Body hair is such a touchy subject for me. On the one hand, the macho in me sees it as a validation of my manhood. On the other hand, it’s hair. It grows everywhere. It’s not very aesthetic, and it’s a pain to manage. For years, I’ve been going back and forth between avid removal of every piece of hair I could find, to selective grooming and trimming. Here’s how to get rid of excess body hair:
One of the cheapest and easiest options for getting rid of excess body hair is shaving. The drawbacks to shaving are that you have to do it every 1-2 days and you can only shave what you can reach. So if you are concerned about removing hair on your chest, that isn’t a problem, but if you want to remove hair on your back you’ll need to look into other options. For more information on how to get the best shave, read our guide to the perfect shave. Check out our shaving cream and shaving brush.
Another inexpensive and painless option is a depilatory; Depilatories are creams that dissolve hair. Because they weaken hair down to the follicle, just below the skin, hair removal lasts longer than shaving. However, hair will still grow back in a matter of days, so you’ll still need to use this method frequently. Some other downsides to using hair removal creams are possible allergic reactions or s and the fact that most depilatories smell strong during application.
Waxing is a good option if you are looking to remove back hair because it can be done by a professional in a salon, but it’s not for the faint-of-heart because it can be painful. It’s also a more expensive option, depending on the salon and the size of the area you’re having waxed. The advantage to waxing is that hair removal lasts an average of four weeks. Inexpensive at-home waxing kits are available for smaller body areas, but if you have never waxed before it might be easier to have it done professionally.
Laser hair removal
The longest lasting option, laser hair removal is great if you are looking for permanent hair removal. Unfortunately, laser hair removal is expensive and time-consuming. In order to get permanent results, you will need up to eight half-hour treatments, and treatments can cost $400-$500 each. Hair can either be completely removed or thinned. Another downside to laser hair removal is that it can’t be used for everyone. Laser hair removal doesn’t work well for men with light hair, and only one type of laser is safe for use on men with dark skin.
Whatever hair removal option you decide on, you’ll need to take care of your skin to prevent ingrown hairs. Using a loofah in the shower twice a week can help to exfoliate your skin and stop newly growing hairs from getting trapped underneath it. Let your loofah dry between uses, wash it twice a week in hot water, and don’t let anyone else use it, otherwise, it will start breeding bacteria.
If you do get ingrown hairs, you can treat them at home with over-the-counter treatments and pain meds, and warm compresses. If all else fails, it will be necessary to see a dermatologist.