Best Ever Me Guide to Hair Removal
Which hair removal is for you?
In summer one of the most difficult things to maintain is smooth hairless skin. During winter it’s easy to ditch the razor and cover up, but in warmer weather it’s just not the case. Are you someone who has spent extra time in the shower shaving your legs in anticipation of nice weather the next day, only to wake up with a stubbly shadow and no hot water? ;-)
Shaving can be time-consuming and counterproductive. My confession is that if I’m stuck for time and wearing ankle grazers, I’ll often only shave the area that’ll be seen, and although It’s not the sexiest of looks, I know that I’m not the only one who does it. On the other hand don’t get me started on home waxing, this can be tricky, painful and even more time-consuming than shaving as you build up the will to tear that strip off. Some things should just be left to the professionals.
Because at Best Ever Me we care, and we want you to make the most informed decision possible, we decided to give you a little insight into the processes of waxing and laser hair removal. So keep reading and we hope you enjoy!
How does it work? Waxing is a form of semi-permanent hair removal, which can be used on any area of the body. Strip waxing uses a soft wax and strips of paper or cloth. The wax is spread evenly over the skin and then ripped off quickly against the direction of hair growth. Stripless wax or hard wax is applied thickly applied to skin with no fabric, which is allowed to cool and then removed. Stripless waxing is considered less painful and better for the removal of fine hairs.
Waxing removes hair from the root. This means regrowth is softer than the stubble that occurs after shaving and use of depilatory creams. It is the most effective and quickest method of removing large areas of hair.
What to expect: Expect to be undressed or given paper underwear, depending on the area being waxed. Expect pain during the process! This will depend on the location of the waxing, and the skill of the therapist. Before waxing hair needs to be of a certain length in order to work efficiently.
Tip # 1: Make sure you don't use oily lotions on the area before waxing. If you have done, do inform the beautician so that s/he can remove it with wipes, otherwise the wax will be unable to effectively grip the hairs.
Tip # 2:Some people recommend taking an OTC painkiller like a Nurofen about 40 minutes to an hour before waxing, particularly if it is on more sensitive parts of the body. [Some women report their skin being extra sensitive (and I mean a LOT!!) to waxing at times closer to their periods.]
Tip # 3: Pain level will also depend on whether you've been waxing for a while already. Our CEO has been having it done for, in her own words, "donkey's years" and claims it is virtually pain-free at this stage on her legs. ;-)
Downsides:Waxing can be painful, but this pain is short-lived and is over as fast as it started. So there is no need to worry. Over time, the process becomes less painful as the returning hair tends to be softer and easier to remove.
Tip # 4: Waxing can also stretch the skin slightly due to the sharp pull of the wax strip and there can be some redness afterwards which will usually fade over night. Be warned if you are considering an eyebrow wax and you have a social event coming up!
Some people can also experience ingrown hairs after waxing, especially after the first session. Check out our Instagram or Facebook where we will give you a top tip on removing ingrown hairs!
Benefits: Hairs grow back finer and softer. Depending on where an individual hair is in its growth cycle, you will usually get 4 (or up to six weeks) before the hair reappears. Over time you will need to wax less often as the hair takes longer to grow back.
Cost: Underarm (€15-€25), Arm (€20-€30), Half Leg (€20-€35), Full Leg (€30-€40), Bikini (€20-€25), Brazilian (€30-€60), Hollywood (€30-€65), Back (€30-€45), Brow (€8-€20), Chin or Lip (€10-€15).
Prices vary depending on the Salon. Hotels and Resorts often charge more.
Laser Hair Removal
How does it work? Laser hair removal is the process of removing unwanted hair by means of exposure to pulses of laser light that destroy the hair follicle.
The science behind this form of hair removal is the intimidatingly named "selective photothermolysis" (SPTL). This is actually a simple process of calibrating a specific wavelength of light and pulse on a targeted tissue. The process heats the darker areas’ melanin or chromophore. It focuses the light directly on the unwanted hair leaving the surrounding area relatively untouched. This is because light is absorbed by darker objects with greater intensity and speed than paler areas. If not dark enough, the darkness can be artificially induced, however this practice has not worked well in IPL for hair removal.
Melanin is the primary conductor of light during the treatment. Melanin occurs naturally in the skin, giving hair its pigment. There are two types of melanin in hair: Eumelanin gives hair a brown or black colour; while pheomelanin occurs in hair that is blonde or red in colour. Laser hair removal is most suited to the darker eumelanin. The laser also prefers coarse hair to fine hair. It works best on dark hair on pale skin. Newer treatments have been developed that have increased its span of action in dark hair on dark skin.
What to expect: A consultation beforehand to decide the area and level of hair to be removed. A hand-held device zaps the hairs with a ping-like sensation often compared to being struck by an elastic band. Similar to waxing, expect to be undressed or given paper underwear, depending on the area. Laser hair removal is not an instant fix; the average number of sessions required for the complete removal of hair, depending on the client, is 6.
Benefits: When it works well there is no further need for hair removal – ever! Skin is left soft and smooth. Furthermore, laser hair removal does not stretch the skin like waxing may do.
Downsides: Controversy surrounds the term permanent hair removal as many users experience complete regrowth of hair. Large areas typically need to be redone after the initial round of treatments. The issue for most here is cost as laser hair removal is not the cheapest. However, an experienced hair removal therapist should be able to give you a good indication of how many sessions you are likely to need.
Why are a number of sessions needed: A number of sessions may be required as only hair in a growth phase can be destroyed. Hair growth has 3 major phases: anagen, telogen, catagen - anagen being the growth phase. This can result in a temporary patch appearance.
Itching, redness, and slight swelling of the follicles is known as follicular oedema. These side effects rarely last more than two or three days. The most worrying side effect is possible skin discolouration, as in hypopigmentation (white spots). The use of numbing cream can result in harm and should be avoided. However icing after the treatment is recommended.
Cost: Usually you will be charged per consultation, which start at €30 each. Some clinics require payment for all 6 sessions upfront. Clinics specialising in hair removal often run seasonal deals which can give you good overall savings.
Prices depend on the area and type of hair being removed. Here’s a rough guide: Bikini line (€50-€132), underarm, Full Leg (€130-170), Lower Leg (€80-€100), Full arm (€50-€70), Lip (€25-€35), Chin (€45-€60), Hollywood (€90-€130).
Prices are on average, per session, depending on hair type.
And what exactly do these fancy names for hair removal downstairs mean?? Here’s a quick guide to give you a hand so you don’t walk out of the clinic confused and unhappy. [Note: Some clinics do have their own definitions so this is not a guarantee.]
We hope this has helped you learn a bit more about hair removal! Please let us know if you have any questions in the comments, on our social media or via email on firstname.lastname@example.org. If you would like to look for a clinic providing either of these treatments, both are listed at the top of the page under Body > The Staples.