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Get the Hair Off Your Face or, “Hey, Lady—you need a shave!” (Plus, a consumer product alert…)

Posted by Dana Ramos, author The Skin Regime: Boot Camp for Beautiful Skin on Jul 02, 2015

Hair removal

How many times did your mom tell you to “get your hair off your face”? She was most likely talking about the perennially-popular teen style of wearing our hair long, parted unflatteringly down the middle, and hanging in our face. But that is not the way I mean it!

First of all—dermatologists will back me up on this —it is NOT TRUE that your hair will grow back coarser or darker or faster or longer if you remove hair, whether it is on the legs or face. Hair will grow back in just the same as it was before, in every way, and will stop growing once it hits its genetically pre-programmed length: Arm hair will stay short, leg hair will return as it was—it will not grow like the hair on your head does just because you shaved or waxed it. If you remove your facial hair, it will also come back as fine as before, not coarser, and not grow any longer than it was before.

Now to the big issue: 

Getting unwanted hair off your face. Naturally blonde women should also take note: Your blonde peach fuzz does show, sometimes quite noticeably in certain kinds of light.

If having peach fuzz doesn’t bother you, great. Be warned, however, that as we hit our 40s and 50s, facial hair often becomes more abundant and longer (thank you again, hormones!). Brunettes like me often choose to bleach our facial hair with products like Jolene Cream Bleach or Sally Hansen’s (both are found in most drugstores). These products will leave you with hair that is fairly invisible—but in some brighter light, the fuzz will show. If you always fantasized about having long, luxurious blonde hair you’ll have it with bleaching—just not where you wanted it!

Another advantage to having a hairless face is that it will allow your glowing skin to show off without the dulling effect of fine fuzz. Makeups and skin treatments will glide on and blend more smoothly and because hair in general traps dirt and bacteria, you will have less exposure to bacteria on your face (which can mean less of an issue with breakouts).

So, if you decide you want to remove the hair from your face, at least rest assured it will not come in more coarsely or thicker than before. 

Here are some ways to get it all off:

  1. Shaving. Gasp! Yes, you can shave your face, though I know that can make a woman feel really weird because it is hard to come to grips with. But if you do it, it need not be daily; most women who shave their faces do so only every week or so.

    Before putting a blade to your face, be sure to prep the skin with shave cream (gasp again!) or a great moisturizing oil like Emu Oil or a good moisturizer like the Advanced Care Moisturizer. Use a good blade, go slowly and carefully, and you will not knick yourself. You can also use an electric shaver for a close shave. If your hair is already a fine fuzz, it will come back in softly. If you have very dark, coarse and stubborn hair you might want to consider a more permanent solution of hair removal so that you don’t end up with dark stubble coming in (which might make you feel even weirder). After shaving, wash and go about your normal skincare routine. Do not use aftershave—it is unnecessary and often irritating and drying. A soothing balm such as NITRO After Shave Balm though, is very helpful for calming irritated skin and avoiding any bumps. It's not just for men!

  2. Laser Hair Removal: This is the current gold-standard of hair removal, but if you have dark skin or very light hair, be sure to ask your doctor or aesthetician if they have lasers for people like you—not all lasers will work on all skin types and hair colors. And instead of “removal,” you need to think of lasers as giving you tremendous “reduction,” in hair instead of “removal”, because sometimes some of the hair does return; results are very individual. In general, lasers are a very effective way of removing hair. Costs can vary, so ask around.
  3. Electrolysis: This method has been around forever, and all skin colors and hair colors will respond because it attacks the hair follicle itself. It is a slow and somewhat more painful way to remove facial hair, so if you have a lot of hair to remove, you’d likely be happier with lasers (and it will be more cost-effective). If you have just a few hairs here and there that keep sprouting out and giving you grief, this is probably the best way to go; you might need only one session of less than 30 minutes.
  4. Waxing: This is another method that has been around forever, but is not for everyone. For one thing, you need to let your hair grow long enough for the wax to grab hold of, and you might not want to wait for that. If you do decide to wax, be sure the wax isn’t too hot before you apply it or you can get a burn. Some people find waxing is too irritating to their skin. As for the “cold wax” strips you can find in drugstores—they are basically very sticky tapes that you press on and then rip off like you would hot wax. Most cold wax brands are not as effective on coarser hair as hot wax because the strips simply don’t stick strongly enough, or if you find a brand that does stick firmly, it might rip off a little skin as well, leaving you with red, irritated skin. 
  5. Chemical Hair Removers: You’ll find these in drugstores, such as the well-known Nair brand, and they do work very well—however, these are strong chemicals that can highly irritate sensitive facial skin. Before using, try a small amount on a small patch of your face several hours ahead of time to see if you get any immediate or delayed reaction (you should always test every new skin product this way!) Personally, I prefer to use chemical removers on my arms, not my face.

CONSUMER BEWARE: You might have seen the heavily-advertised product called The No No Hair Removal. It’s very pricey and before purchasing it you might want to get on the web and read consumer reviews from several sources (as I do before buying just about anything!) The bottom line appears to be that the No No is a very big No on satisfaction.

Some other products you might like to go along with your newly-smooth face:

*** Get A Glow with a Layer-able Peel (you decide the strength): The 1-4-All Peel by The Skin Regime

*** Stimulate collagen and boost skin regeneration with Basics Day Cream

***Increase smoothness and exfoliate dead skin cells with Basics Night Cream

***Gently exfoliate sensitive skin with the Antioxidant Enzyme Mask

Where can I buy Dana's Book?

The Skin Regime; Boot Camp for Beautiful Skin, available as a Kindle download or Buy paperback to buy your paperback copy from Platinum Skin Care. You can also read the first chapter--FREE--by click here to read 1st chapter.

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