Dr. Alai is an actively practicing medical and surgical dermatologist in south Orange County, California. She has been a professor of dermatology and family medicine at the University of California, Irvine since 2000. She is U.S. board-certified in dermatology, a 10-year-certified fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology, and Fellow of the American Society of Mohs Surgery.
Dr. Shiel received a Bachelor of Science degree with honors from the University of Notre Dame. There he was involved in research in radiation biology and received the Huisking Scholarship. After graduating from St. Louis University School of Medicine, he completed his Internal Medicine residency and Rheumatology fellowship at the University of California, Irvine. He is board-certified in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology.
An ingrown hair happens when the sharp tip of the
hair curls back or grows sideways into the skin. It is a benign condition, which
usually appears as a small tan or sometimes pink bump under the skin. Often, a
small pinpoint (often dark) part of the underlying hair may be seen under the
skin bump. In more extensive cases, multiple small red or pink little bumps
around hair follicles may be seen on any skin area that has been frequently
shaved, such as the face, neck, armpits, legs, and pubic region.
Ingrown hair is a very common skin condition occurring primarily after
puberty. Ingrown hairs tend to be more common in areas with coarse hairs, like
the bikini area in women, and beard and neck in men. Individuals with thicker,
coarser hairs, such as African Americans, tend to have the highest rate of
problems with ingrown hairs, particularly of the beard area. Rarely, an ingrown
hair may also appear in other skin parts, such as the eyelid. Generally, an ingrown
hair is medically harmless, yet it may become cosmetically disfiguring and lead
to scarring, skin discoloration (referred to as post-inflammatory
hyperpigmentation), skin infection, and rarely keloid scar formation.
Reviewed by William C. Shiel Jr., MD, FACP, FACR on 7/25/2011
If you opt to shave your bikini area, you can avoid
irritation by following these tips from Julie Harper, MD, clinical associate
professor of dermatology at the University of Alabama-Birmingham, and a
spokeswoman for Philips Healthcare:
Treat razor burn and ingrown hairsby gently exfoliating the affected area
with a washcloth in the shower. You can also trim the hair short (avoid shaving)
until the redness and irritation has subsided.
Resist the urge to perform DIY
surgery on razor bumps and ingrown hairs. The bump could get infected and you
might be left with an ugly scar. You can try gently lifting ingrown hairs with a
toothpick, but don't use anything too sharp. If the hair doesn't lift easily,
stop, and if the area is tender or hot to the touch, see your doctor.
from taking hot showers or baths for several hours after removing hair. If the
water is too hot, pores can become irritated, causing unwanted bumps and
Steer clear of workouts and tight clothing immediately after
grooming to avoid irritation. Skin can be extra-sensitive to bacteria, moisture,
and chafing from your workout clothes.
Many women prefer longer-lasting results,
however, and opt for the bikini wax.
Hair removalis one of the top three
services requested in spas, according to Spa Trade, a spa industry business