When it comes to keeping skin hairless and silky smooth, most people reach for either a razor or a bottle of wax. Yet, if you ask someone the pros and cons of each hair removal technique, they might not be able to give you a good answer. We looked at what the experts are saying to help answer the question of waxing vs shaving — which is better?
Benefits of Waxing vs Shaving
If you’re looking for the most consistent, longest lasting results when it comes to at-home hair removal, then waxing is probably your best bet. The technique involves three basic steps: first, you apply melted wax to the surface of skin; second, you wait for the wax to harden; third, you swiftly pull the dry way from the skin, removing hair along with it. Unlike shaving, waxing removes the entire length of the hair — from the tip to the root. As a result, it can be several weeks or longer before you notice any hair on the surface of you rskin. As an added bonus, the process can even have an exfoliating effect on your skin by removing dead cells, oils, dirt and more.
You should be aware of the potential side effects of waxing, which include:
- Moderate pain
- Ingrown hairs
Waxing can be performed both by a professional and at-home by yourself, though we definitely recommend trying it out on a small area if it’s your first time. We recommend this Sally Hansen – Hair Remover Wax Strip Kit as a great affordable at-home option. If you’re looking for a bit more luxury for your home waxing experience, then consider this Poetic Waxing Kit by Bliss.
No matter which waxing option you choose, just be sure that your hair is at least ¼ inch long, because the wax needs that much length in order to adhere properly and provide the most effective and consistent hair removal. If the hair you’re removing is longer than ½ inch, then it’s recommended that you trim it down to help ensure the best results.
Benefits of Shaving with a Razor
If you’re looking for the most convenient and affordable hair removal option, then look no further than the time trusted combination of shaving cream and a razor. Unlike waxing (which removes hair from under the skin), shaving only removes hair from the surface and above. Although this may only leave an area smooth for a few days, it’s an incredibly convenient option that can be done in the shower or bath, with no appointment or preparation needed.
When compared to waxing, using a razor and shaving cream typically results in little or no pain. And even better, a single bottle of shaving cream and set of razors can be used over and over again, which can save you significant amounts of money over time. Razors come in a variety of shapes, styles, and configurations — with electronic options available as well. We recommend this Venus Embrace Sensitive Razor by Gillette. Just be aware that “razor bumps”, razor burn, small cuts, and ingrown hairs can result from shaving. To help avoid these side effects, we recommend wetting the skin, applying a thick layer of shaving cream, and shaving with (not against) the natural direction your hair grows. Be sure to change or replace your blades when they begin to dull to help ensure the best results.
Which Is the Best Form of Hair Removal?
The answer to which is better between waxing and shaving depends on several factors, including your desired results, your available time, and your budget. If you’re looking for the longest lasting results, waxing is the better choice. Keep in mind that the waxing process can be time consuming (with a single session lasting 30 minutes or more) as well as costly, since most professional appointments ranging from $40-70. Though at-home waxing options are typically much more affordable.
If you’re looking for the quicker and more affordable hair removal option, then using a razor and shaving cream is your best bet. You don’t need to keep your hair within a minimum or maximum length before shaving, and the entire process typically takes 10 minutes or less. Many people will seek to enjoy the best of both worlds by reserving waxing for their bikini areas and then utilizing a razor for their under arms, legs, and other areas. So feel free to do the same or experiment to find the hair removal routine that works best for what you want. No matter which option you choose, be sure to exfoliate beforehand and moisturize after to help avoid ingrown hairs and other skin irritation.