Ingrown hair is a condition where hair curls back or grows sideways into the skin. The condition is most prevalent among people who have coarse or curly hair. It may or may not be accompanied by an infection of the hair follicle or “razor bumps” (pseudofolliculitis barbae), which vary in size. While ingrown hair most commonly appears in areas where the skin is shaved or waxed (beard, legs, pubic region), it can appear anywhere. Anything which causes the hair to be broken off unevenly with a sharp tip can cause ingrown hairs.
Use gentle products Whether it’s the skin on your face or the skin on your body, avoid using products that have a high alcohol content or are overly drying. If your cleanser, soap, or body wash makes your skin feel tight after rinsing, switch to a gentler product. When your skin is dry, It amplifies skin irritation and can worsen any ingrown hairs you already have. Also, avoid using water that is too hot because it can be both irritating and drying.
Exfoliate and moisturize daily Exfoliating your skin (either with a BHA body wash, a loofah, or dry skin brushing) will help your skin cells shed faster, prevent dead skin cells from building up, and keep hair follicles clear. Moisturizing will keep your skin soft and smooth and it will encourage hair to push through your skin instead of curling back inwards. Cocoa butter or shea butter is great for moisturizing body skin. Using a treatment (see below) daily, even if you don’t have current ingrown hairs, will also prevent you from getting them in the future.
Salt works as a great exfoliating agent and at the same time helps increase circulation, promote healing and reduce swelling.
- Mix one and one-half teaspoons of table salt in one cup of lukewarm water.
- Dip a cotton ball in the mixture and gently rub it over the affected skin.
- Leave it on for a few minutes and then rinse it off with water.
- Do this twice daily until the ingrown hair clears up.
Note: Do not use this remedy if your skin gets red or irritated.
Sugar is a great skin scrub that can help get rid of ingrown hair. It gently exfoliates the skin, removing dead cells and helping the ingrown hair come out of the skin. Plus, it will make your skin silky smooth.
- Mix one cup of white sugar with one-half cup of extra-virgin olive oil or jojoba oil.
- Stir in 10 drops each of tea tree oil and lavender essential oil.
- Apply a small amount of this homemade scrub on the affected area.
- Gently scrub the skin in circular motions for a few minutes. Then rinse it off with lukewarm water.
- Follow this remedy once or twice a week as needed.
You can store the remaining scrub in an airtight container for future use.
Cucumbers have hydrating and anti-inflammatory properties that effectively deal with the irritating symptoms of ingrown hair. Plus, cucumbers contain vitamins C and helps relieve pain and itchiness.
- Put fresh cucumber slices in the refrigerator for half an hour. Gently rub the chilled cucumber slices on the affected area. Do this several times daily for several days.
- Make puree of half a cucumber. Mix in one-third cup of milk. Put the mixture in the refrigerator for a few minutes until it is cold. Soak a cloth in the mixture and apply it to the irritated area for a few minutes. Then rinse it off with lukewarm water. Follow this remedy twice daily for a few days until your condition improves.
If these home remedies do not give you the desired results or if an ingrown hair has become infected, consult a doctor for proper treatment.