Beauty advice: hair removal

Advice is usually worth what you pay for it and unsolicited advice is seldom well received. With this in mind, I offer you my free and unsolicited advice regarding  hair removal.

As you may know, I have been using an epilator on my legs since August 2015. I am happy to report that after having had some very bad ingrown hairs as a result of shaving, my skin is looking a lot better lately. I very seldom get any ingrown hairs anymore and the (few) scars I had are fading very nicely as a result of not being constantly  irritated through shaving. I have started to epilate my whole leg from foot to and including the buttocks and I have even been able to get into the groin area. I still cannot use the epilator on my stomach or chest. It is just too sore.

A close up of my legs. Last year they were a mess of angry red bumps.

I have developed a very good routine and I think it is worth sharing. I remove my hair weekly. If I am going out I try and do the hair removal on my legs the day before I go out as this cuts down the time taken to get ready on the day and is also gives my skin a chance to recover from the epilator meaning it will look at its best when I go out. I start the night before the planned hair removal by exfoliating in the shower. I use a pair of exfoliating nylon gloves and soap. I rub my entire body with these gloves using small, gentle circular movements. After showering I rinse and then apply  bikini balm from Lola Montez. This cream acts as a moisturiser and also does some chemical exfoliation which I find to be excellent preparation.

Bikini balm

On the day of epilation I epilate before I bath or shower. I find that the epilator works best on dry hairs. I run the epilator against the growth of the hair and I find that I need to do a few passes to get all the hairs. It is important to keep the epilator in good contact with the skin. Do not allow it to bounce over the bumps. Rather go slower and more carefully. I also find that you may have to go in different directions over the same patch of skin as the hair doesn’t all grow in a uniform direction. I am lucky in that I have an able assistant in my wife as she can reach some of the areas I find hard to reach. If you lack an assistant you may want to do some stretching before starting to avoid torn muscles. After epilating I have a nice warm shower. I do not do any physical exfoliation apart from washing with a face cloth. I pat dry (don’t rub) or preferably air dry (depending on the weather) and I then apply the bikini balm.

The day of going out involves shaving. I have a nice warm shower and exfoliate (including the areas I have epilated the day before) with the exfoliating nylon gloves and soap. I then apply hair conditioner as a shaving cream (it is cheap and very effective). I usually start with my underarms, moving to my chest, stomach, arms (if necessary) and finally groin. I rinse the blades after each stroke and ensure the skin is well lubricated with conditioner. It will not foam up and keeps a good film of lubrication on the skin. It is also I believe more cost effective than most shaving creams. It is best to use a sharp blade, especially if you are looking for a very close shave. I always shave with the hair growth and only go against the growth for special occasions. Going against the growth will increase the number of ingrown hairs.

After this I rinse thoroughly and again air or, if necessary pat (do not rub), dry with a towel. I then exfoliate my face with an exfoliating scrub before shaving, again with hair conditioner. Once again I go with the hair growth, only going against the growth on special occasions. I pat dry with a towel. I then use a very mild antiseptic cream as an aftershave balm on my face and then apply the bikini balm to my shaved torso and also to my legs and buttocks.

I then get dressed. I have found that this reduces ingrown hairs dramatically and any redness that has developed as a result of epilating disappears after a few hours. I have found that the conditioner is a massive improvement on the various shaving creams I have tried and that the use of bikini balm is a massive improvement on any other post shaving/epilation products I have found.


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