Whether you’re looking to stay one step ahead of a receding hairline or you’re just taking a bold new direction, there are many reasons why the bald look can be a stylish, hassle-free, low-maintenance option – and one that’s being sported up and down red carpets by stars like Dwayne Johnson and Tom Hardy.

However, shaving your head is not as simple as getting stuck in with scissors, a razor or clippers (or a combination of all three) and carrying on valiantly until there’s nothing left. Like any form of grooming, there’s a fine art to smoothing off your dome and a careful, one-step-at-a-time approach will ensure the skin you’re unearthing looks as fresh as it can.

Anyone from a seasoned head-shaver to a trepidatious first-timer can always use some shaving tips, so here’s how to make sure going hairless on top brings out the very best in you.

1. Prepare your hair

Firstly, take whatever steps you can to make your hair more cooperative when you come to shave it off. Washing and conditioning hair right before getting rid of it might seem counterproductive but it will make your life easier in about ten minutes’ time – so jump in the shower. You’re not going to shave in there, but clean, damp hair will pull away much more readily. Trim it as short as possible (or cut it if necessary – enjoy the only situation where you can cut your hair yourself without worrying about how it’s going to look).

2. Treat it like any other shave

We don’t mean you should do it bleary-eyed at 6 o’clock in the morning, glancing absent-mindedly at the clock as you inevitably miss patches. But take the same protective measures and care as you do when applying a sharp object to any other area on your body. Apply a generous helping of shaving gel – you’ll be glad of the improved glide and comfort when going in for the shave.

The last thing you want is dull blades, so make sure you’ve got a razor that’s up to the job in this particularly sensitive area – the Wilkinson Sword Xtreme 3 Sensitive Razor should do the trick.

3. Move with care

Once you start shaving (and it will feel odd the first time you do it) ensure that you shave with gentle strokes and only light pressure. Work in different directions – try switching around and shaving against the grain of your hair.

Follow the contours of your head. No two heads are shaped exactly the same, so you need to tailor your shave accordingly. Fold down the tops of your ears as you pass them in order to avoid any nicks .

4. Rinse and repeat

It might be looking swish after the first pass, but there’s always space for a second go in order to really cut the hairs down to size. Rinse your blades thoroughly to get rid of excess shaving gel, hair and dead skin.

Re-apply a fresh layer of shaving gel to your head to help keep razor burn and irritation down to a minimum, and get back to work.

5. Moisturise, moisturise, and moisturise

The most easily skipped step, this might just be the most important part of your shave (apart from, er, the actual shaving). If you’re shaving your head for the first time you’ve just exposed skin that’s not used to being out in the open, so it’s going to be extra-sensitive.

Rinse your head with cold water and towel it down. Then apply a hearty dollop of moisturiser all over your dome – this will not only help you to maintain that fresh, just-shaved feel, it will soothe your skin and help your scalp to stay soft and hydrated. Repeating this final step every day will keep it that way.