Cooler weather is coming and that means long pants, cute tights and a lot of legs that won’t be seeing a razor anytime soon.
Not having to shave your legs regularly is a benefit of living in areas that experience colder climates. And While hiding hairy legs is pretty easy, some women still have to contend with maintaining hair removal regimens on other areas of their bodies.
Genetics, hormones, menopause and other factors can contribute to unwanted hair growth on the face and other areas. Over the years, the beauty industry has created several options for hair removal that includes both permanent and non-permanent remedies.
Waxing is one way to remove unwanted hair growth on the face and body. The process involves using either a heated hard or soft wax that is applied in strips to the area where you want to remove their hair.
If using the hard wax, the esthetician lets the wax cool and then literally rips it off. If they are using a soft wax, a thin strip of cloth or paper is applied on top of the wax. Once the wax and the strip are cooled, like with hot wax, it is removed from the skin the in a fast pulling motion.
Depending on the hair’s’ growth cycle, results last anywhere from two to six weeks before the process is repeated.
The cost for professional waxing depends on the area getting wax and the salon, but prices typically range around $15 for eyebrows, $8-$10 for lips and $35 for half a leg. At-home kits range in price from $9.99 up to $50.
The benefit to waxing is that you can remove hair from larger areas relatively quickly. Waxing can be done pretty much anywhere on the body including the bikini line, underarms and legs. Waxing can also be done at home with store bought kits or at a professional salon.
The downside is that it stings and can leave the skin red and slightly irritated. Hair must be at least 1/4 of an inch long for the wax to adhere to it, so shaved or tweezed hairs have to grow in.
Westside Wax, 1923 59th Ave.; Puttin’ On the Wax, 4500 CenterPlace Drive, Suite 406; and Waxerella’s at Wildflower Beauty House, 7251 W. 20th St. Suite C are just a few establishments that specialize in waxing procedures.
Another option for removing unwanted whiskers is laser hair removal.
Laser hair removal uses a medical grade laser that beams highly concentrated light into hair follicles. Pigment in the follicles absorbs the light, destroying the hair.
The number of sessions needed to remove all the hair depends on the client’s hair color, hair type, body area and skin tone. Most clients can begin to see results after eight sessions.
Nina Duran Gutierrez, co-owner of Beso Hair Skin Laser Spa, 1990 59th Ave., has been performing laser hair removal on clients since 2012.
“I’ve had laser done on myself and I love it. It’s made a big difference for me,” Gutierrez said. “I was very hairy. My legs and arms were so hairy that you could pull on it and twist the hair.”
The procedure feels similar to the snapping of a rubber band on the skin. Gutierrez uses a stream of cool air to soothe the skin during the laser process.
Laser hair removal saves on time and money by not having to shave or wax, Gutierrez said. The procedure also eliminates razor bumps, ingrown hair and stubble.
According to Gutierrez, the average person can spend more than $30,000 and 1,400 hours waxing and shaving over their lifetime.
“I can treat your whole chin in around two minutes,” she said.
Gutierrez’s laser hair removal treatments range in price from $30 for an extra small area like the eyebrows or fingers up to $200 for extra large areas such as a full arm, chest or full back.
The benefits of laser hair removal are that it is a permanent way to remove hair, can be done pretty much anywhere on the body and is quick. Client’s can also shave in between sessions.
The cons to the procedure are that it is slightly painful and depending on where you go, can be costly. Also, the laser usually doesn’t work on grey or extremely light colored hair.
For more information on laser hair removal services with Gutierrez, go to www.besohairskinlaserspa.com.
For folks that don’t want the pain of waxing or the expense of laser hair removal, threading may be an option.
The process of threading for hair removal originated centuries ago in the Middle East and South Asia. While popular in India, Iran and China, the ancient procedure has just begun to rise in popularity in the U.S. over the past five years.
The process of threading involves using a thin piece of cotton thread, the end of the thread is held in the mouth with the hands holding the other end, and swiping it across the skin quickly. This swiping action removes hair at the root without pulling or damaging skin. There are several different methods to threading and trained threaders can thread an entire face in a matter of minutes.
Rebekah Leaf, owner of The Eyebrow Palace, 1919 65th Ave., Suite 2, learned the art of threading from a friend from Pakistan.
“She managed a threading salon and she trained me,” Leaf said. “After about six months, she asked me to come work for her.”
The number one benefit of threading versus waxing is that it is much more gentle on the skin, Lead explained. Also, threading allows for more precise hair removal and more defined shape.
“I can grab all that peach fuzz that waxing may not pick up,” she said. “When you set the string on the face you can plan the path of the thread when it glides across the skin.”
Threading can be done on any flat surface of the body, but most people just have threading done on their face.
Doctors often recommend threading to their patients that are on medication like Accutane or topical retinoid creams because it is gentle on the skin, Leaf said.
“The skin is often compromised and thinner and they can’t do waxing if they are on some of those medications because it can rip the skin,” she explained. “But they are able to do threading.”
Leaf has both female and male clients that come to her for threading.
Jessica Martinac is a threading client of Leafs and much prefers to have her eyebrows threaded versus waxed. Martinac has been going to Leaf for around four years.
“At first, I wasn’t sure if it was something I wanted to do all the time because I wasn’t familiar with the technique,” Martinac said. “But it’s the most amazing experience ever. You get a much cleaner look with threading than what you get with waxing or even tweezing. And I’ve done it all when it comes to eyebrows.”
Like waxing results of threading aren’t permanent and depending on how fast your hair grows back will depend on when you need to book another threading appointment.
Some of the benefits to threading are that it is fast and costs around the same, or even less, than waxing. Threading also isn’t as painful as waxing and doesn’t cause the skin to become bright red or irritated.
Since threading is not taught in cosmetology schools, finding an experienced threader in your city may be a challenge.
For more information on The Eyebrow Palace and threading, go to www.eyebrow-palace.com.
Another option for hair removal is dermaplaning, or in layman’s terms, shaving.
Dermaplaning is the process where a trained esthetician takes a surgical scalpel (yes, an actual surgical scalpel) and gently scrapes the skin. The process not only removes vellus hair, or peach fuzz, it also acts as an exfoliator removing dead cells and stimulating new cell growth.
Dermaplaning leaves clients with ultra-smooth, fresh and bright-looking skin, said Holly Hildenbrandt general manager at James Salon, 5290 W. 9th St. Drive, Suite 100. The peach fuzz that is removed during the procedure doesn’t grow back thicker or darker.
“There’s no downtime at all,” Hildenbrandt said. “It’s a great way to relax and do something for yourself.”
With the peach fuzz gone and the skin exfoliated, makeup goes on much smoother and evenly, said Hildenbrandt, who has also had dermaplaning in the past.
With the procedure using an extremely sharp scalpel, going to a trained esthetician is important, Hildenbrandt advises. Don’t be afraid to ask to see certificates of training or credentials if you are leery.
The procedure isn’t recommended for people with certain skin conditions such as cystic acne or psoriasis. Otherwise, men, women and teens are good candidates for dermaplaning.
While James Salon does offer dermaplaning, the salon has elected to put the skin service on hold due to the pandemic, Hildenbrandt said.
Stores like Walmart and Target sell dermaplaning kits that people can purchase for at-home use, but since the blades aren’t nearly as sharp, the results won’t be as effective as seeing a professional, Hildenbrandt said.
Depending on the salon, dermaplaning can cost anywhere between $75 and $150.
The great thing about dermaplaning is that the procedure exfoliates skin as well as removes hair. It also can lighten post-inflammatory scars from past acne.
The downside to dermaplaning is that it can be spendy and because the hair is not removed from the root, it may not be as long lasting as waxing or threading. Also, dermaplaning is normally only done on the face, leaving people to look to other methods of hair removal for the rest of the body.