Dry shaving, wet shaving or epilation - the gentlest procedures for the skin
Many people believe that a wet shave is gentler on the skin than the dry variant. As Professor Gerhard Lutz from the professional association of German dermatologists in Berlin explains, wet shaving is by no means more skin-friendly, but more thorough. An epilator causes pain especially when it is used for the first time, but it is thorough and gentle on the skin.
Dry shaving is gentle on the skin, but is less thorough. When the hairs on the leg sprout, women and some men like to use a razor. As Professor Gerhard Lutz from the professional association of German dermatologists in Berlin explains, the best time to shave after a shower is. Then the hair would be a little softer due to the warm water and the skin clean. It should be ensured that the shave is carried out with a sharp blade and as little pressure as possible in the direction of hair growth. Afterwards it is recommended to apply a lotion to the skin. Sometimes the hair follicles are injured during shaving, which can lead to an inflammation of the hair roots.
The expert advises people who have very sensitive skin or are prone to razor burn and ingrown hair to dry shave. Although this is less thorough, it is more gentle on the skin. A special electric shaver is available for dry shaving, whose knives are additionally protected. As a result, the shaving head does not lie directly on the skin and accordingly removes the hair somewhat above the skin. The high purchase price of the device and the less thorough hair removal are seen by many as a disadvantage of this shaving method.
Alternatives to dry shaving
Another method for hair removal is provided by depilatory creams, the ingredients of which soften the horny substance of the hair. The hair falls off by itself or can be removed with a spatula, which is usually included. As they are chemical substances, the tolerance should be tested on a small area of skin before the first application to avoid allergies. The hair removal cream manufacturers promise that the skin should stay smooth and supple longer than after a shave.
Epilation of the hair is also an option for many people. The hair is pulled out of the hair root using either wax or an electric epilator. This process is particularly painful the first time it is used and is also more time-consuming than a shave. After an epilation, it takes up to six weeks for the hair to grow back and have to be epilated again.
Laser treatment and flash lamps for hair removal should never be used by laypeople. Flash lamps can cause burns and irregular skin pigmentation. Laser epilation, in which the growth of the hair root is disturbed, may only be carried out by doctors. The application takes place in several sessions. After the last laser treatment, the patient should be hair-free for a long period of time - for months or even years. However, sun and solarium are taboo during the period of use, explains Lutz. Otherwise the risk of skin cancer could increase. (ag)
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