It gets tiring to deal with ingrown hairs. All you wanted was a clean shave. Maybe you’re a guy who was heading to work in the morning. Maybe you’re a woman who was grooming to get bikini-perfect before heading out to the beach. No matter what, things always start out great-you shave, things look smooth, and all is well-and then a few hours later, irritation happens. Suddenly, you have razor bumps. A few days later, there are ingrown hairs. The solution to all of this starts before the problem even happens, though: next time you shave, shave with the grain.
Shave with the grain, you ask? Is it really that simple? Will this really help prevent all of the pain, the redness, the swollen, ingrown hair bumps? Will I get a close shave if I don’t shave against the grain? There are so many questions!
It really is that simple. By shaving with the grain, you’ll cause less irritation. When you shave against the grain in an attempt to get a closer shave, your razor blade makes little nicks around each hair follicle. These nicks cause irritation and inflammation, leading to-you guessed it-razor burn and ingrown hairs.
Although you won’t be able to shave as closely when you shave with the grain (as you’ll be shaving in the same direction in which the hairs grow), if you use a sharp blade, you’ll be able to get pretty close. You’ll also want to use a good-quality shave cream or gel in order to soften the hair and help you get a better shave. (Quick tip: if you don’t have any shave gel handy-or simply don’t want to fork out the money for it-use regular old hair conditioner. It will soften the hair, moisturize your skin, and help your razor glide just as effectively.)