Not a lot of women like to talk about it, but it’s something many deal with on a daily basis. For these women, facial hair is an embarrassing problem that won’t go away.
There are many options available to correct this problem, but some can be costly and painful. Some treatments work better than others, but aren’t always one hundred percent effective. We all want soft, hair-free, and unblemished skin. What’s a girl to do?
The reasons why women get hair growth on their facial area varies. Many times it is simply a matter of genetics. Does your grandmother or even your mother have a mustache? If so, you may one day have the same problem.
Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome affects up to 10% of all women of reproductive age. One annoying symptom of PCOS is excessive hair growth. While this is not true of all PCOS patients, up to 75% of them will see this in one form or another. This hair will not always appear on the face, but quite often it shows up on the upper lip or on the chin.
Some women just have darker hair than others. We all have a fine layer of hair on our faces, but some women’s just grows thicker and darker than others.
Some women will develop facial hair once they reach menopause. It’s quite common, and comes in relation to the hormonal changes that are taking place inside your body.
Bleaching: I have a friend who, due to her ancestry, has a very faint mustache. She buys a bleaching kit at her local supermarket and bleaches the hair on her upper lip. If she hadn’t told me about it, I never would have noticed. If you have fine hair on your face that is just a bit too dark for your liking, this is a great option for you. This process is quick and painless, though you should never bleach when your skin is irritated.
Shaving: I’ve heard all my life that shaving will cause hair to grow back thicker and darker. This really isn’t true. The hairs will not get thicker or darker, but the razor will cut off the fine tip of the hair. When this happens the hair appears to be thicker and darker, but in reality it’s just got a flat tip on it. This gives it a thicker, fuller appearance.
Shaving, however, is not a good option. You may have to shave twice a day to keep your face smooth, and the dark hair roots remain. This sometimes shows through your skin, and will make it obvious you shave your face.
Tweezing: If you have just a few stray hairs that bother you, tweezing is your best option. It’s quick and will only need to be done once or twice a week, depending on how fast your hair grows. Tweezing comes with a minute amount of pain, but you will get used to the sensation very quickly.
Depilatory Creams: These creams are applied to the hair for a short period of time. They will eat away the hair shaft, sometimes below the surface of the skin. They are usually left on for approximately five minutes and then wiped off of the skin.
These tend to work well and offer a few days of hair-free skin. If you have sensitive skin however, these creams may not be the best option for you. You cannot use these on any skin that is cut or irritated, and should never be used near the eyes. Depending on your skin type they may burn a bit when in use, and can leave your skin red.
If you want to try these creams, test them on a patch of skin elsewhere on your body first. You’ll get better results if you do this after a warm shower, or if you place a hot cloth over the treatment area for a few minutes before you begin. This will soften the hairs and open your pores, allowing the product to work better.
Waxing: This form of hair removal is very popular despite its pain factor. Warm wax is applied to the hair and then pulled off once it cools. This, if done correctly, pulls the hairs out by the roots. It is painful, but the results can last for weeks.
This treatment can be done in a salon or at home. Home waxing kits are relatively affordable and come with everything you need to do it yourself. You may need to do it a few times before you get the hang of it, however. If you do choose to do this at home, follow the instructions to the letter so you don’t damage or burn your skin. Also, be sure to buy a kit that is made especially for facial hair.
Electrolysis: This is done by sliding a needle into the skin, along the side of a hair. A short zap of electricity is shot through the hair to kill it. The hair is then pulled out with tweezers.
While this form of hair removal is said to be permanent, that isn’t always the case. Some hairs do grow back and some are missed altogether and must be done at a later date. It is also a slow and tedious procedure, as only one hair can be done at a time.
Expect some pain with this procedure. You will have to go to a professional to get this done. Be prepared to spend a lot of money and time if you go this route. Home electrolysis is not recommended, as it is too easy to scar your skin if it is done incorrectly.
Laser Hair Removal: This is the newest form of hair removal. It uses low intensity lasers to remove hair. The laser is drawn to the pigment of the hair and destroys that hair. It can be mostly pain-free but this will highly depend on you and your skin. You may experience redness or slight swelling.
This treatment is the most expensive of all treatments, but if you are removing facial hair, you may get it all done in one treatment. If you are removing hair on your legs, you may have to go back several times. Unlike electrolysis, which only targets one hair at a time, laser removal can remove up to a hundred or more in one shot.
Those with darker skin may not be candidates for this because the pigment in their skin may confuse the laser, and the hairs may be missed. White or gray hairs are very hard for the laser to see because of their lack of pigment. This may be changing, however. Newer developments are coming along all the time. Call the nearest laser hair removal center in your area to see if you are a candidate for this type of treatment.
Just as all women are different, their choices for hair removal will be different as well. There is no right answer, the just answer that works best for you and your lifestyle. The point is you don’t have to live with facial hair; you just have to find the best way to get rid of it!