7 tips for safely shaving pubic hair

Shaving your pubic hair may seem pretty straightforward– shaving foam, razor, swipe done, right? And yet a study published by JAMA Dermatology found that 25.6 percent of adults had caused themselves injury from preening their private parts.

While we salute those who chose to forgo hair removal in favour of a fuller bush, if trimming your lady garden is something you’re into then here’s how to get it right.

From reducing cuts and rashes to making sure you don’t leave behind any strays, here’s the WH seven step guide on how to shave your pubic hair.

What are the dangers of shaving your pubic hair?

It’s pretty common for people to rush shaving, and we bet if you’ve ever cut your legs while de-fuzzing that area, being hasty was reason. But tiny nips on your pins don’t really compare with the pain you can encounter if you are careless with your pubic hair.

In JAMA’s study, laceration was the most common injury sustained in intimate shaving. This was followed by a burning sensation and shaving rash, with the most common area of injury being the pubis, closely followed by the labia. Ouch.

How can I shave my vagina safely?

The answer is you can’t. Why? Because the word vagina is – frequently and incorrectly – used to reference the skin and outer organs of our pubic area.

*Your vagina is actually the internal muscle canal that connects your vulva to your uterus.*

So if you’re trying to shave your vagina, you’re in real trouble.

How to shave pubic hair: 7 step guide

Now we’ve got the semantics out of the way, it’s time to tackle why we all came here. Yes, there’s an actual skill to shaving your pubic hair so buckle up and get your note pads ready.

Here, Susie Bridgeman-Sutton, beauty specialist at Thunderbird Skin has shared the secrets to a perfectly smooth shave.

1. Exfoliate first

Exfoliating before shaving is a very important step. The preparation will help get rid of dead skin cells so they don’t build up in your razor and will leave you with a close shave. Exfoliating is also key to avoid pesky ingrown hairs and leave your skin looking radiant. You can either use exfoliating gloves or in-shower body scrubs to help polish the skin. You should also use shaving cream or foam with excellent slip, additions to help are bentonite and soy.

2. Leave shaving until the end

When you take a shower or bath, keep shaving till the end. This is because the heat from the hot water and steam will soften the hair. Softer hair and opened-up hair follicles will help to get a close shave. This small move will make a big difference to the smoothness of your skin and make shaving a whole lot easier.

3. Keep your razor safe

Whilst you might think it’s harmless to keep your razor in the shower in between uses, it can cause you damage. Keeping your shaver in a wet environment will increase your risk of bacterial or fungal infection. After you shave, immediately rinse your razor well with warm water, pat it dry with a clean towel and store it in a spot where it won’t get wet. This removes any hairs caught in the razor and keeps it clean until you next shave.

4. Understand the importance of aftercare

Often overlooked, post shaving is the aftercare. After you shave any part of your body, rinse with warm water to remove all traces of foam. Next apply a hydrating post shave balm or moisturiser to instantly cool and sooth down irritated skin. Look for products which contain rosehip oil as this is one of the best sources of omega 3 + 6 and soothes the most sensitive of skin

5. Reduce the pressure

Applying more pressure might sound like it equals grabbing more hair, but in fact it makes things worse. The harder you press, the more uneven your skins surface becomes, because you are creating dimples in where the blade falls. Heavy pressure means you’re more likely to create missed patches and razor burns.

6. Regularly replace your razor

It’s important to change your blade on a regular basis as old razors can cause infections and burns. Fresh blades provide a closer and more comfortable shave which helps prevent cuts and irritation. Regardless of how long you’ve had yours, replace any at the first sign of discomfort or dullness. Disposable razors are only designed for one-time or short-term use, on average women ditch theirs after 5-10 uses. Reusable razors have a handle with detachable blade cartridges, and again lasts up to 10 shaves. Regardless of the type you have, if it starts to pull at your body hair or feels rough, it’s time for a replacement.

7. Stay consistent

During the winter, you might think it’s time for your skin to have a break from shaving. However, doing this could lead to more irritation when you decide to pick up the razor again. It’s advised to keep consistent with shaving as having a break can make your skin surface more irritated and drier as the dead skin builds up.

7 tips for safely shaving pubic hair

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Can I get rid of shaving rash and razor bumps?

Luckily, there are a few things you can do to help alleviate irritated skin if you find a bumps appear on the skin.

  1. Applying a cold compress – this will help cool and calm and soothe the skin.
  2. Use Vitamin E – Vitamin E is great for helping skin keep its moisture and protects skin cells from further damage, FFS blades have a Vitamin E moisturising strip built in.
  3. Taking a break from shaving – Allow your skin to breath and calm for a few days before attempting to shave again.
  4. Conditioning the skin – Skin will become dry so it is important to keep the affected area well moisturised – avoid lotions with perfumes that could cause further irritation, use something gentle like a shea butter enriched formula
  5. Soaking in an oatmeal bath – Oatmeal is known to alleviate dryness and itching so it is a great way to soothe irritated angry skin and soothe away those razor bumps and burn

It’s also worth trying Ingrow Go. A clever formula that helps to banish and prevent ingrown hairs. It contains active ingredients as well as natural extracts to exfoliate areas that prone to ingrown hairs. It’s vegan friendly, too.

Cut through the noise and get practical, expert advice, home workouts, easy nutrition and more direct to your inbox. Sign up to the WOMEN’S HEALTH NEWSLETTER.

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