Shaving too close can cause skin problems

Shaving too close can cause skin problems

Jason Howland: Sometimes you can get too close of a shave.

Dawn Davis, M.D.: If you go to trim or shave your hair, particularly if you’re a man or particularly if you are skin of color and a male, it’s very easy for those hairs if they are trimmed closely to turn in on themselves and then pierce the skin.

Mr. Howland: Dr. Dawn Davis, a Mayo Clinic dermatologist, says those ingrown hairs can become inflamed and infected.

Dr. Davis: That can cause little bumps that erupt like razor burn, but more extensive along the beard area and the neck. And that we call acne keloidalis or acne barbae, or other conditions that then cause lumps of retained hair along the beard area, mustache area or back of the neck.

Mr. Howland: It’s common in men who have tight, curled hair. The bumps start small, but eventually can enlarge and create scars on the face and neck.

Dr. Davis: If they start to see these acnelike bumps or little scar tissue like bumps, they should make sure that they’re washing appropriately. They should be careful with their trimming practices to not shave as close to the skin. And they should investigate whether they could have an infection, and if so, seek treatment.

Mr. Howland: For the Mayo Clinic News Network, I’m Jason Howland.

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