Getting rid of that growing hair

BY CYNTHIA WAIRIMU

…Continued from last Issue

Bleaching

This is essentially the removal of colour using chemicals. It is more of concealing hair than removing it and is best used for the face area including side burns. It should be kept away from intimate areas as it can cause serious burns. Bleaching requires time and patience. The risk would be the chemicals irritating sensitive skin, other than that, it is painless and lasts up to two weeks. 

Electrolysis

Here, a needle is used to blast an electric current into the hair follicle. This has to be done one follicle at a time and the results are usually permanent. This method can only be done by a professional as it also requires specific devices and expertise for it to be done well. Several sessions are needed for the process to be complete. It has its fair share of pain depending on your threshold. It is however less expensive than laser and requires fewer follow up sessions. 

Laser

It is only effective on dark hair and works best if you have fair skin. This method uses a laser beam to destroy the hair bulb by targeting the colour of the follicle and burning it, causing it to fall out. This method is painful and requires follow up sessions of weeks apart and is also expensive. If something like hormonal changes occur, one risks everything growing back. It requires different treatment plans and can only be done by a professional. One will also need to be cleared by a dermatologist first before proceeding for the laser hair removal. It lasts long and whatever grows back is lighter and thinner

Tweezing, threading and plucking

I have grouped these three together because they are pretty much similar and are used on smaller areas such as eyebrows, upper lip, chin and neck. Tweezing/plucking works by using tweezers to pluck out hair from the root. There is some pain and an ice cube would do well to cool off the area after tweezing. Hair can take up to a fortnight to grow back. It should not be used on larger areas as it can cause scarring and ingrown hair. Threading requires the use of a thread to pull out hair against the skin. It is fairly painful but works well to shape eyebrows and is faster than tweezing as it will clean out a line of hair as opposed to plucking one at a time. It is also less damaging to the skin compared to plucking. 

Epilation

It works by plucking out hair from the root using an epilator that is usually mostly, battery powered. This means there is some pain involved; however with more use, the regrowth becomes lighter and thinner and less painful to epilate. It can be used dry or wet. One can go up to four weeks before regrowth. It is also easy to use at home.

Medication

Sometimes when nothing seems to be working, seeing a doctor could help, as there are those treatments that inhibit or reduce hair growth. This will not affect the scalp and depending on the medication, it may even stimulate hair growth on the scalp

These are only some of the many methods that can be used to get rid of unwanted hair on different parts of one’s body. It is advisable to embark on a well-informed decision on the method especially for those who would seek out laser and electrolysis as this require professionals and can in no way be done at home or by an amateur. 

Those using chemicals such as the hair removal creams and bleaching need to be careful and to read the instruction manuals carefully as well as do a patch test. There is also the good old, natural state where you do nothing to your hair but ensure proper hygiene, which is totally cool.  Exfoliating before and after or in between sessions is important so as to be rid of dead skin and avoid ingrown hair.  

Sign Up