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Why your facial hair is growing and how to manage it

by Lucia Ferrari

It’s one of life’s ironies that as the hair starts thinning on our scalp as we approach menopause, we suddenly notice more hair growing in places where it’s absolutely not wanted – on our chins, on the sides of the face and even on our nipples.  It can either be a peachy fuzz or more coarse, stray, dark hairs.

Aesthetic medical Doctor Sophie Shotter, who treats many menopausal women, explains, “As we approach menopause our oestrogen and progesterone levels drop quicker than our testosterone levels – so we can end up with androgen dominance which can cause unwanted hair growth.”

What is the best way to deal with stray dark hairs?

Dr Sophie says, “If it’s the odd stray dark hair, then tweezing it is still the quickest and best way.”

What about the peachy fuzz on the face and chin?

Renowned facialist and aesthetic practitioner Vaishaly Patel says, “Threading is one of the best options for all skin tones and skin types. Lasers won’t work on fine, light hair and isn’t advisable for darker skin tones. 

“Threading however when done correctly is a very good option. You have to see someone who is experienced, as the angle is important. Otherwise, the hairs won’t be removed at the root and can snap off. It can be done all over the face, jawline and chin area. It depends on the person but results will usually last for about a month.”

If hair growth becomes a real problem, Dr Sophie says you can ask your GP for a prescription cream called Vaniqa which can help regulate facial hair growth.

What about Dermaplaning?

This is now one of the most requested treatments in New York and is becoming increasingly popular in the UK too. London-based facialist and dermaplaning specialist, Tine Hagelquist explains, “It’s essentially face-shaving with either a specifically designed device for home use or a surgical-grade scalpel in the steady hand of a qualified practitioner. 

“The blade is scraped over the skin’s surface so as well as removing any peachy hair fuzz you also get a chemical-free form of exfoliation leaving the skin really bright. You’ll also find makeup goes on as smooth as silk afterwards which is why it’s in demand as a pre-event treatment.”

What’s best for upper lip hair?

Vanita Parti, founder of Blink Brow Bars, says that threading is much better than waxing or other forms of hair removal for this delicate area, “With threading, the hair won’t grow back bristly and will in fact come back finer than before.  And if the therapist is experienced it can be pretty quick and not too painful!”

How to deal with ingrown hairs?

Waxing specialist Arezoo Kaviani (who introduced the Brazilian Wax to the UK over twenty years ago) explains, “Ingrowing hairs happen when the hair grows back or curls sideways into the skin resulting in an inflamed, raised, red bump. They can become painful and sometimes turn into a boil. Try not to pick up the tweezers and pierce the skin if this happens – it’s much better to ask your GP or pharmacist for an antibiotic skin cream. “

“To prevent ingrown hairs from happening in the first place, try and keep skin well exfoliated and moisturised. Dry body brushing before getting in the shower or bath can help too”

Dr Sophie has found using a product such as Clinisoothe Skin Purifier spray (Boots.com) can help prevent them in the first place and will definitely help speed recovery as it will take away redness and inflammation.

Find out more about menopause on our blog.

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