How to Prevent Ingrown Hairs on Legs, Face After Waxing and Shaving


Learn how to prevent ingrown hairs during shaving, waxing or epilation. Below are tips on how to stop or avoid infection of ingrown follicles, home remedies and cures that will help you stop hair from curling back into the skin after shaving.

J-peg - type of ingrown hair

Ingrown hairs are hairs that curl back into the skin instead of growing out. In most cases, follicles curve into the skin after waxing or razor shaving. The turned hairs are likely to cause papules, redness and irritation that cannot be withstood. There are treatments for ingrown hair, but those come after these hairs have already developed. One of the best topical treatments are corticosteroid creams such as Natureplex Hydrocortisone Cream and Swedish Skin Care Razor Burn Freedom (Read Review) which is commonly recommended for relief.

The best way to deal with this cosmetic problem is learning how to prevent ingrown hairs. Though shaving and waxing are some of the causes of ingrown hair, some people may get these hairs without doing any of those activities. That means that some people are predisposed to some factors that are likely to cause ingrown hairs.

Ways to Prevent Ingrown Hairs

We have done a long series of resources to help with how to prevent ingrown hair, how to get rid of ingrown hair and the best treatments for ingrown hair available today. A few more pieces touch on razor burn, razor bumps and different ways of dealing with them. I will mention links to those resources as we continue to discuss different aspects and tips on how to prevent ingrown hair. So, without wasting time, let’s get down to the subject of how to prevent ingrown hair.

Exfoliate Before Hair Removal

The thicker the layer of dead skin, the harder it is going to be for hair to penetrate through and grow straight. So, the best way to prevent ingrown hairs is to exfoliate in the run up to shaving. Well, this method also goes a long way to stop ingrown hair as we’ll see below. A fancy scrub can help you avoid ingrown hair, but a small scoop of kosher salt added to your shower gel and washing your body with the mixture before waxing or shaving will help a lot.

Always exfoliate before shaving to prevent ingrown hairs occurring form razor burn and bumps.

Soften Up with Oils and Moisturizers

Softening up is not optional if you want to avoid ingrown hairs after shaving. So, get pre-shave oil and rub it on your legs, face, bikini area or wherever you are shaving, then let it settle for 10 minutes before you start removing hair. A good yet cheap pre-shave oil such as Kinexium Advanced Shaving Oil can work well for both men and women. It will soften your skin and make it more pliable so that hair is less likely to snag on those thick, dry patches forming as it is cut. Some people choose to go with shaving cream to avoid ingrown hairs, but that does not do as well as pre-shave oil.

Stop Infection Early

Ingrown hair can be worsened by infection, so you need to find a way of stopping those infections before they occur if you really want to prevent ingrown hairs. Lotions and oils with anti-bacterial ingredients such as lavender oil, tea tree oil will help avoid ingrown hair after shaving. Avoid rubbing alcohol or any alcohol-based products because they will dry out your skin. That will not prevent ingrown hairs.

Go for Laser Hair Removal

If you are prone to the problem, go for laser hair removal to prevent razor bumps and ingrown hairs

Mellisa Cavanaugh, a director at Pulse Laser Spa in NY says, “I’ve been an aesthetician for years, and I know all the tricks to get a smooth shave or wax, but I can tell you laser hair removal is the best prevention for ingrown hair—period.” Most people believe that laser hair removal is the complete solution when it comes to preventing ingrown hairs.

Tips to Prevent Ingrown Hairs after Waxing and Epilation

Epilation is a hair removal method that involves the removal or elimination of hair right down to its root. Different methods of hair removal are used in this broad technique. They include plucking, waxing and even electrolysis. Laser hair removal is also part of epilation. This information is important because anyone who removes hair using any of these methods will need to learn how to prevent ingrown hair that will occur. Therefore, other than the different methods on how to stop ingrown hairs discussed above, let us now be a bit specific and discuss simple tips on how to prevent ingrown hairs after waxing and plucking.

  • An important tip on how to prevent ingrown hairs after waxing and plucking, according to Mayo Clinic is to understand the risk factors involved with ingrown hair. So, before you go for any of the methods of hair removal listed above, ensure that you find out the likelihood of developing ingrown hair. It will go a long way in helping you prevent ingrown hairs.
  • Another simple tip on how to prevent ingrown hair is to keep your skin hydrated from inside out. Skin dryness is not so good when you are looking to stop ingrown hairs. You can also hydrate your skin topically to stop ingrown hairs. But as a matter of caution when preventing ingrown hairs, ensure that you avoid using petroleum jelly because it is likely to clog the pores on your skin and cause ingrown hairs. Animal byproducts should also be a no go zone if you are trying to stop ingrown hairs.
  • To prevent ingrown hairs, exfoliate your skin just before you go for epilation processes such as waxing. This will remove that dead and dry skin cells to lessen the chances of ingrown hairs. If you are prone to the problem of ingrown hair, it would be helpful if you use glycolic acid solution in the exfoliation process to enhance your efforts to prevent ingrown hair.
  • Epilation should be done in the direction of hair growth pattern. Yes, this tip on how to prevent ingrown hair does not just apply to shaving techniques. This is to avoid breaking the hair from within the skin that would cause ingrown hairs.
  • Apply cool compresses on the skin after epilation. It will help in stopping ingrown hair. This process on how to prevent ingrown hair is the exact opposite of that of how to remove ingrown hairs, where hot compresses are used.
  • In case you fail to stop ingrown hairs after epilation processes, try as much as you can to avoid irritating the papules that might develop as a result of the ingrowing hairs. Scratching the bumps and poking them with sharp objects such as needles will not help prevent ingrown hairs. Instead, it is likely to leave you with scars and an infection in the area.

Home Remedies to Prevent Ingrown Hairs

Well, home remedies will also help prevent ingrown hairs. Some of them may act as treatments for ingrown hair and the infections around them, but when practiced well, you will be able to not only stop ingrown hairs but also avoid them.

  1. Hang up that razor, waxing gel etcetera you are using for a few days. You can simply prevent ingrown hairs from developing by going a day or two without shaving.
  2. Shave with a lighter touch in order to prevent ingrown hairs. For men, shaving with too much pressure will not only lead to razor bumps and ingrown hairs but also with razor burn rash.
  3. Straightening the hair by yourself is one of the recommended home remedies to prevent ingrown hairs. A sterilized needle, pointed nose tweezers or even a clean toothpick can be used in the process of removing ingrown hairs.
  4. Always soften your skin enough before shaving. It will make hair soft, which means your shaving experience will be easy. A steamy shower is always recommended for those looking to prevent ingrown hairs.
  5. Create a consistency with your shaving techniques in order to stop ingrown hair. What does that mean? Well, ensure that you train your hair on not only the direction of shaving but also on the level you shave at. This will train the hair to grow out straight because you will not be applying too much pressure while shaving.
  6. The last of the home remedies to stop ingrown hairs is to watch what you wear. It is simple, tight clothing is going to cause those hairs to bend into the skin. For men, shirts with high collars, stiff collars that rub against your neck is going to contribute to razor bumps and ingrown hair.

Simple Tips to Stop Ingrown Hairs in the Bikini Area after Waxing

  • For the first post wax 6 days, your skin will be very sensitive around the bikini area. So, do not be very aggressive there. Apply hydrating body lotion to keep the cells moist and prevent ingrown hairs.
  • From the 7th day to around the 14th day, the hair is not yet out of the skin, but it is getting closer. The best practice on how to prevent ingrown hairs is to start exfoliating. Do exfoliate – everyday – gently. AHA Smoothing Serum 17% is good for use here. Follow it with body lotion after the shower. It will help dissolve the dead skin cells and prevent ingrown hairs.
  • Prick! Prick! Yes, from day 15 to around day 30, you might start to feel some of the little hairs poking and pricking, and of course roughing up your undies.  The skin might feel a bit itchy, so you need to start using external exfoliants to scrub the skin with and loosen the hair surrounding the skin. This will not just prevent ingrown hairs but also loosen up the skin surrounding the hairs to allow them to come out easily. A mild shower gel and Exfoliating Cloth are known to be some of the best for this function. Try this routine and share your experience with us.

Other Useful Resources on How to Prevent Ingrown Hair

The following areas are also worth understanding if you want to prevent ingrown hairs. Check out the links provided to learn more about them. They are well researched and detailed to provide exhaustive information that will help you avoid ingrown hairs, razor bumps and razor rash.

Ingrown Hair Treatments and Cures

In this article, you will learn just about all the available treatments for ingrown hairs so that in case you fail to prevent them, you will be able to get rid of the problem with working treatments. The article explores ingrown hair treatments from creams to microdermabrasion. Some home remedies for ingrown hair are also explored as potential treatments.

Ingrown Hair Removal

Do you have ingrown hair already? Well, this is an article that provides a step-by-step procedure on how to remove ingrown hairs at home by yourself. It also goes further to describe the simple techniques you can use to prevent infection while at that job and various tricks to prevent ingrown hair too. You can also see other resources provided below to learn more on razor bumps and razor rush.