As an African American male one of the toughest things I’ve had to deal with is Pseudofolliculitis barbae or Razor bumps. Eighty percent of African American males who shave have this problem. Razor bumps, as it’s commonly called, are caused because curly or course hair once it has been shaven close to the surface turns around and begins growing back into the skin therefore causing Psudofolliculitis barbae.
After the hair has grown back into the skin it can become inflamed which continues to worsen with every shave. The body responds by producing collagen to repair the damaged skin and when the collagen spreads into healthy tissue it can leave a noticeable scar. Black men are not only more likely to suffer from Razor bumps but they are also more likely to develop scarring as a result.
Now that I’ve told you what Razor bumps are and how they’re caused, I’m going to tell you how to ‘possibly’ avoid getting them.
1. GROW A BEARD: By allowing the hair to grow out in its natural state and keeping it trimmed and neat your skin will remain healthy and bump free.
2. PICK THE HAIR OUT: Of all of the tips this one is the most tedious and controversial. Most dermatologists won’t recommend you do this but take a sterilized pin/needle and stick it inside of the Razor bump and lift the ingrown hair up and pull it out with a pair of tweezers. The skin will eventually heal on its own.
3. DON’T SHAVE TOO CLOSE: Shave only the outer perimeter of your face and never shave directly on the surface. Leave yourself with a light 5 o’clock shadow. This way shaving won’t leave your face irritated.
4. DON’T SHAVE AGAINST THE GRAIN: Make certain you shave the way that your hair is growing. By not doing this and shaving against the grain you’re inviting Razor bumps to appear.
5. PREPARE YOUR FACE BEFORE SHAVING: Be sure to wash your face with a warm towel to open up your pores before you shave.
6. TAKE CARE OF YOUR FACE AFTER YOU SHAVE: Once you’re done shaving, wash your face again thoroughly with a warm towel then apply Bump Patrol, which is an after shave treatment, over every area where you have shaved. Bump Patrol is approved by dermatologists and can be purchased at any retail store.
Hopefully these tips will be helpful and remember having healthy looking skin will bring out a happier you.