Risk Factors for Developing Ingrown Hair

Ingrown hair is common in men and women, especially after shaving or a hair removal treatment that removes the hair from the root. Some people are genetically predisposed to having ingrown hair, but there are also a number of risk factors that can lead to the development of ingrown hair.

Curly Hair

People with curly hair are more likely to develop ingrown hair. After shaving, the hair may be very short and sharp, so it is very likely to curl back into the hair follicle. If the hair is extracted along with its root (i.e. through depilation or waxing), the hair may start growing under the skin, especially if the skin pores are clogged. People with coarse hair are also very likely to have ingrown hair.

To help prevent ingrown hair, you can apply a simple procedure when shaving or removing hair: shave in the direction the hair grows and not against it, and the hair is more likely to become straight. Laser beam treatments may also be used to make the hair softer and less likely to grow under the skin.

Some patients opt for a complete and permanent hair removal with laser beams, as once the hair is eliminated, it won’t be able to grow under the skin.

Dry Skin

People with dry skin flake more easily, and the skin flakes can cover the hair follicles, resulting in ingrown hairs. Dry skin can be managed with rich moisturizing cream, which is essential especially during cold seasons.

Excessive Oil Production

The excessive production of skin oils can clog the pores and may result in the formation of ingrown hair. Excessive skin oil production may be triggered by several factors:

  • Excessive hormonal activity (i.e. hyperthyroidism)
  • Using skin products that make the skin oily
  • No regular skin hygiene to remove impurities

Failure to Exfoliate

If you fail to exfoliate your body and face on a regular basis, you are more likely to develop ingrown hair. This is due to the fact that you won’t remove the dead skin cells, which will gather in the skin pores and clog the hair follicles. An exfoliating shower gel can soften the skin and can reduce the number of ingrown hairs.

Tight Clothing

Tight clothing can facilitate the development of ingrown hair, especially in the pubic area, as the clothing may irritate the skin. Loose clothing should be worn, especially if there are already ingrown hairs or irritated skin. The loose clothing will allow the skin to breathe and prevent the occurrence of additional ingrown hair.

Ingrown hair can be removed with tweezers and needles that are sterilized, or different laser techniques that make the hair straight and soft, so it will no longer grow under the skin. However, it is best if you prevent the occurrence of ingrown hairs. Knowing the risk factors for developing ingrown hair can help you prevent this problem in the future.