Question: I have red itchy bumps on my head. Can you get ingrown hairs on your scalp? If you can’t, what else could it be?
Answer: Hi, Benjamin. We would need to see your scalp in order to properly assess you and provide a confirmed diagnosis, however, in answer to your questions – yes, you can get ingrown hairs on your scalp, and an alternative issue matching your description could be acne.
Ingrown hairs are more common on the beard area in men – often referred to as ‘razor bumps’ – but it certainly can affect the head too.
Ingrown hairs on the scalp are not uncommon in people with curly and/or thick hair, especially when hair regrowth resumes after shaving the head. This is why the condition is particularly prevalent in Black men, due to the natural thickness and curls of the Afro hair type.
Instead of growing straight up, when the hair doubles back and grows back into the scalp it leads to an ingrown hair. This attracts bacteria which causes the inflammation at the site of the follicle, presenting as a red bump on the skin. You may be able to see the hair through the skin, which may be accompanied by pus.
Try to avoid picking at or scratching ingrown hairs; they can become infected and lead to scarring – something which, if extensive, can result in hair loss as hair cannot grow through scarred skin.
If you are concerned about your scalp condition in isolation, we recommend speaking to your doctor or dermatologist for a professional diagnosis and treatment recommendations.
Should you be experiencing thinning hair or excessive shedding in addition to your scalp problems, a consultation at a specialist hair loss clinic should provide the help you need to address both issues, starting with a diagnosis and personalised treatment recommendations.
The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.