How to banish ingrown hairs!

Ingrown hairs can be quite common for those that wax. They can look like tiny little circles of hair under a microfine layer of skin cells, or they might be straight hairs trapped under the skin, or in extreme cases they could be huge lumps with a pustule or boil.

The reason we can get ingrown hairs after waxing is that when you pull the hair out from the root it takes weeks to grow back and in that time not only can dead skin cells and debris build up and clog the follicle, but a fine layer of skin will have also grown over the follicle opening meaning that the hair will have to break through it to get to the surface.

But you can help reduce and even eliminate ingrown hairs by following these simple steps;

Exfoliate, exfoliate, exfoliate!

Exfoliating is the first step to stopping the build up of dead skin. There are a number of ways you can exfoliate, from a grainy body scrub, an exfoliating brush or washcloth, or a chemical exfoliant.

Body scrubs usually have ground up pumice, fruit kernels, seeds, salt or sugar grains which slough off dead skin cells. You massage well into wet skin then rinse off leaving your skin polished and smooth. I love Eve Taylor Exfoliating Mousse (£12.50, 180g), it leaves your skin SO soft and moisturised and smells amazing. 🤌🏼

A Bit Of Rough Exfoliating Washcloths (£8) are SO EASY to use for a daily scrub up. Just scrunch up and use with your normal shower gel to give yourself a good all over scrub and cleanse at the same time. So quick and easy, and machine washable. They even open out so you can hold them around your back for easy back exfoliation too.

You could also use a Dry Body Brush before your shower, sweep the brush in upward motions towards your heart to get your circulation going and to lift any loose dead skin sitting on the surface. In addition to this, a dry body brush is great for mobilising toxin build up, which would really help if you have areas of stubborn cellulite that you’re trying to smooth out.

Whilst the above methods of exfoliation are all effective, if you’re suffering with red and inflamed ingrown hairs that can be sore to touch, you’re going to want to read on…

Chemical exfoliants have a resurfacing action on the skin without the use of a physical grain or scrub. Usually using ingredients such as salicylic acid, glycolic acid or retinol to name but a few, they are very quick and easy to use on dry skin without the need to have a shower, so you can easily reapply throughout the day.

My recommended product is Aloe Clear, containing two of the superstar ingredients mentioned above. Salicylic acid which is known as the number one AHA for spotty skin conditions due to its exfoliating and anti inflammatory action, so will help reduce any swelling and redness whilst also clearing out any debris from the follicle. And Glycolic Acid which is also an exfoliating and resurfacing acid, and a study from 2018 reported anti bacterial properties too. There is also an extra strength product available, Aloe Clear Ultra, a stronger formulation for those who suffer with continual and persistent ingrown hairs after any kind of hair removal.

Stay Hydrated

So once your skin is all scrubbed up you need to moisturise. Keeping the skin hydrated and supple will help prevent the dead skin cells from hardening, thus making it much easier to keep the follicles clear and for the hair to break through!

For areas suffering ingrown hair related breakouts, usually the bikini area, Eve Taylor Purifying Moisture Lotion (50ml £6.50) is ideal. It’s predominantly designed for the face, but what’s good for the face is good for the fan…. you know what I mean 😂 It’s a lightweight moisturising lotion that provides hydration and anti-bacterial protection for skins prone to breakouts. Lemongrass with astringent properties helps to combat blemishes, Cedarwood soothes while offering an antiseptic element and humectant properties of glycerine keep skin hydrated. You could even use the Purifying Spot Gel (15ml £8) too!

If you’re getting ingrown hairs on your legs Eve Taylor Rescue & Repair Body Moisturiser (180ml £15) is amazing. Vitamins A, C and E nourish and protect skin while contributing to cell growth, repair and metabolism. Hyaluronic Acid hydrates the skin and increases smoothness while Chamomile calms and soothes the skin. I like to use this one on slightly damp skin (straight out the shower) as it is very rich, it just helps it distribute nicely and the extra moisture helps the Hyaluronic Acid do its thing!

Be consistent.

To combat ingrown hairs for good you do need to be consistent. You need to manually exfoliate at least three times a week, daily on the 5 day run up to your waxing appointment, or use Aloe Clear daily and you need to moisturise daily to.

Do this for a month between your waxing appointments and see if it helps, for the majority of clients it will. But there could be the odd client with those big red angry lumps who needs to see their GP. They will usually offer anti-biotics, and on some occasions they will recommend Laser Hair Removal as it kills the hair, so it can’t go ingrown.

Let me know if this helps you!