How to Prevent Bumps After Waxing

Stay smooth

Woman sitting on driftwood with smooth legs and a sun hat
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Hair removal can definitely be irritating to the skin. It's not just razor burn that you need to worry about; red bumps can also be caused by waxing, especially when removing thick hair like the hair in the bikini zone. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to lessen or avoid this inflammation altogether, even if you have sensitive skin.

Preventing Waxing Bumps

A pre-wax routine can make all the difference in making sure your skin stays smooth.


Before removing hair, it's good to get rid of dead skin cells, dirt, and oil which otherwise could get into the hair follicles after waxing, making skin more vulnerable to irritation. Lightly exfoliating also helps the hair point upward so that it can better adhere to the wax and be removed more easily. Use a washcloth and a mild shower gel to cleanse and exfoliate the area.

Apply some heat

Right before waxing, take a warm shower or bath, or apply a soft, warm washcloth to the area for a few minutes. The warmth opens up the pores and softens the hair, allowing it to come out more easily and smoothly. This not only makes the process a little less painful, but it also prevents one of the main causes of irritation—pulling on the skin.

Practice Waxing Yourself

Applying too much wax, not holding skin firm when pulling the strip, or removing the strip incorrectly can cause many problems, including waxing bumps. The technique takes practice and patience, but keep in mind also that it might be best to go to a professional esthetician to get the smoothest results.

Treating Bumps After Waxing

If you do get bumps from waxing, reach for a razor burn soother. Products that treat razor burn can also alleviate bumps that may occur after waxing. Origins Fire Fighter ($21) was made for soothing the burn after shaving. Hydrocortisone cream is another option that helps relieve irritation and any itchiness.

Get It Done Right

Some estheticians are more experienced than others. If you do go to a pro for a wax and still end up with bumps, that person may not have enough skill or simply isn't using the best product for your hair and skin type. (Sometimes they're limited to specific brands that the salon or spa carries.) Shop around for another esthetician who'll do the best job for you. This is so important since waxing tends to be a service that calls for regular maintenance.

Still having issues? Maybe waxing isn't the right hair removal process for you. There are other options to look into. Sugaring is all natural, and devotees believe it's less irritating than waxing. Another relatively gentle, though pricey, alternative is threading, which doesn't use any chemicals and is mostly used for facial hair removal.

The point of waxing is to have smooth skin. These tips should help you keep pesky bumps from getting in the way of that.