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Get summer ready: fighting the fuzz


Getting smooth legs for summer, TVNZ Lifestyle

By tvnz.co.nz's Melanie Scott

Previously: Get your body summer ready - Fake Tan

Admit it ladies, we all tend to get a bit more relaxed about hair removal over the winter months, so when the sun comes out it can take some preparation to make sure you're looking smooth for summer.

There are plenty of options when it comes to hair removal. We take a look at the pros and cons.

Shaving is the quickest and most popular option. The shaver market for women is awash with different brands and styles, from the very basic to the vibrating, multi-blade, moisturising strip giantess of razors. 

Whichever razor you use, hair grows back the fastest of all hair removal techniques, but if you are looking for something fast and simple, shaving is for you.

A hair removal cream, like Veet, is another quick, easy and painless option. Just wipe on the cream, leave for a few minutes then rinse off in the shower. No nasty nicks or scrapes.

Chemicals in the cream dissolve the hair but, just like shaving, it grows back quickly.  The downside of hair removal creams is often the strong (and sometimes) unpleasant smell, caused by those very chemicals, and if you have sensitive skin, you may want to avoid it.

It's no pain, no gain when it comes to hair removal and if you want longer lasting results you need treatments that are a little more uncomfortable.

Everyone's pain threshold is different, so you'll need to work out which is best for you. If you want a longer lasting result, start out with a less intensive treatment like waxing before considering the heavy hitters of hair removal like electrolysis or laser hair removal.

The most popular treatment is of course waxing. There are tons of options when it comes to waxing, whether you decide to DIY at home or see a professional beauty therapist.

Waxing rips out the hair from the root so it takes longer to grow back than shaving, but it does eventually grow back anywhere from two to four weeks afterwards, so you have to keep it up regularly.

It can be painful and you may have redness or bleeding afterwards, but this can be cleared up quickly with exfoliation and skin treatments.

Quick results and longer lasting smoothness over other temporary hair removal products mean waxing is an ideal option for the summer season. 

For a permanent fix to unwanted hair, electrolysis and IPL (Intense pulsed light) or laser hair removal are the only options.

Electrolysis involves the insertion of a tiny needle which zaps an electric current into the hair follicle which effectively kills the hair at the root.

IPL or laser hair removal treatments use intense light to target the dark hair follicles and kill off the hair. It works best on dark course hair.

Prices for electrolysis and IPL/laser hair start from $30/$80 and can reach up to several hundred dollars for one session. With several sessions usually required to complete the procedure, they are an extremely expensive option. 

If you are considering electrolysis or laser hair removal, research thoroughly. As they're such intensive and pricy treatments, you want to make sure you're getting the best treatment possible. There is a wealth of information out there and professionals will provide you with all you need to know before having the procedure.

If you're after a quick fix for summer, these definitely aren't for you but if you have long-term problem areas you want rid of, they can be a godsend.

With all the options available, pick what works best for you. Remember there will always be some trial and error involved when trying something new, so if you haven't had a particular treatment previously, try it out well before you head off on holiday or before the big party.

Next up: we look at summer trends and the most flattering fashion for problem areas.


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