Folliculitis is an infection of the hair follicle. It can occur on any part of the body that has hair, and may be caused by bacteria that develops as a result of damaged or irritated follicles.


  • Folliculitis can look like a pimple that may contain pus (pustule). The hair may be visible but often it is trapped under the skin and cannot be seen.
  • Folliculitis can be red and tender, and may also itch and burn. If the pustules open, they can drain pus and/or blood.
  • Folliculitis can range from mild or superficial, to deep infections that may lead to more pain and discomfort. If left untreated infections can spread and eventually cause scaring or keloids, along with hyper-pigmentation or dark marks on the skin.
  • Some African-Americans and people with extremely curly or coiled hair can develop folliculitis when the hair curls back into the skin as it grows. It will then cause a false follicle that becomes irritated and eventually infected.


Folliculitis can be caused several ways; risk factors include hot tubs, whirlpools, and swimming pools that are not kept clean. Certain substances including make-up and oil can block or irritate follicles. Cuts, burns, or surgical incisions can become infected and spread bacteria to nearby follicles. Diseases such as Aids or Diabetes that lower immune system and the ability to fight infections, can also cause the condition to worsen or spread.

The most common cause of folliculitis is pulling hair out of the follicle. Tweezing and waxing are the most popular methods of pulling hair, but any method or device that pulls hair out of the follicle can distort the follicle, and can cause the hair to become ingrown.


  • The best way to treat folliculitis is to remove the hair permanently with Thermolysis.
  • Thermolysis is Doctor recommended and FDA approved to remove unwanted hair permanently. It is completely safe and 100% effective for all areas of the face and body. There are no side effects and it works on all colors of skin and all types of hair.
  • Once the follicle is unable to produce another hair, the possibility of infection from an ingrown hair is eliminated. The follicle must be treated properly, otherwise the hair will grow back and continued infections will occur.

Ways to relieve symptoms of folliculitis such as itching and pain:

  • Apply a warm, wet compress to the afflicted area several times a day.
  • Use a solution of vinegar or tea tree to make compresses.
  • Apply a drying lotion or gel, or an antibiotic ointment or cream, as needed.
  • In severe cases oral antibiotics may be necessary.
  • Medicated shampoos are available to treat folliculitis on the scalp.

Steps you can take to prevent folliculitis from developing or spreading:

  • Bathe and shower daily with antibacterial soap.
  • Bathe or shower after exercise or using public hot tubs or spas.
  • Avoid sharing towels, washcloths, or personal items.
  • If you have folliculitis, use a clean washcloth and towel each time you bathe.
  • Don’t scratch infected areas, and wash your hands and fingernails often.
  • If you have folliculitis use a new razor blade each time you shave.
  • Do not tweeze or wax any area prone to folliculitis.

Many people struggle with the issue of excess hair and hair removal. There are many causes of excess hair such as ethnic heritage, medical conditions and hormonal changes. Whatever the cause, it can be treated safely and permanently with Thermolysis. There are several ways to remove hair, but they are all temporary methods that can lead to severe problems such as folliculitis. The only option for safe, permanent hair removal is Thermolysis.


Cheryl has advanced training and years of experience with Thermolysis. Understanding growth cycles of hair and pre-treatment preparation are key elements for permanent results. She maintains strict sanitation and sterilization of instruments and environment. Cheryl also gives each patient her complete attention during the treatment session. I myself have had permanent hair removal with Thermolysis along with many of my staff and patients. Martha Gonzalez, M.D., M.P.H.