I believe what females do with their body hair is completely their choice and should not feel pressure to conform to hairless Barbie bodies, however I personally feel most comfortable with minimal body hair.
Being dark haired and having sensitive skin, the desire to keep that freshly shaved look can be problematic. In my teenage years I used to shave my legs and underarms twice a day, and even now I prefer to keep my legs hidden underneath tights as often as I can in the fear that I have missed a patch of hair or people can see the start of regrowth.
I have always been hyper critical of my body, and this is just another one of my issues. I truly wish I felt confident enough to let my hair grow out as nature intended but that is just not what makes me feel good about myself.
Since I was about twelve years old I have been obsessing over my body hair, trying almost every product available; many of these experiences were disasters resulting in ingrown hairs, burnt skin, scabs, rashes and even infections. My current favourite formula for smooth skin is a combination of using my Braun Silk Epil epilator and my trusty Venus razor. Although I am a big advocate for both, they are time consuming.
This long battle with hair removal is why I was ecstatic when Lillian from Beauty and the Snob (who I had met at the Le Chinois Dim Sum Afternoon Tea event) contacted me asking if I would like to try a series of 4 laser hair removal treatments at Pulse Light Clinic. Laser hair removal is something that I have previously considered but the prices were always way out of my range.
Though I initially replied to Lillian’s message with a resounding YES, on the day of my patch test appointment I was not sure if I had made the right decision. I have never had any sort of cosmetic treatments done before and I am even intimidated by going into a spa, so was how was going to feel walking into a glossy sci-fi laser clinic?
Pulse Light Clinic was located conveniently near to Monument and Tower Hill Stations. With my office being so close I plucked up the courage to give at least the patch test a shot. Arriving I buzzed the door and climbed the stairs to what looked like a converted office block, I was greeted by the young and friendly reception staff who asked me to take a seat and fill out some forms.
The waiting room was a narrow corridor that was clinically painted white and had posters showing the wonders that lasers could do for both hair and tattoo removal. It was not the space age place that I had anticipated but was clean, professional and welcoming.
After going through a few pages of paperwork, taking down my details and warning of the dangers of laser removal, I signed it and was taken through to the treatment room. I hopped onto the bed next to giant high tech laser machine and went over my freshly signed consent form.
The technician carefully went through each of my answers and then, again, repeated the risks involved, including: sensitivity, itching, blistering and change in skin colour. I had suffered from most of these and worse from other hair removal products so was happy to go ahead. She noticed that I was taking St John’s Wart to manage my depression, which may have been a problem due to the fact it increases skins light sensitivity.
I thought “oh, great. Here goes mental illness getting in they way again” but instead of just brushing it off and going ahead with the treatment despite this knowledge or sending me packing, she tracked down the nurse for advice. A few minutes later she returned to inform me that fortunately the nurse had experience with this herbal remedy and that I would be fine to go ahead but the laser would have to be weaker which might not give as dramatic results.
I felt reassured by their professionalism and was ready to get on with the patch test under my arm. I wiped off my deodorant, put some rather fetching sunglasses on and placed my arm above my head. The area was shaven and it was explained to me that the laser would burn but to reduce discomfort would be accompanied by a blast of cool air.
After assuring my technician that I understood and was ready to go, I felt a quick painful blast, like an elastic band snapping on my skin, then smelled the faint waft of burnt hair and that was it, patch test completed. As I was handed a glob of aloe gel I was told that usually any reactions would show up within 48 hours but due to the sensitivity of my skin she advised waiting two weeks before booking my next appointment. I was also warned not to tan, use tanning products to epilate or wax.
After only 20 minutes any fears had dissipated into thin air and I was confident that this was the clinic for me to take my first steps into laser hair removal; as long as my skin was willing to cooperate.
Have you any hair removal recommendations? Have you ever had any laser treatments, if so what were your experiences like?
150-152 Fenchurch Street
London, EC3M 6BB
Tel: 0207 205 4085
* as mentioned this treatment was complimentary however as always all opinions are my own