We discovered so many magnificence factoids whereas producing Allure‘s The Science of Beauty podcast (out there on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, or wherever you hear to podcasts) that we’ll by no means battle to make dinner-party dialog ever once more. For instance, do you know hair is liquid earlier than it sprouts in your head? Or that the phrase collagen is derived from the Greek phrase kolla, that means glue, as a result of its mainly accountable for holding our our bodies collectively?
Those kinds of anecdotes make for enjoyable celebration fodder, positive, however a tidbit that West Islip, New York-based board-certified dermatologist Kavita Mariwalla shared throughout our episode on physique hair has eternally modified the way in which we method one crucial — however not often-discussed — side of our magnificence routine: eradicating the hair above our higher lip. Let’s simply say our trusty face razor has been formally retired.
Mariwalla first outlined terminal versus vellus hair. The former kind is present in areas like your armpits and pubic area. It’s thicker and coarser than the skinny hair everywhere in the remainder of your physique — together with your face — which known as vellus hair.
But, “if you do a lot of shaving, for example, on your face, in some ethnicities [vellus hair] can actually turn into terminal hair,” she stated, noting this occurs most continuously to Middle Eastern and South Asian ladies. The phenomena — referred to as hypertrichosis, a thickening of the hair — sometimes occurs on the face and never, say, your legs. (“Facial hair follicles tend to respond to stimulus and hormones in a different way than the body does,” Mariwalla stated.) Shaving specifically can exacerbate this, as a result of — not like tweezing or waxing — it doesn’t take away hair on the follicle.
And whether or not you are genetically predisposed to hypertrichosis or not, when you make the (very-personal) choice to take away the hair above your higher lip, you might have considered trying to rethink utilizing a razor for that very purpose. “When we shave with a razor, the ends of the hairs may become more blunt because they are cut on an angle,” says board-certified dermatologist Laurel Naversen Geraghty, who practices in Medford, Oregon. (Unrelated: You’ll undoubtedly need to take a look at her visitor look on The Science Beauty, throughout which she faculties us on skin-care acids.) “This can lead to a coarse feeling as the hairs regrow, because rather than a soft, tapered hair tip, there is a more blunt or angled end to the hair.” As in: You’re left with stubble.