How to Get Rid of Ingrown Hair Scars on Black Skin

How to Get Rid of Ingrown Hair Scars on Black Skin

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Khadija B.
July 31, 2022
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If you are suffering from ingrown hairs, you might be wondering how to get rid of ingrown hair scars on black skin. Ingrown hair tends to leave dark spots on the skin, especially on black skin. The sights are usually not pretty and tends to be itchy sometimes. One of the most effective ways of getting rid of these scars is using products like nourishing oils, glycolic acid, Vitamin A, lactic acid, and mandelic acid. These products enhance cell turnover and help disperse the pigment from the surface of your skin. You can also use brightening ingredients like vitamin C, hydroquinone, lemon juice, and kojic acid to aid the process.

Whether it’s the patch of hair that grows out before you decide to enjoy a day at the beach or the strands of hair that suddenly appear on the upper lip, body hair can sometimes be a pain. For this reason, we tend to shave, wax or tweeze them away.

Here’s what you probably didn’t know; these hair removal techniques can cause an ingrown hair scar. And an ingrown hair would look like a pimple or slightly elevated red bump that does not go away

All these can be frustrating because ingrown hair flushes your efforts to maintain a baby-smooth skin texture down the drain.

But ridding your skin of ingrown hairs doesn’t have to be a problematic situation. There are DIY treatments that don’t cost as much as you think. All you need to do is understand the causes of ingrown hairs.

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In this article, we will explore all you should know about ingrown hairs scars under the following headings:

  • What are the causes of ingrown hair scars?
  • What happens when an ingrown hair gets infected?
  • How can I get rid of scars caused by ingrown hairs?
  • Do’s and don’ts for ingrown hairs 
  • How can I prevent ingrown hairs from recurring?

So, let’s get right into it. 

What Are The Causes of Ingrown Hair Scars?

You get ingrown hair when your hair gets stuck within your skin. This can happen naturally or from strain on your hair follicles,

Ingrown hair can lead to a scar, an inflammation, or infection of the affected area. Four factors that cause ingrown hairs are shaving, impactions, hair type, and plucking. 

  • Shaving: your hair stretches past the follicle and becomes sharp on edge. And after which, your hair snaps back into place, where it can grow from the pore or get stuck underneath your skin. 
  • Plucking and waxing: plucking, waxing, and other hair removal methods that affect your hair’s natural growth can cause ingrown hair. 
  • Impactions: built-up dead skin cells block your hair follicle and contribute to ingrown hair. When this happens, your hair grows sideways instead of straight. 
  • Hair type: ingrown hair appears on places like the bikini line, face, or neck. However, ingrown hair happens frequently with curly or coarse hair that either grows sideways or curls back.  

What Happens When an Ingrown Hair Gets Infected?

When an ingrown hair gets infected, it looks like a slightly raised red bumps. Inflammation happens, and it becomes hot to the touch, itchy, and pus-filled. You can develop keloid scars or pigmentation changes when ingrown hair gets infected. 

Keloid Scarring

Keloid scars are scar tissues that grow continuously, and look like a smooth, raised bump. Keloid scars might be pink, red, or your skin tone and will grow bigger with time. Keloid scarring happens from an infected ingrown hair. 

Pigmentation Changes

Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PiH) looks like flat brown patches and has been said to happen when you remove the hair in your bikini area. When PiH occurs, it’s usually due to increased melanin production and most likely affects dark-skinned people. While scarring may not occur, areas of post inflammatory pigmentation can appear because of infected ingrown hair. 

If an ingrown hair gets infected – here’s what to do

  • Keep the infected area clean and moist by applying towels soaked in warm water. 
  • Warm compresses and antibacterial cream can help the hair exit faster. 
  • Change the wound’s dressing daily until it heals completely. 
  • Don’t pick at scabs, as that will worsen the wound. 

But these are only basic precautions you should follow, and below is a detailed description of how to treat ingrown hair. 

How Can I Get Rid of Scars Caused by Ingrown Hairs?

There are several treatment options for an ingrown hair scar. You can opt for the DIY method or the other option highlighted below. 

Home Remedies You Can Try For An Ingrown Hair

How do you get rid of dark scars from ingrown hair at home?

Letting the wound heal is the best chance you have at removing and preventing scarring caused by ingrown hair. Picking at it could cause secondary bacterial infection or post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation that could take a few months to heal.

But by keeping the affected area clean, neatly covered, and moisturized, it would be easier to remove the scars from your skin.

Note that it’s also vital that you ensure that there are no signs of infection before you attempt to remove the scar. But if you have a newly formed scar and would like to prevent scarring in the future, here is a list of do-it-yourself treatments you can use. 

Sunscreen

Applying sunscreen reduces the redness and irritation an ingrown hair scar will cause. So, apply sunscreen whenever you go out in the sun so the spot can fade quickly. 

Green Tea

Green tea contains catechins, compounds that have both anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. Green tea helps clear dark marks and scar tissue caused by ingrown hair scars. Here’s how to use it. 

Place a wet tea bag onto the surface of the affected area, or dip a towel in warm brewed green tea and place it on your skin. It would be best to look for skin care products containing green tea extract. 

Aloe Vera

Aloe vera is a decorative plant, but it has healing properties. Here’s how to get rid of ingrown hair scars with aloe vera. 

Cut a fresh aloe vera leaf and apply the gel to the scarring place. Massage it onto your skin daily until the scars fade. If you don’t have the plant, it’s also available as a ready-made gel. 

Onion Extract

Over the years, using onion extract has resurfaced in many pieces of research as one of the best ways to get rid of ingrown hair scars on the skin. This is because onion extract contains anti-inflammatory properties that clear the dark spots caused by the scars.  

Silicone Gel

Silicone gel is highly recommended for reducing the visibility of old and new scars on the skin’s surface. This is how silicone gel works. 

It increases hydration in the skin’s uppermost layer, improving fibroblast and collagen production. In other words, it allows your skin to breathe and makes your scar softer and flatter, indicating healing.  

Essential Oils

Of course, the list wouldn’t be complete if we didn’t add essential oils that contain several healing properties that curb recurring ingrown hair. However, please do not use an essential oil on scar tissue without diluting it with a carrier oil. 

Remember that you need to select the treatment that works effectively on your skin and hair type. And if choosing one is too much trouble, seek professional medical advice. 

Other Ways To Treat Scars Caused By Ingrown Hairs

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Not all ingrown scars get treated with DIY methods, so we’ve provided other treatment options for you. But don’t forget that you’d get the best advice for your skin and hair type when you visit a dermatologist. 

Use Skin Care Products 

One way your skin heals from scars caused by ingrown hairs is by cell turnover. When cell turnover occurs, you shed your dead skin cells, which get replaced with younger cells. Besides removing scars, cell turnover makes your skin firmer and wrinkles less wrinkles. What should you use for cell turnover? 

Use products that enhance cell turnover, and contain salicylic acid and alpha-hydroxy acids like lactic acid, vitamin A, glycolic acid, and mandelic acid. 

Mandelic acid and glycolic acid are excellent brighteners and exfoliators, and when you use them, pair them with vitamin C, kojic acid, or hydroquinone. Lastly, UV rays will worsen any scars you have; do well to wear sunscreen whenever you have to go out in the sun. 

To be safe, you might want to try out any of the following hair removal processes that do not give ingrown hair a chance to grow. 

Dermabrasion

Here, you get rid of ingrown hair scar and scar tissue by scrubbing away the layers of skin affected by ingrown hair. Sand-like crystal is used as a scrub, and although this may sound painful, the procedure only has minor side effects that last a short while. 

Chemical Peels

Chemical peels are similar to dermabrasion, but a peeling agent is used instead of a sand-like crystal. Once the chemical agent is applied to the affected area, the skin later starts to peel off. Don’t worry; it’s an inexpensive and safe ingrown hair scar removal method. But there’s a catch; because of pigmentation, chemical peels might not be as effective on dark skin as on light skin. 

Laser Hair Removal

How to get rid of ingrown hair scars on black skin? Use the laser hair removal method. It is safe and is the oldest method of hair removal among these three. The laser method doesn’t only remove the scar; it also resurfaces the skin. Although this method is more expensive, its results are better than dermabrasion and chemical peels. Plus, you only need a short recovery process, which has almost no side effects. 

Do’s And Don’ts For Ingrown Hairs

Coarse and curly hair are more prone to ingrown hair than other hair types. Because of this, ingrown hairs can become easily infected, but the following rules can help you minimize the risk of infections. 

Don’t Pick At It

You know the way you’re always tempted to pop or pick at your pimples; don’t do that with ingrown hair. Doing so will only irritate your skin further and may sometimes cause more than just a dark scar. 

Let it Breathe

You might probably think stifling the ingrown hair will cut off its oxygen supply, and that way, it’ll slowly die off. No, it doesn’t work like that. If you have ingrown hairs in areas usually covered by clothing, stop wearing tight clothes to avoid irritation, inflammation, and redness whenever they rub against the spot. 

Avoid Shaving and Tweezing 

Shaving and tweezing the areas where you have ingrown hairs is not the best way to get rid of them; you’d only end up having razor bumps. Leave the ingrown hairs just the way they are, which prevents scarring on your skin. 

Clean and Moisturize 

Keep the affected area clean and moisturized. You can also frequently apply warm compresses to the ingrown hair to help it pop out independently. 

Formulated Gels and Serums 

Use formulated gels and serums that will be sure to help an ingrown hair pop out easily. That way, your skin will undergo less trauma, and the chance of the ingrown hair recurring will reduce. 

How Can I Prevent Ingrown Hairs from Recurring?

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We know that absolute terror occurs when ingrown hair recurs after you just treated the spot. So, here are a few tips on how to keep an ingrown hair scar from recurring. 

Moisturize

We advise that you avoid shaving, but we know how difficult that can be. So, when you shave, moisturize your skin before and after, use a sharp razor, and ensure to rinse it between shaves. Doing this also reduces the razor bumps you’d get from shaving. 

Exfoliate

Here’s what exfoliating does for you in the case of ingrown hairs and their scars. Exfoliation removes hair, dirt, and dead skin cells from your skin’s surface, considerably reducing any risk of infection. Use gentle exfoliation weekly to prevent your hair from growing too long and curling into your skin. 

Shave With Caution

Most times, ingrown hairs occur from shaving badly, and it causes pseudofolliculitis barbae – bumps. As such, it’s essential to learn how to and how frequently to shave and reduce the irritation that may result from shaving. 

First, get a single-blade razor because it allows even shaving on the skin. Secondly, shaving cream or gel to protect your skin and form a smooth glide for the razor is essential because it reduces nicks and cuts that increase inflammation and ingrown hair. 

Once your supplies are ready, your shaving method is the next thing to consider. Here’s how to do it the right way. 

  • Apply the shaving cream or gel to the area with hair growth. 
  • Begin to shave off the hair in the direction of the hair growth. 
  • Rinse your razor after each stroke; although it may take a while, this step is essential. Rinsing your razor after every stroke prevents you from going over an area twice from a different angle, reducing the risk of ingrown hair. 

Shaving often prevents your hair from growing too long and curling into your skin, so don’t wait a long time before shaving again. Do not self-medicate and buy over-the-counter products; seek excellent international clinical recommendations on scar management, and advice from a dermatologist or reliable medical associations. 

Final Words

Whatever technique you choose, do not overlook the importance of getting advice from a dermatologist who will help you make the right treatment options. Also, ensure that you choose an experienced surgeon for your ingrown hair scar removal for the best results and to avoid complications. 

Khadija B.