If you’re one of those men who like a clean-shaven look, then shaving is probably the lengthiest part of your shower and shaving routine! We can imagine how that feels. Now, we know that you’ve been shaving all your life, but, can you be absolutely sure that you’re doing it 100% right?
If you get ingrown hairs, you’re probably doing something wrong. You can prevent ingrown hairs and razor bumps while shaving. You just need to learn how to do it, make a few adjustments in your routine and you’ll be good to go. Stick with us to learn how to get rid of ingrown hairs.
What is an ingrown hair?
Ingrown hairs are very common and can occur on any part of the body where you shave. However, it has more chance of occurring on the parts you shave regularly.
An ingrown hair is the sharp tip of the hair which curls back into your skin instead of rising like other hairs. It is usually caused by a hair follicle growing back into the skin instead of rising upwards. This can happen if dead skin clogs the hair follicle. If you’re shaving against the direction of the hair growth, you’re more likely to have ingrown hairs.
If you have coarse and thick hair, then you’re more likely to get ingrown hairs compared to others. But, worry not, you can easily remove ingrown hairs.
What causes ingrown hairs?
Ingrown hairs occur when something prevents the hair follicle from growing in its natural direction, that is, upwards. The most common causes of ingrown hairs include:
- Improper shaving techniques.
- People with curly and coarse hair are more susceptible to ingrown hairs.
- Friction from tight clothing.
- Waxing can also cause ingrown hairs.
- Dead skin build-up.
How to prevent ingrown hairs from growing?
- Shave after you’re done with showering
Do you want to know how to get rid of ingrown hairs? Most of us tend to shave before the shower or during the shower routine. This is a bad habit. When you shave after showering, your skin is cleansed enough for the razor to glide seamlessly. The hot water and the steam can make your skin softer, thus, making it easier to shower. The smooth skin surface will also prevent applying a lot of pressure when you glide the razor on your skin and this will reduce irritation.
If you use an exfoliator while showering, brownie points to you. If you don’t, you should consider getting one. Exfoliation does wonders for your skin.
- Use Shaving Cream
We know a lot of men who prefer dry shaving. But, little do they know that dry shaving will destroy your skin in the long run. Not only will it make your skin coarse, but it is also extremely dangerous. Using a shaving cream or gel acts as a barrier between the skin and the razor, thus, making the shaving process smoother. Applying a generous layer of shaving cream acts as a protective layer and ensures a comfortable shave. If you realize mid-shave that you’re out of shaving cream, here’s what you can use instead.
- Switch to an electric shaver
This is a very effective step while trying to remove ingrown hairs. If you prefer the clean-shaven look, it’s good to invest in an electric shaver. Electric shavers give an ultra-close and smooth shave, thus, preventing any sort of razor bump and reducing the possibility of ingrown hairs. An electric shaver also has an aluminium foil covering over the blade, so, you’re not directly exposed to the blade. Moreover, electric shavers will also prevent nicks cuts. Overall, ensuring the best shaving experience.
- Replace the blades regularly
Wondering how to get rid of ingrown hairs? Replace the blades. Old blades can nick your skin, they tug on the hair and cause irritation. Thus, considering changing out the blades every two weeks or every month, depending on the frequency with which you shave. It is always recommended to change the blade after 5 shaves.
- Consider shaving in the direction of your hair growth
We understand that shaving in the direction of the hair growth can be more lengthy and time-consuming. However, if ingrown hairs are a problem for you, this is what you should consider doing. Although more time-consuming, shaving in the direction of the hair growth gives a smoother shave, preventing ingrown hairs, nicks, cuts, or any sort of skin irritation.
Moisturising is the key to preventing ingrown hairs. The skin tends to become dry and irritated after shaving. Thus, it needs some instant moisturizing to help with the after-effects of shaving. Moisturizing also prevents the skin glands from over-producing sebum which makes your skin oily.
Aftershave products contain alcohol which can irritate your skin and drain it of all its moisture. This is why to prevent and remove ingrown hairs, you should ditch the aftershave lotion and pick up a moisturizer instead.
- Use Acid
The cure and prevention of ingrown hairs is exfoliation. There are a lot of ways in which you can exfoliate, but the best way to do it is to use acid (glycolic, lactic, and salicylic). Exfoliating with acid is also the fastest and the easiest route to exfoliation.
However, keep in mind that using acid can expose you to sun damage. So, don’t forget to follow it up with a good moisturizer, preferably an SPF 50+.
Now that we’ve learned how you can prevent ingrown hairs, let’s see what you can do if you already have one and need to remove ingrown hairs.
Steps to remove ingrown hairs
The best treatment for ingrown hairs is to make sure one doesn’t occur, but, if you’ve already got one, here’s what you can do.
Step 1: Start by using a gentle cleanser followed by an exfoliation agent. Using an exfoliator will remove the dead skin cells and give you a clean, smooth area to work on. Whatever is clogging your skin and hair follicles will clean up after scrubbing. Make sure you use warm to lukewarm water for this.
Step 2: After rinsing your skin, press a warm and moist towel on the area where you have ingrown hairs. This will soften the skin.
Step 3: This is the most crucial step to remove ingrown hairs. Take a sterile tweezer and quickly pluck the ingrown hairs out. This should be done carefully, in a swift but gentle motion.
Step 4: Clean up once again using body wash and warm water.
Step 5: Follow up the above process with toner and moisturizer. Make sure you don’t apply anything that irritates your skin right after. And you’re done it!