Wax, shave, pluck, laser, sugar, thread—maintaining hair growth is one of the most exhausting parts of beauty.
Most of these tactics are painful. Some are expensive. Others have known risks. Yet, we do them anyway, because for many, hair on certain parts of the body is repulsive (while also completely natural). We can’t necessarily explain our cultural fixation on hair removal (well, we can, but that would be a separate article), but we can try to make the process a bit easier.
With countless swimwear shots and barely-there ensembles, celebrities are our hairless role models. And, when it comes to hair removal, they go above and beyond. While Kylie Jennerand Chrissy Teigen go to SEV for their laser treatments, other celebs keep their waxing experts on call. After speaking with a number of celeb-loved hair pros, we’ve got a good idea of what works best.
When it comes to hair removal, there isn’t really one process that works for every part of the body. Arms, legs, underarms, bikini—they have their separate needs, their own dos and don’ts. Get it wrong and there could be in-grown hairs, gray shadows and poorly-shaped eyebrows in your future (eek!).
Once you read the below, being hairless may be easier than you thought!
Wax: When it comes to hair on the face, you really want to avoid growing thicker hair (read: don’t shave). That’s why waxing is popular for the upper lip and sideburns. It takes the hair out from the root, leaving only silky skin.
Laser: Laser treatments are most effective when there is a contrast between the color of the hair and skin. If you have dark facial hair, than laser treatments could work well. The light from the laser turns into heat when it encounters melanin in hair follicles, burning your hair at the root. Peach fuzz, since its usually lighter, may be harder to get rid of.
Flawless: Finishing Touch released a hair remover that works best with peach fuzz (buy it here). It removes facial hair by “microscopically paring it down through a spinning head.”
Wax: Although this is a popular form of hair removal, you’re putting a lot of power into the beauty professional’s hands. If it’s your first time working with them, show a photo of your ideal brows, then ask them to clean, rather than shape. You can always ask them to take off more hair, but you can’t ask them to put any back.
Thread: Having the beauty pro take out of your eyebrow hairs one-by-one is not a painless experience. However, threading is known to offer thicker brows and last longer. There’s always a give and take, right?
Shave: Most people shave, but shaving (especially if the razor is dull) can lead to a grey shadow and razor bumps. It removes hair from the skin’s surface, leaving the hair under intact. For best results, use a shaving cream and a sharp razor.
Laser: Once you’ve completed your treatments, you will be hair-free for awhile.
Waxing: Waxing under your arms removes both hair and dead skin, leaving a smoother surface. Note: You’ll have to grow your hair long enough to wax it.
Laser: If you’re not a fan of the bush, laser treatments are the best way to zap hairs along your bikini line. However, the process can take up to six months to complete, AND during treatments professionals recommend staying out of the sun (Read: no bikinis on the beach). For best results, start your treatments in the fall and make sure to go regularly.
Wax (or sugaring): Monthly waxes are best to maintain hair growth. The hair won’t grow back thicker (in comparison to shaving). Pro tip: Take two Advil before your appointment to lessen the pain.
LEGS (OR ARMS) DOS
Shave: This is the most popular way to get rid of the hair on the legs. With the right shaving cream, you can keep your legs soft, while also shaving as frequently as you’d like. Other treatments, such as waxing, requires that you grow your hair out, which means you’ll have hair on your legs more often than not. Pro tip: Try swapping out your razors every week to avoid a dull shave.
Laser: If you’d like a more permanent solution, laser treatments are a good way to go. But, you want to make sure get the majority of your treatments in the fall/winter, when you wear pants. Note: Laser treatments and sun exposure don’t work well together.