Ingrown Hair 101: your questions answered

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Ever experienced those unsightly and sometimes painful red bumps appearing on your skin after hair removal? These pesky irritations are ingrown hairs – and they’re more common than you think. Want help in preventing and treating them? We’ve got the lowdown on how to safeguard your skin against these little nasties.

What are ingrown hairs?
An ingrown hair occurs when a waxed, shaved or tweezed hair curls and grows back into the skin, instead of emerging outwards. It can pop up anywhere you shave or wax, but it’s most common in the area where hair is curly and coarse, such as bikini line, underarms and eyebrows.
It may appear as a red bump after a few hours of shaving or waxing, and you may also experience itching and pain. In some very rare cases, ingrown hairs can get infected and may need medical care.

What causes ingrown hairs?
When you wax or shave, it can encourage the hair to regrow at an angle (as we often shave or pull out hairs against the direction of hair growth). Instead of growing straight, the hair then pushes back into the skin, particularly if the hair is sharp at the end from shaving.

Can you prevent ingrown hairs?
Yes, there are ways to prevent them from occurring - you just have to take preventive measures before you shave or wax.
To start, exfoliate or massage your skin with a washcloth or body brush. This exfoliates away dead skin cells and helps reduce the chances of hairs growing back into the skin.
If you’re shaving regularly, replace your razor or blade every fortnight; and shave in the direction of your hair growth.
Post-shaving, wash the area with a cleanser containing skin-calming ingredients such as glycolic acid or Witch Hazel, as these have anti-bacterial properties that can soothe existing ingrown hairs and prevent infection. These ingredients also help clear pores prevent the hair follicles growing inwards. Try Alpha-H Micro Cleanse with 12% Glycolic Acid or Waxaway After Care Lotion with Mango and Witch Hazel.

Does laser hair removal cure ingrown hairs?
Some dermatologists claim laser hair removal is a permanent cure for ingrown hair, while others argue the contrary. However, studies conducted by University of Nottingham have shown that laser hair removal makes hairs finer and sparser, resulting in less frequent outbursts of coarse follicles. Laser hair removal also slows down the occurrence of hair, so you don’t have to shave or wax as often.

Can you treat ingrown hairs at home?
Sometimes, simply stopping waxing or shaving the affected area for a brief period can allow the hair to work its way out naturally.
Using cold and warm compresses can also help. Applying a flannel soaked in warm water on your skin can help ease out those existing ingrown hairs, while cold compression is good as a preventative measure after hair removal.
Another handy home treatment is stimulating the skin with a toothbrush a few minutes before and after shaving. Dermatologists in Norway use this procedure to treat patients in their clinics, as they believe the toothbrush will help hair stand upright.
A great ingredient to look out when treating the irritation of ingrown hairs is jojoba oil, which can ease redness and pain. Try giving Aum Anti Age Organics Bio Nourishing Jojoba Oil a go for smooth, hydrated skin between shaves.

 
Do you suffer from ingrown hair? How do you treat it?

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Member Comments

Posted by: Trish_D (Australia)

Really interesting article, Shitika. Lots I didn't know before.

Posted on: September 05, 2012 (Sep 5, 2012 5:08pm)

Posted by: MoonStone (Australia)

I treat ingrowns the old fashion way and i just dig in and pluck them out. I know i shouldnt but its such and easy fix that works. This is a great article that has shown me other ways to get rid of them

Posted on: September 05, 2012 (Sep 5, 2012 5:23pm)

The four lip products definitely worth buying

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If the thought of transforming up your look seems like too much hassle or too expensive to even consider, you'll be glad to know that there’s a quick and easy way to do it – with little more than a lip product.

Lip products really are the unsung heroes of the beauty world. Unlike mascaras and foundations (that always tend to receive the can't-live-without-them labels), lip products have the ability to drastically change your look, lift your spirits and provide a burst of nourishment all at the very same time.

I took the liberty of choosing four of the best lip products you could ever buy with your loose change. Introduce them into your life and I guarantee that they’ll make you look and feel utterly fabulous in no time.

Burt’s Bees Tinted Lip Balm
Ultra nourishing, super-smooth and slightly tinted, these Burt's Bees balms are the perfect all-day-wear lip product. Which works out well actually, as the luscious 'Hibiscus' shade happens to be the official Liptember Lippy for 2012. Find out more on how you can get involved in Liptember right here...

Rimmel London’s Kate Moss Lasting Finish Lipstick
A girl never wants to be let down by her lipstick. Banish fears of smudging, fading and drying by switching to these runway-ready shades by Rimmel London. Truly pigmented, nourishing and long-lasting, these Kate Moss-approved shades are your ticket to one truly sizzling set of kissers.

Chi Chi Lip Gloss Pot
If you're after the shiniest, wettest-looking, supermodel-style pout around town, look no further than this pink-tinted pot from Chi Chi. Glossy would be putting it lightly, this stuff stops traffic. Plus, it's formulated with a nourishing blend of vitamin E and jojoba oils to ensure your lips stay kissable.

Vixen Liprageous Temporary Lip Tattoos - Pink Glitter
If you're looking for a quick way to shake up your look there isn't a better, more effective way than with lip tattoos. Three in each pack means that you get three times the wow factor! Not sure how to wear them? We've got the how to right here...

What are your favourite lip products? Do you have any other cheap and cheerful ways to transform your look?

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Member Comments

Posted by: Ellecook (Australia)

Lip tattoos? haha, i have not heard of this. Sounds very interesting.

Posted on: September 05, 2012 (Sep 5, 2012 12:02pm)

Posted by: MoonStone (Australia)

I own a kate moss lippy and its quiet good. I love the 1skin solution tinted lip balms as they are smooth and smell lovely.

Posted on: September 05, 2012 (Sep 5, 2012 12:11pm)

How to keep your piercings pretty

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Have you recently got a new piercing, be it ears, nose or belly button? I’ll tell you now, while it’s always fun to have something new and shiny to look at, caring for piercings is not always quite as fun. The regular care it takes to ensure your piercing stays clean and healthy can get tedious, but I promise you that once you’re over the hill of treating it daily (sometimes more!) it will all be worth it. Because I’m sure everyone can agree, while an infected nose ring might distract from that pimple on your forehead, it definitely isn’t doing your face any favours. Follow these simple tips to ensure your new piercings stay clean and oh-so pretty.

Wash your hands

While it’s a given that we all wash our hands frequently throughout the day, when it comes to piercings, things get a little more serious. Make sure you buy an anti-bacterial wash, which will double up as a cleanser for your piercing (and any nasty spots on your face). Wash your hands with a dollop of the cleanser before cleaning your piercing. Something you might want to try (if discount chemist home brand isn’t your style) is La Biosthetique Méthode Clarifiante Likopan, with antibacterial properties that will help prevent inflammation around your piercing.

Don’t touch it!

Following on from the hand-washing, one of the most important things to remember is to not touch it! While a new earring might be fun to swivel around, or a new nose stud might be entertaining to poke, this is the fastest way to spread germs and infect those pretty little piercings.

Spray it

Get your hands on a cute little bottle of antibacterial disinfectant spray. A couple of times a day (generally no more than three), spritz it on your new piercing. This just makes sure that any little nasty germs picked up throughout the day will catch a whiff of your spray and die faster than it takes to touch-up your make-up.

Treat it with care (and don’t be impatient)

The usual time frame to leave your new piercing is 8-12 weeks. After this time, you can change the studs in your ears to lovely long hoops, or swap the boring silver thing in your nose to something a bit more glamorous. It’s best to be cautious when you decide to swap out your original jewellery for something more adventurous. This means using hypoallergenic metals and smaller studs before moving on to the more adventurous styles. Try Blomdahl’s range of jewellery for studs that are stylish and skin friendly.

Trust the Professionals


If there’s any piece of advice I find most important to share, it’s to pick a trustworthy piercing parlour, and stay loyal. For a new piercing, particularly if it’s something a bit trickier, it’s worth doing your homework to see which places are least likely to stuff things up. This is vital because if anything does go wrong, or you want to ask something urgent, it definitely pays to have someone trustworthy to bail you out.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Have you had any new piercings lately? How do you care for your new piercings?

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Member Comments

Posted by: Blossy77 (Australia)

I always thought you were supposed to twist the earrings around a few times a day when they are healing. Mind you, for me that was over 20 years ago do I could be recalling it wrong.

Posted on: September 05, 2012 (Sep 5, 2012 5:13am)

Posted by: Snazzie (Member since 2008, Australia)

Same here Blossy77, I remember twisting my earrings too . . . but mine were well over 30 years ago now and times have probably changed :-)

Posted on: September 05, 2012 (Sep 5, 2012 7:00am)

Calling all longhaired ladies to chop off their locks!

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If you’re a longhaired lass, I’m sure that the request to chop off a significant length of your hair is pretty terrifying thing. In fact, I’d bet you probably think I’ve lost my mind asking you to cut off your precious hair.

But here’s the thing. I’m only asking coz it’s for a good cause. Pantene’s Beautiful Lengths program, in its first year in Australia, is looking to encourage women to grow their hair, cut off 20cm, and donate it to be turned into hair wigs for women undergoing cancer treatment.
 
They’ve partnered up with the charity, Look Good…Feel Better - a free national community service program dedicated to helping cancer patients manage the side effects of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, and help restore their appearance and self-image - to help create the wigs and distribute them across Australia at no cost to cancer patients.

National Donate Your Hair Week kicks off on Monday November 12th, giving you a good two months to skip that trim, care for your hair so it’s at it’s best, and chop it off for a really good cause.

Does the thought of a super-short ‘do scare you? I thought so. Which is why I thought you’d be pleased to know that, according to expert hairstylist, Barney Martin, summer is going to be all about shorter, sleeker styles. So there’s no better time (or reason) to update your look.

Barney’s top five short styles for summer:


-    A messy, textured style, ala Dianna Agron, is a great way to wear short hair and is a low maintenance option for the warmer months.
-    A disconnection on one side can help ease you into the undercut trend. Just look to Ginnifer Goodwin for some inspiration.
-    A cute pixie cut, as worn by Michelle Williams, can be worn soft and feminine or can be styled with uber-volume.
-    Rachael Taylor’s semi-bob is an up-and-coming short hair trend that those looking to go for the chop will love. Wear it smooth and sleek for added chic-ness.
-    Try a chin-length ‘do, like Dannii Minogue’s, and couple it with a side-swept fringe. This will soften the look and complement your face.

Find out more about Beautiful Lengths

Find out more about Look Good…Feel Better

Spring hair colours to try…

Want to test the waters before cutting your hair? Try the faux bob…

 

Would you cut your hair for a good cause?

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Posted by: NailObsessed (Australia)

Oh i would so do this! But my hair is in poor condition at the moment :( Im about to book in to the hairdresser to cut of at least 2 inches to bring it back into better nick!

Posted on: September 04, 2012 (Sep 4, 2012 5:04pm)

Posted by: Jacquelinee (Australia)

My hair is in horrible condition right now, 20cm cut would still leave me with lots of hair, still long.
This sounds awesome, but will damaged hair make a good wig? I think not, unfortunately.

Posted on: September 04, 2012 (Sep 4, 2012 5:18pm)

Five reasons why you need this cleanser in your life

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Thank goodness body wash was invented, beauties. Considering I’m not a soap fan (each to their own, though, I say!), I’m pretty sure I’d be a smelly little human being without.

But this doesn’t mean I ‘get around’ when it comes to body cleansers. Oh no. In fact, I’m rather picky. I want one that’s kind to my skin, one that’s sans the faux overpowering scent, and, most importantly, one that leaves me feeling – and smelling – as fresh as a daisy.

Dove Sensitive Skin Nourishing Body Wash is one such body wash. It’ll always be welcome in my shower, and if you haven’t tried this one before, I definitely recommend stripping down and lathering up with it. But why is it worth it? I’ve got five wonderful reasons why, actually… 

REASON #1: it’ll keep your underarms and your toosh happy
Why? Well, the main aim of this cleansers game is to look after sensitive skin, so you know you’re not going to be left with itchy, bumpy, dry skin after using this hypoallergenic gem. 

REASON #2: it won’t interfere with your juice
That’s right – it doesn’t matter what your poison of choice is (mine is Burberry Summer for Women, in case you were wondering…), this fragrance-free beauty will not overpower its delicious notes or even begin to compete with them. Phew! 

REASON #3: it’ll leave your skin super-soft, even sans body moisturiser
Lazy girls will adore this. Because this body wash contains ¼ moisturising cream, you can skip the post-shower moisturiser slathering session if you really can’t be bothered. Of course we’re not one to endorse leaving your body high and dry when it comes to a little hydration, but your skin will never feel dry and scaly after buddying-up in the shower with this product. 

REASON #4: despite all of these reasons, it’ll leave you sparkling clean
Yep, there’s no need to worry about whiffy underarms or unwelcome scents, um, down there, this body wash still does what it was made to do – wash. That means a clean body for you, and a fresh smelling environment for everyone who happens to enter your personal space. 

REASON #5: you can share it with your man friend 
…and he won’t feel girlie. Not in the slightest. With its white and green packaging and fragrance-free formula, it’ll make your man happy (because it could be passed for a masculine product), and it’ll make you happy, too (because there’ll be no more sweaty scents lingering on your man). Double win!

BONUS! BONUS! BONUS! It cost less than eight bucks.
True story. And any beauty product that can be purchased while I’m picking up milk and cereal and not break the bank is ridiculously welcomed by me. You’re also getting pretty good bang for your buck considering you’ll be using it at least once a day. Well, we hope you will be, anyway. Otherwise you’d just be plain stinky…


 

 

 

 

Have you tried the Dove Sensitive Skin Nourishing Body Wash before? Are you a body wash user? If so, what’s your favourite?

PS. Want to know what our Trial Team thought of this cleansing gem?

 

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Member Comments

Posted by: softness (Member since 2007, Australia)

Dove has got some fantastic shower-fresh scents in their products. Gotta love them for atleast this and then some!

Posted on: September 04, 2012 (Sep 4, 2012 12:16pm)

Posted by: Thepinkshoe (Australia)

Like you I don't really like soaps-give me a body wash any day! I haven't tried this one yet but love the other dove body washes out there.

Posted on: September 04, 2012 (Sep 4, 2012 12:20pm)