"Shhhh... Don't be so loud!"
"How do I ask the doctor?"
"To shave or not to shave?"
Is that the question? Well then, let me give you the answers.
A lot of women ( and men of late) come to me with this question. They have fears and apprehensions and rightly so.
Here are few things that you need to know:
- The easiest and a good way to remove the hair in the pubic region is to shave. Shaving usually doesn't cause a problem as long as you remember to SHAVE IN THE DIRECTION OF HAIR GROWTH. The commonest mistake that people make is that they shave in all possible directions... especially against the hair growth for a closer shave and that is when the problem starts. The hair in the region is very thick and curly. So shaving in the opposite direction of hair growth causes the hair to grow into the skin thus leading to tiny pus filled 'bumps' which may or may not be itchy: hair ingrowth. So, if you remember this one thing you will not get those annoying red bumps on the 3rd day of shaving!
- Another important thing you need to remember is to NOT SHAVE WITHOUT USING A SOAP. Many women shave dry without using water and soap. The soap ensures a smooth action of the blade and also makes the hair softer. This makes the shaving faster and smoother.
- Using an antibacterial soap doesn't ensure that you will not get an infection. Any soap has antibacterial action as long as it lathers. The surfactant action of the lather kills the bacteria. SO using a regular bar of soap that lathers also works fine. I'd rather suggest that you use a moisturising soap bar so that your skin get moisturised as well.
- Similarly, NO VAGINAL WASHES during shaving either! Rather no vaginal washes EVER! Use them only if a dermatologist asks you to use them. My experience tells me that vaginal washes usually change the ph balance of the skin and tend to cause irritation in the long run.
If you are thinking of waxing, make sure you aren't applying extremely hot wax or those special waxes that you get these days (chocolate etc). Stick to the traditional warm wax. A few hair always remain post waxing, so don't keep trying to 'wax' them off. Remember, the skin there is thinner than the skin on your legs and hands! Treat it gently.
3. Readymade Hair removal creams
Oh please! STAY AWAY!
Even the companies of the hair removal creams categorically state "TO NOT APPLY ON THE PUBIC AREA!" And yet women, without reading the do's and dont's, apply it without any fear! The irritation it causes is extreme! So if you are using it and still haven't got a rash... stop... because trust me when I say this, that one day you will!
4. Hair reduction laser or IPL treatments
To a lot of my patients this has been like redefining 'Freedom'! The thickness of the hair in the pubic region actually helps reduction of the hair by the laser or the IPL easier and much better in comparison to the other parts of the body. The laser/ IPL both target the pigment in the hair root (not the hair directly). So once the hair root gets damaged, the hair that grow subsequently aren't so very thick. Which means that shaving becomes a easier and quicker task. These treatments also reduce the rate of hair growth. So there comes a point that the hair growth goes down to such an extent that the regular shave becomes an occasional shave. Unbelievable? Believe it! Although initially, regular sittings at a monthly interval are needed... once the thickness and rate of hair growth reduce these sittings get spaced out. Touch ups may or may not be required. But we suggest touch ups maybe twice or even once a year or depending on the choice of the individual (very much unlike waxing and shaving!). On an average, anywhere between 7 to 10 sessions are needed to get the 'ideal' response! But one thing you need to remember when you walk in for a hair reduction treatment: It isn't hair 'removal' treatment... it is hair 'reduction'! Confused? Feel free to ask a dermatologist near you!
So shave or wax or go for a hair reduction treatment!
Define your own 'Freedom' I say!