The American Academy of Dermatology designated November as US National Healthy Skin Month, which is a time to raise awareness about the importance of keeping skin fresh, hydrated and healthy. It’s also a great opportunity to look at ways to prevent and treat skin concerns.
Shaving, an everyday or at least frequent part of many men and women’s skincare routines, can be challenging and cause skin irritation. Sometimes it can cause razor burn and bumps, especially for people with sensitive skin.
Here are a few ways to prevent and treat irritation from shaving.
1. Find the cause
The first step in treating any irritation from shaving is to identify factors that could be causing the irritation. Some potential causes could be that your skincare products aren’t right for you, your razor is dull, or your skin is generally sensitive, meaning you may need to be more conscious of which products you use.
Once you identify some potential causes of your skin irritation, you can adjust your skincare as necessary.
2. Develop a skincare routine
Following a routine for shaving can help prevent irritation. A recommended routine for shaving is to shower first to pre-soften your skin and hair, then use an exfoliating cleanser to clear any buildup on the skin. Before shaving, apply a shave guard or cream.
When you shave, go in the direction that the hair grows to prevent razor burns and bumps, and use light strokes. After shaving, apply a moisturizer or aftershave to sooth your skin.
3. Pick products that suit your skin
Do you have sensitive skin? Are you allergic to any perfumes or dyes? Do you have any acne or other skin conditions? All of these could make your skin more susceptible to inflammation or bumps while shaving. While picking shaving products, look for a high quality shaving cream that is designed for sensitive skin. Consider using a single-blade razor instead of a multi-blade one, which can increase the chance of ingrown hairs and razor burn.
Men with acne on their faces should be extra cautious when shaving. Try electric and disposable blades to see which works better for you, and shave lightly to avoid causing nicks on the skin.
If you continue to suffer from skin irritation as a result of shaving, contact your dermatologist to see if there are any more effective treatment options.
Disclaimer: This blog provides general information and discussion about medical, cosmetic, mohs, and surgical dermatology. The words and other content provided in this blog, and in any linked materials, are not intended and should not be construed as medical advice. If the reader or any other person has a medical concern, he or she should consult with an appropriately-licensed dermatologist or other health care worker.