|What is an ingrown hair?
Definition: Ingrown hairs and razor bumps refer to
the same condition. Both fall under the medical term
"Pseudofolliculitis" (or PFB).
Hairs normally grow straight out of a tube in the center of a
hair follicle. "Straight" hairs have a circular (o) cross-section
while "curly" hairs have an oval (0) cross-section, and tend to fold
or curve like a tulip's leaf.
An ingrown hair is a hair that does not grow straight out of the
follicle opening. Instead, it curls into the side wall of the hair
follicle or into the skin surface. This penetration into and through
the wall of the hair follicle produces an inflammation, which can
result in the development of a pimple (such as a papule or a
pustule) or a cyst (nodule). These lesions are usually tender.
As the hair continues to grow above the opening of the follicle,
it can pull the hair tip out of, or keep the hair tip from growing
into the side of the follicle. Alternatively, the hair tip may
continue to grow into the adjacent skin outside of the follicle and
may produce a larger and more inflamed area. This inflammation can
produce permanent scarring and/or color changes of the skin
(such as darkening [hyperpigmentation] and/or lightening
Ingrown Hair and EpiLight Animation #1
This animation contrasts normal hair growth with an ingrown hair.
It shows how an ingrown hair grows into the wall of the hair
follicle. In the animation, the ingrown hair is treated with
EpiLight which obliterates the hair. After EpiLight treatment, a new
hair is sometimes able to grow back, but usually only a much thinner
hair that may not become ingrown because it is thinner and less
likely to penetrate the follicle wall.
Ingrown Hair and EpiLight Animation #2
This animation is similar to the one above. However, in this case
no hair grows back after the EpiLight treatment. As stated above,
EpiLight treatment can result in either a thin hair growing back to
replace an obliterated one, or no hair regrowth.
about permanent treatment using pulsed light and lasers.
In-depth information on ingrown hairs is available on ingrownhairs.com.
Interested in treatment by Dr. Jay personally? Call our office at
212-755-2237 to setup an appointment.