You may have your shaving routine down pat, but if you’re still getting razor bumps, you could be skipping a few important steps.
“When trauma occurs to your skin, it reacts by becoming inflamed and bumpy,” explains dermatologist Dr. Mona Gohara, M.D. Certain bad shaving habits, like shaving dry or going against the way your hair grows, can lead to even more irritation.
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So how do you make them go away? It’s easier than you think:
How to Make Razor Bumps Disappear
If you already have them on your legs or elsewhere, Gohara recommends using a topical antibiotic like Neosporin or an over-the-counter cortisone cream like Cortizone-10.
You could also have luck with products you may be using on your face: glycolic and salicylic acid pads. Try ones made specifically for bumps, like Completely Bare Bikini Bump Blaster pads.
And definitely avoid picking at the bumps: Irritating your skin or potentially opening wounds will do nothing but make the problem worse — and make it more difficult to shave later on.
How to Avoid Them Altogether
You’ve heard it once and you’ll hear it again: exfoliate, exfoliate, exfoliate. According to Dr. Gohara, using an exfoliating wash or scrub, like the Sephora Collection Gentle Melting Body Scrub, before shaving will help keep skin healthy.
Marta Camkiran, senior esthetician at New York City’s Haven Spa, also stresses shaving in the direction of hair growth to avoid irritating the follicles.
The temperature of your shower can also affect your shave, so use warm water and save shaving for last to ensure your follicles are open and the hairs are softer.
Tool-wise, you may be surprised to learn that Gohara advises against using multiple-blade razors, as they can be more traumatizing to the skin. Instead, stick with single- or double-blade razors.
If you’re still getting razor bumps after trying all of the above, Camkiran suggests seeking alternative hair removal methods, such as waxing or laser hair removal.