As anyone who has ever had a perfect date ruined by a case of good-night kiss related stubble burn (or pash rash if you prefer) is aware, unkempt body hair can be a real pain. Literally. With spring on its way it’s almost time to whip off those wintry tights – but not before a little prep work. That’s right ladies, it’s time to shed your winter coat – and we’re not talking parkas….
We know hair removal can be scary but here at Wahanda we’re all about feeling the fear and doing it anyway. Research has shown us the main obstacles to smooth skin are fear of pain and fear of the unknown. We can’t do much about the pain factor – except remind you of the old saying “what doesn’t kill you makes you more attractive” (we think that's how it goes)– but we can help with the ‘unknown’ . If you’re not sure what IPL stands for, or think sugaring has something to do with cake decoration, read on now to avoid a ‘’hairy situation’’ this spring …
Pain factor: 4/5 We imagine quite a few of you are familiar with the process of waxing, but for any first-timers out there here’s what to expect. During your treatment you will be asked to lie down while a therapist uses a spatula to apply wax to whichever area you want de-haired. After smoothing a waxing strip on top, the therapist will quickly pull it off, taking unwanted hair with it. If you’ve ever pulled off a stubborn plaster you’ve probably got a good idea what this feels like which begs the question why do it to yourself? Well it’s simple, waxing might hurt but the results are immediate, kind to skin and - as hair is removed at the root - last for three to four weeks, so by the time you’re due for a follow up you’ll have forgotten what it feels like anyway.
Pain factor: 2/5 A little more complicated than waxing, Electrolysis uses negatively charged electrical current to destroy hair follicles – exciting right? While you lie back and (try to) relax a therapist uses a fine metal probe to enter individual hair follicles, transmitting a small electrical current. It might sound scary but the probe doesn’t pierce your skin, and you shouldn’t feel it enter the follicle at all. The only sensation you might feel is a mild sting as the current zaps the root of your hair. Treating hairs individually takes a while meaning sessions can last for up to two hours. It takes a few sessions to see the effects, but Electrolysis has long been one of the most effective ways to remove hair for good. Good riddance.
Pain factor: 2/5 Laser hair removal treatments involve an intense pulse of light (IPL) passing through the skin into the roots of your hairs, causing them to heat and destroy the follicle. Despite sounding like an obscure, futuristic torture method, it’s pretty much pain-free, although some describe the sensation as similar to pinging an elastic band against the skin. Each pulse of the laser treats an area about the size of a two-pence coin in a fraction of a second, meaning large areas can be de-fuzzed fast. Unfortunately, the laser can only treat hairs that are on the darker end of the colour spectrum (sorry red-heads) and are in the ‘growth period’ of their lifecycle, which means most of us will need six to eight treatments before baring our bits.
Pain factor: 3/5 Dating back thousands of years, Sugaring is like an ancient version of waxing. Instead of runny wax, a sugar paste is spread on the skin before a strip of cloth is applied and whipped off. A less popular method involves rolling a ball of sugar wax over an area of skin, in the opposite direction of hair growth, lifting the hair as it goes. This takes time but is relatively pain-free and, we imagine, incredibly satisfying. Unlike many waxes, sugar paste contains no chemicals or resins, and is soluble in water meaning excess stickiness can be removed with a bit of soap. Best of all though, the sugar paste sticks to individual hairs rather than the skin making the process less painful than waxing – hooray.
Pain factor: 0/5 (Pain in the neck factor: 4/5) Shaving is fast, immediately effective and it doesn’t require an appointment, which explains why it is the preferred method of hair removal for so many of us – despite having a few drawbacks. Regular shavers among you know what we’re taking about: daily regrowth, itchy skin, ingrown hairs and the hours of bathroom acrobatics required to reach those awkward places. Shaving might be painless, but it’s still a pain. While our main piece of advice for shavers will always be to try out a longer lasting method of hair removal (see above), we understand that sometimes shaving your legs, pits and other bits is far more convenient so we won’t judge. Just remember, if you’re going to shave be prepared to take the rough with the smooth… Thank you, we’re here all week.
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