Razor bumps are small, painful spots on the skin, which develop after shaving. Also known as ingrown hair, folliculitis, or barber's itch, these bumps stay for one to two days.
The agony of shaving to look neat and tidy but ending up with a cluster of razor bumps is common among many people. Ending up with exactly the opposite of what you were aiming for, can make you want to pull the hair off your head. The condition develops when hair gets trapped inside the follicle or grows back into the skin.
These bumps mostly appear red and inflamed, and are commonly misunderstood as acne. They also cause itching and swelling. The problem occurs when the razor used is blunt, or old.
Sometimes, lack of knowledge about proper shaving method can also cause these painful bumps. Men experience this condition mainly on the face, while in women they develop on the arms and the legs. There are many home remedies that can be used to reduce the pain and redness caused by these bumps, and also certain tips that can prevent them from developing.
Razor bumps may cause infection and scarring in rare cases. Though there is no miraculous overnight treatment, these tips will help them heal faster than they usually do
Several lotions have been developed specially for these bumps. They are hypo-allergenic in nature and are, therefore, useful when applied immediately after shaving. Apart from this, you may also use a mild, unscented moisturizing lotion to soothe the irritation and pain caused by this condition.
For men, use of a cleanser to wash the face everyday can help them get rid of razor bumps.
Applying some cornstarch on the affected area for 20 minutes, followed by rinsing it off with cold water, is also an effective home remedy.
Using an ice pack or cold water on the affected area will reduce the inflammation and itching.
Do not try to squeeze out the ingrown hair as it will only aggravate the condition.
Rubbing an astringent that contains alcohol, or an antiseptic solution after shaving helps reduce the possibility of an infection.
Use of a cucumber and milk mask is also a good remedy to clear those razor bumps. To prepare this mask, add ½ a pureed cucumber to ¼ cup of milk, and cool it in the refrigerator. Apply this solution on the affected area with cotton and rinse after a few minutes.
Aloe vera gel is known to soothe itchy and irritated skin. Application of this gel twice a day helps in attaining clear and blemish-free skin.
Apart from these remedies, allow the bumps to heal before attacking them with a razor again.
Prevention is better than cure, therefore instead of finding methods to get rid of them, here are some methods to prevent its development.
The most important rule of shaving is to shave in the direction of hair growth and not in any other direction. This will leave the skin smooth after shaving.
Moisturizing the skin after shaving is a must to stimulate the follicles and encourage the hair to grow out and not beneath the skin.
Avoid using old razors as they are blunt and don't function effectively.
Ideally, women must avoid shaving. Instead, they should try safe hair-removing creams. These soften the hair and gently remove them, thus, preventing the harsh effects of shaving. Also, these creams contain moisturizers that are essential for the skin. These creams leave little possibility for the appearance of razor bumps or ingrown hair.
Before shaving, soften the hair by washing the area with warm water thoroughly. This will make the skin soft and prevent the occurrence of razor bumps.
These aforementioned techniques should definitely help you prevent and treat the bumps, and help you attain smooth, clear skin.