When I go to sleep at night feeling 100% perfect, I expect to wake up feeling 100% perfect. I also anticipate waking up looking the same way, except of course for a few pillow wrinkles and stray hairs.
The other day, this was not the case. I went to bed around 1:38am – not to be specific or anything – and woke up shortly after 9am. The reason for my wake up wasn’t due to an alarm, nor was it because I wanted to get my carpe diem on.
I woke up because I was scratching the hell out of my under arms.
I swiftly jumped out of bed and ran to my trusty mirror. Low and behold both underarms had developed a rather painful, bumpy and red skin inflammation. Did I mention it was itchier than wearing wool on a hot summers day?
At first, I thought the bumps were hives. I didn’t eat, drink or come in contact with anything unusual the evening before so I sucked it up and went to my small town hospital Emergency room.
If you’ve ever lived in a small town then you know how fun it is to go to the local hospital. You know the nurses, doctors and odds are you look like hell and run into at least 3 other people you know.
Me? The triage nurse was the same lady I swore I’d report to the authorities when I was 8 years old because she administered my first (and last) suppository, the doctor was friends of the family and I ran into a buddy I saw the night before. We briefly reminisced over “how awesome” the bar was last night….fabulous!
Getting back to my rash, turns out it was Folliculitis. Never heard of it? Me neither. Let me explain.
Folliculitis is an inflammation of the hair follicle. The pocket that your hair grows out of is called a follicle and may become infected due to bacteria, yeast or fungus.
Since your entire body is covered in tiny hairs, you can experience folliculitis on any part of your body. The most common areas are face, scalp and groin though.
Things like shaving or wearing tight clothing can block and irritate your follicles, which may lead to an infection. Hot tubs, swimming pools, regular makeup use and infected cuts may all be precursors to folliculitis as well.
Sometimes it’s hard to tell what’s irritating your follicle because it may take up to 72 hours to present itself.
Why Are You Telling Me This?
Maybe you’ve never heard of folliculitis before, but there are hundreds of thousands of people who live with chronic folliculitis.
For the sake of helping a fellow sufferer out, here are some of the natural remedies for folliculitis I used and found effective.
4 Natural Remedies For Folliculitis
Probably one of the most soothing remedies I used was 1 tablespoon of white vinegar mixed with 1 cup of warm water. Compressed against my affected skin, it eased the itching sensation and reduced inflammation.
If I’m being perfectly honest, the first time I placed the vinegar compress over my skin I felt such relief, it was almost pleasurable and I for sure made a very loud “Awwwwwww yeaaa!”
You already know I love my Witch Hazel; that sh*t is awesome.
I doused large cotton pads with it and let it soak over my affected areas for 5-10 minutes twice daily.
It was great for the itch, but also reduced the redness. My doctor confirmed that it was gentle enough to use several times throughout the day as well.
Things to Avoid
Like most skin conditions, certain things can exacerbate the issue. You should avoid ingesting dairy and gluten when your skin flares up. Do not apply any essential oils or other oily topical agents either. Wear loose, cotton clothing so your skin can breath. Stay away from harsh body wash and soaps too. Be gentle to your skin for the next few days.
It may not sound like one of the natural remedies for folliculitis but those be a wholllle lotta tips, so I’m throwing it under the home remedies category.
My biggest concern with this gross rash, was how long it would take to heal.
I was inflammed from the back of my underarm to the front of it and it was obvious. The doctor assured me that if I followed his instructions the itching would stop in a day or two and the redness and swelling would decrease within a week.
It took nearly 2 weeks for my arms to go back to normal, but I’m happy to report I’m feeling 100% again and back to my regular cute self! *wink*
Have you ever had folliculitis before? Do you have any home remedies for folliculitis? Share your recipes, remedies or story in the comment section below.