Do you know that hair removal has an incredibly long history? Some historians even believed that the Stone Age men used clamshells to tweeze their beards. Going bald was a sign of royalty, purity, and cleanliness in ancient cultures.
In other words, the desire to get rid of hair seems to be in our DNA. Even if no-shave November is getting more popular, plenty of men and women still spend time removing the follicles.
But with so many options to remove one’s hair, which is the best? Let’s compare three of the most popular methods: shaving, waxing, and laser.
When they notice their body or facial hair has grown out, the first thing people usually do is to reach for a razor. Razors are the cheapest and most easily accessible way to remove hair. One can buy them in supermarkets or pharmacies.
They are also available in different designs, such as disposable, electric, or safety razors. Men usually choose the last type, while women use both disposable and electric ones. The ladies can also invest in an epilator, a device that removes hair by plucking them out of the skin.
Shaving is a wet process. You need to soak your skin and hair in water for a few minutes and then apply shaving cream or soap. The razor glides effortlessly on the surface of wet skin, and the hair gets cut off at the surface level.
But while shaving is easy and cheap and someone one can do at home, it has several disadvantages:
- It can cause nicks, cuts, and razor burn.
- Shaving does not obliterate the hair. You might have to shave every day if you don’t want your hair visible.
- Shaving can cause ingrown hair, which grow back into the skin. They can be itchy and painful, and they may leave scars when you pick them.
- Some people consider shaving not environment-friendly since most razors are not biodegradable.
Laser Hair Removal
Laser hair removal is one of the most effective ways to remove large amounts of hair. The professional laser hair removal machine emits pulses of light that travel down a beam into the skin and destroy individual hair follicles.
The follicles are our glands that produce and secrete oil and grow new hairs as a refresher. Once the laser hits a follicle, the heat in the skin damages it. This way, it prevents the future growth of hair.
The treatment is costly, and it requires multiple sessions to see results ultimately. It also needs expert handling because the laser beam can damage the eyes.
However, the long-term results are gratifying. Laser hair removal is a dry process. You do not need to apply any cream or soap, although the therapist might use a cooling gel to protect your skin from the laser.
During the beginning of the sessions, the hair can still grow back. But you will notice that the strands will appear thinner and less visible. Some studies even suggest it can eliminate 90 percent of the hair. Moreover, this procedure is also more likely to leave you with smoother skin and reduce the risks of ingrown hairs.
Waxing is an old-school hair removal method that is becoming more popular in modern times. It involves melting down wax, usually made of organic materials such as sugar or soybeans, and applying it to the skin.
The actual waxing process and target areas depend on the type. Strip waxing involves spreading the substance onto the skin in the direction of hair growth and then tearing it off.
On the other hand, hard wax does not require cloth strips for removal. A professional applies wax on one side of your body, where it stays on your skin, so the person can pull it off when it’s hard. This type of waxing is used for areas like the face, bikini line, and underarms. Brazilian wax is a bikini wax that removes all the hair from the genital and anal areas.
Waxing, like shaving, is a wet process. But unlike it, waxing lasts longer because it removes the hair from the root. Usually, it prevents hair growth for at least four weeks. It also causes minor skin irritation. However, waxing can be painful, and it is not ideal for those with sensitive skin.
Waxing, shaving, and laser hair removal are all techniques used to remove unwanted hair. While some may think that shaving is the least expensive option for removing large amounts of hair, laser treatment is more cost-effective in the long run.