Alternative Treatment Options for Unwanted Facial Hair

Many individuals deal with unwanted facial hair on a regular basis. Both men and women suffer from needing to remove unsightly hair on their face. There are several alternative options to remove undesirable facial hair. These treatments range from relatively painless to painful, and some may last only a few weeks while others are permanent.

Laser Hair Removal

Laser hair removal is a procedure whereby the roots of facial hair are exposed to a laser beam and destroyed. The procedure should be performed by a physician and not merely a licensed cosmetologist to ensure that it will be performed safely. The results of laser hair removal are said to last anywhere from seven to ten years.

The procedure, however, is expensive and can be quite painful. To reduce the pain, the physician will also prescribe a numbing ointment that a patient will apply 30 minutes to one hour prior to a scheduled laser appointment. It also requires multiple visits and multiple times under the laser. Many physicians will charge a set price payable over the number of visits a patient will need to remove the facial hair. Insurance companies typically do not pay for or reimburse for laser treatments.

Recently, several companies have put at-home lasers on the market. These lasers are cheaper than the cost of seeing a physician, but the lasers are weaker, require more treatments, may deteriorate faster than usual and require replacement. Still, though, they are reported to do the job of removing unwanted facial hair quite well.

Hair Removal Creams

Creams dedicated to hair removal have existed for a long time; however, only recently have they removed hair faster and for longer periods of time without burning or otherwise irritating the skin. Your dermatologist may suggest an over-the-counter cream to use or prescribe a cream for you. Depending on your insurance, the cost of these creams may or may not be covered.


Threading hair to remove it is a little known procedure, but one that is gaining in popularity. Used frequently in the Middle East and other parts of the world, threading pulls hair out by the root. The procedure is exactly as it sounds: a piece of thread is wrapped into a triangle and dragged along the hair wanted to be removed, pulling out the hair by the roots. This procedure, while slightly painful, has the same effect as waxing but with almost no redness or irritation afterwards.

The difficulty with threading is that hair must be longer for the method to work. This means that hair will have to be grown, possibly until it is too long to stand, prior to being able to be threaded. Threading is available in most salons and lasts about a month.

Prescription Medicines

Sudden or quite thick hair growth may be an indication that an individual’s hormone levels are imbalanced. This is particularly true in females. In this instance, a dermatologist will run blood tests to obtain measurements of the patient’s hormone levels and, if high, prescribe supplements to regulate them. As the high levels of testosterone begin to decrease, the extra facial hair will fall off on its own.

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