Hair bumps, more commonly called razor burn, affect men and women. These bumps can ruin the look of smooth legs, underarms or a face. These bumps are difficult to eliminate because every time a razor is run across the skin, the skin irritation returns. There are ways to prevent the bumps and several home remedies and tips to help if the bumps do develop.
Hair bumps are caused by ingrown hairs created by shaving. The bumps usually vanish after a few hours or days, but they may cause a raised welt or pustule. The bumps can become infected.
To prevent hair bumps, soften your skin and hair with warm water. The best time to shave is right after a shower or bath. Use a shaving cream, not soap. Be thorough when you apply the cream. Shave in the direction of the hair growth; this helps hair come out more smoothly. Shave the easiest areas first: cheeks, neck, calves. Don’t stretch the skin as you shave, and rinse the razor every time you finish using it. Replace the blades often. Use a blade three to four times before replacing it. Try a shaving oil. Using the oil first can help moisturize skin, soften hair and reduce the number of bumps that appear.
You can also stop shaving for a while and give your skin and hair a rest. Try using an electric razor, which is easier on the skin. Also, reduce your use of after-shave and cologne, which can dry and irritate skin.
Use a soft touch when shaving. Pressing too hard can cause excess friction and lead to razor burn. Moisturize the shaved area when you’re finished shaving.
If you do have an ingrown hair, take a needle, sterilize it in alcohol and gently slide it under the hair to lift it. Never pick or squeeze a hair bump. To stop the burning feeling that can accompany razor burn, dissolve two uncoated aspirin in a teaspoon of warm water. Mix this into a paste and put the paste on the shaved area. Leave it for a few minutes and then rinse off. Try mashing two strawberries and mixing with a spoonful of sour cream. Put this balm on the shaved skin and leave it for 10 minutes. Use this ointment twice a week to stop razor burn. Other remedies to relieve bumps are witch hazel, aloe vera and benzoyl peroxide. Try eating foods rich in vitamin C to help heal skin.