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“Strawberry skin” is not a cute nickname for blushing berry red — it describes strawberry-like skin texture and pigmentation, specifically on the legs. The dark spots in the skin resemble strawberry seeds, and they linger where hair follicles or pores are. They can be pitted or raised, but their presence is usually not a cause for concern. Read on to learn more about what causes it, what you can do about it, and when to see your doctor.

What Causes Strawberry Skin?

Strawberry skin, also referred to as “strawberry legs,” often describes conditions of the hair follicle. These include ingrown hairs, keratosis pilaris, and folliculitis. However, it can also be none of these things. At its mildest, strawberry skin is the skin’s harmless reaction to shaving and is not accompanied by any pain or swelling. If it does, see your doctor. If not, rest assured it’s normal and preventable.

If you shave the hair on your legs and your hair is darker than your skin, you could get the strawberry skin effect once the hair starts to grow back. This will eventually go away when the hair gets longer until you shave again. It can also be caused by clogged pores and irritation from poor shaving habits. You’re more likely to experience strawberry skin if your skin is dry or dehydrated, which means it’s more susceptible to irritation.

Is Strawberry Skin Avoidable?

The good news is, with a few tweaks in your shaving and body care habits, strawberry skin can be prevented. First, exfoliate regularly and not just when you see something that you’d like to “scrub away.” Strawberry skin is not something that you can remove with a body scrub. However, it can help prevent as well as treat it. gets rid of dead skin cells that can block your pores, loosen ingrown hairs, and soften the skin for a closer shave.

Next, moisturize regularly. Moisturized skin is more resilient against external stress, including hair removal. Apply moisturizer while your skin is still damp to lock in water and hydrate your skin more. Try Vaseline Gluta Hya Serum Burst Flawless Glow, a serum burst lotion that deeply moisturizes the skin. It also has GlutaGlow Technology and Hyaluron, which nourish the skin with 10x the brightening power of vitamin C, resulting in a more even skin tone.

Finally, or try , such as depilatory creams, waxing, or lasers. If shaving is unavoidable, make sure to use a clean razor. Make sure that your skin is damp and do not run it over the same area several times, which can cause irritation. Change your razor regularly and store it in a dry place to keep bacteria from contaminating it. 

Shaving is the primary culprit behind strawberry skin, which is a normal skin condition. However, the right products, body care habits, and shaving techniques can help you avoid and manage it.