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6 Ways to Naturally Get Rid of Razor Burn (& Prevent It Too)

Last Updated: September 7, 2021

Got razor burn? Learn how to properly shave so you can say sayonara to gnarly ingrown hairs and painful post-shower bumps once and for all.

If you’ve ever shaved before, then you know there are few things worse than realizing your morning shave left you with a nasty case of razor burn on your legs, armpits, faces, or … private areas.

Well, we’ve got you covered with this handy guide and recommendations of useful products to treat and prevent painful razor burn for good.

So what is razor burn?

Illustration of a bathtub

Razor burn, also called razor rash, is a skin condition caused by irritation from shaving that usually clears up in about two to three days.

It’s most common for folks with beards, but people who shave their legs or pubic areas are no strangers to this delightful little affliction as well.

Symptoms of razor burn include:

  • Rash
  • Inflammation
  • Tenderness
  • Itchiness
  • Burning

Razor burn vs. razor bumps

These terms are often used interchangeably, but razor burn and razor bumps are actually two different things.

Razor burn is a product of shaving, while razor bumps on your legs or skin are tiny red bumps caused by shaved or waxed hairs that have become ingrown.

Razor burn vs. herpes

Razor burn is an acne-like rash caused by irritation from shaving.

Herpes is a virus that causes blisters filled with a clear liquid. You can’t get herpes from razor burn, but if you use a razor that’s been in contact with the herpes virus, it’s possible for the virus to spread.

How do I prevent razor burn?

We’ve got six shaving techniques so you never have to deal with an uncomfortable razor rash on your legs, face, or nether region again.

Then, check out our list of the best natural shaving products for the smoothest skin you’ve ever known, sans razor burn.

6 shaving tips to prevent razor burn

1. Shave during your shower

Hair follicles are at their softest when they’ve been in steam for a few minutes. Take your time, and shave slowly to avoid skin irritation.

Rinse the razor blade after every stroke to stop hair and soap from building up.

2. Use a shave lubricant

Always use a shaving cream or shaving gel barrier between your skin and the razor to prevent excessive irritation and give your razor a better glide.

3. Shave in the direction of hair growth

We know going against the grain gives a closer shave, but it also leads to irritation.

The best way to shave your legs is to follow the direction of your hair growth.

4. Exfoliate

Gentle exfoliation lifts off dirt, oil, and dead skin cells to create a smoother surface for your razor to glide across.

Try a soap that doubles as an exfoliator for gentle buffing that prevents razor burn.

5. Don’t use a dull razor

Dull razors are a major cause of razor burn because they accumulate dead skin cells, hair, and soap residue overtime.

Swap out your razor with a new, high quality one after five to ten uses for a smooth shave.

Level up your shave game with some hot tips from the American Academy of Dermatology.

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How to treat razor burn

Treat your razor rash naturally with these home remedies that’ll provide fast relief in less than an hour.

Cold compress

Fight fire with ice, and soothe your burn with a cold compress.

Grab a clean washcloth and run it under cold water, or wrap an ice pack in a towel, and apply it to your razor burn to relieve itching and inflammation.

Witch hazel

Witch hazel contains tannins that help reduce the redness and inflammation from razor burn.

Use a witch hazel wipe, or soak a cotton ball in the liquid then gently dab at your rash. Choose an alcohol-free witch hazel — alcohol is an irritant and will not feel good on your burn.

Natural oils

Don’t let your razor burn dry out — hydrate your irritated skin with a natural oil that’ll soften the irritated skin and reduce inflammation.

Coconut , avocado, jojoba, and olive oil are great choices for natural hydration to heal your aching skin.

Oatmeal bath

Oatmeal is an excellent remedy for skin irritation due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

Empty a packet of colloidal oatmeal into a tub full of warm water, and soak for at least 15 minutes for razor burn relief.

Aloe vera

Aloe vera has enzymes that calm inflammation, plus it’s super moisturizing so you can hydrate and soothe your rash in one swoop.

Don’t have a bottle of aloe vera on hand? Just break a leaf off the plant on your windowsill, and squeeze the gel onto your burn.

Don’t shave the area

Give your skin time to heal, even if that means letting your hair grow out for a few days ‘til the bumps subside.

Shaving over razor burn might cause more irritation, inflammation, and possibly infection.

4 tips for shaving your pubic hair

Illustration of 3 leaves.

Razor burn on your private areas is the worst. Whether you’re trimming the hedges or mowing the lawn, it’s nice to have a few tips in your shave kit to prevent bumps and razor rash down there.

1. Trim first

Snip your pubes so the hair isn’t as long — longer hair is more likely to pull when you shave it which may cause irritation.

2. Designate a pube razor

Don’t shave your bits with the same razor you use on your legs, armpits, or face — the blade will dull more quickly and create a breeding ground for razor burn.

For best results, set aside a razor specifically for de-fuzzing your pubic area.

3. Use two hands

Pull the skin taut with one hand and shave with the other. If you can prop your leg up on the edge of the tub, it’ll make reaching all the nooks and crannies that much easier.

4. Go slow

This is not the time or place to beat your personal record for speed-shaving. Work in small sections and go slowly to prevent knicks and razor bumps.

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