Now that summer is officially in full swing, that means you’re probably wearing fewer clothes and showing more skin. If you’re into removing your body hair and have skipped a few waxing sessions, you’re not alone. Whether you choose to shave at home, DIY wax, or get regular waxes at the salon, there are plenty of considerations to take into account to both achieve ~and~ maintain your results — and yes, even if you’re contemplating laser hair removal, but more on that later! Naturally, there are a slew of embarrassing hair removal questions we all have most likely thought about at some point or another, so instead of leaving you to your own devices, we decided to consult with some experts to get the lowdown instead (you’re welcome!).
Our pros have given us the scoop on all things hair removal to help you select the hair removal method that works the best for you — and how to keep your results looking fresh in between services and treatments. Read on to learn more and shop some of our favorite at-home hair removal products.
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1. You Aren’t As Hairy as You Think
“There are three main stages in which hair goes through—Anagen: The Growing Phase, Catagen: The Transitional Phase, and Telogen: the Resting Phase,” explains Bernadette Devaney, Research Manager at Nair. “Many factors can influence hair growth, such as illness, medications, stress, and pregnancy, to name a few. Various areas of the body do experience different growth rates, but on average, hair will grow 4-6 inches per year.”
2. Upgrade Your Razor Routine
“The easiest way [to avoid nicks or cuts] is to lather up with a nice moisturizing shaving gel,” shares Hibba Kapil, owner of Hibba NYC. “Try [to] have good lighting and proper placement of your body part to support while shaving. Get a smaller razor for small body parts like bikini and underarms, but always choose the one with flexibility. Be careful of your direction—the first shave should be in the opposite direction of hair growth.”
Completely Bare Completely Smooth No-Bump Shaving Gel
To elevate your at-home shaving game, investing in a premium shaving gel is the best bet. This hydrating and bump-reducing formula helps prevent ingrown hairs from forming post-shave while also soothing any irritation.
3. Try To Wait Until Your Teens
“There really isn’t a specific age at which girls should start going for hair removal treatments,” shares Natalia Romanenko, Strip Ministry of Waxing Senior Therapist and Trainer. “Ultimately, it depends on how comfortable she (and/or her parents) are with it. Most teenagers of about 12-13 years old tend to start with removing the hair on their underarms for hygiene reasons before progressing to legs and arms.”
4. There Are Pros (And Cons) to Depilatories
“Both lotions and creams are ideal for larger areas such as underarms, [the] bikini line, and legs,” shares Devaney. “Cream depilatories have a thicker consistency, which can provide more control for smaller areas such as the face, where precision is important. Results [can] last days longer than shaving.”
5. You Have to Wait to Wax
“4-6 mm is the ideal hair length for waxing,” explains Romanenko. “Our ‘waxperts’ will trim the hair if it’s too long for a comfortable waxing experience. You can always opt to take an aspirin or ibuprofen about 30-45 minutes before waxing to help reduce discomfort, especially if you are waxing sensitive areas such as the Brazilian or chest.”
6. You Can Shave Your ‘Stache
“This is a myth—shaving facial hair does not cause it to grow back thicker,” debunks Devaney. “However, removing hair using a depilatory cream (like Nair Precision Kit For Face & Upper Lip Moroccan Argan Oil) will cause hair to grow back softer then shaving—because shaving cuts hair across the hair shaft, giving it a sharp edge.”
7. Hair Removal Is Great Year-Round
“All the methods can be used throughout the year,” shares Romanenko. “Many people forget, waxing also removes dead, dry skin—which is common during the winter months—giving you smoother skin. Waxed skin also enables moisturizers to be absorbed more rapidly and efficiently, which is a definite bonus during those dry winter months.”
8. Pamper Skin Post-Treatment
“Irritated skin must be treated properly to avoid scabbing,” cautions Kapil. “Post-treatment, opt for cotton clothing and loose clothing to prevent further irritation [during sugaring treatments]. Apply cortisone cream every hour along with a cold compress to offer relief. At home, mix-up a coconut oil and yogurt concoction as a DIY-solution.”
Shave Works The Cool Fix Post-Shave Treatment
This post shave and wax solution helps to mitigate irritation, razor bumps, and ingrown hairs. This is especially helpful for soothing the skin after a Brazilian bikini wax.
9. Add Lots of Moisture
“It is of great importance to scrub (a week after waxing) and moisturize (a day after waxing) regularly,” explains Romanenko. “Scrubbing and moisturizing will help to prevent the rise of any nasty ingrown hair, as scrubbing removes dead skin and moisturizing keeps the skin soft and supple.”
Tree Hut Hair Inhibiting Body Butter
You can help keep unwanted hair at bay in between waxing appointments by using a hair growth inhibiting lotion or body butter.