Humans are among the most bald mammals for reasons scientists still speculate about today.
Even so, we still have many areas of unwanted lighter hair that we’ve spent centuries trying to remove. Sharpened rocks and seashells gave way to primitive razors and methods similar to modern waxing that used honey.
Waxing to remove hair goes back to ancient Egypt and is still popular today. Modern technology, however, has brought hair removal innovations such as lasers. Given the choice, which option is right for you?
Dr. Javier Zelaya and his medical staff at Skinworks Dermatology, with three New York City locations, are here to help you answer that question.
The basics of waxing
Wax is an organic substance that hardens at room temperature but melts when exposed to heat. It’s made in a variety of ways and has a variety of uses, including hair removal.
This ancient method is performed in salons or at home and involves removing hair by the root. At Skinworks Dermatology, our aesthetic specialist applies melted wax to your unwanted hair, allows it to dry, and then pulls it up, often using strips of fabric.
Almost any part of the body can benefit from waxing. We use soft or hard wax, depending on the area being waxed. The results can last up to six weeks.
The basics of laser hair removal
Laser hair removal uses concentrated light emitted by a hand-held device. The light is absorbed by the pigment in the skin, heating it to the point that it damages the hair follicles.
Growing hair where the follicles are damaged is difficult, so this process leads to thinner hair and, eventually, no hair at all.
We can perform laser hair removal on nearly every part of the body, not including the eyelids or areas of skin with tattoos. Most people need 3-6 treatments to get lasting, noticeable results.
Waxing vs. laser hair removal
Both methods have pros and cons:
Different types of wax can be applied in most places on your body, so large sections of hair can be removed at once.
If you’re trying it at home, you must know when and how to remove the wax to avoid burns. Waxing also can irritate the skin and cause ingrown hairs, skin bumps, and infection.
Laser hair removal pros
This method can keep hair from growing back for months or years. And when hair does grow back, it comes in lighter and thinner than before.
Laser hair removal cons
You need repeated treatment for long-lasting results, and the procedure can cause discomfort similar to a sunburn. Avoid direct sunlight for about a week after treatment.
To learn more about waxing and laser hair removal and see which might be right for you, schedule a consultation with Dr. Zelaya and the Skinworks Dermatology team today. Call the office in Maspeth, Chelsea, or Park Slope, or request your appointment online.