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Why We Get Razor Burn (and How Laser Hair Removal Helps)
December 31, 2023

Young woman unhappy about shaving.

If you dread shaving because of the painful and unsightly aftermath of razor burn, you’re not alone. Razor burn is super common, particularly for those with sensitive skin. But why do we get razor burn? And is it possible to get rid of unwanted body hair without continuous skin irritation?

What is Razor Burn?

Razor burn is characterized by redness, itching, and small, inflamed bumps that occur after shaving or other hair removal methods. It can occur in various areas of the body where hair is removed using razors or other methods like waxing or depilatory creams, but it’s most commonly associated with facial shaving in men and shaving the legs, underarms, and bikini area in women.

Why Razor Burn Happens

When we shave, the razor blade cuts the hair at or near the skin’s surface. Friction from the razor blade can trigger an inflammatory response in the skin. In individuals with sensitive skin, this response can be even more pronounced. As a result, the body releases histamines and other chemicals as part of the immune response, leading to redness, itching, and inflamed bumps on the skin.

Additionally, the disruption of the skin’s natural barrier can allow bacteria to more easily penetrate and cause inflammation. Repeated trauma from frequent shaving can lead to a cycle of irritation, making the skin more prone to subsequent episodes of razor burn. Razor burn can also contribute to the development of ingrown hairs. When the hair follicle becomes irritated from shaving, it can trap the growing hair beneath the skin’s surface, leading to painful bumps and redness.

Causes of Razor Burn

Several factors contribute to this irritation:

  • Blunt Razors: One of the primary causes of razor burn is using dull or old razor blades. These blades can tug at the hair, causing more friction and leading to irritation.
  • Improper Shaving Technique: Applying too much pressure while shaving or shaving against the grain of hair growth can damage the skin’s protective barrier and result in razor burn.
  • Dry Shaving: Shaving without using shaving cream or gel can cause friction and irritation.
  • Sensitive Skin: People who have sensitive skin are more prone to razor burn. Their skin is more reactive and can become inflamed more easily when irritated by razors or other hair removal methods.

Ditch Razor Burn Forever

While there are various methods to alleviate the symptoms of razor burn, such as using soothing creams or changing your shaving habits, laser hair removal offers a more permanent and effective solution.

How Laser Hair Removal Works

Laser hair removal uses concentrated light to target and destroy hair follicles. During treatment, pulses of this light energy are absorbed by the melanin (pigment) within the follicles. This energy heats and damages the follicles, inhibiting their ability to produce new hair.

Benefits of Laser Hair Removal for Razor Burn

  • Permanent Hair Reduction: Unlike shaving, creams, or waxing, which only provide temporary hair removal, laser hair removal offers a more permanent solution.
  • Reduced Irritation: Laser hair removal eliminates the need for regular shaving, which is a common trigger for razor burn.
  • No Ingrown Hairs: Because laser hair removal targets the hair follicles to prevent growth, it can effectively eliminate the occurrence of ingrown hairs.
  • Improved Skin Texture: With less frequent shaving and a reduction in ingrown hairs, many patients notice improved texture and appearance of skin.

If you’re tired of dealing with frequent razor burn and are seeking a long-term solution, consider scheduling a consultation with our office today. We can help you say goodbye to razor burn and ingrown hairs for good!


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