We hairy girls have become well-acquainted with pain and suffering.
Chances are, we were dragged to our first leg and armpit wax in middle school, graduated to the bikini area by the time we were in high school and went full-on Brazilian before our first college spring break.
However, some of us — whether we’re part of the hairy crew or not — are still averse to just about anything that requires slathering hot wax and peeling it off. Steve Carell didn’t like it, and let’s face it — neither do we.
Thankfully, there are plenty of alternatives out there that don’t leave us in red blotches and tears. Or, at least, not as much.
As a personal threading fangirl, I truly believe there is no better way to remove hair. Correction: there is no better way to remove hair on your face, and face alone.
Threading works best on small, precise areas of your face that need the most attention to minuscule detail — think eyebrows, upper lip and chin. It’s cleaner than waxing and way more honed-in to one area, so you won’t be left with 90s TV mom brows.
Another plus: Threading doesn’t leave your skin puffy, red or sad.
Pain tolerance needed: About a 3-4 out of 10. I’ve fallen asleep getting my eyebrows threaded, and only wince a couple of times if I’m getting anything else done.
Laser Hair Removal
"Laser hair removal is a cosmetic procedure used to remove unwanted body hair with intense pulsed laser energy,” Dr. Sobel explained. "This minimally invasive procedure removes hair through a series of treatments while leaving the surrounding skin and tissue unharmed."
Minimally invasive? So you won’t be pouring hot wax over my legs, underarms and face? Sign me up.
There is an ideal client for the procedure, though,
"[Laser removal] is typically most effective on patients with dark hair and light skin, although most patients are able to achieve successful results,” Dr. Sobel said.
You can get any part of your hot bod lasered off, but according to Dr. Sobel, the most common parts are the face, upper lip, neck, chest, underarms, back, abdomen, bikini line and legs.
Pain tolerance needed: Dr. Sobel likens the feeling to having "a rubber band smacked against the skin,” which can feel either more or less painful, depending on where your laser hits -- places like the underarms tend to be a bit more sensitive. However, it can take anywhere from 2 to 6 treatments before you’re totally fuzz-free.
Our favorite and least favorite at the same time. Great, because it’s virtually pain-free (unless you nick yourself, but that’s your own fault). Not so great, because you start to see stubble anywhere from a few hours to a day.
Tip numero uno? Never, ever dry shave. We know you have to run to work or a date or whatever, but shaving sans water or cream will leave you with bumps and nicks.
Also, whatever you do, don’t try to shave any part of your face. I tried to shave my eyebrows with one of those disposable razors in fourth grade, and they’re still growing back patchy.
Pain tolerance needed: Zero? Unless you’re a Chewbacca that doesn’t know how to handle a razor and ends up slicing her leg open.
This is like threading’s evil cousin: it’s just as precise, but way more terrifying, as you’re usually plucking the hair yourself. Again, great for eyebrows and other facial hair, but bad virtually everywhere else. Word to the wise? Don’t try to pluck ear or nose hair, you’ll live in regret.
Pain tolerance needed: There’s a reason that doctors shouldn’t perform surgeries on their kids or loved ones — it hits a bit too close to home. Same thing goes for tweezing: When you’re inflicting that much pain on yourself, it’s going to hurt big time.