Skip to the navigation
Razor bumps, or ingrown hairs, are small, irritated bumps on the skin. They happen after you shave, when strands of hair curl back on themselves and grow into the skin. They cause irritation and pimples. They also may cause scarring.
The best way to treat razor bumps is to stop shaving. If you can't do that, use a clean needle to release the hair shaft when you see a bump forming. This usually stops a razor bump from growing.
If you start shaving again, razor bumps usually return.
For severe razor bumps, you may need a special skin cream, such as hydrocortisone, antibiotic, or tretinoin cream.
Waxing and plucking may cause razor bumps.
Hair removal products called depilatories do not cause razor bumps. But they can irritate the skin and should be used only once or twice a week.
Removing hair permanently with laser treatments, or electrolysis, does not cause razor bumps.
These tips can help when you shave:
Anyone can get them. They're most common in people with tightly curled or spiral hair strands.
Primary Medical Reviewer Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Adam Husney, MD - Family Medicine
Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Ellen K. Roh, MD - Dermatology
Current as ofOctober 5, 2017
To learn more about Healthwise, visit Healthwise.org .
© 1995-2018 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.