No one likes to get razor bumps. They’re unsightly, they can be painful and even after they heal, they can leave scars behind. Prevention is of course better than cure but if you’re prone to skin irritation, you may be looking for the best treatments for razor bumps. Thankfully, there are several options which can help.
It is helpful to know just what causes razor bumps. They occur when hair strands curl back on themselves and grow into the skin after hair removal. They can be caused by shaving, waxing or plucking. The irritated skin becomes a raised bump or group of bumps which can look similar to pimples. Some ingrown hairs can also be painful sores. Razor bumps are most common in people with tightly curled or coarse hair strands but virtually anyone can get them. If you have them, you’ll want to get rid of them quickly.
So, what are the best treatments for razor bumps? Many ingrown hairs go away on their own but in some cases, you may need special skin creams to help the process along. What works for one person may not work for another so you may have to do some experimenting.
Ingrown hairs can become infected especially if you pick at them. If this occurs, visit your doctor and he or she may use a sterile needle or scalpel to release the hair from the bump. A medical professional may also prescribe steroids to reduce swelling and irritation, retinoids to exfoliate the skin and reduce discoloration or antibiotics to treat infection.
There are also some things you can do at home. One of the best treatments for razor bumps is to simply stop shaving. Putting down the razor for about three days gives your skin a chance to heal. If you always get razor bumps you may want to try another form of hair removal such as depilatory creams or laser treatments for a more permanent solution. Hair removal creams, electrolysis and laser treatment do not usually cause ingrown hairs.
The treatments you can try to reduce razor bumps include applying warm compresses to the area to reduce their size and help kill germs. If the bumps are in the bikini area, be sure to wear breathable underwear that’s not too tight since bacteria and sweat can make the problem worse. Commercial products containing witch hazel or salicylic acid can also help along with good old-fashioned cornstarch, aloe vera or tea tree oil.
Preventing Razor Bumps
Ultimately, the best treatment for razor bumps is to prevent the bumps in the first place. This starts with properly preparing the skin for hair removal. You need to make sure the area you are going to shave is soft and moist by getting it thoroughly wet with warm water. You should then shave using a thick gel or cream which will protect your skin and allow the razor to glide easily. Be careful not to stretch the hair as you shave.
You may need to try a few different razors before you find the one that’s perfect for you. Under no circumstances should you use dirty or dull razors. These can cut your skin and introduce harmful bacteria.
The bikini area can be especially sensitive and a proper shaving technique is especially important here. You should shave this area first when the razor is at its sharpest before moving on to less sensitive area like the legs. Make sure you shave in the direction of hair growth since going against the grain will make the hair more likely to curl back onto itself when it regrows.
The best treatment for razor bumps is whatever you find works best for you. If you already have some irritation, give the skin a chance to heal. When you resume shaving again, make sure you use a proper technique and follow up with an aftershave. This will prevent the occurrence of bumps. If you still get some irritation, use one of the treatments mentioned above for quick relief.