Women’s facial hair removal from ancient Egypt to the modern day

Women's facial hair removal from ancient Egypt to the modern day

Getting rid of unwanted hair has been an issue for women for thousands of years. We know that several methods of women’s facial hair removal still in use today, such as waxing, tweezing and sugaring have their origins in ancient Egypt. Unfairly judging people because of their unwanted hair is nothing new either. In Roman times, the value to society of both men and women was based on how much body hair they had. Those thought to be of a higher ‘class’ had less body hair than those who belonged among the lower social ranks. The clever Romans made simple ‘razor blades’ from flint and also made tweezers in order to keep unwanted facial and body hair at bay.

The invention of hair removal creams

It wasn’t until the mid-eighteenth century that the first commercial depilatory cream – “Poudres Subtile” – became available. Invented by New Yorker Dr F. Felix Gouraud and sold for one dollar a bottle, this game-changing treatment for women’s facial hair removal was described as an “invaluable depilatory [that] recommends itself as being an almost indispensable auxiliary to women’s beauty.”

The arrival of razors and the pros and cons of shaving

Towards the end of the eighteenth century the first hand-held razor for home use appeared. Although at first intended for men only, these razors were also used by a few women. It was only in 1915 that the manufacturer Gillette began making razors for the female market. Later in the twentieth century, Hollywood superstars Marilyn Monroe and Elizabeth Taylor were both said to have chosen shaving as their go to method for removing unwanted facial hair. While shaving might be an effective short term solution for hair removal, there are good reasons why women might want to look at other solutions instead. However carefully you prepare your skin, and no matter how gently you shave there is always the risk of skin irritation, cuts and ingrowing hairs.

The range of women’s facial hair removal products grows

Over the next few decades as demand for facial hair removal solutions grew, more and more depilatory creams and powders, hair tweezers and shavers were added to the beauty products market. Another step forward was made in the 1960s, when the first wax strips for underarm and leg hair removal arrived on the scene. These early wax strips were too harsh to be used for women’s facial hair removal, but they would be adapted over the following twenty years by adding a gentler wax to create the facial waxing strips we use today.

Electrolysis and laser hair removal treatments

The idea of somehow using electricity to prevent hair growth by damaging the follicle had been around for at least a hundred years before it finally gained ground in the 1970s. Technological advances meant that electrolysis could now be carried out safely. Electrolysis works by targeting follicles with short-wave radio frequencies that hold back hair growth and remains a popular option for long-term hair removal from all areas of the body, including the face.

The introduction of laser treatments

Later on in the twentieth century, safe laser treatments were developed for the removal of hair. Working in a similar way to electrolysis, laser hair removal is suitable for any part of the body although areas around the eyes should be avoided. It works by using mild radiation to disable hair growth. Like electrolysis, laser hair removal needs several sessions to achieve long-term effects. Temporary redness and swelling of the skin after laser hair removal is common, as is greater skin sensitivity to sunlight. This can increase the risk of sunburn and skin damage.

Women’s facial hair removal in the 21st century

In the digital age there seems to be more need than ever before for men and women to look their best. Thanks to ultra-high definition photography, television and video technologies, there’s nowhere to hide any little faults or issues with the way we look. The enormous popularity of online video tutorials about make-up and beauty treatments shows just how much everyone cares about looking good in the modern world.

What does this mean for women’s facial hair removal? One aspect of twenty-first century life is that we tend to want convenient and effective solutions to our problems straight away. The internet, for example, provides instant answers to almost any question you can think of and allows us to buy goods and get them delivered quickly without the need to leave our homes.

Finding an easy hair removal solution for the modern woman

For all of the great developments we’ve seen in hair removal technologies, the simple truth is that many of them are expensive, time-consuming, inconvenient and potentially messy. Of course, there are facial hair removal solutions, such as wax strips or electric epilators that are designed for use at home. These products are fine but still require time and preparation and can’t be used ‘anytime, anywhere’ which can also make them inconvenient.

In fact, until recently, the only practical facial hair removal solution that could be easily carried and used anywhere by women was a pair of tweezers. That’s fine as far as it goes, but what happens if you suddenly find yourself in a social situation and look in the mirror to find that you have a patch of fine peach fuzz or have failed to spot a patch of facial hair when doing your daily make up?

Epiwand is the answer

The answer lies in clever facial hair removal tools such as the Epiwand. There’s a reason why this simple yet invaluable women’s facial hair removal tool is one of the bestselling beauty products on Amazon. Working along the same lines as tweezing, facial hair removal tools don’t need electricity or preparation and are non-messy. They can be used over and over again, cost far less than electrolysis or laser treatment, are safe to use and – compared to some hair removal treatments we can think of – offer far less discomfort and fewer side effects. Unlike tweezers a facial hair removal tool like the Epiwand can remove loads of unwanted hairs in one go, even if they’re fine ‘peach fuzz’. Perhaps the best feature of this kind of tool, though, is that it can be taken and used absolutely anywhere. Small enough to be tucked into a handbag or pocket, something like the Epiwand can be used at any time and in any place to effectively remove unwanted facial hair.