Hair removal for teens
Puberty is the first time that hormone changes can bring unwanted hair sometime on the upper lip, chin and eyebrows and if you can see it then so can their peers, any perceived flaws often leads to unkindness damaging self esteem and confidence.
The question for parents is what age should they allow their children to start hair removal, this will be different in every case but discussing it with your child is preferable to them trying to solve the problem themselves with unfortunate consequences.
The pros and cons of hair removal methods
are as follows:
- Scissors or clippers is the cheapest and safest method by keeping the hairs short they may not be as noticeable.
- Bleaching will lighten the hair so making it less noticeable but if not done correctly can turn the hair yellowish and damage the hair structure which can make the problem look more obvious.
- Razors can cause cuts and infections especially if the razor is borrowed, the hair is cut off sharply so the look and feel is that the hair is stronger and thicker
- Depilatory creams are messy and time consuming, because the hair is dissolved rather than cut it generally feels softer than with shaving but the hairs come back to the surface in a few days.
- Rotary Epilators, give mixed results but are really painful, are very likely to distort the hair follicle leading to ingrown hairs, spots and boils.
- Waxing and plucking last for up to three weeks but can be painful and can cause distorted hair follicles so that spots and boils follow, also by causing trauma to the root the body reacts by increasing the blood supply to the area which will stimulate more growth as well as making the new regenerated hair stronger.
- Laser/IPL works on some people to reduce hair, but to be effective you need very fair skin with very dark hair where the root is not too deep, because this is new growth the pigmentation in the hair is not at its strongest and for this reason it is not a good idea to start laser during adolescence. If your daughter decides to go with this technique, make sure you get an experienced technician and research the type of laser/IPL being used, different lasers are better or worse for different skin/hair types.
- Electrolysis, it is the only permanent and safe hair removal method known to be effective on all skin and hair types, regardless of the treated area. Electrolysis is the only method approved by the BMA and FDA for permanent hair removal.
Sudden facial hair growth is probably nothing to worry about but may also be an indicator of an underlying medical problem. If you are worried a trip to your GP for some tests where treatment can stop further facial hair development by treating the root cause but unfortunately will not help with the hair already there and there we can step in. There is no best age to start Electrolysis, but it is the only permanent and safe hair removal method known to be effective on all skin and hair types, regardless of the treated area. With electrolysis in professional hands there are no side effects and even though this is the only method approved by the BMA and FDA for permanent hair removal, we need a letter from your GP approving electrolysis if under 16 because it is a cosmetic procedure.
Girls who are mortified by the appearance of facial hair can cause lasting damage to their skin with DIY methods such as burns, scaring and discolouration of skin pigmentation, but also spots, boils and skin infections by trying themselves to solve their problem. Even using commercial alternative methods do cary risk and are at best temporary and expensive solution. Any of the above can cause serious social problems at school and with their peers and can destroy your child’s self esteem and confidence and effect the rest of their lives.
Electrolysis is an investment in the rest of their lives.