What Are Ingrown Hairs, And How Can You Prevent Them?

man wearing a suit and glasses with a styled beard

Ingrown hairs can be unpleasant and unsightly. They can become infected and leave scars, and they always seem to crop up at the worst of times- like just before you go on holiday or to that important interview! In men, they're common on the face but in men and women can occur anywhere on the body that hair grows. Ingrown hairs continue to grow but instead of popping out of the skin they coil back inwards, not something that anyone wants to have to deal with! Certain hair types tend to suffer with these more than others, so if you get recurring ingrown hairs it could be due to this. However there are a few more reasons too. Read on to find out more. 

Dealing with ingrown hair can be quite simple. The first thing to bear in mind is that prevention is better than cure, and you can prevent them by using sharp blades to shave. Brands like Bearded Colonel make it easy by bringing sharp razors right to your door, you can choose a subscription that suits you. Having them delivered when you need them prevents you from being stuck with dull blades, which are well known to cause ingrown hairs. When it comes to shaving, other things to remember is that you should always wet your skin with warm water before shaving any part of your body, and use a lubricating gel to shave with. This prevents friction and ensures a very close cut to the skin. A clean cut through the hair close to the skin means it's less likely to coil over and cause issues when it grows back.

Another way to deal with ingrown hair is to go to the doctor, particularly if it's is very painful or has become infected. They will prick or slice into the pimple which will release the hair. As all of their tools will be sterile there's no risk of making things worse and they'll use techniques to prevent scarring. If you're going to attempt this yourself, proceed with caution. Steam your face first to open the pores, and use tweezers which have been sterilised in boiling water and rubbing alcohol. Rubbing your face in a circular motion with a hot towel each day can help to tease out stubborn ingrown hairs, and this has no risk of pain or infection- just don't rub your skin until it's sore!

Treat ingrown hairs with caution. Don't hurt, scar or infect yourself trying to remove them and do seek medical help if you need it. But do what you can to prevent them in the first place. Shaving is always going to be a bit of a chore- for men and women. But take your time and prepare beforehand to avoid issues like cuts, razor burn and ingrown hair. 

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