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Minnesota State University, Mankato
Minnesota State University, Mankato

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Folliculitis is an inflammation of the hair follicle that usually occurs when hair is clipped below the skin level. Folliculitis is commonly found as small developing pustules after shaving. Sometimes the skin bacteria, Staphylococcus aureus can enter the hair follicle, setting the stage for infection. The following tips may help to prevent this:
  • Instead of shaving, consider clipping the hair with blunt point scissors to a length of 1/8 inch (3 mm).
  • If shaving, always use a single–edge razor blade. This cuts the hair at the skin line and helps prevent folliculitis. Most double–edged razors are designed to gently lift the hair and cut it off below the skin line.
  • Use a shaving cream or gel. This provides a thin layer of lubricant over the skin and helps to prevent abrasion or "razor burn."
  • Always shave in the direction of hair growth. Shaving against the direction of growth pulls the hair up from the skin and cuts it off below the skin level.
  • To prevent hair buildup around the blade, rinse he razor frequently with cool water. Hot water can heat the blade and cause a burn when placed against the skin.
  • Avoid waxing because this causes unnecessary trauma to the hair follicles and tissues.
  • Avoid sharing razors with others and multiple use of razors.