How to Get Rid of Razor Bumps and Razor Burns Naturally

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Natural Remedies for Razor Bumps and Razor Burns

Shaving is something that most of us have to do on a regular basis and for most people is a necessary part of caring for their physical appearance. However, anyone that regularly shaves knows that the shaving process can leave the skin feeling irritated with breakouts of rashes, bumps, spots, and sometimes ingrown hairs. Some of us may also suffer from razor bumps and razor burns and in fact these two conditions can affect women as well as men.But, if you suffer from razor bumps or razor burns, there is much you can do to help reduce skin irritation and the appearance of razor bumps naturally. This article examines the many natural remedies that you can use to get rid of razor bumps and razor burns.

First of all, it’s important to know the difference between razor bumps and razor burns.


What Are Razor Bumps and Razor Burns?

Very often, the terms razor bumps and razor burns are used interchangeably. However, there is a big difference between razor bumps and razor burns.

Razor bumps occur when the hair that re-grows after shaving stays under the skin by either growing into the skin or by staying in the hair follicle. The medical term for razor bumps is pseudofolliculitis barbae.

This can lead to inflammation which can cause spots and pimples to develop and even lead to abscesses. Razor bumps are caused by regular shaving and, while they affect mainly the face, they can also affect any area that is shaved such as the legs, head, the bikini line, and the pubic area. Because they form by the hair growing back into the skin, they tend to affect more people with short, curly hair.

On the other hand, razor burns refer just to the skin irritation that sometimes occurs after shaving. It is usually caused by shaving with a blunt blade or not having the skin properly moist and lubricated beforehand. Areas of the body like the armpits, bikini zone, and face can be quite sensitive, and because coarser hairs grow there, people tend to have more razor burns in those areas.

How to Prevent Razor Bumps

Because of the way that razor bumps develop, it can be difficult to completely get rid of them. The only way to completely avoid razor bumps is to let the hair grow, however, for many people that isn’t an option.

There are some preventative measures that you can take to prevent razor bumps from developing.

The best way to reduce razor bumps is to shave carefully and make sure that the hairs are softened as much as possible before shaving. The American Family Physician Journal, which studied the effects of razor bumps (pseudofolliculitis barbae) on black men, recommends the following to avoid razor bumps:1

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  • Never try to achieve a close shave, so, always shave in the direction of hair growth.
  • Use a single blade razor
  • Don’t pull the skin while shaving
  • Gently brush the area to be shaved to loosen embedded hairs and apply a warm compress

Electric razors can have better results than a blade. You can also try using a razor which has blade wrapped in a wire because that can avoid shaving too close to the skin. If possible, try to shave every other day.

After shaving, it is important to care properly for the skin. To know how to naturally care for your skin after shaving, please read on because the advice on how to get rid of razor burns will help you take care of your skin naturally.

How to Get Rid of Razor Bumps Naturally

Although it is quite difficult to completely avoid razor bumps if you are prone to them, there are some natural ways that you can reduce the frequency of them, or prevent them altogether.

Warm Compress

Applying a warm compress is one of the best and easiest ways to get rid of razor bumps naturally, as the heat from the compress helps to soften the skin and may help draw the ingrown hair closer to the surface.

Here is what you should do:

  1. Soak a washcloth with hot water and press on the razor bump. To keep the cloth hot, soak it in hot water every so often and then reapply.
  2. Leave the compress for up to 10 minutes twice a day. When you can see the hair under the skin, you can carefully remove it with a sterile needle and tweezers.
  3. Don’t squeeze hard on the razor bump or start picking or digging to get the ingrown hair out. Doing so could spread infection deeper into the skin and damage it, leaving you with a scar. So if you see that the ingrown hair hasn’t appeared after using the warm compress, you should try one of the remedies below to try to get rid of the ingrown hair by other methods.

Natural Exfoliators

Sugar Scrub

Research published in the dermatology journal Cutis showed that a topical application of glycolic acid can help reduce and prevent razor bumps by 60%.2 Glycolic acid is derived from sugar cane and sugar beets as well as milk.

You can make your own natural glycolic acid face mask to help reduce razor bumps on face as well as other skin areas. For this, mix 2 tbsp. raw organic sugar with 2 tbsp. raw honey with the juice of half a lemon and mix well. Make sure that the sugar is as fine as possible. Apply to the face and neck, avoiding the eyes and leave for 5-10 minutes. Rinse with warm water. Repeat this once or twice a week to reduce the chance of forming a razor bumps.

Alternatively, you can combine 2 tbsp. sugar with 1 to 2 tbsp. plain yogurt or extra virgin olive oil and add 1 or 2 drops of lavender essential oil. Apply the same way as the sugar and honey face mask. For extra soothing, use a cotton pad dipped in some chamomile tea (which has many other health benefits) to remove the face mask.

Baking Soda and Coconut Oil

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You can make your own natural scrub by mixing together baking soda and virgin coconut oil. The grainy texture of baking soda makes it a great natural ingredient to remove dead skin cells that can clog pores and help get rid of ingrown hairs. When mixed with coconut oil it makes a natural anti-inflammatory scrub that helps to reduce redness, swelling, and preventing bacterial infection.

Here is how to make baking soda scrub to get rid of razor bumps:

  1. Mix together 2 tbsp. virgin coconut oil and 1 tbsp. baking soda to make a thick paste (if you have a sensitive skin you can increase the amount of the coconut oil or reduce the amount of baking soda).
  2. Gently massage the paste onto the razor bump and leave for a few minutes. Rinse off with warm water. Repeat the process once or twice a week to reduce the occurrence of razor bumps.

Sea Salt Scrub

Sea salt is a natural detoxifier that contains valuable minerals naturally found in the sea that are beneficial for our skin. The texture of sea salt and the fact that it has antiseptic and cleansing properties makes it a good option to exfoliate the skin to reduce the appearance of razor bumps.

Use sea salt that doesn’t have rough, sharp edges. The texture of the sea salt should be fine and gentle to the touch, as you don’t want it to scratch your skin but gently exfoliating the dead skin cells.

To make a sea salt facial scrub for razor bump here is what you should do:

  1. Mix 1 tbsp. sea salt with enough water to create a thick paste. You can add to the mixture a few drops of lavender or tea tree oil.
  2. Dampen your face and gently massage the mixture into your skin (avoid any wounded or scratched areas). Leave for a few minutes and rinse with warm water.
  3. Repeat the process once or twice a week.

How to Prevent Razor Burns

The best way to prevent razor burns is to avoid the skin getting irritated in the first place. Here are the best tips on how to prevent razor burns from happening:

Pre-shave

It’s important to moisten the skin beforehand. This will make shaving easier and reduce the chance of razor burns. You can do this by putting a warm, wet face cloth on the area to be shaved.

The next step is to lubricate the skin properly. Remember that many shaving gels and foams contain ingredients which irritate your skin. You can use a small amount of coconut oil, jojoba oil, or sweet almond oil and gently massage into the skin area to be shaved to prevent razor burns as well as ingrown hair.

Shaving

When shaving, it is important to always use a sharp razor and never apply pressure on the skin – this is is extremely important if you are interested in how to get rid of razor bumps. It is also important to always shave in the direction that the hair grows. Even though you will not get as close a shave as going against hair growth, you will avoid irritating the skin and having ingrown hairs which can cause razor bumps.

Always use gentle, slow strokes when shaving and try to avoid going over an area more than once. After shaving, rinse with warm water.

After shave treatment

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When you have finished shaving, it is very important to use natural remedies to care properly for your skin. That way you can prevent razor burns from developing or if you have razor burns, then you can treat them naturally. How can you do this? Here are my top natural remedies for preventing and getting rid of razor burns. You can also use these remedies for preventing and possibly getting rid of razor bumps.

How to Get Rid of Razor Burns Naturally

Aloe Vera

Aloe vera is one of the best natural ways to treat and soothe damaged skin. Aloe vera contains many anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antimicrobial, and antioxidant properties.3 Many dermatologists recommend using hydrocortisone creams to reduce razor burns, but studies have shown that aloe vera is just as effective as 1% hydrocortisone cream.4

To use, squeeze some of the gel from an aloe vera leaf and apply to the shaved area. If you buy aloe vera gel from health store, read the product label to make sure it contains the highest amount of aloe vera with the least amount of additives. You can also use aloe vera for treating rashes, skin inflammation, and infections after waxing hair removal. To find more information on how to use aloe vera for your skin, please read my article on aloe vera for great and healthy skin.

Aloe Vera and Coconut Oil

By mixing aloe vera together with coconut oil you can make an amazing natural treatment to treat razor burns and razor bumps. Coconut oil also contains powerful properties which can help soothe skin infections.5

To make an aloe vera and coconut oil healing lotion for razor burns please see instructions in my article about the health benefits of aloe vera and coconut oil. This healing lotion can be applied to the skin just after shaving.

Honey

Honey has been used for centuries to help treat wounds and repair damaged skin. It is one of the most natural foods available and it is full of healing properties, including powerful antimicrobial and antibacterial agents.5 By applying some honey directly to the affected area you reduce the risk of infection and also help moisturize the skin.

I have already written on the health benefits of Manuka honey, which is one of the best types of honey to use for killing infections. You can apply a little honey directly onto the shaved area, allow to dry, and then rinse off with water.

For more ideas, read my article about the top 10 honey face masks for all skin types.

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Tea tree oil or lavender oil for Razor Burns

Tea tree essential oil is very versatile and has many uses. This oil is a natural astringent which, when applied to the skin, has antiseptic properties and reduces the risk of irritation. It is also antibacterial which will reduce inflammation on the skin. Tea tree oil could cause the skin to become more irritated if applied directly, therefore you need to dilute it in a carrier oil like jojoba oil or coconut oil.

To use tea tree oil, mix 3-5 drops of tea tree oil in a tablespoon of carrier oil and apply to the affected area. Leave for 15-20 minutes, and then rinse with water.

Another great and versatile essential oil you can use is lavender essential oil which is also antibacterial and helps to soothe irritated skin. Use it the same way as you use tea tree oil.

If you are interested to learn more about essential oils you can find useful information in my e-book Magical Aromatherapy.

Witch hazel for Razor Burns

To successfully treat razor burns you can also use witch hazel which has many uses and benefits for skincare. In fact, witch hazel is an ingredient in many skin treatments and lotions to reduce skin irritation. However, you don’t have to buy expensive lotions because witch hazel is a great natural way to soothe and treat razor burns which you can also use to get rid of razor bumps.

Witch hazel has anti bacterial properties, as well as anti-inflammatory properties.7

To use witch hazel for razor burns, put some witch hazel on a cotton pad, and then apply directly to the affected area.

Turmeric face mask

Most people usually only think of turmeric for its use in cooking, however, it also contains properties which are antioxidant and reduce inflammation. Turmeric contains curcumin, which scientists have discovered is a powerful anti-inflammatory.8

I have a wonderful recipe for making a turmeric face mask which can help to reduce redness and inflammation on the skin. All you need is 1 tsp of turmeric, 1 tsp of raw honey, and 1 tsp of milk or natural yogurt. You can also add a few drops of tea tree oil if you want.

Mix together and apply to the affected area for 20 minutes before rinsing off with water. Please remember that turmeric will stain fabric, so make sure that the paste is thick enough so that it doesn’t drip.

Diluted Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)

One of the many uses of apple cider vinegar is its use as a natural antiseptic on the skin. It is very easy to make an effective and natural aftershave treatment using apple cider vinegar.

All you have to do is mix equal parts of water and apple cider vinegar (don’t use undiluted apple cider vinegar).

Dip a cotton pad in the liquid and apply to the affected area.

When you use apple cider vinegar for the first time, it is a good idea to rinse it off with water after 5 minutes. This is so your skin isn’t too exposed to apple cider vinegar on your first time.

If you don’t get a reaction, then the next time you use it, you can leave it for a longer period.

You can also add some witch hazel or aloe vera gel to the liquid.

If you are looking for more ideas on how to use apple cider vinegar as a face wash, then please read my article on why you should wash your face with apple cider vinegar.

Baking soda for Razor Burns

Baking soda can be used in many ways on the skin and one excellent way to reduce redness and inflammation is to mix some baking soda with coconut oil. Baking soda cleanses your skin and the coconut oil provides anti-inflammatory properties as well as moisturizing your skin.

To make a mask to help treat razor burns, mix 2 parts of coconut oil to one part baking soda if you have sensitive skin. Or if you have normal skin, then equal parts of coconut oil and baking soda. Apply to your skin after shaving, leave for few minutes and then wash it off with water. I have more recipes in my article on how to use baking soda for gorgeous face and skin.

Natural butters (Shea, cocoa) for Razor Burns

Natural butters can also do wonders for your skin and help to reduce skin irritation. Most people are afraid of putting butters on their skin because they think that it will make their skin oilier and cause spots. However, natural butters like Shea butter and cocoa butter contain essential nutrients to soothe your skin without clogging the pores.

For example, Shea butter contains a large amount of anti-inflammatory compounds9 and cocoa butter is an excellent moisturizer. If fact, because of the high fat content, you can also use some Shea butter or cocoa butter as a pre-shave treatment.

To get the benefits of Shea butter and cocoa butter after shaving, just gently massage some directly into the affected area.

Read these related articles:

1. How to Get Rid of Ingrown Hair: The Best Natural Ways
2. Why You Should Wash Your Face With Apple Cider Vinegar
3. How to Use Baking Soda for Gorgeous Face and Skin
4. Ingrown Hair Vs. Herpes: Find the Differences
5. How To Get Rid Of Keratosis Pilaris: The Best Home Remedies

Resources:
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