Okay, so I know this is kinda a weird, personal subject, but I have been asked about it before so I know I’m not the only person searching for answers! I thought I would just bite the bullet and share with you guys some tips I have for keeping your skin clear of ingrown hair.
Mostly I’m talking in the bikini line because, well, that’s where they occur the most. If you’re a dude, I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say that probably this post doesn’t apply to you. I’m guessing I don’t have a lot of male readers, so we’ll just keep it moving!
How to Reduce Ingrown Hairs
I just want to be clear, also, I am saying “reduce ingrown hairs” because I can’t guarantee that they will go away entirely. I have tried and when I follow the tips I am going to share with you, I definitely see huge improvements but they’re never gone completely. Okay let’s do this!
To wax or to shave?
That is the question, right? I am gonna be real with you, there is no right answer. It really depends of you, your type of hair and what you prefer. I have always, except for a few one-offs, waxed and I prefer it. It doesn’t really hurt at all anymore and my appointment lasts about 1/2 an hour and she does a Brazilian & my eye brows. My esthetician is pretty amazing! Here are some things to think about when considering waxing of shaving.
- Shaving – cheaper, easier, and can do it in the comfort of your own home.
- On the flip side, the hair can grow back relatively quickly and if you have thick coarse hair, you might find you get a lot of ingrown hairs and razor bumps.
- Waxing – is more expensive, you have to make an appointment and can hurt more.
- On the flip side, the hair stays gone anywhere from 2 to 6 weeks depending on the person and once you start waxing, you get used to it.
- Waxing & shaving – they both can cause issues. With shaving it’s razor bumps and burns, with waxing it can be ingrown hairs & even bruising. That’s never happened to me, but I guess it could happen.
- Waxing – if you have certain medical conditions or are taking a certain kind of medicine, waxing could cause your skin to be red or scabby. Always talk to your esthetician about those things.
- On the flip side, some people can be more sensitive to shaving causing and it could dry out or irritate your skin.
All that to say is that you can evaluate the situation and choose the option that works best for you. I am going to try to include tips for waxing & shaving to keep ingrown hairs at bay, but I only wax so I do know more about what has worked for me in that way.
Prep the Skin
There are a few ways you should prep the skin before going into a waxing appointment or shaving. It might take a little bit longer, but this will only help you get better results!
Wether you are waxing or shaving, always exfoliate before you do it. You can simply use your loofa when you’re in the shower or use a full on scrub. If you have more issues you ingrown hairs, I would opt for the scrub to make sure you’re really prepping the skin.
For waxing and shaving, the shorter the hair is, the easier the process will be. For shaving you want to trim low so that you don’t clog up and dull your razor. For waxing, I have found that it hurts less if the hair is a little more under control. You don’t want to trim too low for waxing because the wax needs something to grab on to so it can pull it out!
Now once you’re all prepped, it’s time to get ‘er done. Personally, like I said, I prefer to be waxed. It doesn’t take too long, isn’t too pricey (for me) and I like not having to worry about it for at least 2 weeks and I make another appointment usually every 4 weeks.
For both shaving and waxing, you don’t want to do them too often. For waxing you need the hair to be long enough to grab onto, about 4 weeks should be good. And for both options, the more you do it, the more it could irritate your skin. So every couple days for shaving and every 4 – 6 weeks for waxing and you’re all set.
I think the most important time to take care of ingrown hairs is afterwards. This will definitely determine how your hair grows back and how much you have to deal with those pesky ingrowns or not. I prefer not to, and here are some tips on how I try to keep them away!
Immediately after your skin is very sensitive, especially after waxing. Try a heavy cream or even a cortisone cream over the affected area. Also, it’s a good idea to stay away from tight, restrictive clothing immediately after. Maxi shirts would be a good idea or even go commando if you need to! The rubbing of the material against the skin can irritate and cause more problems than you’d like.
Take a Break
Immediately after you wax or shave, it’s a good idea to stop exfoliating for a bit (less time for shaving). Hair removal is a form of exfoliation and your skin can and will be sensitive afterwards. It’s a good idea to leave it alone for a day or two before you pick back up on the exfoliating. You could just cause more irritation & that’s never a good idea.
After you’ve taken a little break from exfoliating, start it up again! I have found that the more consistent I am with exfoliating after waxing, the less problems I have with ingrown hairs. You can use your loofa or buy a good scrub like this one. If you have more issues with ingrown hairs, I would suggest a scrub before a loofa to really get that dead skin off. You could even make your own like this one if you want!
You definitely don’t want to pick at the stubborn ingrown hairs when they’re not ready to come out, it could cause an infection. However you do want to keep an eye on the hair as it grows in and watch if any are getting stuck under the skin. Grab your tweezers and pluck them out right then and there to eliminate the chance for an ingrown hair! These are my favorite types of tweezers.
Both of these products were made to help get rid of ingrown hairs and it’s a good idea to use them once or twice a day. I would say Tend Skin is the most popular, but I have used No Bump Solution and seen success with it as well. All you do is put a bit on a cotton ball and swab the waxed or shaved area once or twice a day. If you need more help with ingrown hairs, then do it twice a day. If you’re just working on upkeep, once is probably fine. I would highly recommend these!
This might be the hardest tip! I mean, don’t we all have a million other things going on in our lives, lady grooming just doesn’t always hit the top of our list! But you know what, taking care of yourself should hit up there pretty high, so let’s make ourselves a priority. I know I always feel better, even when it’s not swimsuit season, when all that jazz is taken care of.
Bascially, when I have seen the best results it was doing this: waxing consistently once a month, applying No Bump Solution twice a day, exfoliating in the shower and tweezing the problem hairs. I definitely see a steady decrease of ingrown hairs when I am consistent with the basics.
I hope that this post was helpful and informative for you! And not at all awkward… lol! I am going to link to all of the products that I think are best below so you can shop away and be on your way to a smooth, ingrown-free bikini area!
- Tend Skin – $24.40 (on sale!) for 4 oz & a 2.5 roll-on
- No Bump Solution – $6.79
- Tweezers – $23 but so worth it! They’re my favorites!
- Exfoliating gloves –
- Baby Oil – $8.33 – This one has aloe vera & vitamin e which are great for your skin!
- Sea Scrub – $28.00
- Tree Hut Sugar Scrub – $6.49
- Whish Flawless Post-wax serum – $22.50
- Ingrown eliminating pads – $38