Underarm hair is quite literally the pits. It’s probably one of the most annoying places to have hair. No wonder that most women dread having to shave their underarms daily–especially if they’re particularly hairy.
Shaving your underarms can result in tons of problems, too. Painful ingrown hairs, irritated skin, noticeable stubble—you name it, and shaving your underarms will likely cause it. And unlike other hair removal methods, shaving thickens the hair, making it stronger and denser.
The point? That shaving is probably one of the worst and most annoying methods to rid your pits of hair. Yet what’s actually the best way to remove underarm hair? We’ll take you through three of the most popular methods of banishing underarm hair.
The Most Common Underarm Hair Removal Techniques
Got underarm hair? Then check out your options.
Waxing has been around for centuries as a hair removal technique. And the technique hasn’t changed much since Cleopatra’s day. Wax is warmed until it becomes soft and spreadable—though, it shouldn’t be boiling hot or feel uncomfortably warm. Using a wooden stick that looks a lot like a tongue depressor, the warm wax is spread on the treatment area. Usually, the wax is applied in small portions at a time. Then a clean white cloth is pressed down on top of the warm wax and is yanked off quickly, pulling the hair out with it—roots and all. Waxing can remove hair anywhere on the body, including the upper lip, chin, eyebrows, bikini area, arms, and legs.
Waxing is best done in a spa or a salon, but home kits are available. It is vital, however, to do the procedure in hygienic conditions and to follow treatment with an antibacterial lotion. Done incorrectly, waxing can lead to a nasty skin infection.
To Wax or Not to Wax?
- Waxing can be done fairly quickly. While it’s not as fast as shaving, each hair doesn’t have to be individually removed as with tweezing. Wax can be spread over larger amounts of hair and removed all at once.
- Waxing is versatile. You can either wax at home using a kit or get it professionally done at a salon or spa.
- Temporary results can turn into permanent results. Over time, frequent waxing can cause the hair follicle to become damaged and stop growing hair.
- You have to have three-to-four weeks of hair growth before you can wax. This is because you need enough hair for the wax to adhere to.
- Results are not permanent; they only last a couple of weeks, which if you’re paying for professional waxing services, can definitely add up.
- If you’re not careful or experienced enough, you could end up with burns or skin infections.
- Waxing isn’t as easy as it looks. The inexperienced often find waxing hair removal messy, slow and difficult. They usually end up breaking a lot of hair above or below the surface, instead of removing the entire hair follicle from the root. Hair will grow back much quicker if it’s only broken and not removed.
Laser Hair Removal: The King of Hair Removal Methods
Laser hair removal uses laser light pulses that selectively destroy hair follicles by targeting the melanin in them. More specifically, the hair follicle’s pigment absorbs the laser’s light pulse, damaging the follicle enough to significantly slow down hair regrowth. Laser hair removal can be performed anywhere on the body. The best candidates for laser hair removal are women with dark hair and light skin, since the lasers target melanin. Lasers won’t work on white hair unless it’s dyed a darker color. After a complete series of sessions, almost all unwanted hair is permanently removed.
Though most lasers work on Latina skin, only one or two, called the Nd:YAG and the Diode, are safe for African American skin tones.
To Zap, or Not to Zap?
Laser Hair Removal Pros?
- Results in permanent hair reduction by up to 90%. While you might not get totally smooth and silky skin forever, hair should be less noticeable and require significantly less shaving or waxing.
- Little to no hair growth is needed for treatments. Depending on the type of laser, hair can either be continually shaved, including the day of treatment or only require a few day’s worth of growth.
- Laser hair removal treatments aren’t extremely time-consuming. Large areas can be treated all at once, and small areas such as the underarms can be treated in less than 15 minutes.
- It’s relatively painless. Compared to other hair removal methods such as waxing or electrolysis laser hair removal is a lot less painful – most people compare the pain to having a rubber band snapped against their skin.
Laser Hair Removal Cons?
- Multiple treatments are usually needed. Four to six treatments are often required, spaced out about a month apart to achieve the best hair reduction results.
- Not everyone is a candidate. Because lasers target darkness, people with dark hair and light skin are better suited for laser treatments. Some lasers available produce results in those with light skin and light hair and dark skin and dark hair, but many of these technological advancements are still being made.
- It’s not cheap. Laser hair removal costs depend on the location of the treatment and the type of facility in which the treatment occurs. Each visit averages $200 – $900, based on the size of the area being treated. Because the underarm area is small, the cost is going to be on the low end.
Dissolving Hair with Depilatories
Depilatories use an active ingredient to dissolve the hair shaft. The mechanical action of removing the cream using a spatula or sponge helps pull away the dissolved hair from the surface of the skin. Unlike shaving, which leaves sharp, hard hair stubble just below the skin, depilatories leave a rounded, smoother edge. It effectively minimizes stubble, which makes hair regrowth appear to take longer. Still, treatments need to be repeated at least weekly, if not more often.
Some depilatory creams may not be suited to sensitive skin, which may cause the skin to feel hot and for some, tender. Better look for a depilatory cream that is made for sensitive skin and used specifically for underarms.
To Use Depilatories, or Not to Use Depilatories
- It’s fast, cheap and easy. Depilatory hair removal creams can be found at the local drug store for a few bucks, and you can use them at home.
- It’s painless. Because chemicals dissolve hair at the skin’s surface, you’ll feel nothing.
- They contain strong chemicals. If you leave depilatory creams on too long, you can hurt your skin. Side effects of using depilatory creams include burns, blisters, rashes, stinging, and skin peeling.
- It has an odor. Depilatory creams tend to have a strong smell, so if you’re sensitive to scents, you should consider a different hair removal method.
- Depilatory creams might be too harsh for your sensitive underarm skin. You’ll have to look for depilatory creams specifically designed for the underarms or sensitive skin.
- Results are similar to those achieved with shaving. The follicle hasn’t been removed from the root, only removed at or slightly below skin level. You’ll see hair above the skin surface the next day, or in a couple days at best.
Best Underarm Hair Removal Method Is…Lasers!
If you’re serious about achieving permanent hair removal while effortlessly maintaining silky soft pits, then laser hair removal is the only viable option. The other two hair removal methods – depilatory creams and waxing – only temporarily remove underarm hair, plus they involve loads of risks, too. I mean, who wants to risk getting a rash or blisters on a regular basis just to remove unwanted hair? And who wants to put up with unnecessary pain (anyone who’s ever waxed knows what we’re talking about) every few weeks?
With laser hair removal, you’ll obtain hair-free underarms after three to four sessions, meaning you’ll never have to look at another razor again. Plus laser hair removal is a relatively painless, quick and effective procedure. What are you waiting for?
If you would like to learn more about LaserAway’s laser underarm hair removal services or schedule a free, no-obligation consultation, please email us at LaserAway.com or call us at (888) 965-2737.