Shaving body hair generally gets a bad rep, who am I kidding, it has a horrible rep. However, with the correct steps, including pre and post-shave aftercare, it can be a great solution for hair removal and management at home.
One day during quarantine, I was utterly OVER my overgrown eyebrows, fuzzy legs, and other various furry body parts. Coincidentally, this was the same day I chatted with aesthetician, life coach, and all-around cool girl; Tiffany Tramaine.
Photo: Tiffany Tramaine with a client pre-quarantine
Her positive and upbeat personality is infectious, so we easily chatted for over three hours about the best methods for shaving at home, mental health, and dating during the quarantine. She even challenged me to try a first date via video conference; that experience is for another blog post. Whew!
Thinking about someone potential and new seeing me with my overgrown eyebrows and unkempt body hair during a virtual first date, even though they really wouldn’t know the body hair existed, encouraged me to inquire of best practices for shaving at home to prevent irritation and bumps.
Spoiler alert, Tiffany, drops some excellent tips during our candid conversation that might actually make you like shaving!
About Face – High Brow Mess
CM: My brows miss you. I call you the brow whisperer! During the quarantine, I have not touched my eyebrows. Currently, they look like furry caterpillars crawling above my eyes. One more week, though, and I fear for their growth. I may do self-harm in the form of trying to shape them myself.
Photo: My bushy, yet scraggly eyebrows
TT: Growing them out during this time is ideal. You can conceal hair growth that is outside of your desired eyebrow shape with make-up and concealer to define them. If you are going to shape/trim them…if its not an eyebrow razor, I don’t recommend it! You don’t want to pluck or do any damage that may permanently damage the hair follicle.
CM: Razor only, got it. I am guilty of tweezing, but I have been resisting for the past two months. However, after years of abuse, they’re growing back in weird patches. They look like the hair on the Cynthia doll from Rugrats. Lol. I was hoping this two-month-long abstinence period would result in eyebrows reminiscent of my junior high years, lush and bushy; before I ever touched them.
TT: For that, I would look internally first. Are you drinking enough water to allow your skin to breathe and help hair grow?
CM: Enough wine, yes. Probably need to get back to drinking enough water.
TT: Taking multivitamins, as well. You want to balance inside before outside. Ensure that you’re getting enough protein and critical nutrients. Externally, you want to stimulate blood flow to increase hair growth. At night, apply Vitamin E, a serum, castor oil, or olive oil on brows to help wi growth. Then gently massage each eyebrow for a few minutes with the pad of your finger or old mascara wand.
Body Hair – I hate myself for shaving, but I just can’t stop
CM: TMI, but I am planning for The Full Monty of shaving. I can't wax myself. I never pull the wax strips taut or fast enough. Plus, there are areas I can’t reach with wax. How can I make shaving at home pleasant even when the task is daunting due to my lack of upkeep?
TT: I recommend shaving or using a depilatory cream. A lot of people don’t like depilatory creams, but I prefer a depilatory over the razor. A depilatory cream provides smoother and longer results. But, with Nair or any other hair removal cream; do not exfoliate first!
CM: Good to know. Pre-shave, exfoliation is essential. Why not with Nair?
TT: With a depilatory cream, you should prep skin like you’re putting a perm on your hair. Apply coconut oil or Bio-Oil to create an inclusive layer to protect skin from being burned. After washing off the depilatory cream, use oil mixed with lavender to calm and soothe the skin. Even the ingredients in your product would work well. Before shaving, you want to exfoliate to remove dead skin and smooth any bumps. For that, I recommend using sugar mixed with oil or coffee mixed with oil. If you still have the old school St Ives Apricot scrub, that would work. Or using a dry brush.
CM: Haha, I love that you recommend products that I have in my cabinet!
TT: Yes! To build healthy habits, I believe in the least amount of products/steps to get started and build from there. While shaving, you want to use shaving cream with minimal dyes or fragrances to reduce hyperpigmentation. You can even use body wash to act as a lubricant between the razor blade and your skin to help reduce irritation and redness.
CM: Are you a fan of safety razors?
TT: I like safety razors, but I highly recommend that you clean the razor with alcohol, or Listerine, to remove bacteria that can build up. Even just changing the razorblade isn’t enough. I do prefer using a disposable razor for the pubic mound, though, to avoid infections. Ingrown hairs are infections, so you want to reduce as many complications as possible to allow the hair follicle to grow above the skin.
CM: Good to know about the Safety razor. I hadn’t thought about that step of cleaning as a precaution, especially when changing the blade.
TT: Post-shave, I like the ingredients in the Ingrown Hair Mask to help eliminate ingrown hairs and hyperpigmentation. Topical lavender oil is anti-inflammatory and anti-fungal, which is an excellent option to apply post-shave. Coconut oil, rose oil, or almond oil is also suitable for highly melanated skin to reduce ingrown hairs and hyperpigmentation. If possible, shave at night to avoid things rubbing against the shaved area. The next day, exfoliate again to help improve skin texture as it is repairing, and hair is growing back.