Removing unwanted hair is a common beauty practice. And sometimes, whether it is your bikini line, legs, or armpits, the fastest way to remove hair in a pinch is to shave it off. While the practice is primarily safe and effective, you may experience some unwanted side effects from shaving. Side effects include razor burn, razor bumps, and dreaded ingrown hairs.
The Downsides of Shaving
Razor Burn – Razor burn is redness or irritation that occurs after shaving. This is very common if you practice dry shaving without shaving cream, soap, or water. Razor burn can cause a rash, redness, itchiness, a burning sensation, swelling, and tenderness around the affected area. Clearly, you do not want to be scratching the irritated areas since shaving can introduce micro-cuts to the surface of your skin. If you scratch the irritated area, you are inviting bacteria and germs into your skin through these micro-cuts.
Razor Bumps – Sometimes razor burn and razor bumps are confused with one another. One primary distinction between the two is that ingrown hairs cause razor bumps. Basically, when the hair you removed grows back at an angle, it can get trapped under the skin. Symptoms of razor bumps include red bumps, itchiness, rash, swelling, and tenderness.
Ingrown Hairs – Yes, ingrown hairs and razor bumps are the same! And both are things you want to avoid as much as possible. Ingrown hairs can continue to grow under the skin’s surface, causing painful bumps that swell as the hair grows.
How to Avoid Razor Burn
If you are wondering what prevents razor burn, the answer is quite simple: good hair removal habits. For example, you may want to exfoliate your skin before shaving to remove dead skin cells. Better yet, shave after your shower when your hair is soft.
Avoid dry shaving at all costs. Your skin requires some lubrication for shaving to be done safely. This also means washing your razor blade with water during the shaving process. You do not want your razor clogged with hair, soap, or shaving cream. Also, shave with light and short strokes, but not too quickly. Shaving against the direction of your hair may cause razor burn.
Keep your razor sharp and change your blades as needed, about every five to seven shaves. When you are done shaving, use cold water to wash your skin or a clean washcloth soaked in cold water. Pat, do not rub the area dry.
Tips for Treating Razor Burn
What if you’re already suffering from razor burn? What can you do to alleviate your symptoms? Consider trying the following:
- Try not to touch unless you are administering treatment or re-shave the affected area during active razor burn or inflammation. You might make your symptoms worse!
- Apply a cool compress to the affected area. The coolness will ease the inflammation and irritation while helping prevent the urge to scratch the area.
- Moisturize with natural oils such as coconut, avocado, or virgin olive oil. Applying a small amount to the affected area can help your skin settle down and heal.
- Use a baking soda mixture to treat your razor burn. Simply mix a cup of water with a tablespoon of baking soda and apply it to the affected area. Once the solution dries, rinse it off.
- An oatmeal bath is another option, thanks to its anti-inflammatory components. You can purchase an oatmeal bath product or add actual oatmeal to a tub of warm water. This treatment option is preferable for anyone suffering from razor burn in the bikini line/public area.
Ultimately razor burn should clear up in a few days.
How to Stop Razor Bumps and Ingrown Hairs
Following similar practices above will help stop razor bumps and ingrown hairs, but you can take a few additional measures.
- Try hydrocortisone cream – This topical steroid can reduce inflammation and help eliminate those pesky razor bumps.
- Stock up on aloe vera – It is not just for intense sunburns. The soothing properties of aloe vera can stop razor bumps and ingrown hair symptoms in their tracks.
- Tea tree oil is a natural wonder – No, really! All you need to do is mix ten or so drops with warm water or a carrier oil such as coconut oil and place it on the affected area. Tea tree oil can open your pores and loosen ingrown hairs while soothing your skin. Just make sure you never apply tea tree oil on its own onto your skin, for it may burn or sting without a carrier oil.
- Keep your skin moisturized – Keeping your skin moisturized between shaves makes you less likely to encounter razor bumps and ingrown hairs. Be sure to choose the right moisturizer for your skin type.
How to Avoid Razor Bumps
If you want to avoid razor bumps and ingrown hairs altogether, make sure you take your time while shaving. A rushed job means a better chance you’ll trigger razor bumps. Try not to go over the same skin area more than once and shave in the direction hair grows.
You may also want to consider laser hair removal. This treatment will reduce, if not eliminate, your need for shaving, helping you prevent razor burn and razor bumps. With laser hair removal, you can enjoy long-lasting hair reduction and removal of unwanted hair, smooth and radiant skin, and a proven treatment option to help you avoid ingrown hairs.
Forever Bare BBL™ is a safe, fast, efficacious, and comfortable treatment. This specialized treatment keeps the skin protected by providing energy in multiple bursts instead of all at once and progressively raises the follicle temperature to the therapeutic level for hair removal. The state-of-the-art technology allows for extremely even heating of the hair follicles while minimizing missed areas with traditional hair removal devices. A series of treatments is required for maximum results.
Curious about how it works? Forever Bare BBL exposes the skin to pulses of laser light at a very high frequency. These frequencies are absorbed by the pigment (melanin) in the hair. The light energy is then converted to heat, damaging the hair follicles so they can no longer produce hair. As the area is treated, a thermoelectrically cooled sapphire plate on the handpiece keeps the skin cool throughout the procedure, thus reducing pain or discomfort. Once the hair follicles are damaged, the hair will naturally fall out. No razor burn or bumps.
Dare to be Bare
Body hair maintenance is just another task you may do to feel like your most beautiful and authentic self. But you do not have to suffer from razor burn or razor bumps as a result. Instead, make sure you take extra care before, during, and after shaving to keep your skin healthy and not irritated. If you’re ready to try laser hair removal, book a consultation at First Impressions Rejuvenation Clinic. The expert staff members are ready to address your body hair maintenance needs. Whether you’re looking for a new moisturizer or want to learn more about laser hair removal, the team at First Impressions should be your first stop.
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