Hair removal has always been one of the most utilized ways to let your melanin shine through. However, when it comes to hair removal, being beautiful on the outside may not be what’s best for your inside. Is hair removal good for the skin you’re in? Let’s find out!
Shaving is one of the most well-known hair removal techniques available. A razor is used to remove hair down to the level of the skin, leaving the root of the hair intact. The main types of razors on most bathroom counters are the straight edge, disposable and electric.
A straight razor has an exposed blade and requires a high level of skill to avoid nicks and cuts. Disposable razors were created with safety in mind. The edges of the blades are surrounded in plastic and there is a plastic handle for easy guiding. A disposable razor should get tossed when the blades become dull. An electric razor is powered by batteries or electricity as it removes hair more closely than a disposable razor.
If done properly, shaving is safe in comparison to other hair removal techniques. Disposable razors cost about $.50 on average and an electric shaver costs around $40. Unlike some of the other methods of hair removal, shaving can be done as often as needed and in the convenience of your own bathroom.
Facial and body hairs can be coarse and curly which can cause ingrown hairs. This is commonly seen amongst African-Americans. Shaving only removes hair at the skin’s surface and can make it more likely for these curly hairs to become ingrown. Along with ingrown hair, there can be pain, irritation, and inflammation. Shaving over these problem areas can cause further issues with the skin such as folliculitis, which is inflammation of the hair follicles.
Shaving with a dull razor or without shaving cream can cause ingrown hairs and skin can darken around the follicles. Small dark spots can also appear when oil, bacteria, and dead skin get trapped inside of the hair follicle. This is called “Strawberry Legs” because the appearance of the dark, pitted spots look like the skin of a strawberry.
Other side effects of shaving include; itchy skin, razor bumps, nicks and cuts, and razor burn. However, many of these can be avoided by exfoliating the skin before shaving, shaving in the direction that the hair grows, and getting rid of dull and dirty blades.
Laser Hair Removal
Laser hair removal has become more commonplace than it was a few decades ago. How does laser hair removal work? A laser beam is concentrated on the hair follicle and this causes permanent damage. Therefore, the hair does not grow back. The contrast between light skin and dark hair allows the laser to focus on the hair without damaging the skin. For this reason, laser hair removal was a successful technique for people with brown skin and dark hair.
Today, technology has advanced and laser hair removal has been more successful for those with dark skin and dark hair. There are two types of lasers that work for dark skin: the YAG and the diode. The YAG is the safest because it can bypass the melanin in the skin, without causing damage to the skin.
A laser can remove an area of hair the size of a quarter in about a second. Now, that’s fast! Lasers are precise which cuts down on damage to the surrounding skin. In about three to seven treatments, most hair is removed completely.
The average cost for a laser hair removal session is