February 8, 2021

A Deep Dive into 3 in 1 Gel Cream Hair Remover by Veet

3 in 1 Gel Cream Hair Remover by Veet

A Deep Dive Into The 3 in 1 Gel Cream Hair Remover by Veet

Veet 3 in 1 Gel Cream Hair Remover is a depilatory cream that is specifically formulated for sensitive skin. In addition to its depilatory agents, Veet 3 in 1 contains Aloe vera gel and alpha-tocopherol (vitamin E).

It is an extremely popular hair removal cream worldwide and is regarded as the number one seller globally. Thousands of people swear by this product.

Veet is the brand name of depilatory products made by Reckitt Benckiser company. First sold in 1919 as Neet (as in neat) and produced by Hannibal Pharmaceuticals, Neet was bought out by American Home Products in 1958, then transferred to the Canadian company Reckitt Benckiser.

Since the new formula owners were Canadian, the formula thereafter was renamed to Veet, (as in vite or quick in French, for products sold in Europe and the company retained the name Neet for the Canadian and US markets until 2002 (now, it’s all Veet).

Who’s It For?

Veet 3 in 1 Gel Cream is perfect for people who want to remove body hair without using a razor, but have very sensitive skin and do not do well with other depilatory products. If you are the type of person whose skin is sensitive to developing a razor burn from shaving, this is the product for you.

There are several advantages to using a chemical depilatory for hair removal rather than shaving.

Using a razor can produce what is termed as “chicken skin” appearance, resulting from scalped skin around the follicles which has become infected, thus developing into folliculitis.

Veet 3 in 1 will remove armpit and leg hair within 10 minutes (often within 5 minutes) of treatment. It a great choice for people with sensitive skin with its Aloe vera and vitamin E additions.

What We Like About 3 in 1 Gel Cream Hair Remover by Veet

Veet 3 in 1 works quickly and does not produce skin irritation in most people. Most users report complete issue-free hair removal after just 5 minutes of treatment.

Skin after treatment feels silky smooth and continues to feel this way for about two days afterward. This is due to the skin treatment additives, which are a nice touch that makes for an all-in-one (or 3 in 1) product.

What We Don’t Like About 3 in 1 Gel Cream Hair Remover by Veet

There is not a lot we could find that we did not like about Veet 3 in 1 Gel Cream. It works as advertised, is gentle on the skin, and does its job rather fast (usually in 5 minutes).

Many users complain about the rotten egg smell of the product, but that is simply what you get with thiols. Recall that the main active ingredient is potassium thioglycolate, potassium salt of thioglycolic acid.

We did find some reports of people who developed a mild rash along the bikini line or that the results produced patchy patterns of hair removal. For a homogeneous product to produce patchy results when users claim that they applied the product evenly suggests they had soap or detergent residues on their skin that neutralized the gel.

Bar soaps can run the range from a pH of 6 to 10, depending on the brand and formulation. Any soap residue left on the skin from a brand more in the neutral to the acid range (below pH 7.4, biological neutral) would result in squelching the chemical reaction in Veet gel.

Also, some users report that it does not remove underarm hair. If these users have a layer of deodorant in their axial area, the acidic deodorant/antiperspirant (pH 5.5-6.5) will neutralize the depilatory reaction, which runs at a pH of 12. That will result in no depilatory reaction, which may be the reason for these reports.

PROS

  • Quick and efficient hair removal
  • Leaves skin feeling silky for days
  • Only small amounts of hair regrowth after a week

CONS

  • Prolonged exposure during treatment can produce a mild chemical burn
  • Skin retains a pungent burning smell for some time after washing

What’s Included?

Veet 3 in 1 comes in a package with a 400 ml (13.5 oz) bottle with a pump dispenser and a plastic spatula with a rubber lip. The bottle is a hot pink with a white pump dispenser and the spatula basically matches (white spatula with a hot pink rubber lip).

Instructions are provided on the reverse side of the Veet bottle and are very straightforward. All of it simple, iconographic, and pictorial with a little text.

On the bottle, it states that Veet acts as a depilatory for any type of hair and that the method of removal reduces problems with ingrown hair experienced with shaving. It highlights the vitamin E and Aloe vera additions to the cream.

Overview Of Features

Since Veet is applied to your skin and skin is sensitive and can absorb things both good and bad, we will review the functions of the various product ingredients. Many people are concerned about additives in skin products (and other products, in general) and mostly have no idea what each thing does.

With all the confusing names, it’s easy to feel in the dark about what is going on your skin and whether it is considered safe today, but not tomorrow. Below, we will list out all the ingredients, which are safe and FDA-approved, and what each of them does for you.

Those ingredients are (in order of concentration): Water, urea, mineral oil, cetearyl alcohol, potassium thioglycolate, calcium hydroxide, talc, ceteareth-20, glycerin, sorbitol, fragrance, magnesium trisilicate, propylene glycol, lithium magnesium sodium silicate, sodium gluconate, tocopheryl acetate, Aloe barbadensis leaf juice, acrylates copolymer, potassium sorbate, sodium benzoate, titanium dioxide.

Urea works in concert with potassium thioglycolate to maintain the chemical changes in the hair shaft keratin after the breaking reaction. The active depilatory ingredient, potassium thioglycolate, liberates thioglycolic acid in reaction, which attacks cystines (“sulfur bridges”) in the keratin polymer.

Cystines (cysteine-cysteine dimers) are chemical crosslinks in protein that help to stabilize its three-dimensional structure and breaking them causes instability and protein-polymer shearing. This is a process called denaturation, which is the same process that occurs when you cook an egg white and it turns white.

The egg white protein (mostly albumin) begins to break down from the cooking heat first by a loss of sulfur bridges, thus unraveling the protein structure and changing its refractive index from appearing clear to white and opaque. In like fashion, the thioglycolic acid breaks those bridges and denatures the keratin protein polymer.

The products of the reaction are dithiodiglycolic acid and reduced cysteines in the keratin polymer. Occasionally, these reduced cysteines can re-react and form new sulfur-sulfur bridges, therefore undoing the chemical reaction.

Urea ensures this does not occur by forming bonds with the free cysteines, thus ensuring that the protein remains completely structurally destabilized. Protein destabilization will then ensure polymer shearing and breakage of the hair shaft.

Mineral oil is a petroleum product that is commonly used in cosmetics to produce a smooth, flowable substance for easy application. The grade of mineral oil is a fine, noncomedogenic grade.

Cetearyl alcohol and ceteareth-20 are a mix of C-16 (cetyl) and C-18 (stearyl) alcohols, referred to commercially as fatty alcohols due to their long carbon chains and similarity to fatty acids. They are mainly used as emulsifiers, emollients, and skin penetration enhancers.

Calcium hydroxide and magnesium trisilicate are part of the pH buffering system that maintains a product pH of 12. Sodium gluconate is a chelating agent (binds metals) that assists the buffer system.

Talc is a clay-based mineral that is mostly magnesium silicate hydroxide. It is primarily used as a lubricant and thickening agent. Additional thickening agents in the product are acrylates copolymer, an acrylamide gel, and sorbitol (see below).

Thickeners, emollients, and humectants: Glycerin, or glycerol, is included as an emollient for moisturizing skin and as a humectant to keep the product moist. Sorbitol is a sugar alcohol made from reduced glucose and used as a thickener and humectant.

Propylene glycol is a short carbon chain alcohol used as a hygroscopic and humectant and carrier base.

Lithium magnesium sodium silicate is a temporary skin tightener that produces a thin coating on the skin.

Tocopheryl acetate is a derivative of vitamin E (alpha-tocopherol) and acts as an antioxidant to protect the skin in general and during the depilatory chemical reaction.

Aloe barbadensis leaf juice is an Aloe vera gel (Aloe barbadensis is a botanical synonym term that is no longer used, except in the cosmetics industry).

Potassium sorbate and sodium benzoates are preservative agents to prevent fungal and bacterial growth in the product. Titanium dioxide has anti-oxidant properties and also acts as a whitening pigment.

How to use

  • Spread the cream in an even layer with the spatula.
  • Leave for 5-10 minutes (10 minutes if you have thick hair): 10 minutes is the max
  • Use the spatula to gently scrape off the cream.
  • Rinse your skin thoroughly with water (no soap) and pat to dry.

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Review Summary

Veet 3 in 1 Gel Cream is a great choice for people who want a chemical depilatory but have very sensitive skin. The main ingredients, thioglycolate, vitamin E, and Aloe vera are an effective combination of skin treatment that does not require additional moisturizers after use.

The pump action bottle is also a nice touch for convenience and for dispensing a measured amount of gel. This is an ideal depilatory to achieve smooth skin.

See Related Article: Sleek Depilatory by elōs-mē Review

February 8, 2021

A Deep Dive into the Epi-Smooth Epilator for Hair Removal

epi-smooth-hair-removal-review

Introduction

Epilators are mechanical devices that remove hair by plucking using various means of doing so. They are popular devices to use in combination with other hair removal methods to produce great results.

The very first commercial epilator (the Epilady) was invented in 1986 by Mepro, a corporation based in Kibbutz Hagoshrim, Israel, and was designed around a rotating, counter-compressed spring. A rotating spring would be compressed on one side, grabbing hair, and decompressed on the other side, releasing plucked hair.

This effect would cycle back and forth, covering the treatment area and removing the hair. After its introduction to the public, sales of the Epilady skyrocketed and many other epilator manufacturers entered the market.

In a sense, an epilator is simply the mechanical version of waxing, which uses a hot wax that solidifies, and as it is removed it plucks out the hairs. Most epilators come with a head with multiple tines and either use springs, rotating discs, or mechanical tweezers.

Epilators are often used as part of a broader hair removal “strategy”, as we like to call it since all the various means of hair removal do not work well just on their own. Combining any chemical or light-based hair removal method with epilation tends to yield complete and favorable results.

A Deep Dive Into The Epi-Smooth Epilator

The Epi-Smooth epilator by Epi-Smooth is more of a traditional hair removal device that mechanically removes body hair. Epilators have multiple springs or teeth that grasp the hair and pluck it from the skin.

Whereas most epilators have ahead with 20 or 30 tines, the Epi-Smooth has only one and does its job a bit slower (and less painfully) than most machines. However, the Epi-Smooth is incredibly inexpensive (in this review, we are forbidden from quoting prices, but trust us, it’s really cheap -like, barely in the double digits, but we didn’t say that), so it is a fair trade-off.

Who’s It For?

If you want to do in-home permanent hair removal and have thought about using an epilator, the Epi-Smooth is an entry-level device that will allow you to incorporate mechanical hair removal into your regimen without destroying your budget.

The Epi-Smooth is an extremely affordable epilator with a small epilation head that works great in small areas and can also be used over large skin areas. In this pricing segment, there simply are no other epilators, and it is so economical that the Epi-Smooth can be afforded by almost anyone.

Epilation devices are used for permanent hair removal and are also a great adjunct to chemical depilatories and IPL devices. The Epi-Smooth is a useful tool for removing facial hair in places where IPL devices just cannot go and where you might feel uncomfortable playing around with chemicals.

How it works

You can basically think of the Epi-Smooth as an electric tweezer. Whatever you would normally try to do with a tweezer, you can use the Epi-Smooth in its place for better and faster results.

The rotating head spins the tweezing device across the hair, closes and grasps it, then rotates away, plucking the hair. On the away side, the tweezing device opens and drops the hair into the clear shield, which is then free to fall away from the device.

It’s as simple as that.

How to use it

It is recommended that you shower first and that your skin is clean. A warm shower will increase blood flow to the skin and also cause hairs to stand more erect.

If you have hairs in any area you wish to epilate that are longer than 10 mm, you should shave first. Be certain that any area you wish to treat does not have razor burn or additional injury could occur during epilation.

Before you begin, the skin should be patted dry with a soft towel. A little experimentation before you start doing large areas is recommended to ensure that you do not have a skin reaction.

Just try out a small area on the skin and wait a day to see how it looks. If everything is fine, you are ready to fully epilate.

Next, switch on the device and glide the head over the area you wish to treat. Remember that the device head is a narrow, single tweezer head, so multiple passes over an area may be necessary.

After the first use, the skin may become a little irritated since you are not used to the device. Application of a water-based lotion with lanolin or another emollient after epilating is recommended to reduce skin irritation. Skin irritation will diminish with time as the skin becomes accustomed to epilation and you will also notice that hair regrowth will be less and the hairs finer.

After using the Epi-Smooth, remove the shield and use the brush provided to clean the epilating head. Do not wash the Epi-Smooth with water or rinse underwater as it is absolutely not waterproof.

Read Related Topic: Upper Lip Hair Removal – A Guide

What We Like About Epi-Smooth Epilator

Despite being a very small epilator, there are many positives for the Epi-Smooth. Besides the great cost factor, the device is also very precise and can work in small, tight areas.

At first glance and noting the price, we thought that there was no way this thing could actually work. If it did work, we expected that it would last for a day or two before it broke.

However, that is not the case. The Epi-Smooth is simple but well built. Working it does take some extra time since it only has a one-tine head, but consider the fact that it costs very little and we feel it all balances out.

Think of it like this. You need to mow your lawn (ha, love this analogy).

You get a push mower that has a 20-inch blade and gets the job done fast, but… that would cost you close to $300. Alternatively, you could get a set of electric shears for $30.

Sure, using those will take you longer to mow the lawn, but it’s also something you can afford. That could be the difference between mowing that lawn and not.

Since the Epi-Smooth is small, we found it ideal for working in delicate areas, such as sideburns, eyebrows, and hairline. Another interesting aspect of the Epi-Smooth, and one quite unexpected, is that epilation is nearly painless.

Allow us to repeat that in case you skipped over it: plucking hair out of your skin with Epi-Smooth hardly hurts at all. Maybe it’s the design of the head, maybe it’s the fact that it only has one tweezer, we don’t know.

It’s just almost painless to use it. Cleaning it up is also not a big deal, about as involved as cleaning up an electric razor.

Oh yeah, we also like the fact that it is battery-operated. Whether you choose to use this in your bathroom at home or choose to throw it in your luggage for travel, battery portability is a great plus.

What We Don’t Like About Epi-Smooth Epilator

The fact that the Epi-Smooth has only one tweezer on the head is a negative for us. It works well, but epilating takes a lot of time.

If they just doubled or tripled the tweezers, which is still far, far fewer than most epilators like by a factor of 10, that would increase its efficiency tremendously. It probably would not increase its cost to make much either.

It would also be nice if there was a speed option on the device, since it only has one speed. Also, many other epilators come with various attachments and accessories.

Typical accessories are different-sized shielding covers with different-shaped or -sized windows, but those are mainly to present or occlude some of the epilating tines. In the case of the Epi-Smooth, there is only one so we guess that is a moot point.

PROS

  • Small and portable
  • Very, very affordable
  • Great precision for small, delicate areas
  • Almost painless
  • Battery-operated
  • Great for home or travel

CONS

  • Well, epilation with it is slow…
  • You cannot use it wet in the shower
  • Only one speed

What’s Included?

  • One Epi-Smooth epilator
  • One cleaning brush
  • Instruction manual
  • (batteries not included)

Overview Of Features

The Epi-Smooth is about the size of your typical electric razor and runs on two AAA batteries. It comes in two colors: blue and light purple.

The housing is entirely plastic but is not waterproof. Most of the body is white plastic with a mid-line hourglass rubber strip and a central sliding on-off switch.

The reverse side is the color-theme plastic (purple or blue) and features a battery cover to access the battery bay. The head is covered with a clear plastic, color-themed shield with a rounded cloverleaf window (the four-leaf kind, for luck, we guess).

In the center of the head within the window is a single rotating barrel with a tweezing device.

Review Summary

For what you get, we really like the Epi-Smooth. It does work, it is easy to use, and is completely portable and battery-operated.

For removing hair in delicate areas where everything is close-in, like the face, a small device like the Epi-Smooth is really perfect for that kind of work. Using larger epilator devices in those areas increases the chance (ghast!) of a mishap, leaving you to paint on your eyebrows for a month or so.

We feel that the Epi-Smooth is a must-have for epilation, even if just purchased for travel. It is small and effective and an excellent choice for precision work.

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February 8, 2021

Upper Lip Hair Removal – A Guide

Upper Lip Hair Removal

Removing the hair from your upper lip is a common thing that many people do to improve their appearance. Let’s face it, you look better with a smooth upper lip, but performing this procedure on a regular basis can be annoying.

It can also be uncomfortable, depending on the means you use to get the job done. Regarding the approach you take to accomplishing this, there are several popular methods, and choosing one is a matter of convenience and personal preference.

These methods include the use of chemical creams, electric trimmers and epilators, threading, waxing, sugaring, and light energy treatments.

We will detail for you a basic method that can be done at home. This method will yield good results with a minimum amount of discomfort and employs several different techniques to give you the results you seek.

Here is the step-by-step how-to approach that you can do regularly to get that smooth upper lip in a cost-effective, relatively pain-free manner. We will also talk a bit about other, more exotic methods that give great results but cost a bit more to perform.

Hair Removal Creams

Upper Lip Hair Removal

These instructions are for your basic hair removal cream intended for use on the face (do not use removal creams intended for other body areas on your face). Treatment times can vary by product, so be sure to follow the package directions. The example product we used is the Nair Hair Remover Precision Kit for Face and Upper Lip. The Nair product includes Moroccan argan oil in the formulation to soothe the skin during treatment.

      1.The upper lip should be cleaned and free of soap residue and makeup. Wash your face with a mild soap, rinse away the soap and makeup with warm water, and gently pat dry.

      2. Before going full tilt on your upper lip, you should do a skin test on a less sensitive area such as your cheek. Apply the product as follows to a small area (like a square centimeter) and wait 24 hours to make sure you do not have any negative skin reactions like excessive redness or swelling.

      3, Apply the product with the included applicator. These are usually either plastic or a silicone-coated plastic stick with a chisel-like tip.

Spread an even, thick coat of the cream across your lip making sure to keep the product off of your lips and out of your mouth. Do not rub it in; it will work just fine without that.

Yes, it will smell because the product contains thiols that react and break down the hair shaft.

      4. After about 5 minutes, gently wipe away a small area (such as at the corners of your mouth) with a   soft cloth or cotton ball to ensure that the product has finished working. If the hair removal is incomplete, wait for another 2 to 3 minutes and check again the same way.

      5. Do not let the product sit on your skin for more than 10 minutes, otherwise, you can get a rather unpleasant burn.

      6. Gently wipe away the cream by swiping away from the center of your face a little at a time, gradually working your way to the middle under your nose. Just wipe, don’t rub.

      7. With lukewarm water and no soap, thoroughly wash the treated area. Use lots of water and be careful not to get any in your mouth, your nose, or (dear God!) in your eyes.

      8. Pat the treated area dry with a soft cloth. Again, as before, do not rub. Just pat.

      9. You should see that all your upper lip hair has washed away with the cream. This chemical treatment removes the hair but also removes the acid mantle of the skin since the chemical reactants are alkaline (like bleach).

      10. This is a protective acidic film that coats your skin and is made from sebum (oil) and sweat. Its pH is anywhere from 4.5-6.2 and is protective and antibacterial. Since the wash and treatment, that layer is now gone, so applying a moisturizing cream that is pH-balanced will help to restore your skin pH and reduce redness and irritation following the treatment. 

There are many moisturizers that will work for this purpose, just be sure to choose one that is marketed as a low-pH moisturizer. We like low-pH moisturizer products by Aveeno and Cetaphil since they are commonly available and work really great, but that the market is full of similar products so choose something that works for you. Just be sure that the bottle says it is low-pH (in the range of your skin’s acid mantle).

Most low-pH balanced creams run around a pH of 4.7 up to a more neutral 6.4.

Treatment with a chemical cream can be done somewhat frequently, but should not be used any sooner than 72 hours since the last treatment. If you find that there are a few spots that the cream missed, you can follow up with a fresh blade razor, an electric razor/trimmer with relatively new blades, or an epilator if you wish.

However, you should wait about 24 hours before doing any follow-ups to give your skin some time to rest.

Other Methods

Now, let’s talk about more traditional and exotic methods.

Threading and Tweezing

Threading is an age-old, low-tech approach to hair removal. It is similar to tweezing since it is a hair plucking method.

This technique is favored by many people worldwide since, until the last 50 years or so, cosmetic tweezers were not necessarily available everywhere in the world. Threading consists of using a dampened thread to wind around the base of the hair shaft a few times, then pluck it out.

This hurts, like tweezing, but the results tend to last longer than chemical creams since the roots of the hairs are removed. If you don’t like tweezing or threading, battery-powered epilators will do the same thing since an epilator is basically a motorized tweezer.

Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) Devices

Upper Lip Hair Removal

For the more exotic approaches, the market is now awash with IPL (intense pulsed light) devices that use wavelengths of light to heat and stunt the development of hair follicles. This can be an excellent solution for your upper lip, but these devices will set you back a bit.

Be sure to purchase devices that are specifically for facial use, otherwise they may be too bulky for your purposes.

See Related Topic: Brazilian Laser Hair Removal at Home: Top 5 Devices

Waxing, Sugaring, and Lasers, oh my!

Lip waxing, sugaring, and laser treatments are more advanced and, in many ways, more effective means of upper lip hair removal. The drawback of these techniques is cost since they can only be performed safely by trained beauticians in a salon.

It may be obvious how waxing works, but this is best performed by a professional since a few mistakes can leave you with scars. Sugaring is soft of a new fad in hair removal and uses a sugar-based exfoliant to remove hair and dead skin cells, but is also exclusively done in salons.

The final exotic technology is laser hair treatment, which is not IPL but actual lasers. That being said, the devices are expensive and only salons and dermatology clinics buy them, so there is also a cost associated with laser treatments.

They do, however, produce longer-lasting results than the other methods.

Wrap-Up

The bottom line in upper lip hair removal (lol) is that passable results can be obtained by most methods if performed correctly. There are differences in the longevity of the effect and those differences match up well with costs. Long-term, higher cost, short-term, lower cost.

Which one you pick is up to you and your budget.

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February 8, 2021

Homemade Hair Removal Creams – A Guide

Homemade hair removal creams

Hair removal usually involves shaving and risking cuts and scrapes or the use of smelly chemical creams that can cause burns if you are not careful to follow the directions. These do not have to be your only options, however, since there are homemade methods that are also effective.

They take some preparation and a bit more work to remove unwanted body hair, but they do work and are made of non-toxic ingredients. Now, we do realize that there are a lot of nonsense cure-alls out there, all sorts of click-bait “weird little trick” links that tell you to put onion slices on your bunions or fried eggs on your eyes to treat bags.

Despite the weirdness, these solutions we list below are simply homemade variants of waxing-like techniques and a popular salon trend in hair removal: sugaring. The results you obtain with sugaring or pastes are similar to what you get with hot wax, but with a notable advantage.

Sugar solutions are not molten, like wax, but will at most be warmed to make them pliable, which means that you cannot accidentally burn yourself while doing a sugaring. Pastes we list here are room-temperature treatments as well.

Considering most of us are not well possessed of salon skills, this whole not getting burned part should be quite appealing. The three recipes below are variants of sugaring solutions, one of which is certainly sure to work for you.

Basic Sugaring Mix

This basic sugaring mix recipe looks like nothing, but it is the same stuff they use in the salon. Whereas it is easier to have someone with experience apply the mix to you and do all the hair removal work, with a bit of practice you can achieve similar results to a salon visit. 

Combine the following ingredients:

  • 2 cups of sugar
  • 1/4 cup of water
  • 1/4 cup of lemon juice

Bring the mixture gently to a boil, ensuring it does not burn.

Decant to an airtight container (we recommend a canning jar by Bell or another manufacturer) and allow it to cool completely.

To use: Skin should be clean and dry before you begin. Many beauticians recommend wiping the area with witch hazel and a cotton ball to clean the skin, then following up with baby powder and a soft cloth.

Wearing gloves (dish gloves or disposable examination gloves) pinch a ball of sugaring mix by hand. If the mix is too stiff because the air temperature is cold, warm the mix in the jar gently in a water bath.

This is the same thing you do in canning, so you can purchase a home canning kit with a boiling pot and a rack. Apply the mix by spreading in the opposite direction of hair growth, then remove with the grain by wiping or abruptly wiping the gel off of the skin in the direction of growth.

That is because the hair shaft is caught in the sugar gel and pulled from the follicle, so you need to work in the proper direction. 

Egg White Paste

Homemade hair removal creams

This egg white mix is actually more similar to waxing than sugaring, particularly regarding the technique used at the end for removing the paste and hair. The advantage to this mixture and others on this list is that they are applied at room temperature.

No hot wax that can scar you if left on too long, no mishaps with hot wax getting on more sensitive areas that you wish to avoid (such as your lips, eyelids, and inner parts of your vulva).

Combine the following ingredients: 

  • 1 Egg white
  • 1 tablespoon of sugar
  • 2 tablespoons of cornflour

Mix the ingredients thoroughly in a mixing bowl until they form a smooth paste.

To use: Apply the mixture to the skin in the opposite direction of hair growth and allow it to completely dry. When dry, peel the hardened paste off quickly and abruptly, peeling in the opposite direction of hair growth (note that this differs from standard sugaring and is more similar to waxing).

Sweet Lentil Rub

This treatment for hair removal is an old Ayurvedic technique. Sometimes you will see variants of this mix that include turmeric (like ours, below this recipe). 

Combine the following ingredients:

  • 1 large potato, peeled and diced
  • 2 cups of yellow lentils
  • 4 tablespoons of lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon of honey

Soak the lentils overnight in cold water until they are soft. Drain the water from the lentils and do not rinse them. Mash the lentils with a utensil (like a fork or a spoon).

Alternatively, you can blend them into a slurry in a food processor or a strong blender. Crush the chunks of potato and wring them in either cheesecloth or flour cloth to extract the juice.

You can also use a juicer for this step, if you have one. Combine the potato juice with the lentil paste.

Add in the lemon juice and honey and mix well until a smooth paste is formed.

To use: Apply the paste in the opposite direction of hair growth. Wait for the paste to dry completely, then remove by rubbing in the opposite direction of hair growth.

The hair will come off with the dried paste as you remove it.

Turmeric Cream

Homemade hair removal creams

This is another Ayurvedic recipe for hair removal that uses turmeric and flour to form a paste.

Combine the following ingredients:

  • 1 cup of chickpea flour (same as garbanzo bean flour)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of turmeric
  • A few drops of milk or cream to dampen the mix

In a mixing bowl, place the flour and sift lightly with a fork. Then, add in the turmeric and stir into the mixture a few drops of cream or milk.

Work the mixture until it forms a smooth and thick paste; you can add milk or cream if the mixture is still too dry.

To use: Spread a thin layer of the paste in the direction of hair growth (note, this is different from the other recipes here). Let the paste dry completely, then wipe away the dried paste with a washcloth by rubbing in the opposite direction of hair growth.

Read Related Article: Hair Removal Advice – A Guide

February 8, 2021

Men’s Eyebrow Shaping and Grooming Guide

Eyebrow shaping for men

If you are a man and the thought of grooming your eyebrows sounds like something a sissy would do, we completely understand. However, do you have a mustache or beard, or at least have a friend with either of those?

Beards and mustaches are certainly masculine facial features, but nobody just lets those go wherever they want without some trimming and sculpting. Otherwise, you would simply look like you just crawled out of a cave.

Trimming your eyebrows is really no different. When you were a young man, it is likely that you did not need to consider doing this at all and the mere suggestion of it would have sounded pretty weird.

However, the older you get, the more and more bushy your eyebrows tend to get. Of all the features of a man’s face, the eyebrows are usually the easiest indication of his age.

Keeping them properly groomed not only improves your overall appearance but can also impart a youthful look to the face. So, who doesn’t want to look younger (except those who are already young)?

Well, let’s jump right in and get down to it then. Here are our recommendations for how to go about it.

Go natural

Men’s Eyebrow Grooming Guide

Whereas the ladies sculpt and shape their eyebrows, men tend to look more masculine with a natural look. However, this all has to do with your personal preference (if you are a metrosexual, then we guess that eyebrow sculpting is for you).

To keep your eyebrows looking masculine, be very conservative in removing hair. To do this, we do not recommend tweezing unless there are obvious strays that are outside of the natural borders of your eyebrows.

Thread or wax with professional stylists only

If you really do not want to do this yourself and have the funds, consult with a professional men’s stylist who also does threading or waxing of eyebrows. They will be able to determine your facial shape and pick a style of eyebrow grooming that accentuates your best features.

Trimming

If you want to do your own grooming, we strongly recommend trimming as a strategy. Trimming is far more forgiving than plucking your eyebrows since cutting the hair back will allow it to regrow faster if you get a little overzealous and make a mistake (ahem, yeah, this can happen to you).

Use beard trimming scissors that are slightly recurved (cupped) to do any eyebrow work and also get a spoolie brush or a mustache brush. Spoolie brushes are basically mascara brushes, so if you feel a bit weird using one, a fine-bristle mustache brush works great.

How to shape your eyebrows

        1.Shower. The first thing you want to do is take a shower and wash your face thoroughly with warm, soapy water. Besides working with clean hair, the heat from the shower will open your pores and make it easier to pluck hairs or easier to trim them.

        2. Comb and trim. Using your mustache brush, first, comb the hair in the direction it grows (away from the center of your brow), then comb upward until all the hairs are pointing in the same upward direction.

With your beard scissors (make sure you clean them well first with warm soapy water, isopropyl alcohol, or witch hazel, then dry them with a tissue or soft cloth), trim any hairs that are noticeably longer than the others. We like to call these the “crazies”.

If your eyebrows are extra bushy, you can use an electric trimmer like a beard trimmer, to shape them. However, be extra careful since one slip-up will require you to begin penciling-in your eyebrows until they grow back.

Since penciled eyebrows on any man other than someone wearing stage makeup looks decidedly unmasculine, it’s simply better to use scissors and trim. It’s the haircut approach: you can always take off more later if you want.

        3. Tweeze any strays. Stray hairs that are above the natural limits of your eyebrows or are way off to the side or perhaps at the top of your eyelid should be plucked out with tweezers. They simply don’t belong there.

To tweeze hair properly, use a good set of new, non-dented, or warped tweezers that are clean. If you are in doubt, clean them the same way that you did the scissors to prevent any accidental infections during a pluck.

Using the tweezers, grasp the hair at the base, next to the skin, firmly and pull the hair in the direction that it grows. Never pull in the opposite direction or the hair could shear off, become ingrown, and infected.

Infected hair follicles in your face hurt and can produce more swelling there than other areas of your skin. Plus, it’s your face and you can’t cover up your face.

        4. Stay natural. Stay with the natural shape of your eyebrows and don’t sculpt your eyebrows as women do. If you decide that you do want sculpted eyebrows, this is where we recommend that you consult with a men’s grooming professional and have them do it for you.

They will typically choose a look that best fits your facial features and the shape of your face so that you get the best look you can achieve.

See Related Topic: Eyebrow Shaping and Grooming Guide for Women

FAQs

Men’s Eyebrow Grooming Guide

What about grey hairs?

Leave them in, at least some. They can look very distinctive.

If you are concerned about greyness, buy a brow gel set for men.

Besides conditioning wiry eyebrow hairs in older men, many sets have subtle coloring agents to take care of those grey hairs.

Use the mattifying gel after a professional grooming

If you just had your eyebrows professionally groomed, particularly if this was done by waxing, this can often leave your skin shiny. To prevent this issue, use a mattifying gel between and around the eyebrows.

These typically come in skincare kits and will denote their use for eyebrow areas. If you cannot find any of these products, you can also use a talcum-based face powder or light, water-based moisturizer as well.

You May Also Like: 77 Best Black Men Beard Styles

February 8, 2021

Best Hair Removal Sprays and Lotions for 2021 [Our Reviews and Comparisons]

Hair removal spray

If you hate shaving your legs and armpits like the rest of us and having to put up with nicks and cuts that take a week to go away, then you need to transition to applied depilatory products. The ones we have reviewed here have been shown to work effectively on body hair.

Comparison Table

 

PRODUCT FEATURES LATEST PRICE
1. Sally Hansen Hair Remover Lotion
  • Contains vitamin E, aloe, and chamomile
  • Works in all areas (except the face)
  • Pleasant raspberry-peach scent</li
  • Slows regrowth
Check Price
2. Cidbest Hair Growth Inhibition Hair Removal Spray
  • Spray bottle (20 ml)
  • Pain-free
  • Complete hair removal in 8 weeks
  • Works gently on all body areas, including face and groin
Check Price
3. Neomen Hair Inhibition Premium Hair Removal Spray
  • Made with magnolia flower, Alchemilla, Vulgaris, and aloe
  • Glycerol to coat your skin
  • Works fast: only 4 weeks
  • Removes hair and stops growth
Check Price
4. Nair Hair Remover Spray
  • Ease of use
  • Very fast
  • Moroccan argan oil moisturizes skin
Check Price
5. Scobuty Hair Inhibitor Hair Removal Spray
  • Works in all body areas (but not the face)
  • Works in 10 minutes
  • Contains natural botanical ingredients
Check Price

If you need hair removal for the face (cheek, sideburn, upper lip), then pay special attention to the first two products in our list that are specially-formulated to work on the face. Here is our list of best picks for hair removal sprays and lotions.

Our Best Hair Removal Spray and Lotion Reviews and Comparisons

1. Cidbest Hair Growth Inhibition Hair Removal Spray

Product Highlights

Cidbest Hair Growth Inhibition Hair Remover Spray is made of natural ingredients, like lavender oil, magnolia flower extract, and hyaluronic acid, and works in two stages to remove hair.

In stage 1, hair is dissolved and can be wiped away. In stage 2, matrix cells in the follicle are inhibited to prevent hair regrowth.

Features 

  • Spray bottle (20 ml)
  • Pain-free
  • Complete hair removal in 8 weeks
  • Works gently on all body areas, including face and groin

What We Like About Cidbest Hair Growth Inhibition Hair Removal Spray

We like the addition of aloe vera gel to the mixture, which is soothing for the skin. The treatment does not leave blackspots or cause any peeling.

What We Don’t Like About Cidbest Hair Growth Inhibition Hair Removal Spray

We found customers who complained about the product not working but did not specify how long they tried it. One user did state that there were no results after 2 weeks, however, the product instructions state that hair thinning takes 1-4 weeks, depending on the thickness of your hair.

PROS

  • All-natural ingredients
  • Hyaluronic acid and aloe vera skin softening
  • Works on sensitive areas

CONS

  • The amount of product is small

2. Neomen Hair Inhibition Premium Hair Removal Spray

Product Highlights

Neomen Hair Inhibition Premium Hair Removal Spray is an all-natural product with a breadth of natural extracts and offers excellent skin hydration.

Features 

  • Made with magnolia flower, Alchemilla, Vulgaris, and aloe
  • Glycerol to coat your skin
  • Works fast: only 4 weeks
  • Removes hair and stops growth

What We Like About Neomen Hair Inhibition Premium Hair Removal Spray

We feel that this product is the best we’ve tested for the face. It is gentle and works in about half the time of other products.

What We Don’t Like About Neomen Hair Inhibition Premium Hair Removal Spray

The amount of product is small, only 20 ml.

PROS

  • No skin irritation
  • Moisturizes skin
  • Easy to use
  • Works in 4 weeks

CONS

  • None we can find

3. Nair Hair Remover Spray

Product Highlights

Nair Hair Remover Spray comes in a tall pressurized can, which means that it can work to apply the product at any angle. This spray is effective after about 4 minutes for many people but will produce great results within 10, regardless of the thickness of your hair.

Features 

  • Ease of use
  • Very fast
  • Moroccan argan oil moisturizes skin

What We Like About Nair Hair Remover Spray

The addition of the argan oil helps mask the hair removal chemicals in the product. Users of this product are very satisfied with its performance.

What We Don’t Like About Nair Hair Remover Spray

Some users have bad skin reactions with this Nair product. Although it can be used in the bikini area, this product is absolutely not intended for use on the face.

PROS

  • Works quickly (usually in 4 minutes)
  • Can be applied even upside down
  • Product and hair rinse off in the shower
  • Moisturizes

CONS

  • Can cause irritation if left on too long
  • The nozzle can clog with product

4. Scobuty Hair Inhibitor Hair Removal Spray

Product Highlights

Scobuty Hair Inhibitor Hair Removal Spray comes in a 30 ml pump bottle and is another hair removal and hair growth inhibition product. Scobuty contains aloe, allantoin, chrysanthemum, and glycerol as a skin emollient. 

Features 

  • Works in all body areas (but not the face)
  • Works in 10 minutes
  • Contains natural botanical ingredients

What We Like About Scobuty Hair Inhibitor Hair Removal Spray

People that hate shaving love this product. It works within 10 minutes, but most users find about 6 minutes is optimal for good effects. The product does not smell bad like a lot of other hair removal products.

See Related Topic: Hair Removal Advice – A Guide

What We Don’t Like About Scobuty Hair Inhibitor Hair Removal Spray

This product has a noticeable smell, akin to salon perm solutions, and can cause burns in some people if left on too long. The absolute limit is 10 minutes, then wash it off.

PROS

  • Made from natural ingredients
  • Effective skin moisturizing
  • Not irritating, even if you have a cut from shaving
  • Washes off easily

CONS

  • Smelly product
  • May affect people with very sensitive skin
  • Cannot be used on the face

5. Sally Hansen Hair Remover Lotion

Product Highlights

If you have coarse hair and really, really dislike shaving, then this lotion from long-time beauty product producer Sally Hansen is for you. We found that the Sally Hansen Hair Remover Lotion was the most efficient product for working on extra heavy leg hair.

Features 

  • Contains vitamin E, aloe, and chamomile
  • Works in all areas (except the face)
  • Pleasant raspberry-peach scent
  • Slows regrowth

What We Like About Sally Hansen Hair Remover Lotion

This is a fantastic product and so easy to use, especially if you have really thick leg hair. We mean, this stuff works like a charm. A lot of Sally Hansen hair removal products are not available now due to shipping issues, but this one is so go get it!

You May Also Like: Women’s Grooming Checklist

What We Don’t Like About Sally Hansen Hair Remover Lotion

Nothing really to say that is a downside to the lotion. It has a nice scent. However, there are some reports of low-activity products, so it does not appear to have a great shelf life. Just look for dust on the bottle (avoid the dusty ones).

PROS

  • Spreads easily
  • Tackles coarse hair
  • Rinses off easily
  • Tested by dermatologists
  • Raspberry scent

CONS

  • The product does not have a good shelf life (so check the date)

Final Verdict

If we had to go with one product for legs, armpits, the face, and sensitive areas, we would be at a loss. There is no one product that works best in all these locations.

For body hair, you cannot go wrong with any Sally Hansen product and the lotion we have reviewed here is no exception. If for some reason you cannot get the lotion, then our second choice is the Nair spray.

For facial hair treatment, your best bet is the Neomen spray, with Cidbest running a close second.

February 8, 2021

Hair Removal Advice – A Guide

Hair Removal Advice

Hair removal seems like fighting a never-ending battle to achieve your beauty target. It may surprise you that there really is no one-way-for-everything method for hair removal.

Different methods are better for different body areas. Here, we will review our recommendations for how-to’s on all your little bits.

Eyebrows

For those of you that aspire to tame those eyebrows by waxing, do not try this yourself unless you want to risk accidental eyelid burns, overzealous hair removal, and intend to start drawing on your eyebrows.

Seriously, go to a salon for the wax. Eyebrow grooming is best done by tweezing or threading.

Get a white cosmetics pencil and hold it straight up to the side of your nose, then make a mark where the pencil crosses the eyebrow. Next, tilt the pencil from your nose across the outer edge of your eye and mark the eyebrow at that point, too.

Once again, hold the pencil to your nose and tilt it so that it passes just by the outer edge of your iris. Mark that point with an upside-down V at the top of your brow.

These are your guidelines for left and right extremes (pluck anything outside of those lines) and try to taper the upper part of your eyebrow so that the V is the highest point of the eyebrow arch.

Upper Lip

For upper lip care, your choices are long-term (laser!) or short-term (wax). If you want a great look that lasts about a year or more hair-free, then a salon laser treatment is the way to go.

However, these treatments use specialized equipment and are expensive. A more affordable alternative is home-use IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) machines that can be purchased online or in larger beauty supply stores.

A short-term but effective and affordable way to go is waxing. Just make sure to choose a low-temperature wax kit that is specifically designed to be used on the face.

When waxing, apply the warm wax in the direction of hair growth (for example, down and away from your nose) but pull the wax off in the opposite direction for best results.

Armpits

Hair Removal Advice

Here, your options are shaving, waxing, or lasers. As above, laser treatment is really, really effective, but really, really expensive. Use of an IPL machine, particularly one with galvanic plates, can achieve nearly the same results and give you a longer-term hair-free solution.

For shaving, lather the area thoroughly with gentle shaving cream or soap and shave upward, then downward, then across the armpit to catch hairs from all directions. Never use a razor more than three times (twice only is best), since a dull blade is more likely to cut.

Waxing gives better results than shaving and hair should be waxed on unshaved armpits. There needs to be some length for the wax to get a good grip.

Waxing is a solution that you can do once a week to keep your armpits clean. When selecting a product, get a stripless wax that can shrink around and properly grab hairs.

When waxing this area, work in small sections and from different directions.

Forearms

For your forearms, your best options are waxing and laser treatment. Many women shave their forearms, but this is really not recommended and leaves uncomfortable stubble.

Laser treatments typically can be adjusted to either completely remove hair from your forearms or to simply reduce the density of hair on your arms. Treatment sessions to achieve this are typically one to three visits to the salon but cost several hundred dollars apiece.

As stated above, an effective, non-chemical approach is by using an IPL machine. This is somewhat of an investment, but most machines have a respectable use life before bulb replacement and can work for you for several years.

Waxing is an effective method that is affordable, produces great results that last a few weeks, and can be performed with a minimum of discomfort.

Groin

Cleaning up your bikini lines is a bit of a touchy proposition for most girls. Basically, any method will work, but some produce better results whereas others are more non-fuss.

This is one area where we do not recommend laser removal, for several reasons. The first reason is the fluctuating nature of bush fashion.

Going Brazilian is still an in thing, but the fashion trend is beginning to swing back towards a natural, trimmed look. So, laser removal, although not permanent, will produce long-term results that you cannot easily reverse.

The second is the cost. You can drop thousands of dollars on bikini area laser treatments and still need to wax anyway, so why bother?

Although shaving works well, with the risk of cuts we strongly recommend waxing. It’s not as bad as you think it is and can produce really great results.

Before you start, take a few anti-inflammatories (like ibuprofen or acetaminophen) and not a glass of wine or a few shots. The alcohol will actually make you more sensitive to pain, despite all the old west cowboy dentist references in the movies.

Let your hair grow out to about a quarter-inch for fine hair and a half inch for coarse hair. Sit in front of a mirror so you can see, then put one foot on your opposite knee.

Spread the wax in the direction of hair growth in small sections, like 1×3 inches. Small sections will be easier and less painful to strip off.

Plaster a strip of muslin cloth over the wax so that it embeds in the fabric, pull it tight, then give a good yank in the opposite direction of hair growth. When you finish waxing, be sure to use a soothing moisturizing lotion with aloe or apply some hydrocortisone cream if a rash develops.

Read Related Topic: Homemade Hair Removal Creams – A Guide

Legs

Hair Removal Advice

Removing hair from your legs can be done by any method, though we do not recommend laser treatments since the area is so large and leg hairs are usually so stout that you would break the bank in the process. If you want to try a method that does not involve the usual suspects (shaving, waxing, depilatory creams), then try an IPL device that is a larger model and covers more skin surface area.

Most women simply shave their legs (about 70% of them), but be sure to use a fresh razor every other time and preferably one with multiple blades. Some women find that they can squeeze up to 4 or 5 uses out of a razor, but many of us know that after the first couple of goes, you get diminishing returns.

If you are going to shave, just make the investment and buy some good, multi-blade disposable razors, use them twice or so and toss them. Follow-up with an aloe vera lotion to make your skin happy.

If you aspire to wax your legs, know that the pain factor is rather high since your leg hairs are usually some of the heaviest on your body. However, you cannot argue with the excellent results of a good leg wax.

Just wax down the hairs in small sections (1×3 inches) and strip off in the opposite direction. Just make sure to grow out your leg hair a bit before a wax (like ¼ to ½ inch) since this is a longer-term solution and you will not have to repeat it for weeks.

Chemical depilatory creams are very effective, but smell and can be messy. Many women prefer their use to the pain of waxing and they can be a relatively pain-free approach to hair removal.

Just make sure to follow the directions, do a test patch on your skin before going full Monty on your legs, and stick to the application time limits. This latter point is very important if you want to avoid a chemical burn.

See Related Topic: Best Hair Removal Sprays and Lotions

February 8, 2021

Women’s Grooming Checklist

Women Grooming Checklist

When working to reveal your inner beauty, it often helps to refine your outer beauty as well. In this article, we will outline our tips for keeping yourself looking great and feeling sexy.

Dry brush your skin

Use a natural fiber dry body brush (with horsehair fibers) to exfoliate your skin before you shave or bathe. Exfoliating this way feels great on your skin (most body brushes have nylon nubs to prevent you from bearing down too hard) and boosts your circulation.

Doing this before you shave will make the razor glide over your legs more smoothly and will stimulate your skin so that hairs will tend to be more erect. All in all, that makes your shaving experience easier and you can use these brushes all over your body: legs, arms, tummy, back, and shoulders).

Besides dry brushing your skin, you can also do something similar to your lips by using a tongue brush, a tongue cleaner (like the one on the backside of most toothbrushes), sugar scrubs, or by wiping with a warm washcloth while in the shower. 

Shave your legs

Women’s Grooming Checklist

To keep your legs smooth, you can shave them in a warm shower. Lather up with soap or body wash and use a fresh multi-blade razor or one that has only been used one or two other times and shave in the opposite direction of hair growth.

Alternatively, you can use spray-on or wipe-on depilatory creams and lotions, or do a hot wax on your legs.

Wash your hair with a cleansing shampoo and condition separately

Regular washing of your hair with shampoo does not always get it as clean as you would think. Residues from hair care products, mineral deposits, and body oils can build up on your hair and leave it looking greasy or stringy despite a good wash.

Use cleansing shampoos, which can remove build-up from the hair shaft, to get your hair really clean. Then, apply a leave-in conditioner while the hair is wet to restore some of the suppleness.

Read Related Article: Best Hair Removal Sprays and Lotions

Use witch hazel on areas where you sweat, piercings

Witch hazel is a fabulous astringent for cleaning the skin of leftover loose dead skin cells and soap residue from the shower. You can even use it on your legs before shaving to reduce the chance of scalping (razor bumps).

This extract is also very useful for thoroughly cleaning and sterilizing areas where you sweat a lot, like skin folds and under your breasts. If you have any piercings, use witch hazel on the piercing holes to kill bacteria and prevent infections.

Moisturize (don’t be chalky) after bathing

When you bathe or wash your skin, the acid mantle (a combo of sweat and oils) of your skin is removed. Sure, it is good to exfoliate and clean yourself, but without the acid mantle, your skin can become dry and scaly.

It is always best after showering to replenish your skin with a water-based moisturizing lotion that is pH balanced for your skin. That means one with an acid pH of anywhere between 4.5 and about 6.0.

Most moisturizing lotions will state their pH clearly on the packaging or bottle. Don’t be shy about lathering it on, since in this case more is better.

Clean your ears

If you did not already wash behind your ears in the shower, a wipe down with witch hazel is a great way to touch up. Also, you can use a wet washcloth to clean your ear canal or make use of an ear douche or Q-tip (we know they tell you not to use these in your ear, but everybody does it).

Cover eye circles and get good sleep

Since people will spend most of their personal contact time with you looking at your face, taking care of those dark circles under your eyes is a must. Just apply some appropriate foundation under your eyes that matches your skin color.

Also, get some sleep, like 8-9 hours’ worth. Seriously, if you want to really look good, regular and consistent sleep does wonders.

Shoot for 9 hours since you will not fall asleep right away and may awaken briefly in the night. That way, you guarantee two full sleep cycles (which run about 3.5-4 hours each).

Hint: If it’s been a long time since you can remember having a dream, you’re not getting enough sleep.

Brush and Floss (use whitening toothpaste)

Brush your teeth at least twice a day with whitening toothpaste using a soft toothbrush. Don’t be tempted to get a medium or hard toothbrush; those will do nothing but scuff up your gums and wear down your tooth enamel.

Brush in gentle, circular motions and up and down on your front teeth. Be sure to floss afterward.

Flossing not only cleans between your teeth but helps to define them so that your smile actually looks whiter.

Shape and trim your eyebrows

Tame those things! Properly sculpted eyebrows help to define your eyes and present an overall impression of cleanliness and good grooming.

For removing excess eyebrow hair, try tweezing or threading. Use a razor with caution and if you do, only use a single blade razor.

To define the areas that need to be removed, use a white makeup pencil and mark the inner (line up with your outer nostril) and outer (angle the pencil from your nostril to the edge of your eye) edges.

Keep nails neat, easy on the color

Women’s Grooming Checklist

Give yourself a manicure regularly to shape your nails and be certain to clean regularly (daily) under them. This can be done most easily in the shower with a soft nail brush.

Moisturize your cuticles with a skin lotion or a cuticle conditioner and push them back so that the lunula of your nail can be seen (basically, push them back to the skin). If you intend to use nail polish, go easy on the color, or use a neutral color.

Mascara

Use mascara to make your eyes pop!

Easy on lipstick

No glaring colors here, just basic tones.

Cool it on eyeshadow

Hey, Missing Persons, it ain’t the 1980s. No electric blue or green eyeshadow.

Use natural, warm tones.

Perfume lightly

No need to gas out your friends and colleagues here. Pick a pleasant scent that you like, that makes you feel pretty, and apply sparingly.

Remember, this is only meant to be smelled by someone who comes in very close, not from across the room!

February 8, 2021

Illuminage Precise Touch Hair Removal Review – 2021 Deep Dive

iluminage hair removal review

Iluminage Beauty was a company founded in 2000 by Dr. Shimon Eckhouse in the city of Yokneam Illit, Israel based on his invention of the elōs intense pulsed light (IPL) technology. Eckhouse and his colleague Goldman invented modern IPL technology in 1993 and began producing medical, and later, consumer IPL devices for treatment of a variety of skin conditions and for hair removal.

IPL is now a very common treatment method of permanent depilation and the technology is currently available in consumer devices from a variety of manufacturers. What makes the elōs technology different from other IPL devices you can find on the market is that, unlike other manufacturer devices, it is not limited in effectiveness to only certain skin tones or hair colors.

Most IPL devices cannot function on very dark or tanned skin and also have limited effectiveness on light hair colors. The elōs technology does not suffer from any of these shortcomings and has been verified in clinical trials to work on all skin tones and almost all hair colors (only grey hair was not tested, but Illuminate claims the device will work). See more on the specifics below in our “How elōs works” section.

Iluminage Beauty and its sister company Syneron Medical ceased operations in 2018 and merged with Lescolton to form Syneron-Candela. The company now exclusively produces commercial medical devices, so elōs devices are still available on the market but no further production of the IPL machines is planned.

A Deep Dive into The Iluminage Precise Touch

The Precise Touch is a great hair removal device that is comfortable and easy to use, causing no skin damage or irritation if used in the correct skin locations (not for use on genitals or breasts). Many IPL devices out there are sort of generalist devices for the whole body, but the Precise Touch is precise, as it is so named, and is intended for the delicate, small skin areas of the neck, jawline, and upper lip.

Treatments are in the form of brief pulses of light directed into the skin through a two-centimeter square window which will stun the matrix cells at the base of the follicle and stop hair growth. For the device to work properly, the treatment area should be shaved, clean, and dry, and treatments can be performed every week over a month and a half for permanent hair removal (more on how this works below).

What the Precise Touch is and what it is not
The Precise Touch is an IPL device, not a laser device. That is the short answer.

When trying to read up on at-home hair removal that does not involve depilatory creams or waxes, you will likely find many, many reviews about all the latest rage in-home laser hair removal devices. However, nearly everything that you will read on the internet regarding home laser hair removal is completely and totally false.

This is not to say that the performance review of those devices is false, just the description of what they are and how they work is misleading. This can probably be chalked up to a general lack of understanding of physics among the public, but we will bring you totally up-to-speed on how these IPL devices and elōs specifically work.

All the “laser” devices you find out there, including the Precise Touch, are IPL devices that do not involve lasers but use some form of quartz bulb illumination system. To date, there is only one approved consumer laser hair removal device and it is made by Tria.

The Precise Touch specifically uses a xenon bulb illumination source, which is fast-recharging and tends to be effective over a broader range of skin tones and hair colors. Why are IPL devices not lasers, you may ask?

Lasers are light wavelength narrowband devices that only emit coherent sources of light, meaning that all emitted light is of the same frequency and waveform. They are spatially-coherent devices, illuminating only a very small target area, and tend to remain spatially-coherent over considerable distances because the light output is directed through a collimator.

Laser light is also temporally-coherent, with emitted waveforms in the same temporal phase which drives stationary interference, ensuring that the emitted light remains in a narrow bandwidth of the electromagnetic spectrum (i.e., it appears as one color). The technology of IPL is quite different, however, and the emitted light is not collimated or coherent and is projected in a much broader electromagnetic band range.

As a parallel example, almost anyone these days can easily distinguish between a laser pointer and an LED flashlight. The devices are simply that different.

How elōs works
Before we describe the specifics of IPL technology, keep in mind that the elōs technology is a bit different from your standard IPL device and it is for this reason that elōs is more broadly effective across a range of skin tones and hair colors. What distinguishes elōs is its joint use of radiofrequency emissions (RF) with IPL emissions.

The IPL and RF energies work in combination to heat the hair shaft and stunt matrix cells in the hair follicle. Matrix cells are the only living part of the hair and are responsible for the production of the keratin polymers and embedding of melanin pigments in the construction of the hair shaft.

IPL frequencies are tailored to be absorbed by melanins in the hair, which consist of two types of modified tyrosine polymers. Eumelanin is dark brown pigment and pheomelanin is more of a yellow pigment.

The combination of these two pigments in different ratios is the foundation for different hair colors and skin tones. Absorption of IPL frequencies by melanins causes a spectral phase shift of the light to the infrared band, which produces heat.

The heat produced is intense, but very brief because the emitted light is a momentary flash and just enough to stun the matrix cells without incurring any damage to the surrounding tissues. The RF emissions work in a different, longer wavelength electromagnetic band range and similarly produce brief, momentary heating.

Collectively, both emissions damage matrix cells in the hair follicle and arrest hair growth, and the addition of RF emissions allows the elōs device to target a broader range of hair and skin types than other IPL devices. However, users should be aware that IPL treatments for permanent hair removal require a longer treatment cycle than professional laser hair removal treatments.

The typical treatment cycle for IPL devices is six to eight weeks, applying a treatment every two weeks with periodic follow-ups over the next six months as maintenance. The reason for this lengthy treatment cycle is connected to how IPL devices work: they only can target hair follicles in a particular state of growth, referred to as anagen phase.

Hair growth is a cyclical process that involves an anagen phase (active hair growth), catagen phase (follicle involution), and telogen phase (mature hair phase). The majority of hair on the body at any given time consists of telogen phase hairs, with this stage in a hair life cycle typically lasting about two to three months and ending when the hair is shed.

Anagen phase hairs will grow at one centimeter per month until they reach their terminal length, then transition to catagen phase hairs for two to three weeks before entering the telogen phase. After hair shedding, the follicle will reenter the anagen phase and begin new hair growth.

IPL requires catching hair follicles during their anagen phase and disabling matrix cells to break the hair growth cycle. This is the reason for repeated treatments and having to wait it out for all the follicles in the treated area to go through a cycle.

Who’s It For?

The Precise Touch is perfect for people who want to permanently remove body hair from small, sensitive areas of the skin. It is intended to treat areas such as the upper lip, neck, and jawline, but will also work well on armpits, the bikini line, and forearms. The bulb of the device has an estimated lifespan of about 150,000 flashes and is estimated to be able to treat about 195,000 square centimeters of skin with a total of 80 treatments.

That number of treatments will provide basically two years of use time before the bulb needs to be replaced. The Precise Touch is also offered in a second-tier, a more expensive model with a bulb lifespan of 300,000 flashes, which will treat approximately 240,000 square centimeters of skin over 150 treatments with an estimated use time of 10 years.

How to use the Precise Touch
The device is extremely easy to operate and does most of the work for you, however, it is recommended that the intended treatment area is shaved prior to using the device. The treatment steps are as follows:

  1. Shave hair from the intended area
  2. Power on the device. The blinking blue light indicators report the energy level (1-3) and the device powers up at energy level 1.
  3. Using the elōs button on the back, you can adjust the energy output to the desired level (it is recommended to start at power level 1 and see if that is adequate for you by doing a small patch test and waiting a day to see if you have any skin reaction).
  4. Place the device on the skin so that the silver faceplate makes contact. This is the RF emitter and the device will not flash if it does not sense contact with the skin.
  5. Slowly glide the device over the area to be treated. The device will flash cyclically as long as it is applied to the skin.
  6. For small, delicate areas like the face, place, and allow to flash once, then remove and reposition (in this mode you will need to treat the area 2-3 times in a session using the device in a stamping motion).

If you have fair hair (blonde, red, or grey), it is recommended to wax or epilate the treatment area before using it. Plucked hairs leave microscopic wounds in the follicle and the light energies will heat the blood left in the base of the follicle, which overcomes the limitations with the low melanin content of the hair.

You will also need to double the number of treatments for results, although the device instructions do not specify this change in the treatment pattern.

Illuminage recommends 7 treatments, one each week, for optimal results (more, if you have fair hair). For treatments of the face, you should treat intended areas 2-3 times weekly.

As for how long a treatment requires in time, both armpits take between 2.5 – 5 minutes to treat, depending on the color and density of the hair shafts. A note about permanent hair removal: It is not really permanent, since hormone changes can stimulate the development of new follicle tissue, but full treatment cycles should keep the skin hair-free for a year or two.

See Related Topic: Flash & Go Hair Removal Devices by Silk’n Review

What We Like About the Illuminage Precise Touch

The Precise Touch is pain-free, very easy to use, and does not weigh much, so it is comfortable to hold and you will not tire after a long treatment session. Many users report positive results after just a few treatments and most users to find that treatment cycles of less than six weeks are completely adequate. Compared with other IPL devices, the Precise Touch is more effective and produces better results in less time.

Among all the positive attributes of the Precise Touch, we feel the biggest advantage of this device compared with other devices on the market is its ability to effectively treat all skin tones (Fitzpatrick Scale I-VI) and affect all colors of hair. The overwhelming majority of IPL device manufacturers cannot make this claim and the Precise Touch has been verified to perform this way through clinical trial validations.

The main difference between the Precise Touch and other IPL devices is its inclusion of RF emissions with light therapy to effectively target hair follicles, regardless of skin tone or hair color.

What We Don’t Like About the Illuminage Precise Touch

Many users complain that the flashes are too bright, however, the product package does contain a set of goggles to address this issue. The goggles are rather dark, however, and many customers find that they cannot see a thing with them on (as an alternative, users can wear sunglasses).

The device is intended for small areas, so attempting to treat any large areas of skin (such as the forearms) takes time and patience. If this is what is desired, Iluminage makes a bigger model for large skin areas (the Touch).

There have been some reports of device failures, but in each case, Iluminage has either repaired or replaced the product. You can also find some unfavorable reviews of the device out there from dissatisfied users who claim the Precise Touch does not work. In these cases, and based on their description of use, it is apparent that the customers do not fully understand how the devices work and the amount of time required for observable results (read the manual!).

PROS

  • Proven in clinical trials to work on all hair, including blonde and red hair
  • FDA and CE certified for safety
  • Comfortable to use and easy to operate
  • Small treatment area (2 square cm) is great for delicate locations (neck, jawline, and upper lip)
  • Fast bulb recharge = fast treatment time
  • Safe for all skin tones (Fitzpatrick Scale I-VI)
  • No skin tone sensor necessary
  • Corded, so no need to charge a battery
  • Uses a combination of IPL and RF energy emissions for safety and reduced skin reaction
  • Built-in UV filter
  • Great customer service from the manufacturer

CONS

  • For lighter hair colors (grey, blonde, red), required epilation prior to treatment lengthens the treatment interval several weeks
  • Not intended for treating large skin areas, such as the legs
  • Instructional materials do not fully explain what permanent hair removal means
  • The manufacturer has discontinued the device (and their other hair removal devices), so supplies are limited

What’s Included?

  • Iluminage Precise Touch
  • Quick start card (other instructional materials are on the packaging box)
  • Power cable with AC/DC power supply (UK Commonwealth style plug)
  • Device stand
  • Goggles with a charcoal tint

Overview Of Features

  • Combined IPL and RF emission treatments
  • A 2-year limited warranty
  • The device is a small size (only 5.7 x 6.1 in; 15 x 15.5 cm)
  • Bulb rated for 150,000 flashes (there is a more-expensive 300,000 flash mode as well)
  • 94% hair reduction in 7 weeks
  • Three power levels

Review Summary

If you are looking to remove hair from sensitive areas of the skin in a permanent and pain-free way but do not want to foot the bill of going to a dermatologist for laser hair removal, the Precise Touch is an excellent means of achieving your goals.

 

Read Related Article: A Deep Dive into Pilaten Hair Removal Cream by Baisidai

May 10, 2020

Why is Hair Removal Cream not Working? [Depilatory Creams 101]

Like many of my fellow hairy girls, I had a very early experience with depilatory creams – mainly because my parents completely forbid me from shaving, telling me that I was too young (and also that I would become hairier! What a lie).

While wistfully browsing the women’s body grooming section at the drugstore, I spotted my salvation (or so I thought) – a can of Veet, promising silky smooth legs, no shaving required.

Hallelujah!

I could finally stop being Chewbacca’s little sister.

This was it – I was finally going to get rid of my leg hair discreetly and effectively because it wasn’t technically shaving. Well, my scheming little self was shocked when I actually used the stuff. I thought I would come out the other end of using Veet cream as a smooth, hairless nymph – but that wasn’t the case.

Afterward, my legs were covered tiny, itchy bumps – AND, I still had patches of half-dissolved hair all up and down my legs. Not the look I was going for, obvi.

So what went wrong? Why is hair removal cream not working for me?

First off:

I didn’t patch test. Because depilatory creams are extremely basic (as in, alkaline) to dissolve the keratin bonds that hold your hair together, they can sometimes irritate skin. A patch test is the best way to check how resilient (or not, in my case) your skin will be to the chemicals in depilatory creams.

Second, it wasn’t strong enough for my thick hairs – even though it had been strong enough to irritate my skin and stink out my bathroom, I still had some thicker hairs left in uneven patches, something I clearly did not anticipate.

Luckily, this didn’t entirely put me off hair removal creams – they definitely have their advantages over other methods of hair removal, and are one of my favorite go-to products for being hairfree because they’re so easy to use and yield quick, hairless results.

How Does Hair Removal Cream Work?

Hair removal creams will use a blend of alkaline ingredients in a moisturizing, lotion-like base to soften hairs, and basically turn them to jelly so that they can be easily wiped away from the skin. Ta-dah!

You can use them pretty much anywhere on your body (legs, bikini, underarm, face) so long as it’s correctly formulated for that area – please don’t use body-strength creams on your upper lip!

It’s these same alkaline ingredients that are responsible for that signature, slightly nostril-singeing chemical smell that you get with hair removal creams. The smell can be a make or break deal for a lot of girls out there, and I don’t blame them – even hair removal creams that have scent added to cover-up fail to cover anything up at all!

Sometimes, such a strong chemical smell can make you wonder if maybe, just maybe, hair removal cream is bad for you. It’s okay, I can see how one would think that – they absolutely STINK and when used incorrectly, your skin could become very, very irritated. But on the whole, they’re completely safe to use, even during pregnancy! In that case, it’s more about whether or not your pregnancy nose can handle the smell.

Related Reading: Is It Safe to Use Hair Removal Cream During Pregnancy?

Hair removal creams take anywhere from 5-10 minutes to work, and it’s absolutely essential that you stick to the time recommended to you on the instructions. There was a time when I decided that the instructions did not apply to me and again – I was left rashy for weeks after.

Does Hair Removal Cream Hurt?

IMO, this is the number one advantage that hair removal cream has over basically all other removal methods –

it’s actually painless.

…At least, it is when it’s done correctly. Hair removal cream should only ever be used on healthy, unbroken skin – no rashes, mosquito bites, shaving nicks, nada.

This goes for everywhere that you plan to use it, even on your bikini area – if you can’t handle bikini waxing but still want a smooth bikini line, hair removal cream could be the way to go – here’s my post about the best pubic hair removal cream.

If your skin is sensitive and always seems to tingle or burn (wash that ish off ASAP if it’s burning!) then, unfortunately, hair removal creams may not be right for your skin type – luckily, there’s a whole world of other de-hairing options out there.

Getting the Most Out of Hair Removal Cream

If you’ve used hair removal creams before, dutifully followed all the instructions and still found that you had a few leftover hairs time and time again, you might be sitting there thinking, “Wait, why doesn’t hair removal cream work on me?”

There are a couple tips and tricks that you can use to get the most out of your hair removal creams for gloriously smooth, hairfree skin.

A cream designed for facial hair might not be strong enough to dissolve hair on your underarms, and likewise, a product designed for your bikini area could be too strong for your face.

Like waxing, there’s an ideal length for hair removal via depilatory creams – because they rely on a thick, even layer coating the hair to dissolve it, some hair can be too short for it to be visibly effective.

Doing this helps ensure you’ve taken off as much of the hair as possible down to the root, totally eliminating any chance of leaving any half-dissolved hairs behind. Get ready to feel smooth AF!

Which Is Better: Hair Removal Cream or Waxing? 

Now in comparison, waxing is a whole different ball game. The major difference is how exactly the hair is removed from the skin. Waxing rips hair out at the root for a few weeks of totally hairless skin but can be painful if you’re not used to it. Hair removal cream only dissolves the visible hair on the skin, not the root, so regrowth from depilatory creams can appear pretty quickly – so you’d have to use a hair removal cream about once a week for general upkeep.

Improper waxing aftercare can leave you more prone to ingrowns than hair removal creams because the hair root is totally removed, and the hair has to regrow completely. But, there’s no funky smell and it’s over relatively quickly in the hands of a skilled aesthetician.

They’re both excellent ways of managing body hair (believe me, I know) and, at the end of the day, comes down to your personal hair-managing preference.

Here’s to happy hair removal!