Many consumers get ingrown hairs from shaving and other hair removal methods, and there are numerous products designed to help with this.
Regular readers know that I write pretty tough reviews of hair removal products. Well, I’m happy to say there are a few products that can sometimes work as well as they claim. One of these is Tend Skin.
When applied regularly, Tend Skin can effectively and safely reduce the following side effects from hair removal:
- Razor bumps or shaving bumps (Pseudofolliculitis barbae or PFB)
- Ingrown hairs
- Shaving rash
- Whiteheads following waxing
- Inflammation after electrolysis or waxing
Tend Skin is a clear liquid with a slightly vinegar smell. It’s covered by U.S. Patents 6,001,340 and 6,156,299. Even the manufacturer admits what makes Tend Skin work “is not completely understood.” Tend Skin appears to be a beta-hydroxy acid type exfoliant.
You can purchase Tend Skin from Amazon below.
Razor bumps (pseudofolliculitis barbae or PFB)
From 50-80% of African-American men and 15-20% of Caucasian men have beard hairs which curl as they grow and eventually burrow into the skin adjacent to the hair follicle. Shaving sharpens the hair ends, making it easier for them to penetrate into the skin. Razor bumps itch, burn, and make shaving difficult. Over time, this can cause keloidal scarring which looks like hard bumps of the beard area and neck.
A 100% effective treatment is to let the beard grow. Once the hairs get to be a certain length they will not grow back into the skin.
Use of an electric shaver can help the condition because it does not cut as close as blades do.
Some doctors recommend “chemical shaving” with products such as Nair, Neet, Magic Shave, etc. to improve PFB.
Some recent studies have suggested certain types of lasers may be useful; in treating PFB, but the data is very limited, and darker skin tones have a higher likelihood of skin discoloration from laser.
Washing the beard area with Lever 2000 soap using a Buf-Puf helps raise the hairs from under the skin and prevents them from growing back into the skin. This should be done twice a day. Buf-Pufs are available without a prescription at your local drug store.
Tend Skin or similar products can be an effective treatment for razor bumps.
Retin-A or a topical antibiotic solution prescribed by your doctor can help the problem.
If you must use a blade, before shaving wash the face with a mild cleanser such as Cetaphil Lotion, then rinse. Massage the beard area gently in a circular motion with a warm, moist, soft washcloth. This will free up the hair tips so they can be cut with the shaver. The warm water will also soften the hairs, making them easier to cut. Lather the beard area with a non-irritating shaving gel such as Aveeno Therapeutic Shave Gel instead of cream and shave in the direction of beard growth using an Aveeno PFB Bump Fighter Razor. Both of these products should be available at your local drug store. After shaving is finished, rinse thoroughly with warm water and apply a mild moisturizing aftershave lotion such as Cetaphil Lotion.Shaving every other day, rather than daily, will improve pseudo-folliculitis barbae. Use a single blade razor. Do not pull the skin taut when blade shaving and do not use a double or triple-edged razor.
Single edge razor must be discarded after 2-3 uses! This is critical. Dull blades make razor bumps!
Apply Tend Skin before and after shaving, two three times per day, for the first 3 days. Once the skin clears (usually in 48 hours), apply it once daily to maintain clear skin.
For greater comfort, allow 15 – 20 minutes after shaving before applying.
Even after condition has improved, you must continue using the product as parts of your shaving routine.
Always shave in the direction of the follicle, not against it, don’t stretch the skin.
Do not tweeze ingrown hairs as it may cause skin damage and increase the likelihood of more ingrown hairs.
Men can get ingrown beard hairs, and women can get them after shaving or waxing their legs, bikini lines, and underarms. Some women also get them following electrolysis or laser. Ingrown hairs form after existing hairs curl over within the follicles and fail to exit to the surface. The result is an unsightly ingrown-hair-formed “bump” on the skin.
Applying Tend Skin to existing ingrown hairs will clear 24 to 48 hours. DO NOT Tweeze or pick at ingrown hairs. Once the hair is well above the skin. Then dip tweezers into the Tend Skin and remove. Re-spot with a Q-Tip.
Women have reported good results using a double edge disposable razor, replacing it after two shaves. Applying Tend Skin before shaving will decrease the burning and itching associated with PFB. Apply twice a day, in the morning after showering and once at night before going to sleep.
Applying Tend Skin after shaving will eliminate the noticeable redness that appears on the skin after shaving, both for women after shaving legs, bikini lines and underarms, and for men after shaving their faces.
Inflammation after Electrolysis or Waxing
When used after waxing, the Tend Skin can reduce redness. Applying Tend Skin regularly to areas that are waxed or treated with electrolysis is will prevent the ingrown hair formation that occurs after these procedures.
If you have pre-existing ingrown hair problems, buy a bottle of Tend Skin for home use. Apply the product 2 – 3 times daily prior to hair removal. Ideal times to use the product are after showering in the morning and before retiring at night. This approach will permit lifting of existing ingrown hairs prior to waxing or electrolysis, making hair removal in the salon much cleaner and neater.
15-20 minutes after waxing or electrolysis, apply Tend Skin to the area. There may be slight stinging when applying Tend Skin.
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Disclaimer: A product which works perfectly for one consumer may not work at all for another. I discuss this product for informational purposes only and make no claim or guarantee about its safety or effectiveness for individual consumers. As with all products discussed on this site, I have no financial interest in Tend Skin.