10 tips to prevent ingrown hair

By Kumud Patil
Health 10 tips to prevent ingrown hair

Can’t wear those boy-shorts because of unsightly ‘razor’ bumps on your legs? Worry not. We are here to help you. Ingrown hairs are hairs that have curled around and grown back into your skin instead of rising up from it.

They appear as itchy painful red bumps which heal with pigmentation and sometimes scarring. They occur commonly over the face in males and arms, thighs and legs in females.

Anyone can have ingrown hair. However, patients with curly or coarse hair have them more commonly.

Follow these simple tips to get rid of these annoying bumps-

1. Avoid dry shaving
Dry skin facilitates ingrown hairs. When the hair shaft is dry, it’s much harder for your razor to cut, leading to more tugging and pulling. Not only is this uncomfortable, but it also can cause the hair tips to be cut at an angle, making it even easier for the hair to penetrate back into the skin as it grows and increase your risk of a razor bump outbreak.

Always use an alcohol-free, moisturizing shaving cream before razing.

2. Exfoliate your skin once a week.
It removes dead skin cells, sebum, dirt and unclogs the follicular openings which may obstruct the growth of the hair causing them to curl over themselves and produce bumps.

3. Shave with the grain of the hair rather than against it.

4. Go for a less close shave.
Do not pull the skin tight while shaving. This will reduce the chance of a sharp tipped hair poking through the skin when it regrows.

5. Restore the moisture.
Shaving can remove more than just hair – moisture can also be removed, leaving the skin dry, tight and irritated. Use a moisturising after shave product to help replenish moisture in your skin and facial hair after you shave. You can also press a cool cloth on your leg afterward. Cool, light pressure will reduce inflammation, and contract your pores.

6. Wait till the hair are long enough.
Longer leg hair is the surest way to avoid ingrowns. Repeated shaves is close succession will only agitate the irritated sites.

7. Wear loose clothes.
Tight clothing will prevent hair from growing away from the body. For example, skinny jeans will exacerbate the problem on the thigh and calves. Friction is another exacerbating factor.

8. Stop tweezing and waxing.
When the hair is pulled entirely out at the follicle, its tip has to break back through the skin as it grows. This can easily lead to ingrown hairs when the tip fails to break through, or curls back around into the skin. Those with coarse or curly hair are at particular risk. While tweezing and waxing aren’t problematic for everyone, they’re the hair removal methods that are most likely to cause ingrown hairs.

9. Try depilatory creams instead of shaving.

Depilatory creams work to dissolve hair beneath the surface of the skin. Whereas shaving leaves the hair with a sharp tip, these creams do not, potentially mitigating a major irritant for you. The hair still regrows from the root, however, meaning these creams can still cause ingrowths.

10. Laser hair removal helps big time.
Laser your problem areas. The ultimate solution, laser hair removal is an option for those who have chronic issues with ingrown hairs. Treatment inhibits regrowth entirely making sure you never face the embarrassing bumps ever again!

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