The only thing worse than unwanted hair is razor bumps. Razor bumps, also known as pseudofolliculitis barbae (PFB), are bumps caused by irritation of the hair follicle and surrounding skin. They are caused by the hair either entering the skin before leaving the follicle or curling back into the skin.
Razor bumps can be painful and uncomfortable and lead to self-consciousness. However, there are some things you can do to help keep razor bumps at bay and reduce the frequency and severity of them.
#1: Exfoliate, Exfoliate, Exfoliate
Exfoliation is the key to preventing razor bumps because it removes dead skin and ensures the hair follicles are exposed, lessening the likelihood of razor bumps or ingrown hair. Using either chemical (i.e., glycolic acid, salicylic acid) or physical exfoliation (i.e., granular scrub), rub it onto the skin in small circles and rinse it off before applying your shaving cream or gel. Avoid using a chemical exfoliant on sensitive skin, such as underarms or bikini lines.
#2: Shave in the Direction of Hair Growth
When you shave against the direction of hair growth, you can irritate the skin and shave the hair at an angle, which may increase the likelihood of it curving back into the skin. Be sure not to press too hard and let the razor do most of the work for you.
#3: Use a Shaving Gel or Cream
Once you have exfoliated the skin, it’s time to prepare to shave. Shaving gel or cream forms a protective barrier between the razor and the skin, reducing irritation. Further, it helps the razor glide along the skin and prevents tugging on hairs.
It may also help to apply some cold water or a cold cloth to the area to soothe any inflammation or redness.
Following shaving, the skin may be irritated and dry, so it is imperative to apply a moisturizer within a few minutes of shaving. It will replenish the moisture in the skin and soothe any irritation.
#5: Consider Schedule a Consultation for Laser Hair Removal
If you still have razor bumps after using these methods, it may be time to try a different hair removal approach. Laser hair removal targets the hair follicles directly, preventing hair from growing back and, therefore, helping to prevent razor bumps as well.
Schedule a consultation with Dr. Bucay or Dr. Bhandari today at (210) 692-3000 and learn more about laser hair removal in San Antonio, TX.