BOTTOM LINE: Creams, gels for those seeking a leg up on stubble

It's summertime, otherwise known as the Season of Bare Legs. Time to cast off the socks, tights and stockings. But without these winter cover-ups, our gams are fully exposed, hairy ankles and all. What we wouldn't give for a smooth shave, especially one that leaves skin soft and stubble-free for longer than a day. We asked three testers to shave their legs using these gels and creams. Did they find their summer shaving savior?


Product: Aveeno Positively Smooth shave gel, lightly fragranced, $4.49 for 7 ounces, Walgreens.

Stubble trouble: "I've been using -- and adoring -- Aveeno's Therapeutic Shave Gel (for sensitive skin) for the past few years, so it was a no-brainer to try this new Aveeno product. Although I need to shave my legs only once every five days, I'm prone to those irritating red razor bumps. This brand of shave gel has been the best at minimizing that."

Close shave?: "Lightly fragranced? Are they joking? Though strong, the almond-milk scent is pleasant and will make you crave Chinese almond jello. The gel is incredibly rich and thick, even more so than my standard Aveeno gel."

Smooth moves?: "So did they really end up shaving less often? Maybe I did ditch the razor one day longer. One thing's for sure: It gave an amazingly close shave and spa-silk-soft legs. I'm definitely switching my allegiance -- but at least I'm staying loyal to the brand."


Product: Skintimate Moisturizing shave gel, in Melon Burst, $3.19 for 9.3 ounces, Walgreens.

Stubble trouble: "I'm a hairy monkey. I shave every morning, yet I have stubble before I see my man at night. Maybe I'm not getting a close enough shave with my shower gel?"

Close shave?: "It was easy enough to use, but it was an extra step to my normal routine: I still had to soap up with my shower gel."

Smooth moves?: "A waste of time. A waste of money. My man couldn't tell the difference except that my skin felt rubbery. And I'm still as stubbly as ever."


Product: Davies Gate Warming Shave Cream, in Sugar Plum, $20 for 10.6 ounces, and select Bath & Body Works.

Stubble trouble: "I'm fair-skinned, and I don't appear to be that hirsute. But after one day of not shaving my legs, they become as lethal as a bed of nails. I've tried every shaver. Now I'm willing to try every shaving cream."

Close shave? "I usually use the aerosol stuff that comes in a can, so I was intrigued by this tube-o-cream. The formula smells delish, and there's a nice, warming sensation as you slather it on."

Smooth moves? "The directions indicated I needed to wet my legs but not soak them with water. Which meant I had to shave my legs outside the shower first. It was an annoying extra step I had to take, but I did seem to have a closer shave. I'm sold. But just for date nights."