The Joys of Womanhood: Bikini Line Hair Removal

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bikini.jpgOh how I love the summer. Between walks outside, iced coffee and sundresses, there really isn’t a more perfect time of year. But alas, every summer I am faced with the same debacle: bathing suit = dealing with the ‘ol bikini line.

We all know we don’t want hair down there, but red bumps; not really the look I am going for. Not to mention the in-grown hairs, the itchiness, or all the other problems that come with taking care of the situation. As if getting our bodies bikini-ready wasn’t challenging enough – now we are stuck with what is often times a force to be reckoned with: Bikini Hair Removal.

So in efforts to prepare you to grin and bare it this summer (hey, you didn’t spend all that time doing extra crunches for nothing, lady!) here are some pro/cons on the latest – as well as the tried and true – hair removal tips for your bikini line.

Shaving:

Pros: This method is great if you are in a pinch. It’s quick, easy and cheap.

Cons: Shaving only removes the hair above the surface, so hair can show up again the very same day (thank your foreign, hairy grandmother for inheriting her genes). Shaving often times leads to in-growns and those icky razor bumps. If you choose to go this route: hold skin taught while shaving, change the razor often, and trim before shaving, if needed. Also, shave in the direction that hair grows and wait to shave until after the shower when your skin has been softened by the warm water.

Waxing: While I personally do not recommend do-it-yourself waxing, there are people (crazy bitches) who do it. Waxing is best accomplished by a professional.

Pros: Since waxing removes hair from the root, it should last anywhere from 4-8 weeks, and the more often you do it, the slower the hair grows back.

Cons: No one ever said pain was cheap (though I constantly wonder why I spend so much to be abused)… bikini waxes can run from $30-100 dollars per wax, depending on how much you take off. Waxing can also cause in-growns, so it’s important to exfoliate. Other things to consider: Not only is it painful (take a pain reliever an hour before you go and avoid waxing a week before your period when you are the most sensitive, due to heightened levels of estrogen), it can be nerve wracking if you are a first-timer and relatively modest. What I tell my friends: your waxer has seen more vagina’s than she can even remember. So just put your dignity aside and (try to) relax.

Depilatory Creams: Depilatories use chemicals that react with the protein structure of the hair to literally melt the hair away. I am sure everyone remembers those lovely commercials, “Nair wears short shorts!”

Pros: Hair removal creams (like Nair) are inexpensive, easily accessible, quick and painless (you leave them on for 3-15 minutes and then wash off).

Cons: The awful smell. Seriously, it is like rotton eggs on your hoohah. Not sure it is worth the misery. Also, many people find that their skin becomes irritated from Depilatories, so make sure to do a skin test before using it.

Laser: How it works: the laser targets melanin, which is found in the hair, and breaks the follicle preventing further hair growth. Laser is said to work best on light skin/dark hair combination and is not recommended for those with darker skin tones.

Pros: An effective way to completely remove bikini hair once and for all. Relatively pain free (it’s said to feel like a small rubber band snapping your skin), and sessions are usually pretty quick.

Cons: Very expensive. Laser costs around $400 a session – and the average woman requires 5 sessions, plus once a year maintenance. You also can’t shave or be exposed to the sun in between sessions, which totally ruins your summer plans of sitting poolside. This would be a good option to consider starting in the winter, so that, come bikini season, you are already swimsuit ready.

Interested in laser? Visit the hair removal forum to get all the information you need before you go. Seriously, you don’t want any surprises. They even have a full list of local providers so you can find someone now and get that business taken care of.

Whatever option you choose, there is one must-have product for bikini zone happiness: Tend Skin. When that hair starts making a comeback, this is the best product for reducing and preventing those infamous in-grown hairs.

Got any other bikini zone tips to share? We can use all the help we can get…

[Photo courtesy of the Sydney Morning Herald]

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