When I asked the women in our community to share their questions about makeup for women over 60, there was one from Carol, who asked about facial hair removal. So, to help investigate this issue, I turned to my good friend, Ariane Poole.
Our top pick of facial hair removal methods:
If you have been following Sixty and Me for a while, you have probably already been introduced to Ariane. Not only is she a fantastic makeup artist, but she is also a warm person and a good friend. Below is a quick summary of some of the points that we discussed.
There are many mysteries that women over 60 have to deal with. Why is it so difficult to lose weight as we get a little older, even when we are eating less? Which parallel universe do all of our socks disappear into? Why does the hair on our heads tend to get thinner, while the hair on our faces gets thicker?
Of course, on some level, we all know that the extra facial hair that seems to magically appear is actually the result of our changing hormones. But that doesn’t make it any easier to deal with on a day-to-day basis.
Fortunately, Ariane says that there are good (and bad) ways to deal with unwanted facial hair. First, let’s look at what NOT to do.
When we discover unwanted facial hair, our first reaction may be to shave it off. After all, we’ve been applying this technique to the rest of our body for decades and it’s worked pretty well. The problem, as Ariane explains, is that shaving tends to make your hair grow back in thicker. This isn’t so much of a problem on your legs, but it’s more noticeable on your face. This theory can be disputed and some women do shave and have not noticed any thicker regrowth.
Another technique to be careful of is threading. This is an Indian technique that uses a thread to pull out each hair. While this is an effective technique for shaping your eyebrows, it may be too harsh for the delicate area around your lips.
So, if shaving and threading are out, what options do we have left?
Ariane says that one of the best ways to deal with unwanted facial hair is tweezing. If you go this direction, make sure that you have a high magnification mirror and a light.
One of our readers mentioned that she uses the Bellabe Facial Hair Remover. The spring system grips the hairs and pulls them out. This is a great option if you can’t see the individual hairs that need plucking.
One way to safely and gently shave unwanted hairs is with a facial razor. These were initially used to shape eyebrows, but are now used for facial hair as well.
Depending on the sensitivity of your skin, waxing may also be an option. The only downside is that this process tends to inflame the delicate skin around your lips. You can always use one of the products from Ariane’s concealer palette to cover up the redness.
Ariane recommends that you have it done professionally first. It’s the only way to know how your skin will react, how it should feel, and the correct way of doing it. Once you know all that, if you want to try an at-home wax removal kit, you can.
Depilatory creams like Nair and Veet have been around for a long time. New formulas, like Sally Hansen Hair Remover Duo Kit, are now created for delicate facial skin.
It’s always a good idea to do a patch test first before applying to larger areas on your face.
Dermaplaning is rather new to the hair removal industry. The procedure consists of gently scraping away with a scalpel the layer of dead skin and fine hair on the face. This is a temporary way of removing facial hair and fuzz and needs to be repeated regularly.
This is best left in the hands of a professional esthetician.
If you really are at your wit’s end, Ariane says that laser treatments can have the desired effect. The obvious downside here is the cost. But if you feel like this is a good investment, it is certainly one of the most effective options. The major downside for women our age is that white hair is more difficult (if not impossible) to treat with laser hair removal treatments.
Many women swear by the IPL Hair Removal device, a small gadget that is akin to a mini at-home laser device. Your results may depend on your skin and the type of hair you use it on. For example, coarse leg hair and downy facial hair may have different outcomes, but it may be a good option if facial hair removal is your main concern.
Electrolysis is an effective way of eliminating facial hair and is a technique that has been widely available for several decades now.
It works by sending heat and chemicals into the hair follicles making the hair fall out and essentially not grow back. This is also on the pricier side, takes several sessions, and not all skin complexions are good candidates for the treatment.
Choosing the best option for you depends on a number of factors. How much hair you want to remove, the coarseness of the hair and, although none of the methods mentioned here cause an extreme amount of pain, your pain threshold is another thing to consider. Laser hair removal is much more uncomfortable than threading, for example.
The best thing to do is to just try one method and see how it works, making sure to test it on a small area first to see how your skin reacts. If you’re not happy with the results, try another. Some women get the best outcomes from threading, others prefer waxing. For some, laser is the only thing that truly works for them.
For many women, facial hair is not bothersome, and leaving it alone is the best choice for them. The important thing to know is that, if you are struggling with unwanted facial hair after 60, there are a number of ways to get rid of it. The choice is yours!
For many older women, including myself, makeup has become a form of personal expression, not an attempt to impress someone else. At Sixty and Me, we don’t shy away from taboo subjects. At the same time, I want to remind you that makeup for women over 60 should be fun.
You are beautiful just the way you are. If you feel like removing your facial hair, go for it! But never forget that you are amazing, inside and out!
Have you tried any of the facial hair removal techniques listed in this article? Which ones worked best for you? Please take a few seconds to join the conversation. Our community is stronger because of you!