Topical anti-acne medications and remedies are excellent for treating ingrown hair. In fact, they are probably the best way to fight ingrown hair. 

Topical anti-acne medications have three primary mechanisms to fight acne: 

1. Anti-inflammatory

A significant part of acne is inflammation caused by plugging the opening of sebaceous glands and p-acne, an anaerobic microbe inside acne lesions.

Ingrown hair has some similarity to acne, in that pulling hair from its follicles causes micro damage that leads to inflammation. The inflammation causes edema and deviates the channel of the hair follicle, and, consequently, growing hair penetrates the hair follicle wall instead of coming out of the follicles. Any remedy or medication that reduces inflammation is excellent for preventing and curing ingrown hairs. 

2. Anti-microbial

Ingredients that include antimicrobials are great for fighting p-acne.

Infection is not necessarily a side effect of ingrown hair, but there is always a chance of a micro abscess in the site of an ingrown hair. The antimicrobial effects of anti-acne medicine can prevent any future infection or micro abscess in the location of an ingrown hair. 

3. Skin Turnover

Anti-acne medication can remove old skin cells and open blockage of the skin’s pores.

The surface layers of the skin are continually replaced with new layers of skin cells that are produced from deeper layers. Any medication or remedy that increases the turnover of skin cells increases the healing process of the skin. The faster the new skin cells replace the old ones, the quicker the deep lesion emerges to the surface and is expelled from the skin’s surface. 

Chemical and physical peeling are two ways to increase the turnover speed of the skin. Yet there are some chemicals, like salicylic acid and Retin-A, that do this action by another mechanism. A significant part of all acne medications is the peeling effects or the increase in the turnover of the skin.