An ingrown hair occurs when the follicle (hair) deviates from its growth path in the part of the dermis where it usually breaks through and continues. It then finds itself outside of this path and pushes obliquely inside the skin that has not been designed to receive it (it grows in the opposite direction).
Several types of skin reactions can result from these such as inflammation, pus accumulation, redness and scarring. Depending on the type of skin reaction, this hair’s deviation will cause some individuals to experience unpleasantness, sometimes causing more serious consequences to the skin.
What causes ingrown hair?
Many things can cause ingrown hair. Here are a few examples:
- Using electric razors
- Waxing (hot or cold)
- The growth of corkscrew hairs because of the person’s heritage
- Clothing rubbing on the skin and drying it out
The places most affected by ingrown hair are the most common areas for hair removal treatments like the legs and pubis in women, and the beard in men. When an ingrown hair appears, most people tend to remove this hair by scraping the surface of the skin with their fingers or using tweezers, which is not recommended at all since it may cause infections and scars. Moreover, this is not a sustainable way of doing things and other hairs will regrow in the wrong follicle trajectory.
How do you treat ingrown hair?
Treating ingrown hair already present
When a hair is already ingrown, there are no miracle solutions—other than disinfecting and applying a local anti-inflammatory treatment. The lesion will improve, the inflammation will subside, and the epidermis will eventually reject the ingrown hair. However, if the lesion accumulates pus, is extremely painful, looks like a cyst, or occurs often in the same place(s), you should consult a doctor about it.
Things to do to prevent Ingrown hair
There are many solutions to prevent benign ingrown hair, which is ingrown hair that does not cause infection or more serious complications, such as cysts or abscesses. The first step to avoid ingrown hair is to exfoliate weekly (1 to 2 times) to promote cell renewal, which greatly help the follicles to grow in their distinct trajectory. Then, it is important to properly disinfect your hair removal tools, making sure to remove any remaining bits of hair that are full of microbes ready to cling to the thin layer of your skin when you use the tools. Lastly, moisturize the skin well with a moisturizing cream, which improves its suppleness and prevents ingrown hair caused by dry skin.
Emu oil and ingrown hair
Pure emu oil is an effective, 100% natural product. It is antibacterial and anti-inflammatory, containing a combination of its omegas 3, 6, 7 and 9, which helps relieve the discomfort and redness caused by ingrown hair. In addition, its use as an anti-inflammatory applied directly to the ingrown hair helps the skin soften so it naturally rejects the hair, while helping heal the lesion. Emu oil can also be used as a preventative measure for ingrown hair since it is a moisturizing solution that helps balance the skin’s moisture when used regularly.
External sources, except for the last paragraph:
, Santé Médecine