As the temperatures rise, we naturally reach for our sleeveless and spaghetti strap tops and dresses for the summer.
For most of us, this means it’s time to start shaving those pits more often than once a week again.
While shaving your underarms is an easy task, many women complain of having itchy, bumpy ingrown hairs afterwards.
This is because all that razor action, plus the inevitable dampness and rubbing you experience on a hot summer day, is a recipe for ingrown hair heaven.
NYC-based dermatologist, Dr. Ellen Marmur gave tips on how to care for the skin in our pits and how to prevent ingrown hairs there.
1. Prep with oil.
The night before you’re going to shave, apply a body oil to your pits to add extra hydration and bolster the skin against the razor blade.
2. Use a non-soap cleanser.
“Use something moisturizing, like Dove Beauty Bar or their body wash,” Marmur recommended. This way, you won’t be stripping the skin of essential moisture and oils. If the area becomes too dry, it has a greater chance of becoming flaky and irritated.
3. Use the right razor.
Marmur suggested a women’s razor with a flexible head, as it will be smaller and more responsive to the small, curved area.
4. Limit yourself to four swipes.
“Try to get the job done in four passes or less,” Marmur said. Over-shaving an area will just tear at the skin and cause further damage, allowing irritation, bumps and razor burn to occur. Good to keep in mind for shaving any area of your body!
5. Consider laser hair removal.
You don’t even need to go for the full amount of sessions, just two sessions of laser hair removal can get rid of those big coarse hairs and make shaving what’s left way easier. If you’re someone who has to shave your underarms every single day, this will make your life a lot easier.
When you do get ingrowns, apply something calming and anti-inflammatory.
Don’t treat your ingrowns like a pimple, Marmur warns. Many people will use something harsh like benzoyl peroxide since the bumps may look and feel like acne, but this will just further irritate the area instead of soothing it and making it dissipate.