We have all heard the term “razor burn” but just what is it? What causes it? Most of all how do we get rid of it if it happens to us? A razor burn can be as soft as a sunburn looking spot on your body where you have shaved, to a severe skin irritation and even infection.
Often razor burns can not even be seen by others, but even if that is true if you ever get a razor burn you will definitely feel the burning sensation. Sometimes you nick or cut the area shaved and it will look like a mild rash. Or you can be one of the people that as a result of shaving you get something known as a razor bump. This is a raised pustule or welt. If you are black or have very kinky hair..the follicles when shaved can get inflamed, this is called Pseudofolliculitis.
Now we will go through the reasons razor rash happens, the symptoms of razor rash and the solutions to preventing it and curing it.
First let us list the reasons why razor rash happens:
- The razor blade is dull or dirty
- You are not using any lubricant or the wrong lubricant for your skin
- You are shaving in the wrong direction-Yes it is important to shave with the growth of hair and not opposite of it.
- When shaving your are pushing down to hard, thinking maybe you will get the hair shaft this way and have a cleaner smoother shave
- You shave too often. Young men and eager women will do this shaving up to 3-4 times a day.
- You are using disposable razors-These are more likely to cause problems
- You have chosen to us a shaving product that has skin irritants in it such as; dye, alcohol and fragrance
- After you shave you cover the area with cologne or heavy with after shave lotions and creams
Symptoms of razor rash:
- Redness of the skin
- bumps in the area where you shaved
- Rashy looking appearance
- Sometimes sores or pustules
The goal in preventing razor burns is to make sure when you shave that you are not shaving anything but the hair off. The following are some steps to take that should lessen the likelihood of getting razor burns:
- Make sure that you skin is healthy-This means clean and care for your skin
- Bathe the area to be shaved prior to shaving with a mild soap
- Use a mild exfoliant-This can be using a loofah, a shower scrubber or even a gentle chemical exfoliant that has salicylic acid in it. This will remove oil, dead skin and dirt and make your skin smooth for the razor.
- Place a warm wet cloth on your face for a few minutes or soften the hair by applying a lotion for a few minutes.
- The last thing that just might be the cure for it is this. The tried and true shaving brush with shaving soap. This brushes the air up, lubricates and allows for a great and close shave with little razor burn chance.
- Do not shave in the wrong direction, always with the hair growth
- Do not pull you skin to tight
- Use new blades, at least every week and rinse the blade often while shaving
- Try using an electric razor
- When you are finished shaving, close the pores up with a piece of ice rubbed on the skin. If you do have sensitive skin you can try cold water or alcohol, but alcohol is very drying.
Solutions and Home Cures for razor burns:
- Stop shaving-Give your skin time to heal and the hair to grow back. Razor burn will go away on its own
- Use mild after shave balm
- Eat a diet rich in vitamin C, this can aid in healing razor burns
If your skin is burning you can:
- Use Aloe Vera
- Use Witch Hazel
- Tree oil creams and sprays
- Use Apple cider vinegar
- Use a paste of two plain aspirins made with water. Leave it on ten minutes and then rinse with warm water.
- Make a mask with aloe vera or strawberries in plain yogurt or sour cream. Leave it on ten minutes and rinse with warm water.
- Apply potato skins to the burns
- When home soothe the burn with petroleum jelly
You have tried all these cures and a hundred others and still you have the problem of razor burn. That is when you look into alternative ways to remove hair from your body. There are many products out there for hair removal, some are: powders, wax, creams, sugar solutions, laser and simply getting a barber to do so with a straight edged razor.