*contains affiliate links
Hair removal can be a touchy subject. Some people choose to do the bare minimum while others go to extreme lengths to maintain a smooth and hair free appearance. It’s a personal choice and there is no right or wrong.
I can still remember the first time I shaved my legs. I must have been about 7 or 8 which seems so young now looking back. I’m pretty sure there wasn’t that much to shave but of course I cut myself with blood pouring everywhere and in the end I had to fess up to my mum what I’d done. She wasn’t angry about it, more concerned that I’d used a razor without supervision or assistance. It’s safe to say once you’ve done that first shave, there’s no going back. The smooth and suppleness is hard to beat and as soon as the hair starts to come back through with the inevitable itchiness, the cycle begins all over again.
I opted for half leg waxes from the age of 16 to about 18 and I found it to be a decent method of keeping on top of growth however as with anything it requires constant maintenance and it can be tricky to align appointments with your social schedule. Once you start shaving in between waxes and get out of the cycle, it can be more convenient to keep on top of it yourself. Waxing can be quite expensive depending on how frequently you need it and of course your salon of choice.
In September 2017, after thinking about it for a considerable period of time, I purchased the Philips Lumea BRI956/00 Prestige IPL Hair Removal Device. It’s worth noting at home laser devices are only suitable for specific skin and hair types and are not appropriate for everyone to use. It’s important to check you meet the criteria before purchasing. The concept of at home laser was relatively new at the time however the reviews were positive and I decided to give it a go. The device was pricey at £375 (approx £300-£350 now) however when you add up the cost of monthly waxing appointments, razors or any other hair removal products used regularly, it amounts to more than you realise.
The first step ahead of using the device is to shave the area completely and this is crucial to guarantee the desired results. This is where Hey Estrid comes in. In September 2020, I was approached by the brand to collaborate on an instagram post with products gifted. My friend had previously tried and recommended the product therefore I was already aware of the brand before they got in touch and was keen to try out the starter kit.
The razor is weighty and feels more in line with mens razors than the usual flimsy ones made for women. It has a 5 blade head which is great for getting a close and smooth shave. The quality of the design is apparent and the brand values are inspiring. It’s not before time that a reliable razor existed made by women, for women.
Once smooth and hair free, I get started with the Philips IPL. The device is easy to use and painless. Before starting, you do a check by placing the device on the area you want to target and it’ll identify the correct setting to apply. As an example, my underarms might require setting 5 however my legs require setting 4. It’s all dependent on the skin tone and hair type which will be different for each area and each individual. It can also be different from one treatment to the next therefore important to check each and every time before use.
The first 4 treatments should be carried out 2 weeks apart and thereafter at 4 weekly intervals to maintain the results. It probably takes me about 5 minutes in total to cover all areas with underarms taking about 30 seconds as it’s such a small patch. Legs take longest but even still, it’s not anywhere near the timeframe of waxing or other hair removal methods. The treatment is painless and while I didn’t find waxing particularly sore, it was more uncomfortable and I’d have redness and tenderness immediately afterwards. I don’t have any of that with IPL and can head straight out the door once finished with no downtime required.
While I was initially impressed with the results, I made the mistake of not keeping up the treatments which resulted in the hair coming back and having to start the process all over again. In order to reap the rewards, you need to keep at it and consistency is the key point for any hair removal treatment. If I maintain a really good routine through the winter months, I benefit from it all through Spring and Summer with very minimal hair growth that is much more manageable day to day. While it’s the last thing I want to do in the midst of winter, I know it’s worth it once Spring arrives and I can slip on a nice dress without having to worry about whether my legs are fuzz free.
It wasn’t until I had been using both the IPL device and Hey Estrid razor consistently for a few months that I realised the notable difference. My hair regrowth is now incredibly fine and I no longer have that itchy or stubble like feeling. I can go much longer between shaves which is wonderful. I’m not prone to ingrown hairs so can’t comment on the effectiveness in that area however with the hair regrowth being finer and softer, often unnoticeable the opportunity for ingrown hairs to arise is likely less. Most of the time I don’t even realise I need to shave as I don’t have the tell tale signs or discomfort. My legs feel smooth and soft even when there is a reasonable amount of growth.
The Philips IPL device is pricey however completely worthwhile in my opinion due to the ease of use and prolonged results. Hey Estrid offer incredible razors at an affordable price with a subscription option for replacement blades. I used to go through packs of single use razors like nobody’s business with constant cuts and nicks from the cheap and flimsy products.
Overall, I feel as though I’ve finally (at the age of 30) nailed my hair removal technique to a point where minimal effort is required and maintenance is low which is all I’ve ever desired. It enables spontaneity and allows me to live in the moment with time spent on things that matter rather than a lengthy hair removal routine.
I previously worked with Hey Estrid however all opinions are my own and not linked to the original collaboration. I’m now a happy paying customer and simply wanted to share should anyone else be stuck in a rut when it comes to hair removal.