FTC: This post is not sponsored. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
I’ll try to be as informative as possible without being completely and utterly disgusting. Here at Trials N’ Tresses we like to cover the good, the bad and the ugly and we all know that ingrown hairs can be very ugly.
My skin is very prone to keloids and ingrown hairs so when I started getting brazilian waxes four years ago, I was playing a very dangerous game with some of the most sensitive skin on our body. I would get the occasional random painful ingrown hair and my aesthetician would take care of it. That is why it is so important to go to a professional because they have the methods and tools to properly handle such situations. Groupons can be great, but going to Groupon salons definitely exasperated my ingrown hair situations.
In 2015 after a failed Groupon visit to a random hole in the wall salon (take my word for it… it’s not worth the hassle). I probably should’ve done better research, because after all Yelp is nothing but a Google a way. But I didn’t… and although they were sanitary (that is always a 100% requirement of mine) the aesthetician was waxing the same area several times (big mistake that I knew I’d be paying for later on) and was waxing in the wrong direction. (Should be going into the direction that the hair grows). A few weeks later… I had an ingrown hair start to form on the side of my lady parts.
At first it was minor and just annoying, so I tried my best to get rid of it on my own… FAIL. Major Fail! That ingrown hair became a massive problem and took over a YEAR for me to truly get rid of it. Fast forward to the present and I haven’t had any ingrown hairs in over four weeks (which is a lot for me) and I’m hoping to keep it that way. Here’s what I had to do, and stop doing to get rid of my stubborn ingrown hairs.
How To Get Rid Of Stubborn Ingrown Hairs
1. Exfoliate: This is alway the first step that people recommend when it comes to getting rid of or preventing ingrown hairs. So yes… I’ll recommend as well but I’ll be completely 100% honest with you… this can make the issue better or worse. When I started getting waxed in 2012 they told me to exfoliate a few days after in order to make sure ingrown hairs didn’t creep up. You have to pick a good exfoliant that is both gentle yet effective. Especially because you will be exfoliating such a sensitive area of your body you don’t want to use your most aggressive exfoliant. I mixed between St. Ives Apricot Exfoliator because it worked well on skin with acne so I figured it would do the same on my bikini area. I also used LUSH Cup O’ Coffee because it smells amazing and has great ingredients to not only exfoliate but also take care of the skin in that sensitive area.
2. Drink Water: I know I hate this recommendation too. I drink tons of water… but trust me… drinking water works miracles on our skin. I’ve seen it first hand on my face what happens when I skimp on the water and increase the alcohol (usually around holidays). Drinking water will help your skin deal with ingrown hairs. I was taking a hair vitamin for quite some time and wasn’t drinking the right amount of water that I should have been. In doing so I noticed my ingrown hairs flaring constantly. Once I stopped taking the hair vitamin and added 12oz daily to my water intake (bringing me up to a total of 72oz) that is when I noticed that my skin cleared up and remained ingrown hair free.
3. Do NOT Pick At The Skin: It may be a fave past time for us ladies… but do NOT pick at the skin. Removing the hair is key/crucial but, I was being excessive. I would pick and pick and try to remove the hair and irritated the skin way too much. Once I would let it heal, I could see the skin in the area was different and was still irritated no matter how much time had past. This made me feel like the hair was still in there. I couldn’t figure out whether the skin was irritated because the hair was in there or because I kept picking at it. Because of the location of the ingrown hair, the healing process also wasn’t as simple and as quick as I would have liked it to be. As good as it may make you feel to see all the bad stuff coming out… you could be doing more harm than good.
4. See A Dermatologist: This was my saving grace. Depending on your situation your dermatologist will handle it differently. The location of the ingrown hair was such a tricky spot. My underwear and jeans/pants would rub directly on it all of the time so even when I would put medication onto it, it never had the opportunity to fully heal properly. After suffering for way too long I finally decided to seek professional help (after over a YEAR!) and received a cortisone shot and topical antibiotic. My dermatologist didn’t think that seeking out the hair would be safe and decided to avoid taking that route. I did have to receive two cortisone shots because the ingrown hair flared up three weeks later after the initial shot. After the second shot I increased my water intake and stopped taking my hair vitamin. That helped the skin remain flat, and heal properly.
5. Laser Hair Removal: I stopped getting Brazilian waxes because I knew that they were one of the causes for my continuous ingrown hair situation. I got a great deal on Laser Hair Removal and made sure that it was appropriate for darker skin women. I’ve since had my fourth session (I’ve got two more to go) and I’ve seen not only a decrease in ingrown hairs, but also the skin in that area has become brighter and my scars and dark spots have faded/almost disappeared. I know it is quite pricey and isn’t for everyone but if you can I highly recommend that you do!
6. Acne Cleanser: I also deal with back acne (my skin is always up to something) so I’m constantly trying out various cleansers that will leave my skin moisturized while tackling the issues I have with oiliness and acne. When I started using African Black Soap I started to see changes in my skin all over. I also use African Black Soap as a natural exfoliate so it is a two for one. It may be too harsh for some skin types so it is best to see what works best for you and your skin.
What are some tips or tricks you use to tackle ingrown hairs? Share them with us below. You can also follow along on our Skin Care Hacks board on Pinterest for more skin care tips and tricks!
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Hey there! I’m Melissa, co-founder of Trials n Tresses, natural hair and beauty lover, binge tv watcher and lover of life. When I am not creating content for TNT, I’m busy teaching the future of society.