Unwanted hair can make a woman feel less feminine and even freaky. Celebrity Kathy Lee Gifford has spoken many times about never wanting her husband to see her annoying facial hair. But today’s woman is lucky because there are plenty of methods for getting rid of unwanted hair. Whether you want to get rid of leg hair or annoying new hairs that crop up due to hormonal changes from childbirth or menopause, there’s a way to do it. We take a look at everything from temporary methods for removing hair to saying goodbye to unwanted hair forever. After weighing your options, if laser sounds like something you’d be interested in, then come to Satori Laser!
Advice from the experts
Lauren Hatfield, operations and marketing manager for Clique Waxing Boutique, says that when shaping certain areas like eyebrows or bikini lines, waxing gives a sharper line than some other methods. But for eyebrows, some women prefer threading because it removes the peach fuzz that sometimes tweezing or waxing leaves behind. With threading, a cotton string is pulled along unwanted hair in a twisting motion. “Threading is a little more tedious because the hair is removed in sections,” Lauren says. But she adds that threading is preferred by clients with sensitive skin because it doesn’t use products or medication.
Dermatologist Tamella Cassis says that laser hair removal has been scientifically proven to be the most effective way to remove dark hair, but she says, “Laser hair removal does not work for blonde, gray, or red hair.” According to Denise Searcy, laser tech, and office manager at Ultimate Vein Care, the laser usually takes 6 to 10 treatments because the hair has different growing stages and you have to get it at just the right time. She also recommends shaving a day or two before getting the laser treatment in order to shorten the distance the laser has to travel down the hair shaft to reach the follicle. But you have to do your homework and be careful to have laser hair removal done properly. Dr. Cassis has seen instances of burned skin – “not done at my office, but I have to take care of patients that it happened to at nonphysician-run offices.”
Temporary hair removal
- Shave or trim with a razor or electric shaver.
- Depilatories are creams or powders that chemically dissolve hair.
- Friction uses rough surfaces to buff away hair.
- Tweeze with a small metal implement to pluck one hair at a time.
- Wax with a cold or hot layer of wax which is quickly yanked off the skin after cooling or setting.
- Sugaring is similar to waxing, but with a sticky paste.
- Threading is a method of twisting cotton thread and then rolling it across the skin to remove even fine hairs.
- Rotary epilators are tools that rapidly grasp hairs and pull them out by the root.
Permanent hair removal
- Electrolysis passes the electric current through the hair root.
- Laser hair removal beams an intense heat through the skin to damage an individual hair follicle.
- Flashlamp or intense pulsed light uses a filtered light to damage hair follicles.
- Prescription oral medications.
- Prescription topical preparations.
Our health advisory group’s experiences and feelings regarding hair removal:
- “Now that I have completed the permanent hair removal process, I recommend starting with the laser. Once those treatments are complete, get any remaining hair with electrolysis. I did it the other way and it took much longer and cost much more.” – TINA NUTTAL, Stay-at-home mom, and CEO of the household
- “I see a lot of women that are distressed by an increase in unwanted hair on their faces, neck, and chest. It can make a woman feel unsure of herself and less feminine. My use of hormonal contraception has affected my hair growth.” -TANYA E. FRANKLIN, M. D., OBGYN, University of Louisville
- “For me personally, hair removal is like the completion of a sharp, stylish outfit. I believe how you feel about the way you look under your clothes is the foundation to how you feel in your clothes.” -SUSAN BODDY, Independent insurance agent
- “I have grown some coarse, dark hairs on my chin after having my son. They are the most irritating thing on my body. These hairs grow in daily, making it a hassle to stay mini beard-free. I routinely wax and tweeze them. Electrolysis was the worst. It was akin to paying to be tortured like a hairy prisoner of war.” -ALLISON YOUNG, LMT, Spencerian College instructor
Written by Today’s Woman LLC May 2011