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how to get rid of strawberry skin: ultimate guide to preventing & curing redness, razor burn, & itching

when it comes to styling an outfit, accessories are a big deal. from cherry earrings to pineapple pattern shorts, fruits are trending when it comes to fashion. but while we all might love a strawberry printed dress, nobody loves strawberry legs. 

nothing can ruin an outfit quicker than a rash. while long-sleeve shirts and pants might be able to cover bumpy skin during the winter months, those little red bumps will be on display when summer rolls around and the sun comes out. to stop the spread of strawberry skin before it has the chance to ruin your outfit, learn how to get rid of strawberry skin once and for all. 

what is strawberry skin?

as the name implies, strawberry skin is a condition characterized by irritated, dry skin that looks a lot like a strawberry. unfortunately, this skin condition is a lot less inviting than those sweet fruits we love so much. made up of tiny red bumps filled with black dots at their centers, these “strawberry seeds” can be the result of ingrown hair or really big blackheads. whatever their cause, they have a tendency to irritate our skin’s surface. 

also known as chicken skin, strawberry skin is the common name of a skin condition called keratosis pilaris. coming from the Latin words meaning “hair” and “scaly skin,” this skin condition is no joke, despite its amusing common name. sometimes appearing on the upper arms or legs, strawberry skin seems to strike when you least expect it. 

what are the causes of strawberry legs?

no matter what your mischievous older sister might have told you as a kid, strawberry skin is not caused by eating too many strawberries. fortunately for your love of fruit salads (and unfortunately for your skin), the causes of strawberry skin are much more complicated than that … and sometimes a bit harder to avoid. 

guessing at genetics

in some cases, strawberry skin is genetic, but just because your mom or grandmother had strawberry skin when they were younger doesn’t mean you’re destined for it, too. 

sometimes this skin condition skips a generation or two. nobody really knows the reasoning behind heredity keratosis pilaris. just rest assured that a family trend is not always a guaranteed future of little red bumps.

waxing- and shaving-related skin conditions

if genetics aren’t always the culprit of strawberry skin, how do people develop this skin condition over time? like many other cosmetic conditions, keratosis pilaris and folliculitis can be the result of sub-par shaving or waxing techniques. sometimes, they just pop up if you have a sensitive skin type.

at the center of every strawberry seed (the skin bumps, not the sweet fruits) is a dark spot. and like we said, that dark spot is usually the result of one of two things: an ingrown hair or a blackhead. 

  • ingrown hairs develop when a hair follicle grows back into the skin because it can’t escape the skin’s surface. multi-blade plastic razors cut beneath the skin while shaving, can irritate your hair follicle and disrupt the natural direction of hair growth. when your hair isn’t happy, neither is your skin — hence the angry strawberry seeds. 

  • blackheads and pimples can have many causes, including shaving. using dirty or dull razor blades and harsh shaving creams can lead to more than just razor burn. breakouts, bumpy skin, and clogged pores are practically guaranteed when you are careless about shaving. 

does strawberry skin go away?

strawberry skin can feel like your worst nightmare. with red bumps that itch and burn, this skin condition makes regular old razor burn seem like a happy happenstance. people plagued by the condition might find themselves wondering, “does strawberry skin ever go away?” 

thankfully, it absolutely can with the right skincare products and shaving precautions! 

the causes of strawberry skin can seem endless, but that’s no reason to stress. in most cases, preventing strawberry skin is as easy as improving your shaving routine.

how can i prevent strawberry legs?

when it comes to avoiding strawberry skin, prevention is key. unlike more serious skin conditions like eczema, in nine out of ten cases, strawberry skin is an entirely preventable situation. but that doesn’t mean it will always be easy. to say goodbye to strawberry legs, you need to make some serious changes to your shaving routine. 

using the right razor

disposable razor companies will try to convince you that their five-blade cartridges can give you the best shave of your life, but all those dull razors can provide for your skin are clogged pores and razor burn. to put an end to ingrown hairs and the strawberry seeds they plant, ditch your rusty razor and upgrade to a single-blade alternative. 

hanni’s plastic-free weighted razor is designed with your skin’s safety in mind. with a metal body made to glide effortlessly across your skin, this razor is good for your skin and for the environment. thanks to its anti-rust powder coating and easily changeable blades, this razor guarantees a clean (both literally and metaphorically) shave every time. 

shave with the grain

but using the right razor isn’t always enough. as tom cruise and miles teller would say, it’s not about the plane, it’s about the pilot. avoiding strawberry legs is just as much about how you use a razor as the type of razor you use. 

when it comes to shaving, there are a ton of misconceptions, the biggest being that you should shave against the grain. while this technique might temporarily provide a close shave, this practice only hurts your skin in the long run. 

dermatologists recommend you actually shave in the direction of hair growth. not only will this prevent pulling at the skin, but it can also help prevent razor bumps and burns – and with it, strawberry legs. 

how to get rid of strawberry legs?

for nine out of ten people, strawberry legs are preventable, but what about the remaining one person? even if you do all the right things, you can still end up with patches of strawberry skin. if you are that one person, here are a few steps you can take to ease your strawberry legs.

step up your skincare

the most important (and perhaps most effective) thing you can do to get rid of strawberry skin is to step up your skincare game. 

when people think of skin care, they usually only think about how they care for their face. but your whole body is covered in skin, and it deserves to be cared for too! the way you treat your skin has a huge impact on how it looks. in a lot of cases, cosmetic skin conditions can be solved by improving your body’s skincare routine.

every good skincare routine needs three basic steps: prepare, treat, and hydrate. to get rid of strawberry skin, you’ll need to do all three. 

  • prepare: to set your skin up for success, purify it by using a skin-safe cleanser. more than just a drugstore body wash, a good cleanser will strip the skin of any excess oils, carrying away any dead skin cells and buildup clogging your pores. 

  • treat: while treating your skin is technically optional, this step is one of the most important for your skin health. using different serums and creams hand-selected by you, you’re able to cater your skincare routine to your skin’s specific needs, whether that’s curing dryness with glycolic acid, decreasing redness with salicylic acid, or banishing strawberry skin altogether. 

  • hydrate: the final step, hydration is what locks in all the benefits of your skincare routine. without a good body lotion, your skin can become dry and irritated, losing all its moisture (and all those treatments). to avoid these problems, nourish your skin before and between shaves with a daily moisturizer

exfoliate regularly 

when basic improvements to your skincare routine aren’t enough, it’s time to bring out the big dogs. the best way to get rid of strawberry legs is to attack the seeds at their source. expand on your skin (and shaving) care by adding regular exfoliation to your routines. 

done in between your normal cleansing and treatment steps, at-home exfoliators wash away any remaining dead skin cells clogging your pores. in most cases, a physical exfoliator like a sugar or body scrub will be enough to banish this buildup, but sometimes, a more serious solution is needed. 

if regular exfoliation cannot cure your strawberry legs, turn up the volume on your exfoliation routine by using a chemical exfoliant. reach out to a dermatologist to see which treatment option is right for you. 

a note from hanni

when talking about something as important as your skin, it can sometimes be hard to see the bigger picture. the texture or condition of your complexion plays a big role in how we see ourselves, and it can be easy to look in the mirror and not like who is looking back. but remember that you are more than your skin. 

it’s true that strawberry legs might be annoying, and it’s also true that the skin condition might even ruin your outfit, but remember that strawberry skin is not the end of the world. here at hanni, we believe that everybody is beautiful inside and out, and that includes your strawberry skin.

Sources: 

hair removal: how to shave | American Academy of Dermatology

glycolic acid for the skin: benefits and how to use it | Medical News Today

how to safely exfoliate at home | American Academy of Dermatology

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