How To Stave Off Post-Shave Itchiness

Even if you wanted to keep count, you'd probably lose count of how many times you shave your legs. Your shaving routine is probably so down pat that you barely think about what you're doing — until the day you get an unwelcome wake-up call. Within minutes of putting away your razor, your legs begin to itch. So, of course, you have to scratch them — the worry being that if you scratch your legs too hard, they could bleed. Why is your skin suddenly responding with such irritation to a habit that long ago became a rote part of your beauty routine?


Most likely, one of two things is going on. You could have razor burn (often a result of running a razor along dry skin). You may also have the ensuing razor bumps, which are red and, as you've discovered, very itchy (via Medical News Today). Or two, you may have folliculitis, which occurs when the hair follicles become inflamed (via Medical News Today).

Itchy conditions are annoying conditions because they steal so much of your attention. On the other hand, post-shave itchiness is also a fairly simple problem to solve, especially if you adopt a two-step plan of attack: eliminate some likely causes and then take several proactive steps.

Honestly answer some questions

To bring the likely cause (or causes) out into the open, ask yourself the following questions about your shaving habits. Your gut instinct is spot-on if you notice straight away that each question should be answered in the negative (not the affirmative): Do you shave your legs when they're dry? You should say "no" because running a razor over dry skin is probably the biggest shaving no-no of all, per Medical News Today. Do you use razors or razor blades until they're dull and practically useless? Thriftiness counts, but dull blades could cause you to exert too much pressure on the razor, thereby irritating (or even cutting) your skin.


Do you shave your legs too often? This is no trick question, though it may sound like it. Hair grows at different rates, and people tolerate the presence of hair differently, too. Still, Healthline suggests that shaving every day isn't necessary, noting that razors remove skin cells along with the hair. Giving your skin a one- or two-day break could help keep the "itchies" away. Have you started to use a new shaving product? Check the ingredient label. If it's scented or contains alcohol, you may have landed upon your itching trigger.

Baby those legs

You've already learned a few valuable lessons about how to stave off post-shave itchiness: apply a gentle shaving cream or gel before you shave to keep your skin hydrated (via Medical News Today). And use sharp razors that require a light touch rather than a soft razor that requires magnum force. Keeping your razor clean between shaves is smart, too, since it can reduce bacteria and blunt folliculitis, according to Biome.


The fact that your legs have taken an itchy turn suggests that they're dry, too. So, take the hint and keep your legs well hydrated, perhaps by applying an all-natural moisturizer right after shaving (via YoRo Naturals) and then another soothing moisturizer at the end of the day, Wilkinson Sword says.

If you find yourself needing fast, instant relief from itchiness that is so bad it could bring tears to your eyes, try a quick-fix remedy like applying aloe vera (also known for cooling sunburn and taming rashes) or putting a cold compress on your skin. If you have 15 minutes or more, pour yourself an oatmeal bath. Colloidal oatmeal contains emollients, which are basically oils and butters, that will make your skin feel the exact opposite of how it feels now, meaning soft and velvety smooth, per Treehugger. Treating yourself to one oatmeal bath a week could be the one discovery that might make your post-shave itchiness episode worth its while.