How to prevent a bikini shaving rash
What you do (or don’t do) with your body hair is, of course, all down to personal preference. But if you’ve ever used a razor to tidy up downstairs, the chances are you’ll have experienced bikini shaving rash, and isn’t it just the worst!?
Those little red bumps can sometimes seem like an inevitable consequence of shaving down there, but it doesn’t have to be this way! Just follow our tips and that bikini shaving rash will be a thing of the past…
As the old saying goes, “fail to prepare, prepare to fail”, and when it comes to preventing a bikini shaving rash this couldn’t be truer.
The first (and arguably the most important) step is to jump in a hot shower or bath. The longer you can hang out here the better, as the heat and steam will help to soften the hair.
Give your bikini area a clean with a mild exfoliating wash. As well as removing any dead cells that could create unwanted friction, exfoliating helps to lift hairs away from the skin. You’ll get a closer result, with less chance of experiencing ingrown hairs. Winner.
We’re sure you don't need reminding that your lady garden is a sensitive domain, but when we say mild, we do mean mild. A bit of common sense goes a long way here; if you wouldn’t put it on your face, then don’t put it between your legs! Don’t scrub too hard, and make sure you just stick to the surrounding skin.
Our kóri exfoliating face wash is ideal for this, as the gentle formulation shouldn’t upset your sensitive skin.
Tip: If you’re dealing with a fair bit of hair, it’s best to have a trim with some scissors beforehand. If the hair is too long, it’s likely to pull and get caught in your razor. Ouch.
Never underestimate the importance of shave gel
We know it’s super tempting, but do try and avoid falling into the trap of using shower gel as a substitute for proper shave gel or cream.
One of the best defences against bikini shaving rash is to create a decent protective barrier between your skin and the razor, and shower gel just isn’t going to provide the protection you need.
Again, it’s important to be mindful of the products you’re using down there, so stay clear of anything that contains alcohol or artificial fragrances. Canned shaving foam is also a big no-no, as it tends to contain chemicals that can dry out the skin.
A clear gel, like danne, works well for bikini grooming. You’ll get all the protection you need with the added bonus of being able to see where you’re shaving, which is particularly handy for intricate bikini lines.
Tip: For extra smoothness, let your shave gel sit for a couple of minutes before you reach for your razor. This will ensure the hairs are super-soft, so they’re much easier to cut.
Choose the right razor
There are no prizes for guessing that the old razor that’s been sitting in your shower for weeks probably isn’t an ideal option here. The thing is though, so many people are still making this mistake, then wondering why they end up with shaving rash.
In order to achieve a smooth result, the aim of the game is for the hairs to be cut as cleanly as possible. When you use a blunt razor, the hairs are tugged and torn in all sorts of manners, which really upsets the skin.
A decent razor blade cartridge should last for around 5-7 shaves. If you feel like it’s tugging, or you find yourself having to go over the same area multiple times to get a close result, then the chances are it’s time for a change.
Grime and bacteria love hanging out on razor blades, and they’re another common cause of bikini shaving rash. With that in mind, we’d never recommend hanging on to a used razor blade cartridge for any longer than a month, even if you don’t shave very often.
Tip: To extend the life of your blades, it’s best to keep your razor somewhere dry.
As for the number of blades you go for, it’s really a matter of personal preference. A greater number of blades can deliver a closer result, however, this is sometimes too much for the delicate skin along your bikini line.
We’d usually recommend our osku 3-blade cartridges for bikini shaving. We’ve found that 3 is a pretty prime number for ensuring maximum closeness, but with minimal risk of upsetting the skin. Plus, the smaller design of the 3-blade cartridge is ideal for navigating through trickier body contours.
Know your grain
When you’re shaving your bikini area, it’s really important to take your grain into consideration. Don’t worry if that’s caused a blank look - it’s just shaving lingo for the direction your hair naturally grows.
The thing is, when you shave against the grain, the hair is often cut too far down the follicle which can lead to a nasty case of bikini shaving rash. If you’re unfamiliar with your grain, the chances are you’ve been doing this without even realising, but it’s an easy fix once you know what’s what.
Tip: To figure out the direction of your grain, gently run your hand across the hair (stubble works best) and it’s whichever way feels the smoothest
That being said, we’d always recommend starting in the direction of the hair growth (with the grain). If you find that’s not close enough you can always go back in the opposite direction, but please do so with caution!
Easy does it
Most shaving cuts are simply a result of carelessness. Shaving rash aside, we think it’s safe to say that an injured minnie won’t be high on anyone's agenda. We know you’re probably eager to get this over and done with as quickly as possible, but please do take your time.
Pull the skin taut as you shave, and use short strokes with as little pressure as possible. Providing your blades are nice and sharp it’s the razor that should be doing all the work here.
It’s best to rinse your razor after every couple of strokes. Hair and shave gel clogged in the blades create friction which can lead to a bikini shaving rash. If you do find you need to go over the same area more than once then make sure you re-apply your shave gel.
Aftercare is just as important as proper preparation when it comes to preventing bikini shaving rash.
Your skin will be pretty vulnerable at this point, so it’s best to avoid any rubbing with your towel. A gentle pat will do the trick.
It might sound a bit odd, but giving the area a quick wipe with our gösta facial tonic is a brilliant tip for keeping shaving rash at bay. It has natural anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory ingredients to soothe and repair the skin.
Finish off with a generous layer of moisturiser. Again, you’ll want to avoid anything that contains artificial fragrance or alcohol to prevent any unwanted stinging.
Give yourself a virtual high five. You’re now ready to be silky smooth and bikini shaving rash free.
It’s best to give your skin a bit of time to recover, so try and avoid shaving downstairs daily if you can help it.
If you’ve ever shaved your bikini area before, then you’ll no doubt be familiar with the unforgiving itch that likes to make an appearance as the hair grows back. Keep this at bay with regular exfoliating, and a daily dose of moisturiser.