Most of us were introduced to razors by our moms and elder sisters back when we were in school. It is the cheapest way of hair removal, as compared to waxing and other methods. It is also pain-free and cuts down the garbage you create due to waxing. It is comparatively a sustainable method of hair removal as well. If done well,it guarantees you silky smooth arms. However, it comes with its own set of problems.
Of course, hair removal is a very personal choice, and one that other people don’t really have the right to weigh in on. If you’ve decided that diving into the world of shaving your arms is right for you, here are some things to be aware of before you start.
When you shave your arms, there is a high probability that you will get arm stubble in few days. Although it’s a myth that your hair will grow back thicker and darker, it is believed that the hair does have a blunt end after shaving so it can feel thicker. You’ll want to shave frequently to avoid that from happening, which can become cumbersome.
2. Razor Burn
Arms are even more tempting to dry shave since you don’t have to bend over and do any shower yoga to shave them, but control the urge! Dry shaving puts you at a much bigger risk for razor burn. Dermatologists recommend using shaving cream if you’re going to shave your arms and believe that the product you use to shave doesn’t really matter, “as long as it’s a liquid and glides.” To further reduce the risk of irritation we recommend shaving in the direction of hair growth. Also you should not repeatedly go over the same areas multiple times, and not shave irritated or inflamed skin.
3. Elbow Nicks
Elbows are essentially miniature knees. Speaking about any risks to shaving your arms versus shaving your legs, that while your arms are “not more sensitive” than your legs, you “must respect the creases, folds and curves” of your arms. IMO it’s even easier to nick your elbows since the angle is weird, so take your own time while shaving your arms.
4. Ingrown Hairs
If you’re prone to ingrown hairs, exfoliating with cream or wash that has ingredients like salicylic acid, glycolic acid, or classic acid beforehand can help,” Elbuluk says. Always opt for a moisturizing exfoliant that will help soften up your hair before you go shave. Products with hydroxy acids can help prevent ingrown hairs but should not be applied immediately after shaving as they can often cause burning and discomfort.
5. Dry Skin
Anyone who’s shaved any part of their body has probably noticed how shaving can dry out skin, so treat your arms like your legs and always moisturize after. If you can find a lotion with SPF, that’s even better. Hair (especially dark hair) provides some sun protection, so removing the hair may expose skin to harmful UV rays even more. We recommend that everyone use a zinc oxide-containing sunscreen lotion daily regardless of season or forecast.
6. You Might Consider Alternatives
If you’re not wanting to deal with the short, annoying stubble, you’ll start tossing around the idea of waxing your arms or considering laser hair removal. Laser hair reduction and depilatory creams are the least irritating methods of hair removal long-term. We recommend depilatory treatments since they are “less traumatic to the skin, won’t cut or abrade, and superficially removes hair from hair follicles.” Basically, if you’re wanting to remove the hair on your arms, you have options.
Compulsive writer, Feminist, Cat mommy.