Step By Step: How to Remove Ingrown Hairs

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Ingrown hairs are ones that have grown back into the skin instead of growing the other direction where they're supposed to grow- away from the skin. Often they're the side effects of removing hair, like with shaving, waxing and epilating. Because hair growing into where it shouldn't, the skin will often get infected as well.

They can appear anywhere, but most often pop up where hair is thick or curly, like men's facial and body hair. The bikini zone and underarms tend to be hot spots for women for the same reasons.

Sometimes they the end of the hair that's supposed to be pointing up needs some help. If if doesn't get directed to point up and grow in the right direction, it will continue to grow into the skin.

Removing ingrown hairs isn't exactly hard but does require prepping the skin and the right steps before and after for the best possible results. If the hair is infected or severely inflamed, physically removing the hair can irritate the skin further because it's in a fragile state, so please use precaution.

Difficulty: Easy

Time Required: 5 - 10 minutes for removing ingrown hairs

Here's How:

  1. Cleanse skin. Use a mild cleanser to get rid of surface dirt and debris. You'll have less chance of bacteria entering the follicle after the hair has been uplifted.
  2. Apply heat. Take a warm shower or bath or apply a very warm washcloth over the area of skin for about five minutes. The heat helps to soften skin, relax the hair follicle and aids hair to come to the surface.
  3. Exfoliate area if not infected. While in the shower or bath use a mild exfoliator, a sugar or salt scrub for the body, or one especially for the face if it's a facial ingrown hair. Work product with fingertips in small circles around hair follicle which encourages hair to point up and loosens debris and dead skin. Then completely rinse it all off.
  4. Remove hair. Find the side of hair that hair has grown into skin, not where the hair is growing from. On the side Try to gently remove hair out by holding skin taut, and 'scraping' a cotton swab in the opposite direction the hair is growing. If the hair comes out, then skip the next step and move on to step six.
  5. Try tweezers.  If the cotton swab doesn't work, try something stronger. Use tweezers especially made for ingrown hairs with a pointed tip like Tweezerman Ingrown Hair Tweezers (compare prices). First, sanitize the tweezers with alcohol. Gently grab onto hair and only remove the tip of hair growing into the skin. Don’t take the hair out from root because this will irritate the hair follicle more.
  6. Shave hair. Once hair is out of the ingrown skin, then shave it down if it's much longer than surrounding hair. Shave with a clean blade using shaving cream or gel.
  7. Disinfect area. Apply a small amount of hydrogen peroxide with a clean cotton ball or square to hair follicle and then Neosporin to ward off infection.
  8. Fight them off. While this works well for an ingrown here and there that’s really bothering you, using a product specifically like PrinceReigns ingrown hair serum (compare prices), These bump-fighting products can help remove ingrown hairs or avoid them altogether. It's good to have one on hand for prevention in areas that you get ingrown hair or razor bumps often or in case they rear their ugly head.


  1. Don't dig tweezers hard into skin. We don't want to scrape skin or get it infected.
  2. Looking for other ways to prevent and get rid of ingrown hair with ingredients at home and save money? See: Ingrown Hair Home Remedies

What You Need:

  • Gentle exfoliator, like salt or sugar scrub
  • Mild cleanser
  • Cotton swabs
  • Tweezers made for ingrown hairs
  • Alcohol
  • Hydrogen peroxide
  • Cotton balls or squares

Watch Now: How to Deal with Ingrown Hair