When the weather forecast says 90 degrees you get a free pass to rock the shortest shorts and skimpiest tank tops. But what about all those unsightly red bumps all over your legs, underarms and bikini area? Razor burn can make you want to trash those sun dresses and live in skinny jeans all year long. Fortunately, your razor bumps are most likely the result of some shaving misconceptions, and with a few quick change-ups to your shaving routine, you can have silky, bikini-ready skin in no time!
First: razor burn is caused by ingrown hairs. That’s right - when the hair itself curls and bends as it grows back, it will grow underneath your skin, causing painful red bumps. What causes the hair to curl backwards? Improper shaving
techniques. We’ve always been taught to shave against the grain (in the opposite direction of hair growth), but when we do that we are cutting the hairs below the surface of the skin.
In order to let the hair grow back properly (and therefore not cause bumps) we should be shaving with the grain, so that the hairs are only cut down to skin level. This may mean more frequent shaving, but so totally worth it if your skin ends up smooth and bump-free!
It’s also important that the products/tools you’re using are right for you.
You want to be sure to use a clean razor each time. This means cleaning your razor in between shaves (a quick spritz/wipe down with lavender hydrosol or tea tree hydrosol) and - if you use the disposable kind - switching them frequently.
You also want to be sure to exfoliate before, apply shave cream during, and moisturize afterwards to ensure a clean cut and to prevent bacteria from getting into your pores. Some products can irritate skin and cause further inflammation, so it’s best to go with natural products when caring for your skin.
Follow this simple 3 step routine for a smooth shave:
After being in the hot shower/tub for a few minutes (the hottest water you can stand!) gently exfoliate your skin to remove any dead skin cells that will clog up your razor as you begin to shave.
Try this DIY pre-shave salt scrub:
1 cup epsom salt
20 drops of lavender essential oil
8 drops of geranium essential oil
Mix together and store in an airtight container.
2. Apply Shaving Cream
It is so important to apply a cream before putting the razor to your skin. Do NOT shave dry! Make sure to use light pressure, shave in the same direction as your hair growth, and try not to go over the same spot multiple times.
Try this DIY shave cream:
¼ cup coconut oil
3 tablespoons shea butter
¼ cup liquid castille soap
1 tablespoon kaolin clay
2 teaspoons baking soda
Heat coconut oil and shea butter in a double boiler slowly until melted, then transfer to a bowl. Add the rest of the ingredients to the bowl and use a hand mixer (for best results) to make it fluffy. For a longer shelf life, store in the refrigerator.
Extra tip: Rinse with cool water afterwards to close your pores back up before stepping out of the shower. This technique is good for you hair, too!
Pat-dry so that your skin is still slightly damp, and then apply your choice of moisturizer. We each have our own favorite way to moisturize, but here are a few all-natural suggestions:
Alright, get to it! You can use just one or all of our suggestions, or comment below and let us know which natural products you like to use for smooth skin.
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