Ingrown hairs can be embarrassing and painful. Ingrown hairs are the result of irritation and excessive hair growth and are caused when the hair follicles become clogged and irritated, trapping new hair growth under the skin or when emerged hair growth is irritated and begins to grow back into the skin. Some people are more prone to ingrown hairs than others. Sensitive skin and thick, deep hair growth are the leading causes of ingrown hairs. Ingrown hairs cause painful irritation, redness, swelling and often look like tiny pimples, hence the name "razor burn." In severe cases, ingrown hairs can cause minor scarring. Ingrown hairs on the legs most commonly form on the back and insides of the thighs, under the knees and along the bikini line.
Things You'll Need
- Non-acnegenic shaving gel
- Salicylic acid
- Azulene ointment
- Witch hazel
- Exfoliation gloves
- Body scrub
- Talcum powder
- Soft-bristle face brush
Treat an ingrown hair with products that contain salicylic acid, azulene and/or witch hazel, which will help reduce the redness and swelling. These products also can exfoliate, moisturize and clear clogged pores. Treat freshly shaven areas with these same topical ointments to help prevent ingrown hairs from forming.
Coax the ingrown hair out with a tweezer. Ingrown hairs lie just under the first layer of skin and can be lifted out by gently scraping the skin surface. Carefully lift the ingrown hair, but do not tweeze it. Poking at ingrown hairs will irritate them. Treat the area with an ointment, such as those mentioned in Step 1.
Exfoliate the area every time you wash. Use exfoliating mittens and scrubs that contain gentle exfoliates and salicylic acid. Body scrubs are great for exfoliating, but use the products before shaving and not afterward.
Adjust your shaving technique for areas prone to ingrown hairs. Avoid foam-based shaving creams, and opt for non-acnegenic creams when shaving areas prone to razor burn. Avoid a very close shave by shaving with the hair growth, instead of against it, and do not pull the skin taut or press too firmly on the razor. Too close a shave will create an opportunity for hair to grow back into the skin. When taking a shower, shave last to allow the hair to soften before you shave it. Use a soft-bristle face brush on your legs to lift hair off the skin surface and gently exfoliate the skin before shaving.
Avoid ingrown hair triggers. If you are prone to ingrown hairs on your legs, avoid the things that trigger their growth. Waxing is one of the worst things you can do to sensitive skin. Waxing pulls the hair out at its root, which causes hairs to root more deeply under the skin surface, giving them more time to infect and causing them to become ingrown even deeper in the hair follicle. Do not tweeze or wax areas of your legs that are prone to ingrown hairs.
Prevent ingrown hairs in the summer and when exercising. Ingrown hairs on the legs can be caused by irritation from working out, sweating and thighs rubbing together. In the summer or during a workout, use petroleum jelly, talcum powder or deodorant on the insides and backs of thighs to prevent the irritation caused when your thighs rub together. Wash these products off immediately after a workout or long walk so the hair follicles can breathe again.
Tips & Warnings
- Do not use any product that has alcohol; it will dry the skin and further irritate ingrown hairs.
- Photo Credit hanging legs image by Vladislav Gajic from Fotolia.com
How to Stop Ingrown Leg Hair
Ingrown leg hair can be a painful, unsightly symptom of shaving with a dull or rusty razor. If you are prone to...
Home Remedy for Ingrown Hairs on the Leg
Ingrown hairs on your leg can be a frustrating problem. They can make shaving a painful experience; make the surrounding skin red,...
How to Prevent Ingrown Hair on Thighs & Private Areas
Ingrown hairs are a possible side effect of shaving your pubic region or upper thighs. These areas can get warm and chafed,...
What to do with Leg Zits and Ingrown Hairs
Ingrown hairs and zits are uncomfortable and often unsightly. And while we may expect them to happen from time to time on...
How to Get Rid of Ingrown Hairs on Thighs
Ingrown hairs can be a tough problem to deal with, especially if you frequently get them in sensitive areas like your thighs....
How to Get Rid of an Infected Ingrown Hair
Ingrown hairs can be found on any part of the body that has hair and can happen for different reasons: ... such...
How to Get Rid of Ingrown Hair Scars
How to Get Rid of Ingrown Hair Scars. Ingrown hairs can occur on any area of the body where hair grows, ......