Ingrown hairs are a pain, literally and figuratively. No one likes dealing with them and who can blame you. You likely try to avoid getting one at all but they happen sometimes. Having a plan on how to deal with an ingrown hair before it happens is a great idea. That way you know how to handle it when it comes up.
You might not know how to handle it yet but that’s why we’re here. We want to help you make sure you’re prepared for the bumps in life. The bumps of ingrown hairs are definitely a bump in your life that we can help with. Whether it’s on your legs or in your bikini area there’s a plan to help you out.
Keep reading to figure out what to do the next time you have an ingrown hair. What’s the best way to deal with it? We’ve got all the answers right here.
Related: What To Do Before Shaving
What Causes An Ingrown Hair?
When you shave the hair usually grows back without a problem. The same is true for other methods of hair removal, like waxing. The hair just grows back in. Sometimes, however, hair gets trapped when it’s attempting to grow back. When it gets trapped under your skin it can start to curl under on itself.
When that happens the hair starts to grow inwards. This is how this frustrating part of hair removal gets its name. The hair growing back into the same area it grows out of creates that painful bump and thus you’re doing with an ingrown hair. It’s not a fun thing but you can handle it. That’s why we’re here to help.
How To Treat An Ingrown Hair
- Avoid Hair Removal In that Area. You don’t want to irritate things by doing more shaving. Instead of causing more problems just avoid hair removal in that area until the ingrown hair has been dealt with fully.
- Warm Compresses Help. Place a warm compress on the affected area. You can make one with a warm wash cloth in a Ziploc bag. Just place it over the area for about 15-20 minutes. Heat will help soften the skin and that helps the hair break through.
- Avoid Tight Clothing. Until the hair has broken through the skin and fully healed, you should avoid tight clothing in that area. It’s going to be uncomfortable and it will just make the situation worse because of friction.
- Exfoliate Gently. Use a physical exfoliator on the area. Just make sure you do it gently. Don’t scrub too hard or you’re going to end up being more uncomfortable and could just make the ingrown hair even worse.
- Pull The Hair Out Only If It’s Above Skin. Put the tweezers down. Only pull the hair out if it’s already broken through the skin. Otherwise you could risk getting the ingrown hair area infected.
- Visit Your Doctor For Anything Else. If the area is very painful or not getting better with the above tips, visit your doctor. You don’t want to try and deal with this at home.
What If It’s Infected?
Anytime you suspect that you have an infected ingrown hair it’s time to visit your doctor. They can help you out or refer you to a dermatologist who can help. Don’t try to deal with an infected ingrown hair at home. You can spread the infection to other areas and make it even worse. It’s best to leave this one to the pros.
An ingrown hair doesn’t have to be a disaster. It can be easily dealt with using the above tips. Just make sure you’re visiting your doctor when appropriate. The last thing you want to do is deal with this longer than you have to. Once you’ve got it all figured out the pain will subside and you’ll be back to your wonderful self in no time.
Sarah Nelson is a nurse with 15 years of experience working with a variety of patients. She has a Masters of Science in Nursing and has spent a large portion of her career working exclusively with women in an OB/GYN setting.
Nursing is a passion for Sarah but she also enjoys writing and sharing her expertise online with people who need helpful information. Treating patients well and helping them learn more about their own bodies is a key essential to a healthy lifestyle that Sarah truly believes in.