Hair removal options: Part 1

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Thursday, March 27, 2014

SOMETIME in history, social norm dictated that women should have no body hair sprouting from below the eyelashes. Whoever made up this rule, you have inconvenienced a lot of women and caused us pain! But until visible body hair becomes socially accepted again, if it ever does, we’re left with no choice but to explore different ways of removing excess hair.

Since summer is just about here, it’s time for sleeveless tank tops, shorts, swimwear and, with it all, making sure body hair is kept at bay.

Depending on the area of the body, thickness of the hair, pain tolerance and personal preference overall, here are some suggestions for getting rid of unwanted hair.



This is perhaps the most ideal way to keep eyebrows in shape. There’s less chance of irritating the thin skin on this area instead of using an eyebrow razor. I’m also personally not comfortable with having a razor so close to my eyes! The very thought of it makes my hair stand.

You can choose to have your brows professionally shaped once at a salon, and then just tweeze them yourself at home when the hairs start to grow back.

Some people like to pluck underarms, but this is quite painful and often causes unsightly chicken skin. If you tend to get very red or see small spots of blood on any area after plucking, don’t pluck right before leaving the house, and have a clean cloth dipped in ice water on hand to help with the irritation.

Regrowth time for plucking is anywhere from a few days to a week. You’re pulling out hair from the root, giving you a few more days, but it will still grow back since you’re not removing the hair follicle.


Women should definitely not use a shaving razor anywhere on the face, because hair will grow back more obviously. Shaving is a good method for legs. Just make sure your skin is wet and apply a shaving cream. Be careful, and don’t press too hard on the skin, or you’ll end up nicking yourself. Remember to rinse off the razor after every stroke or two. Always opt for a sharp razor to avoid tugging on skin; disposable ones will last three to five shaves depending on hair thickness.

Regrowth time may only take two or three days since you’re just cutting off hair from the surface, but this is one of the easiest and most painless methods for hair removal.

You can also shave underarms, but since this area is already more prone to friction, this may worsen underarm darkening.

Depilatory Cream

These creams work by dissolving hair. Just spread on a thick layer and leave for five to 10 minutes, then wipe off with a wet washcloth or scrape off with a plastic spatula. Results last longer than shaving, without the scratchiness of blunt hairs, but be careful not to leave these creams on too long nor rub them in, which may burn the skin. Always do a patch test on the area you’re going to work on before applying it for the first time.

We’ll explore more hair removal options next week. Let me know through my contact info below if you’re wondering about anything in particular.

Twitter or Instagram @cuencojoanna/ e-mail

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on March 28, 2014.


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