How to Prevent Breakouts After Waxing

Waxing is many women's hair removal method of choice, but the occasional breakout after waxing is enough to send some women in search of another way to remove hair. Breakouts can occur after waxing because of bacteria, inflammation and irritation, but you can take steps to prevent the problem both before and after your waxing treatment. Whether you're having your eyebrows, lip or another part of your body done, proper care and treatment can prevent a nasty breakout after waxing.

Close-up of woman having her leg waxed. (Image: AndreyPopov/iStock/Getty Images)

Step 1

Exfoliate your skin with an exfoliating scrub before you have the waxing done. This will remove any dead skin cells, dirt and oil which may otherwise be forced into your pores with the application of wax. It also helps ensure a smooth result. If you don't have an exfoliating scrub, make one yourself by mixing enough sugar and water to form a paste and massaging it into your skin.

Step 2

Ensure that the salon you are going to for the waxing treatment uses fresh utensils for each waxing appointment. Bacteria left on the materials and wax from other patrons could set you up for breakouts. If you are waxing by yourself at home, sterilize all of your utensils, including the spatula and wax strips before applying them to your skin.

Step 3

Apply an astringent to the area immediately after waxing. Witch hazel is a good, natural astringent and can help calm the inflammation that occurs after waxing, says the website for Associate Skin Care Professionals. Just douse a cotton ball with the product, and lightly dab it on the freshly waxed area to keep it clean and cooled.

Step 4

Use a hydrocortisone cream as soon as you see bumps forming. What you think is acne may actually be ingrown hairs or small irritation bumps. Paradi Mirmirani, MD, a dermatologist for Kaiser Permanente in Vallejo, California, suggest smoothing a hydrocortison cream on the area to reduce irritation and stop any itch that may be occurring.

Step 5

Avoid touching the area with your fingers. While you may be eager to feel the results by running your fingers over the area, you may be transferring bacteria to the sensitive area, which will serve to cause even more breaking out. Keep your hands away, and look in the mirror if you want to see the difference.

Things You'll Need

  • Exfoliating scrub

  • Witch hazel

  • Hydrocortisone cream

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