Got a beauty nemesis? Don’t we all. Whether you hate plucking your eyebrows, shaving your legs or exfoliating your skin, there is most likely an at-home fix that promises quick results. The results will be speedy, but the question remains: will you be happy with them?
Here’s a look at some of the at home skincare treatments that are most likely to backfire – and how to handle it when they do.
Eyebrows seem pretty straightforward, considering they only consist of a few hairs. But at-home waxing mishaps can lead to burns, irritation and crooked brows that can entirely change the expressions on your face. You may hate plucking each individual hair that is out of place, but it might be a better option than scalding your sensitive skin or stripping them too short or too thin.
If you wax at home, test the wax on the inside of your wrist (another spot with sensitive skin) to ensure it won’t be too hot for your face. Start slow – only apply the wax to select parts at first so you are always in control of which hairs are being removed.
If you’ve messed up – don’t worry. There is a common misconception that eyebrows don’t grow back, but they do. In the meantime, find a picture of yourself from a time when you had eyebrows you liked, and use an eyebrow pencil to fill them in. Color over your entire brow (even the parts with hair) for a uniform look.
Leg hair removal
Ugh, shaving. We all hate it, but yet we find ourselves slaves to the razor. Those at-home chemical hair removers are tempting, but any sort of allergic reaction you could have to one can be horrendous – especially if you were planning on wearing shorts or a skirt any time soon. The again, that extra time you spend in the shower making your gams hair-free could be better spent doing… well, a lot of things.
If you want to use a hair remover, try it on an inconspicuous and sensitive spot on your body – like the upper back part of your thigh or somewhere on your foot. Leave it on for the recommended amount of time then give yourself 24 hours to see if any sort of allergic or skin reaction occurs. This is especially important if you know you have sensitive skin or are prone to allergies.
Shaving might still be your best (and cheapest) bet, but you might also want to head to a salon for a professional waxing job. Again, though, ladies with sensitive skin should be especially careful about inflammation afterward.
If you do suffer a chemical burn or other reaction, wash the affected area thoroughly and wrap it in a loose, clean and dry cloth.
Smooth, exfoliated face
Now that chemical peels have become more mainstream, a number of companies are marketing at-home versions that claim to offer similar results. Glycolic acid is commonly marketed as the best chemical to use at home to get rid of that top layer of skin and presumably enjoy brighter, healthier skin afterward.
Beware of using harsh chemicals in their pure state, though. At spas and in at-home peel kits, these chemicals are mixed masterfully with other substances so as to be safe and effective on the skin. A chemical peel may seem like a quick fix for dull skin, but you might be better off starting up an exfoliation routine.
It may take a little longer, but using a microdermabrasion product can also help get rid of the top layer that makes your skin look dull. Leave the chemicals to the pros.