Root removal methods


Best Hair Removal Method for Root Hair

 

Epilating

Works by:
Using a hand-held device that has a head of rotating tweezers which you run along the skin’s surface, removing hairs as it goes.

Best for:
All body parts - legs, underarms, arms, bikini area and face

Advantages:
Ultra-smooth results, lasting up to four weeks. It is mess free and new models also come with an extra attachment for removing unwanted hair from specific areas such as the face.

Disadvantages:
It may be uncomfortable in more sensitive areas.

Beauty rating:
Epilators can remove hairs as short as 0.5mm, unlike wax which needs lengths of 2mm hair growth for optimal results – so there’s no need to wait for unsightly regrowth.

Dermatologist’s note:
“Because with epilation the hair is removed at the root, when it does grow back the tip tends to be tapered which results in it having a finer appearance. In addition, regular epilation can reduce the number of in-growing hairs.”

 

Waxing

Works by:
Applying hot or cold wax to the skin in the direction of hair growth. Then, once it solidifies, fabric strips are smoothed on and quickly stripped off against the direction of the growth, pulling the hair out with it. An alternative option are pre-made wax strips.

Best for:
Legs, bikini, eyebrows, underarms and upper lip

Advantages:
Wax can keep skin hair free for weeks, so you don’t have to think about hair removal for some time.

Disadvantages:
Can be painful. Plus you have to wait until hairs are long enough before you can wax them again, which can be a problem if you want to bare your legs or hate the feeling of regrowing hairs. If you do it yourself, it can be messy, and if you go to a salon, it can be expensive. Finally, wax can miss very short hairs.

Beauty rating:
Great if you find daily hair removal a ‘hassle’ – and if you’re prepared to pay for a professional treatment.

Dermatologist’s note:

When you wax, skin can be left dry afterwards. Follow with a soothing lotion, ideally one containing aloe vera.

 

Threading

Works by:
Taking fine pieces of cotton thread and twining the thread round each individual hair then pulling the thread quickly apart, removing the hair along with it.

Best for:
Small, delicate areas like eyebrows and upper lip.

Advantages:
Hairs are removed from the root, so regrowth is slow, and hairs don’t grow back prickly.

Disadvantages:
Fairly slow process, since hairs need to be pulled out one by one. It’s also quite a specialized procedure, so you need to go to a well-trained professional.

Beauty rating:
Great for eyebrows – once they’ve tried it, most women are converts.

Dermatologist’s note:
“Threading is not very traumatic for the skin, so is good to use on particularly sensitive areas like the upper lip or eyebrow.”

 

Laser hair removal

Works by:
Focusing a narrow beam of concentrated light on to small sections of skin. The light is absorbed by pigment in the hair follicle underneath the skin surface, thus heating the hair follicle and disabling hair growth depending on growth cycle (anagen only). The paler your skin and the darker your hair, the better the treatment will work.

Best for:
Bikini, underarm, upper lip

Advantages:
Much faster and less painful than it used to be, because larger sections of skin can now be treated in one go. In many cases, hair is discouraged from ever growing back, or if it does, the hair tends to be very fine and thin.

Disadvantages:
Requires multiple treatments that can get very expensive. You also have to be careful about going in the sun for up to six weeks either side of your treatment as the changes to pigment in your skin can increase the risk of sunburn. Hormonal changes like pregnancy or the menopause can also cause hair to start growing back again.

Beauty rating:
Great for areas that cause you real distress, like the upper lip, but quite extreme as an ordinary hair removal option.

Dermatologist’s note:
“The laser works by ‘homing in’ on the pigment in the hairs – so the closer your hair colour to your skin colour, the higher the risk of burning and potential scarring. The ideal combination is therefore dark hair on pale skin. If you have dark skin, you should give careful thought before embarking on this technique.”