15 November 2010


For over 10 years now, I've used an epilator to remove facial hair fairly regularly. Why do I do it? Simple, really. I don't like facial hair. I don't like the way it feels, and it always makes me itch, as does body hair. I'm not certain but I think that I'm allergic to my body hair. Let it grow and the skin that it rubs against always comes out in a rash. Removing facial hair also means that I don't need to use heavy makeup to hide beard shadow. The lack of beard shadow as a male doesn't really bother me, and nobody has ever commented about it.

Most people have experienced hair being pulled out one way or another, such as by the glue on a band-aid, by waxing or by using an epilator, and assume that removing facial hair that way must be incredibly painful. The first few times, it was quite painful, as is the first time after I've gone a few weeks without doing it. The more often it is done, the fewer hairs there are to remove and the finer the hairs are, making it much less painful.

The big downside is ingrown hairs. If you remove hair without using some sort of ingrown hair treatment, you'll probably end up with ingrown hairs. How many and how bad varies from person to person. I've tried a few different products over the years, and have been using Nad's Ingrow Solution for at least 5 years. If I get slack and don't use it, I get ingrown hairs. If I use it consistently, I don't. These days, I have far more trouble with my legs after waxing than my face after epilation. If you're wondering why I get my legs waxed instead of using the epilator, the main reason is time. Doing such a large area simply takes too long and I don't start because I know how long it will take.

After all this time, I've found out that it is a controversial topic. I've been told quite vehemently by self appointed experts that epilation of the face is something that "nobody should ever do". The main reason given is torsion, where the hair roots get twisted and the hairs no longer grow straight, causing ingrown hairs and making it difficult or impossible to do electrolysis. Another reason occasionally given is that it can cause scarring. I guess that if the hair was strong and heavy, that could be true but I can't say that I can see any skin damage from the epilator since the first few times, when I was pressing it too hard and grazed the skin. At this point I'm not having trouble with ingrown hairs, I'm not seeing twisted hairs, I can't see the value in getting electrolysis done when regular epilation is such a cheap and easy alternative and I don't believe that my skin is being damaged by the process. If I was going to experience these problems, I would have expected to see them by now!

I know some people who don't believe that ther hairs become sparser or thinner with regular epilation, and who always experience ingrown hairs no matter what they do to try to prevent them. Everybody is different, and I'm quite happy to continue doing what works for me.

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