Dealing with ingrown hairs can be a huge pain (literally!) and we all want to do whatever we can to prevent them from rearing their ugly heads. There are many different approaches to preventing and treating ingrown hairs, however, most treatments and products contain harsh chemicals that can irritate the skin even further. With these ten natural preventatives and helpful tips, you can keep your skin looking gorgeous and free of those pesky ingrowns without having to worry about additional irritants!
1. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is a great natural choice for preventing ingrown hairs. Not only does this oil help to prevent future hairs from becoming ingrown, but it can also help to prevent ingrown hairs from becoming infected! Tea tree has natural antibacterial properties that help to keep your skin clean and healthy. Just dab some onto your trouble areas with a cotton swab after cleansing and you’re good to go!
2. Sugar/Coffee Scrub
There are thousands of variations of DIY sugar and coffee scrubs out there, and it’s because these scrubs are natural exfoliators. Exfoliating is a great way to remove dead skin cell build-up, as well as dirt, which can clog pores and cause ingrown hairs to become irritated.
Scrubbing your skin with one of these scrubs also helps to free any ingrowns that may be trapped just below the skin’s surface and helps to prevent new ones from forming.
3. Baking Soda
Baking soda is not just for in the kitchen! For people with sensitive skin, baking soda is a good alternative to a sugar scrub, which may be too rough. Mix 1 cup of water with 1 tablespoon of baking soda to create a paste that can be used as a gentle exfoliator or even as a spot treatment for ingrown hairs.
Applying baking soda to an ingrown hair can help to relieve irritation, itchiness, and redness. Just rinse off with cold water when you’re done for the best results!
4. Black Tea
Not just for drinking, black tea bags can be used similarly to the way baking soda can be used to prevent ingrown hairs. Once steeped, black tea bags can be placed on ingrown hairs and help to naturally draw them out and treat redness and inflammation. Black tea has natural acids in it which help to gently tighten skin, helping to prevent ingrown hairs in the future! Just be careful not to burn yourself!
5. Witch Hazel After Hair Removal
Using witch hazel on areas you’ve just shaved or waxed can have amazing preventative properties on your skin! It is a natural astringent that when applied to the skin can prevent infection of ingrown hairs as well as remove any bacteria from the hair follicles.
In addition to preventing ingrown hairs, witch hazel is great for treating them too. When applied to ingrown hairs it can reduce inflammation, redness, and itching!
6. Aloe Vera
We all know the struggle of ingrown hairs and the urge to pick at them and dig them out so we can be rid of them quicker. While it seems tempting to dig the hair out and be rid of it quickly, digging can cause more damage! It’s hard to wait out an ingrown hair, but aloe vera can help.
Applying some of the gel from an aloe plant onto an ingrown hair can help to gently and naturally free the hair over time. The natural acids in aloe gel work at the build-up surrounding ingrown hairs and break it down naturally, preventing scarring and further damage caused by digging.
7. Apple Cider Vinegar
Another great natural preventative for ingrown hairs, apple cider vinegar has natural antibacterial properties that remove excess skin, dirt, and germs from the skin. Applying apple cider vinegar to your skin with a cotton ball opens up the pores and allows trapped ingrown hairs to breathe. Additionally, it prevents infection or clogging of the pores, preventing future ingrown hairs! Seriously, what isn’t apple cider vinegar good for?
8. Keep Razors Sharp And Clean
This one may seem like an obvious bit of common sense, but for many people, it can be really easy to forget to change razor blades in a timely manner! If your razor gets too dull or too clogged and dirty, it won’t work properly.
The shave won’t be as close or clean as you’d like, you’re more likely to get cuts, and ingrown hairs are much more likely to appear when you shave with a dirty or dull razor. Always make sure to rinse your razor thoroughly and to change it out regularly to prevent those annoying ingrowns!
9. Shave In Direction Of Hair, Not Against
This tip may seem like the opposite of common sense and may go against everything you’ve ever known about shaving, but hear me out! Shaving against the hair growth like so many of us are taught offers a close shave, but the odds of ending up with ingrown hairs and irritation are much more likely than if you were shaving in the direction of hair growth.
Going against the growth rips the hairs from the root in all different directions and can end up altering the way that those hairs grow back into the follicle, often resulting in ingrown hairs. Try shaving in the direction of your hair growth to keep those hairs growing in the same direction they always have.
10. Wear Loose Clothing/Let Your Skin Breathe
A great tip for preventing ingrown hairs is to avoid wearing any tight-fitting clothing after hair removal. If you put on a pair of tight leggings after removing your leg hair, the friction of the clothes on your sensitive, post-shave skin can cause irritation and ingrown hairs.
If you wear loose-fitting pants, shorts, or a skirt instead the chances of ingrown hairs appearing are much less. It’s important to allow your skin to have time to recover after hair removal to achieve the best results.