Facial hair is a problem for nearly all women, especially in Western society, where beauty standards are constantly shoved in the faces of women who already have insecurity issues with their appearances. Many women think they need to look like Heather Locklear or Britney Spears to get and keep a man or a better job. Unfortunately, in a world where looks are nearly everything (at least initially), this is often true.
Women deal with removal of facial hair in a number of ways, some more effective than others. These can include:
- Laser removal. Also known as phototricholysis or photoepilation, laser hair removal is now generally accepted, even though it was a relatively new procedure just a decade ago. The most popular facial hair laser treatments tend to be for removal of chin hair and hair on the upper lip. But it’s not cheap, running several hundred dollars (at least, depending on geographical location) for a face and neck treatment.
- Depilatory creams. Depilatory creams dissolve hair at the base of the follicle, with results that last for one to two weeks. But they can be a problem when used on the face, since they may irritate the skin and often don’t remove all of the hair (they are better suited for areas like the legs). Perhaps the best thing about these creams is the price, since they are relatively inexpensive.
- Waxing. Waxing has long been a popular method of hair removal, and usually an effective method of removing hair the fine vellus hair on the sides of the face and on the upper lip. But waxing isn’t recommended for the chin area, where hair can be coarser. Depending on hair type, waxing usually only last from two to six weeks, and sometimes requires a woman to grow out unsightly hair between treatments.
- Electrolysis. Results of electrolysis last longer than treatment with waxing and depilatories. But the process can be time-consuming and costly, and can be painful because of the hair-by-hair removal process. In addition, finding a good practitioner is important since electrolysis, which uses low-level electricity to render hair follicles inactive, can cause scarring when performed incorrectly.
- Tweezing. Probably the oldest, and obviously cheapest, method in the book, tweezing can cause irritation of hair follicles, and hair will often grow back thicker and stiffer once it’s been plucked. And on darker-skinned women, tweezing can sometimes result in scarring. Unless a woman has just a few occasional stray hairs, tweezing or plucking isn’t the way to go.
While ladies in some countries don’t grapple with the issue of facial hair as much as American women may, it’s no doubt been a problem since time began. In America, at least, compared to other countries, women tend to have more money to afford them access to remedy the situation. Hopefully modern medicine will provide a solution to this problem someday.