Razor bumps, technically called pseudo folliculitis barbae is one of the battles guys get to fight day in and day out after shaving. Razor bumps are caused by ingrown hairs that get trapped inside the pores after you shave. Apart from it being itchy, it doesn’t look cool at all. Razor bumps are known to be common in black men with about 30-40% of black men likely to be victims. Since we are all uncomfortable with it, the following steps will help you reduce and possibly prevent razor bumps when you shave.
Wet your hair before you shave
First of all, make sure your hair is very wet before your shave, that is, after taking a bath or shower. In situations where you can’t shower, wet your hair for about two minutes with warm soapy water. Wet hair is more likely to cut evenly. It is also easier and better to cut than dry hair. The wetter the better.
Apply shaving oil
It’s always good to apply a good shaving oil before you shave your beard especially. This will help to soften and make the skin moist, improving lubrication to ensure a clean cut with no pulling and tugging of hair.
Use a good shaving cream
Shaving creams just like shaving oils help to reduce friction and irritation. Apply the shaving cream into your scalp for a period of time, say two minutes before you start. Don’t forget to leave the cream for longer periods in areas were bumps are most likely to arise. The longer the cream stays, the softer the hair.
Don’t over shave
Most guys will shave a particular area over and over again. How do you expect to avoid getting razor bumps with this? As much as possible, don’t go over the same area more than twice. Please, reduce the pressure.
Avoid stretching your skin
Allow the skin to stay neutral and relaxed when you shave. Stretching your skin while shaving will increase the risk of getting razor bumps. Even if you have to stretch, do it gently.
Replace your blade regularly.
Shaving with a dull blade will cause uneven hair cut in addition to razor bumps. Use a clean blade, preferably a single-blade razor and change it frequently.
Finally, according to Marina Peredo, M.D., F.A.A.D, founder of Spatique Medical Spa in Smithtown, NY, “always shave in the downward direction using a clean single or double-bladed razor. Any more than that will add unnecessary aggression to the troubled area,” she says.
Note that, so long as you shave, getting a razor bump is imminent and the above steps can help you avoid them. I’ll advice that, don’t always aim for a very close shave, leave a little shorter hair to reduce the likelihood of a bump.