Women’s facial hair, hormones, and you.

So you’ve just finished this great workout, you’re feeling good, not looking too shabby either, and you’re strutting out of the gym a la Tony Manero of Saturday Night Fever, all ‘rockin’ and rollin’ and what-not’. But then you make the fatal mistake of looking in the rearview mirror at just the wrong time, you know the time of day when the sun hits the glass just right and bounces off your face and reflects these two gi-normous black hairs coming off of your chin, and what’s that??  Under my nose?? Hairs? Oh my god I have a mustache.

It happens to all of us. Depending on your genetic make-up, and/or ethnic background, some of you may be quite used to excess facial hair and it’s something you’ve dealt with all your life. You may bleach it, or you may be a waxing connoisseur. Or you simply may not care. But if you are reading this blog, chances are you do. But for those folks who are not used to seeing hairs on your chinny chin chin, or lip fuzz, it can be disheartening. It is a reminder of aging. It is a reminder that we may not look as young as we feel. More often than not, the onset of facial hair growth is just a normal part of aging. It could also be genetics. And then there are those pesky hormones. They can be blamed for nearly everything. And lip and chin hairs are no exception. As women age, we lose estrogen. This you probably know. But what you may not know is that because of this decrease in estrogen production, male hormones (androgens), namely testosterone, take over. Thus, excess hair growth. And no, you are not turning into a man. And no, you are not the only one suffering from this. According to Laurie Green, M.D. of CNN Health, “More women have excessive facial hair, or think they do, than you might think. Approximately 20 million American women remove facial hair at least once a week, according to research done by BristolMyers, a manufacturer of health and grooming products.”

So you see, you are not alone. You are not abnormal. You are VERY normal. Facial hair growth is annoying, yes, and it does creep up when you least expect it. It even happens to me and I have wax at my disposal 24 hours a day, five days a week. For example, this past weekend I had a date night with my hubby. I’m feeling all sexy in my skinny jeans and strappy sandals, and as I’m leaning against the restaurant table with my hand seductively propped upon my chin –  aack! there it was. A hair. A very, very coarse hair. Where were you earlier?! It must have been a conspiracy. Fortunately I keep a pair of tweezers on hand…

Anyway, the point is, it happens. For random hairs tweezing is perfectly valid and mostly painless. But when you have more than baby fuzz on your lip and chin, I recommend a good wax every four weeks or so. Bleaching I don’t recommend because of the damaging effects to your skin. Also, the hair will turn yellow and usually looks just as bad as dark hair and even noticeable on darker skin, so what’s the point? Shaving also destroys the skin and regrowth is quick and looks dark and stubbly. Waxing, on the other hand, will leave your skin smooth and hairless from anywhere between ten days to three weeks depending on your genetics. So whether facial hair has been something you’ve dealt with since puberty, or a recent acquisition, if it bothers you, make waxing a part of your regular beauty routine and forget about it. It’s a simple fix to help your look (which DOES affect how you feel!) and a whole lot cheaper than therapy…


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