If you happen to shave your body, you may notice the appearance of small red bumps on it after the shave. Legs and arms have them most of the times. These are called razor bumps.
They may start itching or turning red right after the razor use. They can also take a form of folliculitis when the hair begins to regrow. It causes the appearance of the skin to be rough and inflamed. You may also feel an urge to itch them.
The razor bumps are caused by the friction of the razor. When the razor is pushed to the skin, the resistance from the ingrown hair creates the itchy feeling. The bumps are actually the leftover ingrown hair which is not removed.
These bumps are highly uncomfortable especially when you have to spend the day out. People with sensitive skin or curly hair are more likely to have them. Here are some ways which you can try to prevent the discomforting feeling of razor bumps.
- Leave it for sometime
It may not sound like a real “plan” but the thing is that the skin has its natural healing process. The razor bumps may feel like a burning sensation but leaving it aside is the best way.
Scratching it, again and again, will just make it worse. To prevent the bumps, try to shave less often. Try shaving every other day or just twice a week. Also, using alternative methods such as waxing can delay it for some time.
- Apply a moisturizer
The rubbing creates a dry skin condition which becomes itchy. To prevent
this, apply a moisturizer on your body parts after you finish shaving. For best results, try to find a moisturizer which has no alcohol content
It is better to dry the body after shaving before applying the moisturizer. It will make the moisture of the skin retained and the itching will be far less.
Using a moisturizer which has aloe vera gel or shea butter in it is of extra benefit. Both these ingredients are highly user-friendly. They usually have no allergic reaction caused by them so everyone can use them.
Do not use an extra oily moisturizer because it will block your skin pores. The ingrown hair will remain inside and cause a painful infection. This is called folliculitis which appears like a severe pimple with pus inside.
- Try a cold compress on skin
Usually, the cooling effects of the ice work like magic for all skin allergies. For shaving the legs or arms, using a cold compress provides comfort.
Wet a washcloth with ice cold water. After you finish shaving, apply this soaked cloth on to the skin. It will eventually reduce the redness and bumps within minutes. Also, it feels good and reduces uncomfortable feeling.
- Get rid of ingrown hair
The itching aftershave is caused by ingrown hair. These hair curl back and coil inside the skin if they fail to find a way out. After penetration, the start growing which causes irritation and itching.
To get rid of this ingrown hair, you must exfoliate the skin before shaving it. Not only it will remove all the dead cells but also prevent the coiling of hair deep inside the skin.
It is not a suitable idea to use needles or tweezers to take out the ingrown hair. If you try to pluck this hair, the roots will become open and exposed to bacteria. It eventually turns into folliculitis.
- Home remedies for razor bumps
There are several home based remedies which anyone can try with ease. They soothe the condition and reduce the skin bumps.
For example, an aspirin paste in water can help in this condition. This paste can be made from two uncoated tablets of aspirin and one teaspoon water. You can make as much as your body requires.
Dilute the aspirin in water and apply this paste for about 40-45 minutes. Just like this remedy, other home-based ingredients such as coconut oil, tea tree oil, aloe vera gel, and witch hazel can also provide help.
All of such remedies work but they may not work on you as good as they work for someone else. For this reason, one has to try and find the best working remedy. Try 2-3 remedies before you settle for one.
Don’t forget to do a small allergy test before using a remedy ingredient. Apply a thin layer on your skin, over the razor bumps. Wait for 1-15 minutes and rinse with water. Any redness, inflammation or itching will represent sensitivity.
- Try a topical cream on it
If the razor bumps are so much in number and you feel that they are making you very uncomfortable, you can also try a topical solution.
These topical creams are available over the counter. You don’t need to get a prescription for them. Usually, they are steroidal by nature. They reduce inflammation, redness, and itching.
If these creams don’t work, you might need to see a doctor as soon as possible.
Why do you need a doctor?
The razor bumps are not a serious problem. They come off and on and usually disappear on their own. If the razor bumps are consistently problematic for you and they are not vanishing even after 2-3 days, there may be an infection.
These razor bumps can become very itchy. The person may make these bumps to wounds by continuous scratching. Additionally, they make the appearance of your skin dark and rough.
If you are feeling any of such conditions, it is the right time to go to a doctor. He will give you specific products which will ease the condition.
How to prevent and control them for the future?
Leaving the razor is the probably the most difficult thing for some people. The best way to get rid of them is to avoid razor’s use. For prevention, even with shaving, one has to follow the careful shaving practices that include the following.
- Avoid shaving in a rush.
- Don’t have too much.
- Always wet the skin before shaving.
- It is better to shave with a suitable shaving cream or gel.
- Do not try an old and used the razor.
- Check the skin for sensitivity.
- Do not shave crisscross.
- Do not shave too close to the skin, damaging it.
All these advice are just the tips that one can give. Shave the legs wet, use an exfoliate before shaving. Use a shaving cream an always apply a moisturizer aftershave.
Do not use old razors, especially the used ones. Discard old razor timely and do not use after 4-5 shaves from one razor. Shave in the right direction.