Ingrown hairs are no fun. If you have tried countless of creams and techniques that don’t work, give this a try. So let me get right to the point. How do you get rid of ingrown hairs at home naturally? Exfoliate!
Oh! you say. When it comes to ingrown hair that’s all we hear..exfoliate, exfoliate, exfoliate…but we don’t see results. The key though is WHAT tool you use and WHEN you do it. So i’m going to take you through some easy steps on this effective technique that works for me.
First, you need to understand what ingrown hairs are. Ingrown hairs are hairs that have curled around and grown back into your skin instead of rising up from it and appear to be raised bumps or even like pimples. Some ingrown hairs can even be painful and if you play around with them too much they could get infected. They are not a health concern but aesthetically they are embarassing and can stand out more when you have darker hair. Ingrown hairs are common if you have coarse hair and also very dry skin.
Over the years I have tried everything from loofahs, scrubs, body brushes, cellulose sponges, to wash cloths and spent money on products like Tend Skin and nothing really seemed to make it go away. Ingrown hairs can appear anywhere and on men it can be a problem on the face. For me, it’s mainly a problem on my legs so it’s a bit more manageable. Also, as always, please remember that when it comes to your body, you know best. So if you find my technique is irritating your skin and is causing pain then please stop.
What you’ll need:
- Atleast 10 minutes a day and some patience.
- A bath gove like below. My favourite is from the Body Shop as it’s not that expensive and great quality (a pair for $5 CDN). You can find some at dollarama too which I have used before, but I find the texture of these far superior to the dollarama ones and last longer.
Before you exfoliate?
- General rule is you exfoliate every couple of days as doing it every day can irritate your skin. Now if you’re doing this for areas like legs or arms and your skin is not very sensitive you can exfoliate every day given that you moisturize well.
- My skin is very dry and I know it can take a bit of scrubbing so I do this on my legs every day and some times even twice a day.
- Typically people exfoliate in the shower. This is fine for general purposes, but for getting rid of ingrown hairs you need to do this when your skin is DRY.
- Remember, the purpose of exfoliating here is to get rid of your DRY skin so that any ingrown hair underneath can slowly start to come out.
- The technique below is for your legs as this is a common problem for a lot of women. Feel free to adjust it for other body parts and remember sensitive skin needs a little less scrubbing :).
If you wax your hair (the best way to remove hair to minimize ingrown hairs) then don’t do this immediately after or before waxing. Depending on your growth cycle, start the exfoliation about 2 weeks before you think you will need a wax to get a good start on it.
So how to do it?
- First, BEFORE you shower, while your skin is dry, put on your bath glove and find a comfortable place to sit or put your legs up on a stool.
- Now start rubbing the bath glove on your skin in gentle circular motions.
- Once you start getting the hang of it start rubbing it a little more harder and cover larger areas.
- Do not, and I repeat, DO NOT simply rub it up and down your legs as it’s not very effective. Think of this as you buffing away at your skin and removing the dead skin layer (you can see whitish dry skin come off and even small tiny hairs start to lift off your skin if you’re doing a good job).
- Start with small patches, especially in your problem areas and cover the whole leg. This can take up to 10 minutes, hence you need to find a comfortable position instead of just standing. It will literally look like you’re buffing and sanding your skin.
- Now take a shower (not too hot as it will irritate the exfoliated areas) and while your skin is slightly damp apply loads of moisturizer. It doesn’t matter what type but slather it on.
Another option is to do this at night.
- Exfoliate with the bath glove as mentioned above.
- Wash your legs or have a quick shower and moisturize. You have to wet the skin and soften it after you do the dry exfoliation.
On the day of your waxing session stop the exfoliation as you might irritiate the skin more. After your wax, try not to exfoliate for a week as you don’t want to irritate your skin and also don’t want to cause the little hairs to come out faster right away.
You will notice a huge improvement right after waxing if you had been exfoliating for about 2 weeks as the hair that would typically stay under the skin would now come out. Do this patiently again a week after your next hair removal session and you’ll notice your ingrown hairs become considerably less. You have to realize that this is not a one-time technique. With practice you’ll start to spend less time exfoliating and it will become a habit. The more you exfoliate, especially before your next hair removal, more of the dead skin will fall out and reveal the small hairs that would otherwise get stuck under your skin.
Remember, you don’t need to spend money to get results. This simple exfoliating technique will help to get rid of ingrown hairs. If you have more several ingrown hairs that tend to get infected, you may want to consult with your doctor and get topical creams as exfoliating it might not help and might irritate the skin.
To sum up the steps all you have to remember is: Exfoliate while skin is dry, wet the skin, moisturize.