Cease me if this sounds acquainted: You’re within the bathe and able to shave your legs, however you’ve totally forgotten to exchange your razor (once more). Then, out of the nook of your eye, you spy your accomplice’s razor gleaming at you—newer, cleaner, method sharper than yours normally is. Your intestine tells you it’s in all probability a foul thought to make use of it, however it’ll simply be this one time! So that you seize it and get to work.
Should you’ve accomplished this, both as soon as or a number of instances (responsible!), it’s completely comprehensible. While you’re residing with somebody or staying at a accomplice’s place often, it’s straightforward to justify “borrowing” all types of hygiene merchandise, particularly when you’re in a rush. However you actually shouldn’t share razors together with your accomplice—or anybody else, for that matter. “Sharing razors is a serious no-no from a dermatologist’s perspective,” Joyce Imahiyerobo-Ip, MD, a Boston-based dermatologist and the CEO of Vibrant Dermatology and Pores and skin Bar, tells SELF.
Shaving, even if you’re doing it gently, creates what Dr. Ip calls “gentle trauma” to the pores and skin. Minor scratches and tiny nicks attributable to the razor’s blades can function an entry level for doubtlessly dangerous micro organism, fungi, or viruses, which may finally set off an an infection. A razor is usually a surprisingly fertile surroundings for all kinds of germs. Give it some thought: Many razors have a number of blades (and thus extra floor space for organisms to dwell on), lots of people don’t exchange their blades as usually as they need to, and razors are normally saved in a toilet, which has humid situations that many bugs thrive in.
Clearly, “it isn’t best to get another person’s micro organism or viruses into your pores and skin,” Dr. Ip says. In the case of frequent pores and skin infections, micro organism could cause points like cellulitis, sure viruses can result in warts, and fungi are likely to unfold athlete’s foot and yeast infections, per the US Nationwide Library of Medication. If that sounds fairly gross and form of unsettling, take a breather: The most typical facet impact of utilizing one other individual’s razor is folliculitis, which is characterised by irritation of the hair follicles that may appear to be small, reddened or infected pimples, set off itchy or tender pores and skin, or trigger a bumpy texture; it may be triggered by a pathogen that enters the pores and skin (mostly staph micro organism) or the friction of shaving itself.
“Bacterial folliculitis is extra possible in case you have been sharing a razor,” Dr. Ip says. So when you’re questioning why the spot you shaved now feels tough or appears to be like extra infected than traditional, this is likely to be a possible trigger. Should you expertise gentle irritation—say, reddened pores and skin, a bumpy texture, and itchiness—you possibly can attempt a drugstore therapy to assuage the world first, like an over-the-counter antibiotic ointment or a 1% hydrocortisone cream. You may as well think about a protecting ointment like Vaseline ($4, Amazon) or CeraVe’s Therapeutic Ointment ($11, Ulta) to scale back irritation and maintain the pores and skin protected because it calms down; each of those choices work for nearly anybody, even those that have delicate pores and skin. Dr. Ip additionally recommends Shea Moisture’s Restoring Cream ($11, Amazon), which accommodates antimicrobial tea tree oil and azelaic acid. (Simply notice that some individuals discover these substances to be irritating, so when you’re involved about that, check out a small quantity of product on an unaffected space of pores and skin to make sure you don’t react negatively to it.)