Popular Ways To Get Rid Of Unwanted Hair
In search of a hair removal technique that can remove pesky, unwanted hair and promote softer, smoother—not to mention: hairless—skin? We cover the most popular ways to get rid of unwanted hair, ahead.
Removing unwanted hair is like the dirty dishes of personal hygiene. No matter how hard to try to avoid them, they just keep piling up (or, in this case... growing) until you can’t stand to look at them any longer. However, unlike dirty dishes, when it comes to hair removal, there are both long term and short term options available. From shaving to waxing to laser hair removal, find out which options are the best for you—and your hair removal needs—with our guide to ten popular ways to remove unwanted hair, here.
If you looked in the beauty cabinets, showers, or bathroom counters of most women and men, you’d be hard pressed not to find a razor stashed away somewhere. This is because, for many of us, shaving is the introductory course to hair removal. Shaving—which requires a razor and lubricated area (usually with water and shave cream) to get the job done—can quickly remove the appearance of unwanted hair from the surface of the skin. With shaving it’s important to keep a few things in mind. First, you’ll never want to shave skin when it’s dry or you’re practically asking for irritation in the form of razor bumps and burn. Second, post-shave you’ll want to make sure you moisturize to help replenish your skin with hydration. Want more tips to get the best shave ever? We share our comprehensive guide to shaving, here.
Another popular form of hair removal (especially when we’re talking brows) is tweezing! Whether you’re trying to remove one pesky—read: stubborn—unwanted hair or patiently re-shaping your eyebrows, tweezing can be a great way to remove the appearance of unwanted hair in a more precise manner. When it comes to tweezing away unwanted hairs there is a major rule of thumb you’ll want to follow. Plucking those stray hairs between and below your brows is fine, taking your tweezers to your skin to remove an ingrown hair is not. This can lead to something board-certified dermatologist and Skincare.com consultant, Dr. Dhaval Bhanusali, calls “post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation” as well as scarring. Learn more about the effects of tweezing (the wrong way) here.
Another incredibly popular method to remove the appearance of unwanted hair from the face and body is by waxing. In fact, this technique is often the go-to for brows, upper lips, and bikini areas. Unlike shaving, waxing can leave you with the appearance of a silky smooth—read: hairless—skin for a longer period of time, but like shaving it’s only a temporary solution. For many, waxing can cause the skin to feel uncomfortable so it’s important to follow a tips—like we outline here—to care for your skin post-wax. Another downside of waxing is that you have to let your hair grow out before each appointment…which is why many women (and men!) turn to the next hair removal technique on our list: laser hair removal.
LASER HAIR REMOVAL
If you’re looking for a hair removal technique with longer-lasting results, consider looking into laser hair removal! Laser hair removal is a technique that uses specially designed lasers that are tuned to specific colors to zap away the appearance of unwanted hair. “The hair absorbs the laser energy, as do the pigment cells from that hair,” explains board-certified dermatologist, cosmetic surgeon, and Skincare.com consultant, Dr. Michael Kaminer. “The heat builds up and engulfs the hair bulb, or the root of the hair [and] the heat kills the bulb.”
Laser hair removal is not just a one-time zap and you’re done (that would be nice though, wouldn’t it?). The hair removal technique calls for about 10 sessions of laser treatments and follow-up sessions as needed. And while this hair removal technique isn’t permanent per say, it can give you longer lasting results than that of shaving, waxing, threading, and so on.
If eyebrow waxes aren’t your thing, you may want to give threading a try! This ancient hair removal technique uses—you guessed it—thread to essentially pluck away rows of unwanted hair. So, how exactly does it work? A threading specialist typically uses either a thin cotton or polyester thread that is doubled, then twisted, and rolled onto an area with unwanted hair.
Another form of hair removal—that’s basically like tweezing plus—is epilating. This hair removal technique employs a device called an epilator to remove unwanted hair from the surface of the skin. The device itself is sort of like a bunch of tweezer heads on a spinning wheel that pluck away unwanted hair with each roll. The results can often be similar to that of waxing with weeks of the appearance of soft, smooth, hairless skin but many will admit that this form of hair removal can be a bit of a pain—quite literally!
Wouldn’t it be nice if we could just coat our legs in shaving cream, wait a few minutes, then wipe it off to reveal the appearance of soft, smooth, hairless legs? Well that dream becomes a reality thanks to depilatory creams. Similar in texture to shaving cream (only with the ability to remove unwanted hair), depilatory cream is a highly alkaline formula that contains ingredients that target the protein structure of unwanted hair in order to dissolve or break it down, resulting in the appearance of a smooth, hairless surface.
When it comes to removing unwanted hair from the surface of your skin, we are willing to go pretty far to achieve the appearance of soft, smooth, hairless skin. Case in point? Dermaplaning. According to board-certified dermatologist and Skincare.com expert, Dr. Dendy Engelman, “dermaplaning is the act of exfoliating and shaving the surface of the skin with the use of a sharp surgical scalpel, comparable to a man shaving with a blade.” While it may sound a bit scary, if done correctly (by a licensed practitioner), dermaplaning can be very gentle. What’s more? In addition to removing the appearance of unwanted hair, dermaplaning can slough off dead skin cells, resulting in the appearance of smoother, softer, more radiant-looking skin.
Similar in technique to that of waxing—only the “wax” used is not wax at all—sugaring is a hair removal technique that uses a heated sugar mixture to create a thick paste or gel that can lift away unwanted hair. The result? The appearance of softer, smoother—not to mention: hairless—surface skin.
Looking for something a little more permanent? Consider electrolysis. Electrolysis is the only hair removal method considered to be permanent by the FDA. So, how does it work? According to the FDA, “medical electrolysis devices destroy hair growth with a shortwave radio frequency after a thin probe is placed in the hair follicle.” Similar to laser hair removal, electrolysis requires a series of sessions over a period of time for best results.