Frizz, razor burn, sunburn, sweat — an active summer lifestyle brings with a whole slew of not-so-fun beauty issues. Perhaps the worst of all: Ingrown hairs. Red bumps in your bikini area can be itchy, uncomfortable, and embarrassing. We reached out to New York hair removal expert, Taylor Gordy, Senior Specialist at Spruce & Bond, to find out how to prevent and deal with ingrown hairs.
What causes ingrown hairs?
Ingrown hairs are primarily caused from shaving, or when the hair has been cut bluntly, causing the hair to curl around under the skin instead of breaking through. Shaving is the leading cause of ingrown hairs. However, waxing may cause ingrown hairs to form as well, especially if the wax is not formulated well to grip only the hair to avoid trauma to the skin.
Are any hair or skin types more prone to getting them?
People with coarse and curly hair tend to have more ingrown hairs, naturally. But we can all get them from time to time. Regular maintenance is part of any healthy skin and hair regime.
Once you discover ingrown hairs what can you do to remove them or help the affected area?
I always advise my clients against picking or trying to remove the hair themselves. Come in for an appointment and leave it to a professional. However in some cases the hair may be visible on the surface of the skin and may be easily removed with a sterile needle point tweezer.
Is there anything you can do quickly to remove them if you have a beach day/big event coming up?
Razor bumps and ingrowns can be a real pain especially when a beach day is involved! There is really no instant fix, unless the hair is visible and can be removed easily. Consistent waxing every 4-6 weeks will allow the hair to become more fine and grow through the skin more easily, preventing these little less-than-ideal moments from happening. Exfoliating the bikini area 2-3 times a week is key to beautiful skin.
Are there in-salon treatments that can help?
My clients always ask me “how can I get rid of all this irritation and ingrowns!?” Laser! Laser is your best friend. If you’re a candidate, the laser will penetrate into the follicle, closing down the root system, over time allowing your skin to regenerate. No more of those pesky ingrowns !
What can you do to prevent ingrown hairs in the future?
The most permanent always-smooth solution is laser. But for those of us who aren’t candidates or who prefer our other methods, say goodbye to your razor and switch to waxing only. Razors cut the hair at the surface of the skin, causing the hair to grow unevenly and the hair is unable to break through the surface naturally. Regular waxing will reduce the coarseness of your hair and will eventually lead to a softer smoother result.