The skin surrounding your bikini line is some of the most sensitive on your body. Considered part of the vuvlar region, or external female organs, by the U.S. National Library of Medicine, some skin-care practices can irritate the sensitive skin and make it feel bumpy, itchy or inflamed. When removing hair, the right method goes a long way in keeping your bikini line smooth and healthy. Use the right products and techniques when you wash to ensure an overall healthy bikini line.
Cleanse in the shower with a mild soap, suggests the University of Illinois McKinley Health Center. Harsh soaps with perfumes and dyes should never be used around the bikini area. Instead, look for soaps that are made especially for sensitive skin. You should also avoid things like scented bubble bath, bath beads, perfumes, douching products and scented feminine-hygiene products, all of which can cause irritation and infection.
Exfoliate weekly with a loofah and soap, especially if you tend to remove the hair along your bikini line. Exfoliating helps to reduce the dead skin cells found on the surface of the bikini line and can help reduce ingrown hairs. Exfoliation of the bikini line doesn't warrant special creams or scrubs -- a washcloth or loofah is abrasive enough. When performing daily washing, simply use your hands, which are much gentler.
Choose your primary method of hair removal based on your skin type and past experiences with hair-removal methods. If you have irritable skin that is prone to ingrown hairs, shaving is not ideal. It cuts hair at the surface, leading to stubble and incorrect growing patterns. Waxing can be painful but yields smooth and long-lasting results. Depilatories are best for sensitive skin, as long as they are spot-tested before use. Finally, talk to your dermatologist about laser hair removal for a more permanent solution.
Avoid ingrown hairs, which are especially prevalent along the bikini line. An ingrown hair is one that grows incorrectly or curls back and punctures the skin. An ingrown hair is inflamed in appearance and often has a loop of hair on top of the bump. You can avoid ingrown hairs along your bikini line by exfoliating, always using a new razor and shaving in the direction of the hair growth, and by choosing hygienic salons and spas if you have your waxing done professionally.
Consult your doctor if you notice strange growths or sensitivity along your bikini line. It could be a sexually transmitted disease like genital warts, or you could be suffering from a rash or allergic reaction to one of your beauty products. Your doctor can suggest safe alternatives for your sensitive bikini line.
Kay Ireland specializes in health, fitness and lifestyle topics. She is a support worker in the neonatal intensive care and antepartum units of her local hospital and recently became a certified group fitness instructor.