Hair Removal creams: Your Ultimate Guide
How does hair removal cream work?
Don’t have the time to sit down and epilate or shave? This is when hair removal cream kicks in! What this product is, is basically a cosmetic preparation containing calcium thioglycolate or potassium thioglycolate. These active ingredients break down the bonds in the keratin (a key structural component of human skin, hair and nails) allowing you to easily remove the hair from the follicle (the skin organ that produces the hair).
So that basically traduces with “you apply the cream on your body, leave it on for a few minutes, wipe it off and voilà! The hair is gone!”. No wonder why depilatories (the other term used to describe hair removal creams) became so common recently! We are always on the go with less and less time on our hands, everybody loves a fast solution to their problem.
How to use hair removal creams
Using a depilatory cream might seem easy peasy work, and it is actually much easier than most other hair removal methods, that said, there are a few guidelines that you should follow in order to act safe, and get the best result from the product.
1. First, choose the right product!
The first thing you need to look at when deciding which hair removal cream to choose, is check out the ingredients, see if there’s any element you might be allergic to or that has caused you irritation in the past. Also, be sure to ask your doctor for his opinion or advice, especially if you have sensitive skin, there might be special products made for your situation; usually products containing aloe or moisturizers.
Take into consideration the area where you intend to apply the cream. You might want to use specific products for each area of your body as every cream has different properties.
2. Clean up the area
As with most procedures that involve applying a product on your skin, you might want to first clean up the area that’s going to be treated. Use soap and warm water or take a shower if you are going to depilate a big area of your body. The warm water is also going to soften the hair and open the skin pores, which will for sure facilitate the action of the cream.
3. “Crash test”
Don’t worry, this doesn’t actually involve racing a car full speed into a brick wall… All you have to do before applying depilatory cream all over your body is simply test a little bit of product by applying it on a small skin spot, wait a few minutes and remove it.
Then, wait up to 24 hours to see if the product has left you any redness or weird mark on the area; if everything is ok, then congrats, you just made sure the cream is for you 🙂 That of course doesn’t mean it is suitable for every part of our body… so juts make sure you read the previous paragraph as well.
OMG! I found a permanent hair removal cream!!! *face palm*
Let’s just make something clear once and for all ladies and gents, depilatory creams are NOT PERMANENT. Exactly, no matter what you might have read online, these product do not remove hair for life, they may last a few weeks at best, but that’s it!
It is very important in our opinion that you guys understand this, they are called “depilatories” for a good reason, which is, instead of removing hairs at the root (like epilators or IPL hair removal devices do) these creams simply get rid of the hair that are on the surface, same thing with shavers.
What is the best hair removal cream?
The answer to this question is not just one, each of us has it’s best or favorite product, it’s juts a matter of finding the right one for yourself! Check out our reviews to get a few awesome ideas! And now let’s break it down to the pros and cons of depilatory creams!
The benefits of hair removal creams
As already mentioned in our overview here, hair removal creams or depilatory creams are probably the laziest method for getting rid of unwanted hair. If you’re on the lookout for an easy and pain free hair removal solution check out the benefits in the following section 🙂
- CHEAP – Hair removal creams are pretty cheap if compared to epilators or laser hair removal devices, that’s for sure. The price range goes from $4 to $15 for average good products, which makes this a good and affordable solution for most people and everybody knows people always look for the cheapest and easy way to solve their problems.
- FAST – depilatory creams are by far the fastest hair removal solution; all it takes is just laying a bit of cream on the interested area, wait a few minutes and then rub it off with a washcloth soaked in warm water. The rubbing off part is especially helpful as it is some sort of exfoliation, you remove dead skin cells leaving space for new cells to grow and get you a good looking skin
- PAIN FREE – Chemical depilatories are absolutely pain free. Just apply, wait and rub it off.
Hair removal creams sound too good to be true don’t they?
The problems of hair removal creams
Depilatory creams come with downsides as well, here’s a few:
- MESSY - these creams can usually create a big mess, they require some getting used to in order to avoid uneven areas, plus it might take some time to remove the cream and broken hairs when you’re done
- SHORT TERM EFFECT – Depilatory creams don’t last very long, it usually takes around 2 to 5 days until you see some regrowth
- SIDE EFFECTS – Depending on your skin type, some creams or hair removal gels that contain harsh chemicals can cause irritations or allergic reactions so be careful and make sure you are aware of the side effects of a specific product.
So, does hair removal cream work?
Fact is, hair removing creams are mostly just a method for people who want to get rid of unwanted hair for just one special event, a night out with friends or something similar. Nothing bad with that! They work fantastic if you think about removing hair in that context, they are probably the best solution for you! If you want a long lasting, semi permanent solution for your problem, you might want to check out epilators or laser hair removal in our dedicated sections.
Interested in hair removal creams? Check out our pick for the best depilatory cream of 2014 here 🙂