Have you ever noticed small dark spots on your legs, particularly after shaving? Known as “strawberry legs” or “strawberry skin”, these spots literally resemble the pitted surface of a strawberry. While they are harmless, common and nothing to be ashamed of, many women don’t like the appearance, and would prefer they weren’t there.


There are quite a lot of misconceptions about strawberry legs, and that’s partly because there are so many different causes. The bottom line, is that strawberry legs are a result of clogged pores. They occur when hair follicles are clogged with oil, dirt, dead skin cells or bacteria. The lighter your skin, the more visible these spots may be, but they may affect women of all skin tones.


After shaving or waxing, these clogged pores are exposed to air. When exposed to oxygen, the oil oxidizes and darkens, which is why you are prone to seeing strawberry skin after a shave.


So what causes your pores to become clogged? This is where the misconceptions come in. Clogged pores are not a result of being “dirty” or unhygienic. You could be the most hygienic person in the world and still get clogged pores from time to time.


The reasons for these clogged pores may be anything from a build-up of dry and dead skin cells on the surface of the skin, using an old or dull razor blade to shave, excess oil produced during puberty or during hormonal fluctuations or bacteria on the skin.


Luckily, strawberry skin is simple to treat and home, and even simpler to prevent once you have the know-how. Here are four easy and affordable things you can do to prevent and treat it:

Shave with a sharp, good quality razor

A low quality razor dulls more easily than a high quality one and is often not as sharp to begin with. This may lead to redness, irritation and ingrown hairs. Rather invest in a good quality razor, and replace the blades regularly to ensure a close shave. Shave in the direction of hair growth to prevent razor bumps that can eventually lead to strawberry legs. Store your razor in a cool, dry place (not in the shower!) where bacteria won’t grow on the blades.


Exfoliate your legs regularly with a physical scrub

Gently removing the dead and dry skin cells on the surface of your legs regularly will ensure they do not build up and clog your pores. The best way to do this is with a physical scrub. We recommend Bramley Shea Butter Exfoliating Scrub. It contains nourishing and healing shea butter as well as high concentrations of fatty acids and vitamins to soften skin. Squeeze some onto your sponge, wash cloth or exfoliating mitt and gently move the product over your legs in circular motions. Once or twice a week will do the trick. Not only will exfoliating help prevent the formation of strawberry skin, but it will also leave your skin softer, smoother and more radiant.


Gently cleanse your skin after sweating

It goes without saying that showering or bathing every day is a must, but it’s also important to note that one should rinse off if you’ve been sweating – regardless of whether you showered earlier that day! For example, you may shower first thing in the morning but then go for a hike in the afternoon or squeeze in a quick gym session. Sweat contains bacteria and if it sits on the skin for too long, it can contribute to clogged pores and also lead to breakouts. However, you want to use a gentle cleanser that removes bacteria, oil and dirt without drying out your skin. Try Bramley Magnolia & Vanilla Body Wash. Lightly fragranced, it gently cleanses skin, leaving it feeling refresh and nourished.


Moisturise your legs every day

Because dry skin is one of the main causes of strawberry legs, it’s important to moisturise every day to keep your skin moisturised and to encourage your skin to shed dead cells off naturally. Choose a moisturiser that’s filled with deeply nourishing ingredients and is free from harsh ingredients that may cause sensitivity.


Bramley has a range of different formulas available to accommodate all preferences: Their Body Butters have a rich and thick buttery texture that leaves skin feeling soft and supple. If you prefer a lighter texture, then one of Bramley’s Body Lotions may be for you. Easily absorbed, the lightweight formula leaves skin feeling soft and velvety. Both products contain Bramley’s signature Bio-Pharm oil and vitamin E to nourish and protect.


Wash your towels regularly

We all have plenty on our plates, and sometimes remembering to wash our towels falls by the wayside. However, washing your towels regularly on a high temperature is essential to keep your skin healthy and free from bacteria. Wherever there is moisture, bacteria may thrive, and after a few days moist towels may become a breeding ground, which means you’re spreading that bacteria on your skin every time you dry off. Keeping them clean will help prevent this, as will allowing them to dry outside in the sun during the day.


With a little bit of care and consideration, it’s easy to make strawberry legs a thing of the past this summer!


Bramley products are available at PEP Stores nationwide. Bramley Tissue oils, Body Butters and Wipes are available at select Clicks, Pick ‘n Pay and Wholesale stores.


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