Help, my face is on fire.
August 22, 2010 9:36 AM   Subscribe

This is so embarrassing- I used hair removal cream to get rid of my moustache (I'm a female) and I left it on too long. Now I've got a screaming red moustache-shaped rash over my upper lip. It's ugly and it burns like crazy. How can I make this go away?
posted by anonymous to Health & Fitness (19 answers total)
Maybe try some hydrocortisone cream? (Make sure not to get it on the inside of your lip!)

Or a fake moustache?
posted by greatgefilte at 9:38 AM on August 22, 2010

Vitamin E creme and/or aloe vera works to soothe the rash when I've done the same thing. The rash doesn't usually last too long (not more than a couple hours in my experience using depilatory creme on my face).

I'm not sure using hydrocortisone is good advice. When I get this redness, it's akin to a chemical burn and not really like an allergic skin rash.
posted by bluefly at 9:42 AM on August 22, 2010 [1 favorite]

Does the brand you used have a number to call for problems? Most do. Give them a call.
posted by cestmoi15 at 9:47 AM on August 22, 2010 [2 favorites]

I would put some aloe on and ice it (wrapped in a towel of course). IANAD
posted by elpea at 9:52 AM on August 22, 2010

I'd try some vitamin E oil, rather than a lotion. Much more concentrated and really does heal stuff very quickly.
posted by orange swan at 10:01 AM on August 22, 2010 [1 favorite]

This dermatologist recomments hydrocortisone.
posted by Dr. Zira at 10:22 AM on August 22, 2010

How long ago did you do this? If you only just did it, just leave your upper lip alone for now and the redness will go away on it's own within a day. Putting more creams or anything else on it will aggravate the skin further. If it's still a bit red tomorrow you can put some concealer or foundation on it to hide the red.
posted by Polychrome at 10:29 AM on August 22, 2010 [2 favorites]

I use vitamin E oil whenever I have sunburns, and it speeds up healing in a pretty noticeable way (I only started using it when I had a second-degree burn with blisters, years ago, but have had dozens of sunburns).
posted by so_gracefully at 10:38 AM on August 22, 2010

If you have an aloe vera plant, slice off one of the spines and smear the goo on the burn. It doesn't smell very good but it works very well on burns. (NB: I've only used it for heat burns, though, not chemical burns.)
posted by orrnyereg at 11:05 AM on August 22, 2010

Although they won't actually treat the burn, Visine or TendSkin (alternative, homemade version; avoid if you're allergic to aspirin) may reduce the redness.
posted by neushoorn at 11:21 AM on August 22, 2010 [1 favorite]

You can use a green-tinted makeup to cover it the area if the redness itself is staying aruond. The green tint cancels out the red.
posted by adipocere at 11:38 AM on August 22, 2010

I've done this before - there's nothing you can do to make it go away completely immediately, but hydrocortisone (kept in the fridge for extra soothing relief) will help. When I've done it, a thick layer of hydrocortisone while in private and liberal concealer over a thin layer of hydrocortisone when you have to be out in public has generally done the trick.
posted by wuzandfuzz at 12:40 PM on August 22, 2010

It's a chemical burn. Do not use anything oily or greasy on it. Aloe or burn gels are your best bet.

Leave it alone and don't layer makeup on it if you can avoid it. Wait a couple of days. It is embarrassing, but let it breathe.

This happened to me once before and my face was red for a week. Because I left it on for 12 minutes instead of 10. Now, I just shave that area. Takes a couple of seconds and no more burns. But the hair I have there is pretty fine.
posted by cmgonzalez at 12:51 PM on August 22, 2010 [1 favorite]

If anyone asks just say you burned it on a hot cup of coffee or something.
posted by Bonzai at 1:05 PM on August 22, 2010

If this just happened, be sure to make sure that you rinsed ALL of the stuff off. Even a little bit left on already raw skin will make it burn much worse.
posted by gjc at 1:52 PM on August 22, 2010

Keep a cup of cherry Kool-aid in your hand at all times. I'm only sort of joking.
posted by palacewalls at 2:53 PM on August 22, 2010 [2 favorites]

I wouldn't recommend Visine -- the red will only come back with a vengeance! If you're not going out, I would recommend a thick zinc cream, the kind used on baby's diaper rash. It can be quite soothing.
posted by monkeymonkey at 6:35 PM on August 22, 2010

Plain aloe works really well for chemical burns. You want the straight aloe (looks green and goopy in it's natural state), rather than a cream or lotion which just contains aloe Vera.

Aloe is cooling and soothing, and frequently when you buy a waxing kit for your eyebrows, it will come with something containing aloe to apply afterward.
posted by misha at 6:49 PM on August 22, 2010

In the future what you should do is to wet the area thoroughly with very warm water then dab dry with a towel, then put baby powder on it so there is a thin non-lumpy layer everywhere. Then you put on the hair removing face cream and leave for 8-10 min. You will not be red at all or only for a very short while after you wash it off. Also - never use non-face hair removing cream on your face, that will always turn out redder, you need the special one for faces.
posted by meepmeow at 8:04 PM on August 22, 2010

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