Anyone can get ingrown hairs, but they’re especially common with curly or coarse hair. Learn what you need to know to prevent them for popping up.
If you’ve ever shaved any part of your body, you may have noticed a bump or two that appeared in that area post-shave. Odds are, those bumps are ingrown hairs
An ingrown hair occurs when a hair that was growing normally curls up and grows back into your skin. While harmless, ingrown hairs can be frustrating to deal with. If they pop up on your face, they can also be embarrassing. Ingrown hairs can show up anywhere, including your face, bikini line, legs or underarms.
What causes ingrown hairs?
These unsightly bumps are usually a result of shaving, waxing or tweezing, which sharpens your hairs. If you have curly or coarse hair, you’re even more prone to them because it’s easier for the hairs to bend back and re-enter your skin.
Another cause of ingrown hairs? Having a dull razor blade, which forces you to shave closer to the skin, irritating the hair follicles further.
How to get rid of ingrown hairs
Normally, ingrown hairs clear up after a few days. The easiest way to avoid them is to stop shaving, waxing or plucking the affected area, but that isn’t always possible. It’s important to consider the following when dealing with ingrown hairs:
- Avoid picking at ingrown hairs, since that could lead to an infection.
- Use a cream made specifically to treat them.
- Consider laser hair removal on an area that is constantly plagued by these bumps.
If the bumps that you see are pus-filled, this may be a sign of folliculitis. This is when the hair follicles become infected and inflamed. You can treat mild cases by dabbing tea tree oil or another mild antiseptic on them. For extreme cases, you should see a doctor, who will probably prescribe antibiotics.
How to prevent ingrown hairs
- Dead skin cells make it much easier for ingrown hairs to occur, so exfoliating your skin can stop hairs from getting stuck in your pores.
- Try opening up your pores with a warm washcloth or water before shaving.
- While you’re shaving, don’t press your razor too close to the skin. Make sure to always use a fresh razor, not a dull one.
- The less blades on the razor, the less irritated that area of skin will get.
While both physically and visually unpleasant, ingrown hairs typically only last a little while. With the proper preparation, you can minimize them. If you suspect your skin condition may be more than just a few ingrown hairs, visit your local Velocity Care Urgent Treatment Center in Little Rock, Arkansas; Shreveport, Louisiana; Bossier City, Louisiana; or Natchitoches, Louisiana, for treatment today.
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