Hair Removal Techniques

Although the Human Species first began to evolve close to 200,000 years ago, when it comes to Body Hair, it seems that many of us do not feel evolved enough. Thankfully, Hair Removal methods have come a long way since our caveman days of using sharp flint and pumice stones to cut and scrape away our unwanted Hair but with so many options to choose from these days, it’s hard to know which is the best option. Whether you are after something quick and inexpensive or something a little longer lasting or even permanent… here are some of the most popular Hair Removal services offered in salons worldwide and how they work.


Having made a resurgence in the last few years, the art of Threading is actually centuries old and is believed to have begun in or around the Middle East. This technique uses a length of thin, cotton string that is looped and twisted to form a series of knots that when rapidly moved backward and forward across the skin will actually catch and pull out any Hair in its path. Although promoted as being less painful than Waxing, some would beg to differ. Also, this method seems to be mainly reserved for facial Hair Removal and not an option you would choose for your next Brazilian. But for those who are after a quick and cheap Hair Removal option, this is definitely worth a try.


Hot Waxing


Well, if you don’t know what this is then you have been living in a bubble… but what you may not know is that Waxing can come in various forms and use various styles of ‘Wax’. Strip Waxing involves applying a very thin layer of warm Wax onto the skin then pressing a strip of woven fabric onto the Wax so that when it is ‘rrrrriiiped’ off (like a bandaid) … the Hair which has stuck to the Wax, is ‘rrrriiped’ off right along with the Wax that has stuck to the fabric. It’s a widely used method and is even available for you to do yourself at home. The down side with this method is that it is one of the more painful methods and Hair breakage can often happen. Hot Waxing is similar to Strip Waxing but without the strip. The Wax is usually a thicker consistency and is applied in strips or patches, allowed to dry enough so that one edge can be flicked up with fingers then quickly ‘rrriiped’ off taking the Hair along with it. This method can be slightly less painful than Strip Waxing as it does not seem to pull on the skin as much therefore it is the preferred method for intimate areas such as the brazilian and underarms. However, many salons now offer this for all body areas but it will be a little more pricey as it does take longer than Strip Waxing.


Sugaring is very similar to Hot Waxing in that there is no material strips used and like Threading, it to is an ancient form of Hair Removal. As the name suggests, the sticky ‘Wax’ is made of sugar and water and cooked into a ball which is then pressed and pulled on and off the skin pulling the Hair as you work over the area. It’s a bit messy but if you are a purist than this chemical free, preservative free option may be for you.


Electrolysis is the first form of ‘Permanent’ Hair Removal and was developed back in 1875 by an Ophthalmologist who was treating in-grown eyelashes on patients… ouch! It uses a very small, fine needle (probe) which when inserted into the Hair follicle, delivers an electrical current which basically cooks the Hair follicle (like an egg). Cooked Hair follicle means no more Hair from that follicle. The down side is that we literally have thousands of Hair follicles in any given area and each follicle has several growth cycles making electrolysis a very slow and drawn out method of Hair Removal. It also hurts… a lot! But up until recently, Electrolysis has been the only option for permanent Hair Removal and for many women suffering from thick, course hormonal Hair growth, Electrolysis has been their saviour.


Ellipse Machine In Action


Laser as a faster alternative to permanent Hair Removal, Electrolysis is stilled used in combination with this new technology to treat grey or light coloured Hairs that are not able to be treated by IPL or Laser. IPL & Laser is the latest, fastest and most permanent form of Hair Removal currently on the market. While the two are different (IPL is not a Laser), they seem to be interchangeable as they both work in a very similar way. This technology uses a flash or beam of light to deliver controlled energy onto the treatment area. This energy is absorbed by the Hair in this area and converted into heat. This heat then radiates out from the Hair and cooks the Hair follicle (like an egg) so that it is not able to produce another Hair. In the end it works very similar to Electrolysis however this is a much faster processes with large areas such as a man’s back being able to be completed in less than 1 hour (electrolysis would takes years!). However, it does have several downsides, the main one being it does not work on grey, blond or very light coloured Hair. Developers have been working on this for several years with a few companies claiming that they have solved the issue however I am not convinced that this is so just yet. Also, both IPL & Laser are not suited for use on dark skin types and can lead to skin damage if done on darker skins. Again, some companies have developed equipment more suited for dark skin colours however if you fall into this category, be sure your technician performs a patch test on yours skin before you begin treatment. A patch test will show how your skin will react to this type of treatment.

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