Silky-smooth skin is something we all want for summer, especially when we start rocking those short shorts. Here’s how to prevent nasty ingrown hairs from spoiling your fun in the sun…
Whether you’ve waxed, shaved, depilated or epilated, one thing’s for sure – your aim is to have smooth skin, for as long as possible, right? So there’s nothing worse than going to the trouble of getting fuzz-free, only to suffer from unsightly (and sometimes painful) ingrown hairs a few days/weeks later. The good news though is that ingrown hairs can be treated – prevented even. Here’s how…
ANTI-INGROWN TIP #1: Scrub sooner than you think
While your skin may be slightly sensitive post-hair removal, that doesn’t mean you can forget about exfoliating it until you next decide to go fuzz-free. To help keep your skin smooth and remove any dirt or dead skin residue that may be blocking your follicles, give your skin a gentle scrub three to four days after your hair removal, and continue scrubbing regularly until the next time you shave or wax. We like: Sorbet Sensual Salt Scrub, R44,95, which will effectively slough away dead skin cells and dirt, without being too harsh on your skin.
ANTI-INGROWN TIP #2: Get the closest shave possible
Don’t shave as soon as you hit the shower. Allowing warm water and steam to soften the hair and open up the hair follicles makes it up to 60 percent easier to cut. But like most things, in moderation – after 15 to 20 minutes, water causes your skin to wrinkle and swell slightly, resulting in a shave that’s not as close as you’d like.
When wielding your trust razor, limit your pressure – blades are designed to cut hair across a flat surface. If you press the razor onto your skin, you’ll “dent” the skin, creating an uneven surface, which makes shaving more difficult. Plus, the harder you press, the more likely you are to nick the skin.
ANTI-INGROWN TIP #3: Use an astringent oil
Once you’ve finished getting fuzz-free, your hair follicles will remain open for a while (especially if you’ve waxed, epilated or threaded). So it’s important not to overload your skin with a heavy product as it could clog your follicles, which will cause ingrown hairs later down the line. Your best bet is to invest in a light oil or cream that’s specifically formulated to be used after hair removal, as it will act as a skin soother and astringent in one. Witch hazel is also a good, natural astringent and can help calm the inflammation that occurs after waxing.
ANTI-INGROWN TIP #4: Opt for product over picking
Although it’s pretty tempting to squeeze or pick at an ingrown hair or a pustule, the bacteria that’s transferred from your fingers to your skin can actually increase the infection around your ingrown hair, which is definitely not a good look. Instead, arm yourself with a hard-working ingrown hair eliminator (preferably before you remove your hair) so that if you do get an ingrown, you’re ready to treat it with the right product straight away. We like: Fino Soothe WOMAN and FINO Soothe MAN, R69,95, as it prevents ingrown hair and razor bumps while also helping to relieve itchiness when new hair growth comes through.
One sure way to get rid of ingrown hairs once and for all? Laser – no hair, no unwanted ingrown’s.
Do you suffer from ingrown hairs? What do you do to get rid of them? Are you guilty of picking or squeezing them?