Hair removal options: Part 2

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Thursday, April 3, 2014


LAST week, we talked about shaving, plucking and depilatory creams. Here are other options to help you go hair-free for summer and those trips to the beach.

Waxing

This is quite a painful method of hair removal, but people still opt for it since the regrowth period is much longer compared to tweezing or shaving. If you’re an expert, a number of at-home waxing kits are available. If you want to have it done professionally, always choose a reputable place.

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My friends couldn’t believe it, but I just recently had my first-ever waxing experience. I visited Skin First skin center outside Paradise Village. To be honest, I was terrified. I had heard of how painful waxing is, but I knew I had to try it at least once.

Before the procedure, the esthetician will ask if you are doing any whitening treatments or chemical peels, which makes skin more sensitive. You can opt to take a pain killer 30 minutes before the treatment to minimize discomfort. If you are really nervous about the pain, Skin First offers topical anesthesia upon request, at an additional charge.

The esthetician will cleanse the area to be waxed and trim the hair down to about a fourth of an inch, just enough for the wax to grab the hair, but not too long that it will be extra painful. Hard wax was used in very small sections to minimize pain. The most sanitary way of using the wax is to use a fresh wooden spatula every time to scoop it out, instead of double-dipping from the skin and back to the hot wax.

I braced myself for the first pull—and it did hurt, but not as terribly as I thought it would. The whole procedure took about 45 minutes, and I was tense but not in unbearable pain. I was relieved to have an esthetician who was really patient and took care to do only small sections at a time, because she knew I was a first-time waxer.

You will feel some stinging afterwards, which for me went away after less than half an hour. Hydrocortisone cream will be applied after waxing, which will help minimize irritation.

Cold wax can also be used, with strips. Depending on age, health and gender, hair will grow back between two to six weeks. Regrowth of one-fourth of an inch is necessary before the next waxing session.

Tolerance for pain varies from person to person, but if a ‘fraidy cat like me can stand waxing, you can too.

Laser Hair Removal

This is the only permanent way to remove hair because it destroys the follicle. New machines are completely painless and you will only feel heat when the device is massaged over the skin.

The number of sessions will depend on the thickness of the hair, and because follicles grow at varying phases. The down side to this procedure is that it tends to be very expensive, but scout around and call different salons or skin care centers around the city, and you will most likely find one that can fit your budget. Just make sure as always that it is a reputable place, because lasers used incorrectly can definitely cause damage.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on April 04, 2014.

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