7 DIY Hair Removal Techniques You Can Try at Home (2024)

It seems that life is only getting busier these days. So busy, that we may have to push back that laser hair removal appointment or cancel a wax. But just because we can't get get to a professional doesn't mean that hair removal isn't possible at home. True, it's not the easiest thing to DIY, but it can be done. We found several hair-removal recipes that are easy, inexpensive and made up of all-natural formulas. Best of all, they use ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen at home like sugar, water and lemon juice. We reached out to two dermatologists and a hair removal expert to find out what methods work for at-home hair removal.

Meet the Expert

  • Annie Gonzalez, MD, is a board-certified dermatologist based at Miami's Riverchase Dermatology.
  • Rachel Nazarian, MD, FAAD, is a board-certified dermatologist at Schweiger Dermatology in New York City.
  • Courtney Claghorn is the founder of hair removal and tanning company SUGARED + BRONZED.

Check out these easy hair removal techniques for smoother skin in no time.

Sugaring

"Sugaring is an old technique that uses a combination of sugar, lemon juice, and water to remove hair. The mixture is mostly sugar, typically around a cup, with 2 teaspoons of lemon juice and 2 teaspoons of water," says Nazarian of the mixture, which is then boiled on a stove top.

Stir the sugar mixture until it turns deep brown, then remove from heat and allow to cool for 30 minutes. Then, use it the same way you would wax (by spreading it over the skin and removing it with a gentle pull). Remove the sugar with water to clean skin (unlike waxing, which requires a special product to remove all of its residue).

"My concern is always with the variations and how much people are mixing; the pH of the mixture may very greatly from that of skin, increasing risk of irritation, or chemical burns—so always proceed with caution," says Nazarian. "The way it works is by gripping to hair more than gripping to skin—so it can be used to remove the hair from the root, and if done properly, not irritate skin.Many people apply a light power on the skin before starting to buffer the skin surface."

Sugaring is preferred by many over waxing because it’s gentler to the skin and doesn't stick as much as waxing does. Less pulling not only equals less pain, but there may also be less chance of skin irritation, redness, inflammation and bruising. Those with sensitive skin especially love this method.

Sugared Gel

You can also heat up the sugar mixture in the microwave and use it as a gel, in a hair removal process done similarly to waxing. It’s an easier technique than the paste, but you’ll need at least 1/4" of hair growth and a bit more items like strips and applicators ("If it is any longer, the molding process can be painful," says Courtney Claghorn, founder of hair removal and tanning company SUGARED + BRONZED).

Gel is the better option for those new to removing hair at home from the root or who have some experience waxing. Plus, "You can remove hair in the arms, legs, underarms, and bikini area," Gonzalez says.

Once you remove the mix from the microwave, "the mixture should be a brownish color," Gonzalez adds.

As Claghorn notes, with sugaring, "there’s no need to lighten hair because sugar paste removes all of the hair!Sugaring will, however, refine hair growth over time."

Turmeric

"Turmeric is known to lighten the skin and slow hair growth," says board-certified dermatologist Dr.Annie Gonzalez. "You can use it to remove facial hair and reduce your hair growth rate."

It’s also easy to use yourself: "all you have to do is mix one tablespoon of milk with three tablespoons of turmeric powder," Gonzalez says. "Then, place this mixture in the same direction as hair growth on the facial hair you would like to remove. Leave the mixture on your skin for about twenty minutes or until it is dry. Next, wet your hands, wet the mixture slightly, and scrub your skin in small circular motions. Finally, wash off with lukewarm water."

Baking Soda

One of the most common ingredients in your kitchen could also help you bid adieu to extra hair. "Baking soda is also great for removing unwanted hair, lightening dark parts of the skin, and decreasing hair growth," says Gonzalez.

"First, you’ll need to mix a few drops of lemon juice with asmall amount of baking soda. Then, add water to the mix to make the mixture thick. Next, apply the mixture to the unwanted hair and leave it on the skin for about 15 minutes. Lastly, wash off with lukewarm water."

Pumice Stone

While a pumice stone isn't going to go as deep as, say, a sugaring wax, it can help remove unwanted loose hairs. You have to be gentle, though, using a dry pumice stone on clean skin and working it in small, circular motions.

"Although it is also somewhat effective, it is concurrently physically exfoliating your skin the same time it’s pulling the hairs out. This makes it a very aggressive option for people with sensitive skin," says Nazarian of the technique.

Byrdie Tip

You can also use a pumice stone on the heels of your feet for an at-home pedicure.

Egg White Mask

Like the pumice stone, this method won't get super-deep, but it can work on light facial hair.

"Mixing cornflour with an egg white creates a paste-like concoction that’s applied to skin and allowed to dry," says Nazarian. "It’s removed similarly to a wax, and pulls hairs out from the root."

As Gonzalez explains, removing any sort of wax-like product should be conducted with caution: "Make sure the skin is dry, and apply in the opposite direction of hair growth. Then, lift the hairs, and rip them off in the direction of hair growth."

Oats

Oatmeal is a natural exfoliating agent, so it makes sense that it's included in our hair removal roundup. In a blender or food processor, grind oats until they are a breadcrumb consistency. Then, mix in a ripe, mashed banana to form a scrub. Apply evenly to skin and leave on for 15 minutes. After that time, scrub in a circular motion against the direction of hair growth, and rinse with water.

This method works well for those with sensitive skin as oats are hypoallergenic and the banana is a good form of added hydration.

FAQ

  • Is DIY hair removal at home better than professional services?

    According to Nazarian, "many of the at-home recipes for hair removal are somewhat successful, but also more high risk than traditional hair-removal methods," as the latter are done by trained professionals.

  • Does toothpaste remove hair?

    There is no evidence that toothpaste can be used for body hair removal.

  • Does hydrogen peroxide move body hair?

    Hydrogen peroxide can be used to bleach or lighten unwanted body hair, but it will not remove the hair follicle.

Permanent Hair Removal: Everything You Need to Know

7 DIY Hair Removal Techniques You Can Try at Home (2024)
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