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It's time to get those swimsuits out of your closet and flaunt your beach-ready body. But what happens if you find out that your private area needs some intervention? Deciding which hair removal method is better is a matter of personal choice. Nonetheless, it won't hurt to educate yourself about these methods.
Two of the top pubic hair removal treatments are the trendy Brazilian waxing and the good ol' shaving. Brazilian waxing is an immaculate yet painful hair removal method. Meanwhile, shaving is quite a chore yet also the go-to method for many women. Needless to say, each treatment has its share of pros and cons.
Let's take a look at how each method differs in many aspects. And hopefully, in the end, you can pick which one is for you.
Brazilian Waxing vs Shaving Comparison
20 minutes to 1 hour depending on the density and amount of hair
5 to 15 minutes depending on the amount of hair
Pain Level *rate 1-5
Time Until Regrowth
3 to 6 weeks
A few days at most
$10 to $15
*1 being the lowest, which means painless and 5 being the highest, meaning extremely painful
Brazilian Waxing vs Shaving: The Basics
Shaving is like your typical family friend who’s present at nearly all family gatherings. Simply put, it doesn’t need introductions because you just know what it is. Brazilian waxing, on the other hand, is a foreign term for some.
Most women are more familiar with the term bikini wax. It's referred to as the process of removing all the hairs visible if you wear a bikini bottom. The only difference with Brazilian is that it removes more hair. We're talking about the hairs along the vagina lips and on your bum here. Yep, it's a lot, I know.
Anyway, while shaving uses a razor to trim the hair, Brazilian waxing requires a hot wax to remove the hair from the root. Whether you want to cut those pubic hairs off or rip them all out, there's good and bad to either. Below are factors to consider when choosing which method is better for you.
Which Method Takes Less Time to Finish?
Bikini Line Shaving
Shaving your pubic area could take anywhere from a couple of minutes to 15 minutes. It depends if you want to have a landing strip, square, or triangle on top or go fully bare.
The same can be said for Brazilian Waxing. It’s all up to you to leave some hair or remove them all. Brazilian waxing done by a pro is a relatively quick procedure. One session could take up to an hour.
For some salons, the average time is 30 minutes tops. The exact duration of your wax treatment will depend mostly on the speed of the tech. With DIY Brazilian waxing, it could take you an hour or more, depending on your experience.
Which Method is Less Painful?
As what the famous saying goes, “No pain, no gain”.
Shaving is generally a pain-free method when done correctly. Just make sure to use a sharp razor and a shaving gel to avoid getting nicks and razor burns. Also, be extra careful when shaving because cuts and nicks in your pubic area can hurt a lot.
And if it's your first time shaving your private area, you may experience some pain. There's also the factor of how thick and long your hair is. It's highly recommended to trim your hair if it's really long. This way, there will be less pulling on the skin.
Undoubtedly, there's nothing pleasant about getting your pubic hair ripped out of the follicle. With waxing, there's no way to prepare yourself. The experience itself is downright uncomfortable and painful. Pain is normal, even more so if it's Brazilian waxing since your bikini area is sensitive.
That said, the amount of pain varies greatly from one person to another. Such factors like your pain threshold, the type of wax used, and the waxing technique have to be considered. But don’t worry, it’ll soon feel satisfying and freeing once the tenderness wears off.
Which Results Last Longer?
A major consideration when deciding whether to use a razor or opt for a classic Brazilian wax is the duration of results. Simply put, how long will the results of your shaving or Brazilian waxing last?
Depending on how fast your hair regrowth is, odds are, you can get take a few days off without shaving your pubic hair.
However, not until one whole week or more, especially for women with coarse and dark hair. For those with lighter hair, at best, you’ll probably have three days. Shaving only cuts the hair from the skin surface, so your hair grows back more quickly.
After a Brazilian wax, you won't need to go for another session for at least a few weeks. On average, the results can last 3 to 6 weeks. In many cases, there's minimal hair growth during the first week or two.
Then the process hastens in the following week. Subjecting yourself to regular waxing increases the lapse of time in between treatments.
Which is More Affordable?
To avoid razor burns, spending a few more dollars on a good razor is a great idea. You'll also want to stock up on blades or razors, so you won't need to go on a last-minute trip to the store.
Your $15 can already buy you a high-quality razor and a jar of shaving cream that will last for several uses.
At first glance, shaving seems like more affordable than waxing. But bear in mind that you also have to note how often you'll need to buy blade refills. For a reliable razor, try Gillette Venus Extra Smooth Women's Razor. With its five blades to achieve a super-close shave, this razor is a great deal at $9.89.
Cost-wise, shaving is nothing compared to waxing, particularly if it's a professional Brazilian wax session. At most, you'll be spending a hundred bucks for a top-quality waxing treatment, sans the tax and tips. But you can also get a Brazilian wax for as low as $30 at some parlors.
If you're a fan of at-home wax kits, then good because your $10 can go a long way. The Nair Wax Ready-Strips is only priced at $6.85. No heating required, instead, you just simply peel apart, apply, and pull off. But if you have coarse hair, it might be best to buy a DIY reusable kit that costs $25 to $100.
Brazilian Waxing vs Shaving: The Aftercare
One of the downsides of shaving and waxing is their after-effects: razor burns, bumps, and ingrown hairs. If you prefer shaving, then you'll probably be doing it more than once every week. As such, you'll likely experience one or all three. Fortunately, there are products to combat skin irritation and inflammation.
Unless you're into all-natural skincare, your favorite lotion is probably packed with fragrances. These ingredients can irritate newly shaved skin. Buy a soothing lotion or gel that is specifically formulated to soothe your private area. You can also use an OTC hydrocortisone cream to help reduce itching and irritation.
For a quick solution that you can find at home, sprinkle some Johnson’s Original Baby Powder. Also, don’t apply products that contain alcohol on your freshly shaved area. Instead of soothing your skin, alcohol-based products can burn your skin and prolong healing by weeks.
Lastly, regardless if you shaved or waxed, avoid wearing underwear made out of lace or nylon. Instead, use 100% cotton undies that don't come with tight elastic bands around the leg openings. Wearing the right kind of underwear is essential to give your skin time to breathe and recover. This also helps prevent ingrown hairs.
Now, What’s The Final Verdict?
The battle between waxing and shaving has long since sparked several debates over the years. When removing the hair from your bikini line or private zones, these two are the long-standing contestants. Chances are, you've already chosen your pick and that's good.
As for me, I'm personally leaning towards Brazilian waxing for all the good reasons mentioned above. While I find waxing painful, the pain intensity is tolerable for me. Overall, I like the meticulous, more polished version of removing pubic hair, and that's Brazilian waxing.
Waxing is generally better than shaving. However, it’s important to consider your skin, hair texture, and hair growth. If you have very sensitive skin, Brazilian waxing can be very painful. It could also cause rashes and even exacerbate it.
On the flip side, shaving is quick and pain-free. The bonus part is that it’s an inexpensive DIY method, albeit, with short-lived results. But then again, it all boils down to your personal choice, as well as the factors you deem more important than others. So, whether you’d go with Brazilian waxing or just stick to shaving, the decision is yours to make.