With all the hair removal options available to us today it is important to know the basics of each, their pros and cons and ultimately which one will work best for your clients. In this post, we give you a breakdown of hair removal methods and why waxing is the best option.
Hair Removal Methods
The basics: Tweezing is pulling out individual hairs one by one from the root.
Pros: Tweezing is great for small areas and lasts between 3 and 8 weeks. It is also good option for removing a stray hair after a treatment such as a wax.
Cons: This is a tedious, time consuming method of hair removal and if the hair breaks it could grow back under the skin causing painful ingrown hairs. Tweezers need to be cleaned with rubbing alcohol between treatments to reduce the risk of infections Bottom line: This is great for eye brows and stray hairs or for cleaning up stray hairs after a treatment.
The basics: The hair is cut off very close to the skin with a razor. A disposable razor or blade is used on wet skin. Then using a soap or shaving cream the hair is cut in the direction of growth. Alternatively an electric shaver can be used on dry skin.
Pros: Shaving is a relatively cheap method of hair removal and can be used for most large parts of the body.
Cons: Shaving is not a long lasting method of hair removal, lasting between 1 and 3 days. It is not advisable for small areas such as eyebrows. Razors need replacing often for hygiene reasons. Ingrown hairs (especially in the bikini area) are also quite common. Razor burn, nicks and cuts are common place with shaving. Bottom line: Great for a classic men’s treatment but otherwise not really a good salon treatment.
The basics: A depilatory Hot, Film or a Strip Wax applied to the skin depending on the area. A paper strip removes Strip Wax. Hot or Film Wax is removed once dried, in a quick and single motion. In order to prepare the skin it is important to apply Pre & Post Waxing Oils to prevent any irritation or ingrown hairs after the treatment.
Pros: It is possible to apply wax to most parts of the body, as specific waxes target different areas. Hot Wax is used for smaller more intimate areas. Strip Wax is used for larger areas. Film Wax can be used for both. A wax also last between 3 and 8 weeks. Good quality professional waxes are design to soften and nurture the skin during a wax. Hairs grow back softer after waxing. A good wax range is highly beneficial for the skin.
Cons: A professional waxing treatment requires training. One would also need the appropriate equipment and wax. The bottom line: Waxing is the most popular salon treatment available.
Laser/ Pulsed Light
The basics: A strong beam of light destroys the root of the hair.
Pros: Laser is the nearest form of permanent hair removal and can be used on most areas of the body.
Cons: It won’t work on white hair and doesn’t work well on blonde hair. It takes between 6 and 12 treatments before the client sees results and the client will need a touch up every 6 to 12 months. There are also possible side effects such as swelling, redness, burning and scarring. It is also a very expensive method of hair removal. This treatment requires extensive training and a licence registration. The step up costs are also high. The bottom line: Training and certification is essential for salons looking to offer this treatment. It also is a costly treatment to do however it can result in permanent hair removal after several sessions.
Chemical Hair removal creams and oils
The basics: Chemical substances in the cream remove the hair by breaking down the structure of the hair.
Pros: These products are relatively cheap and work quickly. This hair removal method can be done at home.
Cons: The same chemicals that dissolve the hair also affect the skin. This leaves the skin with a nasty glossy look and feel. Rashes and burns are common with these products. Hairs start to reappear after just a week. These creams are also infamous for their unpleasant smell. Bottom line: Due to the smell, availability for home use and effect on sensitive skins this is not a great option for a salon treatment.
The basics: This form of hair removal is very similar to waxing. With sugar, a pliable paste is produced that acts like a hot or a strip wax.
Pros: It is inexpensive to make and can remove very short hairs. It is made from natural ingredients, therefore, is great for sensitive skins.
Cons: This method of hair removal can be quite painful and is not a popular salon treatment so it is difficult to find salons that offer it. Bottom line: As an alternative treatment this is an interesting one to offer. It is almost as effective as waxing but really good for sensitive skins.
The basics: A strand of knotted cotton tread is used to remove the hairs. Twisting the thread removed individual hairs from the root.
Pros: It is a great method of hair removal for small areas.
Cons: It is not an option for large areas and can be very painful for people with large hair follicles. Bottom line: This treatment is great for shaping eyebrow but not a good option for large areas. To do this effectively training is required, however it is a cost effective treatment.
The basics: An Epilating device looks a lot like an electric razor only instead of cutting the hair it pulls it out.
Pros: It can be done at home and lasts 3-8 weeks.
Cons: This is quite a painful form of hair removal and can leave little welts behind on the skin. Epilating devices can also be costly. Bottom line: These are suitable for home use but not good for a salon treatment.
The Basics: Therapists use a fine, needle-shaped electrode to apply an electrical current to the hair follicle. This destroys the hair-producing cells.
Pros: Great for small areas and can permanently remove hairs after multiple sessions.
Cons: Electrolysis treats each hair follicle individually so it is time consuming and expensive. If you do not implement this method of hair removal properly it can leave scarring and skin discolouration. Treatments can be very uncomfortable and cause a stinging sensation. Only certified professional can carry out his type of treatment. Bottom line: Electrolysis can provide permanent hair removal after several sessions. Only certified professionals can apply this treatment and the equipment can be costly.