Taking Care of the Skin Under Your Beard
The skin under your beard might go neglected for long periods of time. This results in dry, flaky skin and super itchy face. The worst of all is that facial hair tends to catch dirt and oils near the follicles, which causes the pores to clog, promoting acne. Fortunately, our dermatologists provide expert advice on how to take care of the skin under your facial hair to ensure it remains smooth and clean.
PSEUDOFOLLICULITIS BARBAE (INGROWN HAIRS)
This condition is common to people with curly facial hair. It occurs when hair curls back into the skin – usually after a shave. To prevent this condition, apply pre-shave oil to moisturize the area before you shave. You should also avoid shaving too close to the skin since it elevates the risk of ingrown hairs. Another precaution to take is ensuring that you use shaving gel and a sharp razor every time you shave. Shaving along the grain and not pulling the skin taut also helps to prevent this condition.
SEBORRHEIC DERMATITIS (BEARD DANDRUFF)
Seborrheic dermatitis usually results from a scaly rash that leaves flakes in one's beard. To prevent beard dandruff, ensure that you wash your face and exfoliate the skin beneath your beard regularly. It is good to use facial cleansers and natural soaps since they are less likely to dry out your skin. It is also advisable to use an anti-dandruff shampoo occasionally to prevent dandruff from getting bad. Your medicated shampoo should have ingredients such as pyrithione zinc, tea tree oil, coal tar, and selenium sulfide. Massage the shampoo gently into your beard, ensuring that it reaches the skin underneath.
BUMPS AND PIMPLES
To prevent pimples and bumps from appearing, wash your beard daily using a good beard cleanser. Doing so helps to remove the grime and dirt build-up. This will starve the pimple-causing bacteria and forestall future infections. It is also advisable to exfoliate twice or thrice in a week to remove the topmost layer of the dead skin and dislodge the stuck debris. Exfoliating allows penetration of the hair through the skin, and thus reduces the chance of having ingrown hairs. It also ensures rejuvenation of fresh, new skin and promotes a healthier beard.
IRRITANT CONTACT DERMATITIS
Irritant contact dermatitis refers to the skin irritation caused by shaving. It often stems from the ingredients in the shaving creams, pre-shave lotion, and beard balms. They break down the barrier of the skin - heightening its sensitivity. To prevent this irritation, use emollients to moisturize the skin and preserve its protective barrier. When the irritation occurs, your dermatologist might also prescribe hydrocortisone to soothe itching and burning.
Finally, beard care is a continuous process. To soften the skin underneath and loosen the beard hairs, take a warm shower to steam the skin then scrub your face using a face cleanser. Doing this twice per day removes the oil and dirt trapped around the hair follicles, preventing inflammation and clogging.
Read more of this blog and others on Dermatology Consultants of Frisco's website.