If you’ve been looking into permanent solutions to hair removal, there’s no doubt you’ve come across two of the most common options; laser hair removal and waxing. But which is best? Let’s break down these two techniques and see which comes out on top.
What makes waxing a formidable opponent against laser hair removal is its centuries of success. Dating all the way back to the times of ancient Egypt, waxing was the go-to option for hair removal.
Waxing always starts with a heated sticky substance. The ancient Egyptians used beeswax and other sugar-based substances. These days we haven't veered much from the original recipe of beeswax. Though, we’ve come to mix it with thioglycolate and sulfides, compounds that aid in the easy removal of hair. There are two different kinds of waxes, soft wax and hard wax. Soft wax (used in a technique called strip waxing) is applied in thin layers to the body. A strip of paper or cloth is then pressed against the warm wax. Once the paper has fully adhered, it is then quickly ripped off of the skin in the opposite direction of the follicles removing both the hair and the wax. Hard wax is used in stripless waxing. In this procedure, the wax is applied in a thick layer and spread on the body. It is given time to cool and harden. Once fully hardened, the now solid strip of wax is pulled from the body, removing the hair follicles from their root.
Stripless waxing is said to be less painful than strip waxing. This is due to the fact that the hard wax solidifies over each individual hair and pulls them out from the pores, whereas strip waxing essentially rips the hair from the root. In either case, hair has a hard time growing back in a waxed area. However, waxing is not a permanent hair removal solution. Visible regrowth can happen anywhere between 3 to 6 weeks.
Coming back to the 21st century, hair removal has gotten a major technological upgrade. This popular trend is said to be “one of the most commonly done cosmetic procedures in the United States.” So let’s see what all the fuss is about.
In laser hair removal procedures, a laser is used to focus concentrated light beams into the follicles of unwanted hair. These beams of light reach the pigmentation cells of the hair follicles thus converting into kinetic energy, aka heat. The heat destroys the cell, ultimately killing the hair. In about a month, the hair will eventually fall out.
Laser hair removal is truly a solution for permanent hair removal. After 6 to 7 treatments, the body will discontinue the production of cells in the treated area thus eliminating the possibility of regrowth. There are a few possible side effects like sore skin and blisters, but if the procedure is carried out by a professional, the chances of permanent damage are slim. Some people may experience pain during and after treatment, but a numbing agent is usually applied beforehand to limit this.
Determining which is best depends on your personal pain threshold and the size of your wallet. This is because waxing can be painful and laser hair removal can be expensive. Nonetheless, when looking for a permanent solution, laser hair removal delivers.