The Ultimate Guide to Upper Lip Hair Removal

February 20, 2020
Genesis Rivas
By: Genesis Rivas | by L'Oréal
The Ultimate Guide to Upper Lip Hair Removal
Ladies, let’s talk about upper lip hair. In 2020, we’d like to think that as a society we’re slowly but surely making strides toward a more accepting attitude surrounding facial hair. And yet, when it comes to upper lip hair specifically, we find that some still whisper about the topic, like it’s some big secret. Well, spoiler alert: women grow hair on their upper lip area and it’s not a big deal. That being said, if you are interested in getting rid of your peach fuzz and are not sure what hair-removal methods will work for you, we’ve got you covered. Here, we tapped Zeefah Ali, esthetician at Trifecta Med Spa in New York City and Natalie Ismiel, brand ambassador for Nad’s to talk about all things upper lip hair removal. 

What Are Some Upper Lip Hair-Removal Methods?
In short, there are a lot, that’s why we asked Ali to help us break down some of the most popular methods. “Upper lip hair can be removed through waxing, which is quick and easy,” she says. “It can also be removed by threading, which could be uncomfortable for some people but is also quick.” She adds that hair-removal or depilatory creams are also popular but can burn the area of the skin if left on for too long and do not remove the hair directly from the follicle. You can also shave your upper lip hair (a.k.a dermaplaning), which removes the hair and gently exfoliates the skin for a smooth-looking complexion, but it can be intimidating, especially if you’ve never done it before. “With 14 years of experience in the industry, I would say laser hair removal is the best long-term option for getting rid of coarse, dark upper lip hair. Laser does not, however, work for all hair types such as fine or white hair, which is when I’d recommend other treatments like waxing, tweezing or shaving,” explains Ali. 

How Can You Tell Which Upper Lip Hair-Removal Technique Is the Best for You?
“Picking an upper lip hair-removal method will depend on your skin sensitivity and pain tolerance,” says Ali. “Shaving causes no pain but will require more upkeep. Tweezing is time consuming, and waxing and threading will hurt the most out of all options.” If you know you have very sensitive skin, Ali doesn't recommend waxing or hair-removal creams. If you have thick and coarse hair and want to give laser a try, Ali says it’s the only option that is quick and will prevent the hair from growing back after six to eight sessions. With all that said, if you’re not sure what your skin can handle, Ismiel recommends trying your method of choice on a small area of your upper lip first. “Always test on a small patch of the skin you want to treat as the skin on our face is more delicate than the rest of the body.”

How Can You Care for Your Upper Lip Area If Irritation Occurs? 
Mild reddening is a common side effect when removing upper lip hair but usually subsides within a couple of hours, explains Ismiel. “In the rare instance of skin becoming painful or inflamed for a prolonged period, that’s a sign you should try another method of hair removal in the future,” she says. To help reduce the redness in the interim, Ali recommends treating the area with a cold compress and avoiding makeup as it can lead to further irritation.

Other Tips for Upper Lip Hair Removal:

Tip #1: Always Clean the Area First 
Ali says a common mistake her clients make when trying any hair-removal method is not fully cleaning the upper lip area before. Be sure to wipe away all remnants of makeup, dirt and oil from the skin before removing your peach fuzz to avoid potential irritation. If you need a quick cleanse, a swipe of the Garnier SkinActive Water Rose Micellar Water never lets us down. 

Tip #2: Apply a Thick Layer of Hair-Removal Cream 
“When using a hair-removal cream, make sure you apply a thick layer evenly across the upper lip,” says Ismiel. “Applying a thin or uneven layer will be ineffective and may result in patchiness.”

Tip #3: Never Wax the Same Area Twice 
“When waxing, some people mistakenly go over the same spot twice,” says Ismiel. “It’s important that you only wax each section once to prevent irritation to the skin. You can always go back and tweeze any hairs you may have missed.”

Tip #4: Always Read the Directions on the Pack 
Always follow the instructions on the pack whenever you try DIY hair removal. Ismiel says to take particular note of the application and removal instructions with waxes and developing times with creams, and never exceed the recommended times. 

Tip #5: Whatever Products You Use, Make Sure They’re Formulated for the Face
Using a hair-removal cream, wax or razor that’s not formulated for your face can make things go awry quickly. As we mentioned before, the skin on your face is normally more sensitive and delicate than the rest of your body, so don’t try to get away with using a hair-removal cream made for your legs on your upper lip. If you need a recommendation, we like the Nad’s Hair Removal Cream for its ability to dissolve unwanted facial hair in as few as four minutes and the Facial Wax Strips, which are formulated for delicate facial skin and are easy to use. 

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