Red Blotches From Shaving. Help.
April 17, 2007 7:35 AM   Subscribe

I shaved my face last night in order to buy me some more time this morning, but it seems like I overdid it, and now there are giant red blotches of irritation all over my face and neck. I have a date tonight. Help me to not look like a chump?

For the record, I'm now at the office, so I can't do anything too complicated that might invole showering or the such. There is a Duane Reade pharmacy right around the corner, though, so I can buy things if needed. What's your advice for making these disappear by 7PM Eastern? Will periodic splashing with cold water help, or hurt?
posted by logovisual to Health & Fitness (20 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
Does the pharmacy (or perhaps a crunchy health food store nearby) have calendula gel? I've found it to be somewhat effective in reducing redness and irritation.

Aloe may also help too.
posted by foxy_hedgehog at 7:43 AM on April 17, 2007

Tell your date about it. Make it into a quirky and fun story, laugh about it. She (I'm assuming it's a she) will be charmed. If it's a he, then he'll understand.
posted by The Giant Squid at 7:46 AM on April 17, 2007

Putting Visine on it might help.
posted by penchant at 7:48 AM on April 17, 2007

get some after shave lotion from duane read; neutrogena has a male mositurizer (i forget the name) that has spf 15 in it. that helps with my red bumps.
posted by Stynxno at 7:53 AM on April 17, 2007

You can try using a hydrocortisone cream - it's a type of steroid, which typically reduces most skin inflammations very quickly (although using them for extended periods - measured in weeks generally - will have negative side effects).

IANAD but have consulted many for numerous skin problems.
posted by chundo at 7:59 AM on April 17, 2007

Don't try Visine. Got some on my cheek once. Got bizarre-looking streak of oddly coloured flesh for several hours.

Seconding hydrocortisone. Pop round to the pharmacy and ask the pharmacist to suggest a non-greasy cream.
posted by kmennie at 8:06 AM on April 17, 2007

Google seems to at least confirm that lots of people believe Visine will help if applied gently with a Q-tip or cotton ball.

I have very sensitive skin and shaving is hell for me. I use ice on my face after shaving to reduce irritation. If I was in your situation, I would retire to the restroom with Visine, ice, and moisturizer. I'd bathe my face in comfortably hot water to open the pores, pat dry, then apply Visine to the key areas if you're willing to go that route. If not, then move on to the ice, closing your pores and soothing the irritation. Glide the ice around on your face for a couple of minutes. Pat dry again. Then use your moisturizerr, preferably something with aloe.
posted by hermitosis at 8:07 AM on April 17, 2007

Visine? For redness on the skin? Please explain further.. I have never heard of this!
posted by punkrockrat at 8:17 AM on April 17, 2007

red eyes != red skin
posted by sophist at 8:21 AM on April 17, 2007

Apparently it constricts capillaries or somesuch.

Googling has turned up encouraging recommendations of hydrocortisone cream (not ointment!), which may be very good advice, but I would make sure you have something on hand to combat drying in case it occurs.

It's too bad that all this sounds so witch-doctory. It seems like everyone has their own way of preventing/treating it.

If push comes to shove, you can buy a little green concealer and try to cover it like acne. However, if serious kissing occurs, you're going to be in worse shape tomorrow than you are today.
posted by hermitosis at 8:24 AM on April 17, 2007

And to answer the last part of your question, periodic splashing with cool water won't hurt, and may help-- however, the dryness resulting from water constantly evaporating off of your skin will sink you unless you have something to soothe it.

Any rubbing or wiping motions across the area will keep inflaming it, so even if you buy something to apply to it, don't go overboard with re-application or you'll keep riling it up. You'll get further with a cold compress (like a cold can of soda) to periodically hold against it.
posted by hermitosis at 8:37 AM on April 17, 2007

I use an anti-acne cream (e.g., clearasil) whenever I get these breakouts. Seems to work pretty well for me, but I'm not sure it will be all cleared up by tonight. Perhaps go for overkill and try both hydrocortisone cream and an anti-acne cream?
posted by treepour at 8:53 AM on April 17, 2007

Eeeek, eek, if it's shaving related, clearasil is going to make it much worse. My dear boy had occasional blotches from shaving. He goes cool water followed cortisone cream every time. Just do be sure to get cream rather than ointment (so you won't be all greasy for your date).
posted by mostlymartha at 9:59 AM on April 17, 2007

Neutrogena Post-Shave Moisturizing Gel. The stuff is a marvel of modern science!
posted by rentalkarma at 10:25 AM on April 17, 2007

I get blotchy. I'm seconding ice and hydrocortizone.
posted by Help, I can't stop talking! at 10:27 AM on April 17, 2007

I use TendSkin after shaving and it works fabulously -- i think the active ingredient is asprin, bizarrely? Anyway, it's a very well-known solution for bikini line problems so i reckon it would do well on the face too. Looks like they also have some shaving products.
posted by ukdanae at 10:41 AM on April 17, 2007

Witch Hazel.
posted by cramer at 10:50 AM on April 17, 2007

Thirding the hydrocortisone cream, and give yourself some ibuprofen -- it's an anti-inflammatory.
posted by houseofdanie at 11:13 AM on April 17, 2007

If your date makes a big deal about your razor burn, she is probably not a keeper. Relax, take a deep breath and don't focus on it too much, because she probably won't even notice. If you are nervous about it, she might interpret your uneasiness as a lack of self confidence. Just be confident and act like everything is cool. And good luck.
posted by |n$eCur3 at 1:59 PM on April 17, 2007

Thanks all -- hydrocortisone does seem to have had an effect, they were noticeably less pronounced by the time I left the office. Though they're back with a vengeance this morning, sigh. That'll teach me to get overzealous with my spot-smoothing, I guess...
posted by logovisual at 7:30 AM on April 18, 2007

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