Welcome to your skin check-in with Life & Style’s resident health and beauty expert, Dr. Will Kirby, a celebrity dermatologist and Chief Medical Officer of LaserAway. Every week, he’ll be spilling his candid thoughts and professional advice on all things skin, beauty and wellness as it relates to you — and your favorite stars.
So, you just shaved and now you’re dealing with itchy, red, raised and occasionally painful bumps. What are they, how do you treat them, and how can you prevent them in the future? I sat down with the nation’s leading dermatologists to find out!
Identifying Ingrown Hairs
“These annoying and embarrassing skin pimples are simply ingrown hairs,” says dermatologist Dr. Annie Chiu. “They can appear anywhere that hair grows but they are more commonly observed in people who have thick, dense hair.”
“Ingrown hairs are easily identifiable,” dermatologist Dr. Michelle Henry adds. “They are located in the area that was just recently shaved or waxed and you can occasionally see embedded hairs or even small pustules.”
Treatment of Ingrown Hairs
“Treatment of ingrown hair options include warm compresses, topical prescription anti-inflammatory creams, and gentle topical exfoliants like Skin Medica’s AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser,” says Dr. Deanne Mraz Robinson. “I love exfoliants as a treatment option too. Try Tatcha Rice Polish,” adds Dr. Chiu.
Prevention of Ingrown Hairs
“Prevention of ingrown hairs comes in many forms,” says Dr. Henry. “The single best way to prevent them is by implementing proper shaving techniques so that the hair never gets underneath the skin’s surface. So, lubricate the skin by utilizing shaving cream or gel, only make one pass with the razor when shaving, don’t pull the skin taut, and always shave in the direction that the hair grows in.”
“The use of fresh, clean razor blades are also helpful in preventing ingrown hairs, Dr. Chiu advises. “So, also don’t leave your razors in the shower where they get dull and rusty.” Dr. Henry adds, “Oh, and single blade razors are better than multiple blade razors,”
“I tell patients that the best way to prevent ingrown hairs is to have no hair to shave!” dermatologist Dr. Mraz Robinson says. “Just get laser hair removal! It’s easy, quick, and after just a few treatments any remaining hair will be thin, fine and less dense … or gone altogether! I recommend getting treatments with the Cynosure Elite IQ as it has gold standard technology and is fast and safe for all skin types.”