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.

Razor burn is that irritating, red rash that occurs on the surface of your skin shortly after shaving. We’ve all been there. Other symptoms can include tenderness, pain, a temporary texture change, a burning sensation, swelling and itching. Although this annoying condition will often go away on its own, it can reoccur any time you shave. So, I reached out to the nation’s leading aesthetic experts to learn ways to prevent and treat razor burn!

Avoid Dull Razors
“Even though it might seem counterintuitive at first, only shaving your legs in the direction of hair growth will make a huge difference in preventing razor burn,” finds dermatologist Dr. Shaheen Khosla. “Also always use a clean razor that does not tug or pull and change your blade frequently to ensure it’s not dull. All too often female patients who experience razor burn on their legs are using old razors that have been sitting in the shower and they shave against the grain. So new razors blades and proper technique can make a huge difference!”

Get Steamy
“The average man will shave his face more than 10,000 times in his lifetime so razor burn is a huge issue in the male population,” says plastic surgeon Dr. Gaurav Bharti. “The key to preventing facial razor burn is to take a nice hot shower, apply a high quality shaving cream and use short strokes in the same direction as the hair. Afterwards aggressively moisturize afterwards with a high quality moisturizer formulated with emollients like SkinMedica’s Rejuvenating Hydrator.”

Exfoliation Is Key
One of the tricks to preventing razor burn is to very gently massage the area with an exfoliating wash as soon as you finish shaving,” suggests dermatologist Dr. Amy Spizuoco. “This will free up the hair follicles and make sure they don’t get trapped under the surface of the skin. A highly quality moisturizer should always be a strong consideration as well!”

Then Cool Off
“A cool soak can help soothe the hot, burning sensation that occasionally accompanies razor burn,” finds aesthetic registered nurse Corey Ordoyne. “Get relief from that irritation with a daily, fifteen minute bath filled with colloidal oatmeal from Aveeno. It works wonders on skin suffering from razor burn!”

“If the itching and irritation from razor burn is causing a distraction then you can use some over-the-counter products to relieve it pretty easily,” advises aesthetic nurse practitioner Emily Perbellini. “I recommend taking a 50/50 mixture of Vaseline and 1% hydrocortisone cream and applying a small amount twice a day for two days. It will typically minimize, if not completely eliminate, the discomfort associated with razor burn!”

Treat Problem Areas
“If you have tender or painful skin after shaving, or red bumps that take a long time to heal, then you might actually have a mild bacterial infection associated with razor burn,” notes dermatologist Dr. Tejas Desai. “These types of minor infections are typically mild and heal on their own but if they persist or are common then you might want to make an appointment with a dermatologist for an assessment. Occasionally serious infections can accompany razor burn.”

Consider Laser Removal
“Clearly the best way to prevent razor burn is not to shave!” says dermatologist Dr. Deanne Mraz Robinson. “Laser hair removal is the gold standard means by which to remove hair in a permanent fashion. My favorite laser device is the Cynosure Elite iQ; it has the best two wavelengths to safely target hair in all skin types so you never have to shave again!”

“Intimate areas have extremely sensitive skin and are thus prone to easily developing razor burn. And that’s uncomfortable and embarrassing!” adds dermatologist Dr. Angie Koriakos. “My recommendation for preventing razor burn in intimate areas is to target the source of the actual problem and knock it out with laser hair removal. It is truly life changing for so many patients who want smooth, hairless skin in the private regions!

So there you have it! Soothe razor burn by following these tips from the leading aesthetic providers and prevent razor burn by using new razors and shaving in only one direction. If all else fails, consider laser hair removal so that you never have to shave again!