Do you know it? You’ve just shaved, stroking your thighs and thinking: “It doesn’t get any smoother!” Perfect – Well, it kind of isn’t. Because although the skin feels so smooth, it doesn’t look like it. Where before there were noticeable stubbles, now there are still small dark spots. What’s going on?
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In the USA a name has long since been found for this annoying beauty problem: “Strawberry Legs”. Why is it called that? The many dark spots remind us of the seeds in the strawberry bowl. Fits, doesn’t it? But while the dots on the fruits don’t bother us at all, they are really annoying on the legs. That’s why we’re going to tell you why they’re there and how you can get rid of them.
What are those dark spots on your legs?
Do you know the situation when a man shaves and then still has a beard shadow left? Strawberry legs are a shaving shadow too. “When shaving, the hair is only removed superficially. This means that there is always a small residue under the skin, which can shimmer through depending on the hair colour and thickness. If you don’t shave, you don’t have strawberry legs, and then you can finally see the hair,” explains Munich dermatologist Dr. Timm Golücke.
This is, by the way, also the reason why the effect is only visible on the lower legs in some women: Because they only shave there. The hairs above the knees are often finer and do not necessarily have to be removed.
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Why do I have strawberry legs after shaving and others do not?
This is not because you shave the wrong way, but because of the individual hair colour and thickness. “The thicker and darker the hair, the more likely it is to show under the skin. “If someone has a few blond hairs, you can’t see through the stubble after shaving.”
What can I do to avoid the strawberry effect?
Strawberry legs are – as said – only formed by shaving, because small mini stubbles remain under the skin. “Even shaving against the grain can help minimally, because the hair is then cut even shorter and the stubble is less (quickly) noticeable,” says Golücke. However, shaving against the grain irritates the skin strongly – which is not worth the minimal effect. The dermatologist therefore recommends methods in which the hair is plucked directly from the root.
“After waxing, sugaring or epilating, there is no strawberry effect, because the hairs 1. are pulled completely and 2. grow back slowly and ultra-fine. Laser is also an option – but an expensive one.
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What else can I do about strawberry legs?
Self-tanning and body make-up can help to minimise the contrast between the skin and the dark stubble – as a result the dark spots are much less visible. Also good: Regularly apply creams and exfoliants to keep the legs nice and smooth and prevent them from keratinizing.
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Because shaving irritates the skin, small whitish red plugs often form around the hair follicles (=Keratoris Pilaris or grater skin), making the skin on the legs look like strawberry skin.
Recipe idea for a self-made leg peeling
Peeling products are available in large quantities in the drugstore. But you don’t have to buy them separately, you can easily make them yourself from kitchen ingredients that you probably have in the house anyway. For a great body peeling, for example, you only need 2 Ingredients: 1 EL sugar and 1 EL Coconut oil
Here’s how it goes:
- Take coconut oil out of the refrigerator and wait about 15 minutes until it is soft. Alternatively, put it on the heating for a short time.
- Mix the oil with the sugar until a viscous paste is obtained.
- Wash with shower gel as usual.
- Remove the peeling with your fingers.
- Distribute in circular movements on the moist skin.
- Rinse with lukewarm water.
- Because a light film of oil remains on the skin, you can save yourself the trouble of applying cream afterwards.
Important: Never exfoliate directly before or after shaving – this puts too much strain on the skin: Better take a day off. So do the peeling in the morning and shave the next day or vice versa.
After shaving your legs are covered with little dark spots? Now you know what to do: wax or epilate your hair and peel it regularly, and strawberry legs will be a thing of the past.