How to Treat a Razor Burn in the Pubic Area

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Shaving is the process of removing hair from various parts of the body using a razor or blade. One part of the body that is commonly shaved is the pubic region, also known as the "bikini area."

Given this is a sensitive part of the body, razor burn can sometimes occur due to shaving. That said, razor burn can occur anywhere on the body that is shaved.

Read on to learn more about razor burn in regards to the bikini area, how to treat it, and other conditions that may mimic razor burn symptoms.

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What Is Razor Burn?

Razor burn, also known as razor rash, is a red, often itchy rash that can occur after shaving. It can happen on any part of the body where hair is removed.

Besides a red and itchy rash, other symptoms of razor burn include:

Razor Burn Treatment

Razor burn can be treated by a variety of methods. Some of these include:

  • Applying cold compresses
  • Trying tea tree oil
  • Using aloe vera
  • Taking a break from shaving
  • Conditioning the skin
  • Soaking in an oatmeal bath

How to Shave Pubic Hair

Shaving pubic hair is a fairly simple method of hair removal. That said, there is still a correct way to do it:

  1. Wet skin
  2. Slather on shaving cream or gel
  3. Shave in same direction of hair growth
  4. Rinse blade in-between strokes

Waxing

Waxing is another method of pubic hair removal. Waxing is a physical method of hair removal that uses hot wax to pull hair from the follicles.

Side effects of waxing can include pain, red bumps, discoloration, and ingrown hairs. While uncommon, infection may also occur.

Recently, sugar waxing, also known as sugaring, has also become another popular form of waxing. It requires less clean-up than traditional waxing.

Related: Pros and Cons of Different Hair Removal Methods

Not a Shaving Issue? Other Possibilities

Some other conditions may cause symptoms similar to those seen in cases of razor burn, including sexually transmitted infections (STIs), yeast infections, ingrown hair, and pubic lice.

STIs

STIs are infections transmitted via sex. An STI that may appear similar to razor burn is genital herpes. Genital herpes is also accompanied by headaches, body aches, and fever, which razor burn is not.

Talk to your healthcare provider if you think your rash may be herpes in order to get proper treatment.

Yeast Infection

Candidiasis, more commonly known as a yeast infection, is a fungal infection triggered by a type of yeast called Candida. While Candida naturally occurs on both the skin and within the body, it becomes an issue when it overgrows.

A yeast infection can occur on many places throughout the body, including the vagina.

Symptoms of a vaginal yeast infection include:

  • Vaginal and vulval itchiness
  • Thick, white vaginal discharge
  • A burning sensation while urinating

Vaginal yeast infections can be treated by medicated creams, tablets, and suppositories.

Ingrown Hair

An ingrown hair is a strand of hair that grows back into the root after shaving, tweezing, or waxing. Ingrown hairs often look similar to acne but is an entirely different skin condition.

Those with curly or thicker hair are more prone to having ingrown hairs. That said, there are ways to prevent ingrown hairs, such as using proper hair removal techniques including applying shaving cream, using single-blade razors, and using warm water to shave.

If you're already an ingrown hair, treatment options include:

  • Taking a break from hair removal: This gives your hair the chance to grow back fully and correctly
  • Using topical clindamycin: Topical clindamycin can help soothe inflammation

Pubic Lice

Pubic lice, also known as crabs, is primarily spread through sexual contact. Pubic lice's main symptom is itching, caused by a reaction to the parasite's saliva. This itchiness increases in intensity as the infestation worsens.

Pubic lice can be treated by a variety of topical medications. There are both over-the-counter and prescription options available.

A Word From Verywell

Shaving can sometimes cause razor burn, also known as razor rash. It usually goes away within two to three days. Treating the condition by using aloe vera, applying cold compresses, and taking a break from shaving can help symptoms resolve sooner.

Other conditions may have overlapping symptoms to those seen with razor burn. This includes public lice, ingrown hair, and some STIs. Talk to your healthcare provider if you're unsure about the cause of your particular pubic irritation.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What causes razor burn?

    Razor burn occurs after shaving. It can be caused by multiple issues during shaving such as using an old razor with a dull blade, shaving in the incorrect direction, shaving dry skin, and shaving too quickly.

  • What does razor burn feel like?

    Razor burn is marked by redness, itchiness, tenderness, and a "burning" sensation.

  • How long does razor burn typically last?

    Razor burn typically lasts around two to three days. Properly treating the affected area can help relieve symptoms more quickly. Some options for this include cold compresses, applying aloe vera, and using emollient creams or lotions.

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