Pimples the day after a close shave?

    Pimples the day after a close shave?

    post #1 of 24
    Thread Starter 

    Hello gentlemen, I have a recurring problem that I've been dealing with since I was in high school. I am now in my mid 20's and it really hasn't gotten any better. Let me just give you some quick info to help you answer my question:

     

    First off, my facial hair grows in pretty full, but not very quickly. The most times I ever need to shave in a week is 3, but most of the time I only need to twice (my habit is Monday and Friday mornings). I like to shave before my shower to relieve some of the razor burn because I have sensitive skin. I still use hot water and a washcloth before I shave to exfoliate. I use the Gillette Fusion razors and unscented Aveeno shave gel, for I found that it gives me the smoothest and comfortable shave.

     

    Now, the problem. The day that I shave, my skin is fine. A smooth, close shave and I look great. The day after not so much. I almost always wake up with a couple patches of small pimples that get very red and irritated around them. Feels very uncomfortable and looks like hell. I'll even wash my face with oil-free face wash the night before. My skin will have a bit of a sandpaper feel to it due to the regrowing hair, but it's not near long enough to shave and otherwise still look pretty cleanshaven. Sometimes the pimples will linger even into the next day, but almost never the third day. My "5 o'clock shadow look" doesn't even really appear until that third day. The next day I'll shave and the process begins anew.

     

    Do you guys have any idea what could be causing this? I've tried and changed around some of the products that I use to combat the problem but to no avail. I hate looking zit faced a couple days out of the week.

    post #2 of 24
    I solved irritation by shaving with the grain, then across, then across from the other end, then finally against.

    This eradicated ingrown hairs completely. But it took a good month of proper shaving.
    post #3 of 24

    I don't have that problem for the beard usually, but I do use products against ingrown hair when I wax, and they help. These products include things like Anthony's ingrown hair treatment, and the Kiehl's one. Perhaps you can try and see what happens. You probably don't want to use them right after you shave, because they can irritate the skin further,but you can use them in the evening or in the morning.  Some facial exfoliants probably would work as well.

     

    I'm not sure exfoliating before shaving helps much, you must exfoliate as the hair is growing to free it from the pore.

     

    cacio

    post #4 of 24
    Thread Starter 

    Thanks for the replies. I will look into your solutions.

    post #5 of 24
    alum block rubbed on wet skin post shave.
    post #6 of 24
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hedonist222 View Post

    I solved irritation by shaving with the grain, then across, then across from the other end, then finally against.

    This eradicated ingrown hairs completely. But it took a good month of proper shaving.

     

    Wanted to chime in, since one observation I practically made while actually shaving may be of some use and/or on-topic. Indeed, I have tried out Hedonist 222's technique during the last couple of days, during the daily shave which is supposed to be more strenuous, more demanding on skin, yet it worked and reduced up to almost completely eliminating not just ingrown hairs, but overall tendency towards irritation, pimples or other skin irregularities- thanks for that. 

     

    While it may have just luckily worked in my particular case, it is a shaving technique worth taking into consideration. 

    post #7 of 24
    Glad it worked for you ken.

    I read about it on several shave forums.

    Frankly I'm unsure of the logic but it did solve ingrown hairs.

    I stopped shaving like that a couple of months ago and the ingrown hairs are back.
    post #8 of 24
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hedonist222 View Post

    I solved irritation by shaving with the grain, then across, then across from the other end, then finally against.

    This eradicated ingrown hairs completely. But it took a good month of proper shaving.
    I don't know that I would have the patience required for this.
    post #9 of 24
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hedonist222 View Post

    Glad it worked for you ken.

    I read about it on several shave forums.

    Frankly I'm unsure of the logic but it did solve ingrown hairs.

    I stopped shaving like that a couple of months ago and the ingrown hairs are back.


    The logic is that the stub of the hair remaining in the follicle has a very symmetrical and smooth tip with no longer parts on one side or the other which would make it more likely to grow whilst catching on that side of the follicle and therefore ending up growing in the wrong direction.

     

    If you get ingrown hairs which lead to pimples then as well as the above shaving technique, these things may help:

     

    1) replace your blade more often, as uneven cutting can make ingrown hairs worse, as can bacteria being carried from shave to shave,

     

    2) exfoliate your skin very gently with a cleanser that has granules in it.  This reduces the layers of skin in which the growing hairs get caught as they emerge, and

     

    3) use an oil rather than a foam for shaving.  This means that the blade damages the skin less with each pass as it's slipping better on the skin, and also means that you can see what the razor is making contact with better.

     

    My brother in law used to get razor rash and ingrown hairs so badly that the only way he could 'shave' was to remove the hair with a chemical depilator like Nair.  Gradually as his technique of shaving and using fresh razors and oil have improved things have got better for his skin.


    I hope that you get less sore and itchy soon too.

    post #10 of 24
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sfmedusa View Post


    The logic is that the stub of the hair remaining in the follicle has a very symmetrical and smooth tip with no longer parts on one side or the other which would make it more likely to grow whilst catching on that side of the follicle and therefore ending up growing in the wrong direction.

    If you get ingrown hairs which lead to pimples then as well as the above shaving technique, these things may help:

    1) replace your blade more often, as uneven cutting can make ingrown hairs worse, as can bacteria being carried from shave to shave,

    2) exfoliate your skin very gently with a cleanser that has granules in it.  This reduces the layers of skin in which the growing hairs get caught as they emerge, and

    3) use an oil rather than a foam for shaving.  This means that the blade damages the skin less with each pass as it's slipping better on the skin, and also means that you can see what the razor is making contact with better.

    My brother in law used to get razor rash and ingrown hairs so badly that the only way he could 'shave' was to remove the hair with a chemical depilator like Nair.  Gradually as his technique of shaving and using fresh razors and oil have improved things have got better for his skin.


    I hope that you get less sore and itchy soon too.

    Excellent. Thx.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hednic View Post

    I don't know that I would have the patience required for this.

    It's the way you regularly shave but first pass with the direction of the hair grain. Then swipe across it. That's it.
    post #11 of 24

    I had what you had for several dozen years until a couple of years ago, which was why I shaved electric for most of that time. I would try most every new cartridge razor that came along during that time (and occasionally my DE razor) and they would give me the pimple patch and red rawness. Someone here recommended Trumpers Shave cream, and while it improved things somewhat (it only took me a couple of days to recover instead of four) it didn't solve the problem. Finally, early last year I tried Fusion (regular,not Pro Glide) with Trumper's shave cream, and for the first time in decades I didn't get those pimples. I perserved with that for a week, and then went back and tried my huge collection of old razors and old DE razor. Some were okay, some gave me the pimples. I'd switch back to electric while recovering from them, then restart with the Fusion. Now, I can use most cartridge razors and both regular and aggressive DE razors. The only razors I haven't been able to get used to are the one and two blade disposables.

    So, my suggestion in the first instance is to try a very slick shaving cream with your Fusion, like Trumpers, Art of Shaving or Crabtree and Evelyn. They are the slickest I know of - my face is still slick even after washing them off. And use an Alum block after the shave.

    If that doesn't work, try something much milder like an old Gillette Tech razor and Shark Stainless Steel DE blades, or use those mild blades with something like a Lord L5 (with Tech head) or Lord L6 (with Merkur head) DE razor which are fairly inexpensive on Ebay, and work well. If that works, you can use them for a while, your skin gets used to them, and then try the razors that gave you trouble and see if matters have improved.
    Regards,
    Renato

    post #12 of 24
    I have a full beard and keep it bump free by taking a shower before I shave to soften the hair. I like to keep it shaped up and dark ceasar length. After applying nice shaving cream (kiss my face shaving cream) and using a new disposable razor (never reuse razors), I rinse my face with COLD WATER to close the pores. I then apply Stetson after shave balm to help heal freshly shaven skin. Hope it works for you!
    post #13 of 24
    Thread Starter 

    Thanks for all the helpful replies guys. I am going to purchase a better shave cream and an alum block. Hopefully this changes my fortunes.

    post #14 of 24
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TheNotoriousMAZ View Post

    Thanks for all the helpful replies guys. I am going to purchase a better shave cream and an alum block. Hopefully this changes my fortunes.

    I forgot to add that some people don't like the alum block (it took me a while to get used to it). Though not quite as good an astringent as an alum block, another pretty good astringent alternative is witch hazel that you find in the women's make up section as a toner - just apply it after a shave (it makes no difference whether you buy pure witch hazel or the one with 18% alcohol). Also, you may want to try Mennen Skin Bracer which has some pretty useful healing items inside what you might otherwise think is typical nasty aftershave splash.

    Good luck.
    Regards,
    Renato
     

    post #15 of 24
    Switching to DE shaving worked best for me. I found success sampling different blades. It took a while and a few ripped my face up. Then I discovered Silver Blues. No more irritation. It's odd but each person reacts differently to different blades.
    post #16 of 24

    I went with the double edge because it seemed more economical, but after 3 weeks, I can't take it anymore. The shave was never close and it left my skin irritated, which was never a problem before. I'm back with gillete and doing great.

    6/12/13 at 9:02am

    TheNotoriousMAZ said:



    Hello gentlemen, I have a recurring problem that I've been dealing with since I was in high school. I am now in my mid 20's and it really hasn't gotten any better. Let me just give you some quick info to help you answer my question:

     

    First off, my facial hair grows in pretty full, but not very quickly. The most times I ever need to shave in a week is 3, but most of the time I only need to twice (my habit is Monday and Friday mornings). I like to shave before my shower to relieve some of the razor burn because I have sensitive skin. I still use hot water and a washcloth before I shave to exfoliate. I use the Gillette Fusion razors and unscented Aveeno shave gel, for I found that it gives me the smoothest and comfortable shave.

     

    Now, the problem. The day that I shave, my skin is fine. A smooth, close shave and I look great. The day after not so much. I almost always wake up with a couple patches of small pimples that get very red and irritated around them. Feels very uncomfortable and looks like hell. I'll even wash my face with oil-free face wash the night before. My skin will have a bit of a sandpaper feel to it due to the regrowing hair, but it's not near long enough to shave and otherwise still look pretty cleanshaven. Sometimes the pimples will linger even into the next day, but almost never the third day. My "5 o'clock shadow look" doesn't even really appear until that third day. The next day I'll shave and the process begins anew.

     

    Do you guys have any idea what could be causing this? I've tried and changed around some of the products that I use to combat the problem but to no avail. I hate looking zit faced a couple days out of the week.

    6/12/13 at 12:05pm

    hedonist222 said:



    I solved irritation by shaving with the grain, then across, then across from the other end, then finally against.

    This eradicated ingrown hairs completely. But it took a good month of proper shaving.

    6/12/13 at 12:14pm

    cacio said:



    I don't have that problem for the beard usually, but I do use products against ingrown hair when I wax, and they help. These products include things like Anthony's ingrown hair treatment, and the Kiehl's one. Perhaps you can try and see what happens. You probably don't want to use them right after you shave, because they can irritate the skin further,but you can use them in the evening or in the morning.  Some facial exfoliants probably would work as well.

     

    I'm not sure exfoliating before shaving helps much, you must exfoliate as the hair is growing to free it from the pore.

     

    cacio

    6/13/13 at 6:48am

    TheNotoriousMAZ said:



    Thanks for the replies. I will look into your solutions.

    6/13/13 at 2:44pm

    willyb said:



    alum block rubbed on wet skin post shave.

    6/16/13 at 4:56am

    Ken_Russell said:



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hedonist222 View Post

    I solved irritation by shaving with the grain, then across, then across from the other end, then finally against.

    This eradicated ingrown hairs completely. But it took a good month of proper shaving.

     

    Wanted to chime in, since one observation I practically made while actually shaving may be of some use and/or on-topic. Indeed, I have tried out Hedonist 222's technique during the last couple of days, during the daily shave which is supposed to be more strenuous, more demanding on skin, yet it worked and reduced up to almost completely eliminating not just ingrown hairs, but overall tendency towards irritation, pimples or other skin irregularities- thanks for that. 

     

    While it may have just luckily worked in my particular case, it is a shaving technique worth taking into consideration. 

    6/16/13 at 5:51am

    hedonist222 said:



    Glad it worked for you ken.

    I read about it on several shave forums.

    Frankly I'm unsure of the logic but it did solve ingrown hairs.

    I stopped shaving like that a couple of months ago and the ingrown hairs are back.

    6/16/13 at 7:14am

    hednic said:



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hedonist222 View Post

    I solved irritation by shaving with the grain, then across, then across from the other end, then finally against.

    This eradicated ingrown hairs completely. But it took a good month of proper shaving.
    I don't know that I would have the patience required for this.

    6/16/13 at 7:43am

    sfmedusa said:



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hedonist222 View Post

    Glad it worked for you ken.

    I read about it on several shave forums.

    Frankly I'm unsure of the logic but it did solve ingrown hairs.

    I stopped shaving like that a couple of months ago and the ingrown hairs are back.


    The logic is that the stub of the hair remaining in the follicle has a very symmetrical and smooth tip with no longer parts on one side or the other which would make it more likely to grow whilst catching on that side of the follicle and therefore ending up growing in the wrong direction.

     

    If you get ingrown hairs which lead to pimples then as well as the above shaving technique, these things may help:

     

    1) replace your blade more often, as uneven cutting can make ingrown hairs worse, as can bacteria being carried from shave to shave,

     

    2) exfoliate your skin very gently with a cleanser that has granules in it.  This reduces the layers of skin in which the growing hairs get caught as they emerge, and

     

    3) use an oil rather than a foam for shaving.  This means that the blade damages the skin less with each pass as it's slipping better on the skin, and also means that you can see what the razor is making contact with better.

     

    My brother in law used to get razor rash and ingrown hairs so badly that the only way he could 'shave' was to remove the hair with a chemical depilator like Nair.  Gradually as his technique of shaving and using fresh razors and oil have improved things have got better for his skin.


    I hope that you get less sore and itchy soon too.

    6/16/13 at 10:12am

    hedonist222 said:



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sfmedusa View Post


    The logic is that the stub of the hair remaining in the follicle has a very symmetrical and smooth tip with no longer parts on one side or the other which would make it more likely to grow whilst catching on that side of the follicle and therefore ending up growing in the wrong direction.

    If you get ingrown hairs which lead to pimples then as well as the above shaving technique, these things may help:

    1) replace your blade more often, as uneven cutting can make ingrown hairs worse, as can bacteria being carried from shave to shave,

    2) exfoliate your skin very gently with a cleanser that has granules in it.  This reduces the layers of skin in which the growing hairs get caught as they emerge, and

    3) use an oil rather than a foam for shaving.  This means that the blade damages the skin less with each pass as it's slipping better on the skin, and also means that you can see what the razor is making contact with better.

    My brother in law used to get razor rash and ingrown hairs so badly that the only way he could 'shave' was to remove the hair with a chemical depilator like Nair.  Gradually as his technique of shaving and using fresh razors and oil have improved things have got better for his skin.


    I hope that you get less sore and itchy soon too.

    Excellent. Thx.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by hednic View Post

    I don't know that I would have the patience required for this.

    It's the way you regularly shave but first pass with the direction of the hair grain. Then swipe across it. That's it.

    6/21/13 at 10:58am

    Renato said:



    I had what you had for several dozen years until a couple of years ago, which was why I shaved electric for most of that time. I would try most every new cartridge razor that came along during that time (and occasionally my DE razor) and they would give me the pimple patch and red rawness. Someone here recommended Trumpers Shave cream, and while it improved things somewhat (it only took me a couple of days to recover instead of four) it didn't solve the problem. Finally, early last year I tried Fusion (regular,not Pro Glide) with Trumper's shave cream, and for the first time in decades I didn't get those pimples. I perserved with that for a week, and then went back and tried my huge collection of old razors and old DE razor. Some were okay, some gave me the pimples. I'd switch back to electric while recovering from them, then restart with the Fusion. Now, I can use most cartridge razors and both regular and aggressive DE razors. The only razors I haven't been able to get used to are the one and two blade disposables.

    So, my suggestion in the first instance is to try a very slick shaving cream with your Fusion, like Trumpers, Art of Shaving or Crabtree and Evelyn. They are the slickest I know of - my face is still slick even after washing them off. And use an Alum block after the shave.

    If that doesn't work, try something much milder like an old Gillette Tech razor and Shark Stainless Steel DE blades, or use those mild blades with something like a Lord L5 (with Tech head) or Lord L6 (with Merkur head) DE razor which are fairly inexpensive on Ebay, and work well. If that works, you can use them for a while, your skin gets used to them, and then try the razors that gave you trouble and see if matters have improved.
    Regards,
    Renato

    6/21/13 at 11:23am

    sjg3839 said:



    I have a full beard and keep it bump free by taking a shower before I shave to soften the hair. I like to keep it shaped up and dark ceasar length. After applying nice shaving cream (kiss my face shaving cream) and using a new disposable razor (never reuse razors), I rinse my face with COLD WATER to close the pores. I then apply Stetson after shave balm to help heal freshly shaven skin. Hope it works for you!

    6/21/13 at 12:03pm

    TheNotoriousMAZ said:



    Thanks for all the helpful replies guys. I am going to purchase a better shave cream and an alum block. Hopefully this changes my fortunes.

    6/21/13 at 10:08pm

    Renato said:



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by TheNotoriousMAZ View Post

    Thanks for all the helpful replies guys. I am going to purchase a better shave cream and an alum block. Hopefully this changes my fortunes.

    I forgot to add that some people don't like the alum block (it took me a while to get used to it). Though not quite as good an astringent as an alum block, another pretty good astringent alternative is witch hazel that you find in the women's make up section as a toner - just apply it after a shave (it makes no difference whether you buy pure witch hazel or the one with 18% alcohol). Also, you may want to try Mennen Skin Bracer which has some pretty useful healing items inside what you might otherwise think is typical nasty aftershave splash.

    Good luck.
    Regards,
    Renato
     

    7/10/13 at 8:21pm

    Smathersx said:



    Switching to DE shaving worked best for me. I found success sampling different blades. It took a while and a few ripped my face up. Then I discovered Silver Blues. No more irritation. It's odd but each person reacts differently to different blades.

    7/12/13 at 7:42pm

    elevation said:



    I went with the double edge because it seemed more economical, but after 3 weeks, I can't take it anymore. The shave was never close and it left my skin irritated, which was never a problem before. I'm back with gillete and doing great.