Deforestation: A Woman's Story

There are moments in life that define you. Surviving a bully. Overcoming a phobia. Giving birth to your first child.

But today I want to talk about a recent one. Enduring laser hair removal.

It has come to my attention that not all are created equal, contrary to what you may have heard- particularly when it comes to hair.

We live in a society that has very high standards when it comes to hair on a woman.

Roots and dead ends are ugly. And should be addressed on a regular basis.

Frizzy, unruly, dull hair is a sign of poor hair hygiene.

And all other hair on the body should be removed as frequently as possible.

This seems an unreasonable standard for a busy mother and wife, at least this one.

Keep the house tidied, get the bills out on time, have dinner on the table, kids to all activities, laundry done, nails pristine, look beautiful for hubs, oh- and hair removed around the clock.

That is where my big beef comes into play. Because like I said, we are not all created equal. Were you aware that there are actually some women out there that rarely have to shave their pits and/or legs? And I’m not talking about hairless people. I’m talking people that were gifted with the gene that makes hair only grow occasionally.

Then there’s me. I shave my pits before my workout. By the time I dress, drive to the gym, workout, and return home 2.2 hours later I have already grown enough stubble that I shave- again. And although not quite as obvious, my leg hair could also be removed on a bi-daily basis.

Please tell me, how does one keep up with this insane hair schedule and get anything else done?

For a while I was doing regular Brazilian waxing treatments. But they only last for a couple weeks and then the annoying hair is back.

So, I did what any sane woman would have done, I enquired about laser hair removal. A little pricey and possible risks.

But after years of being tormented with hair, hair, and more annoying hair…

When I heard about a new nurse practioner that started doing this via a close friend, it was time. She was cheaper than the local clinics offering the treatment and it seemed a no-brainer.

I’ve only had two treatments. The first was the bikini area. The most annoying area of all, particularly those few months of summer when the kids expect me to live in a swimsuit.

But it wasn’t until the 2nd treatment that I decided to bite the bullet and get my pits done as well.

How bad could it be, right? I mean, I’ve already done my most intimates down there. Yeah, it was more painful than anticipated, but nothing can get much worse.

Those were my last thoughts before she started shooting that laser into my pit. Every swear word my mind could muster flooded my brain all at once. And words I didn't register. The pain was off the charts. Worse than anything imaginable. Rubberband snapping my butt. And this from a woman that has given birth not once, but twice.

To make matters worse was that my “stubble” was much longer than realized and with each excruciating zap of that laser the hair actually burned to a crisp. I smelled of how I imagine a morgue to smell. Like I was being incinerated. And mixed with the pain- there were no words. I gritted my teeth. I squeezed my eyes shut. And I dreamed of an exotic beach with waves and blue skies and… but the PAIN and the SMELL were unbearable. Breathe, Alicia.

And just when I couldn’t take even one more beam, she was done. Holy freaking PAIN!!!

The bad part about the laser, besides the price and the pain- which we have already established is not in my head- is the fact that it takes the average person about 5 treatments to remove all unwanted hair from a general area.

It wasn’t until yesterday that it hit me. When did I last shave my pits? Seriously. I couldn’t remember.

I know I did it right after, well a couple days after the rash and burning went away. Let’s be real. That kind of pain is going to leave a small mark. And in the last few weeks I can only remember one other time and there was hardly any hair.

I checked yesterday and there were only a few stray hairs. And they were soft, hardly recognizable, and easy to remove.

Hallelujah!! Happy day! It was NOT for NAUGHT. Turns out the pain and anguish was worth it. I’m practically hair free. And only one treatment. A miracle?

So, for all of you out there suffering with unwanted hair that seems to need shaved around the clock… I highly recommend you save up your money and gumption. And seriously consider going under the laser. The results are unbelievable.


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  2. Oh my word. I can't imagine. I tried it once (never mind where) and it was very painful. And that was after using the numbing cream. THEN after the pain and the money I was told I shouldn't go back because my results wouldn't be good. You see, I have blonde roots. They don't respond to laser. Also, I'm part Scottish. The hairy part. So, I've tapped into my inner hippie and I just don't bother. Except if I'm going to show anything outside. Then I still wax. I'll always wax... it's the best thing for me. But I'm glad to hear it worked well for you, and you won't have to worry about it anymore.

  3. Sorry it didn't work for you Koreen. Yes, it is true. It works best on dark hair and caucasians. I never had any numbing cream. They had me put some ice on the area right prior to the treatment. It's supposed to numb it, but sure didn't feel like it. I've been cursing my German roots for multiple reasons lately. Maybe I should look at it as a blessing. I'm so glad it was NOT for Naught.

  4. Hilarious! I got my brows waxed today and was practically convulsing from the pain. I don't think my threshold could tolerate the laser, I so want to though!!! Thanks for sharing, I think. ;-)

  5. I'm going to take the liberty of apologizing before I continue. I'm sorry. Now, with that said...I'm one of those lucky folks who doesn't have to shave all that often. It's great in some respects, but I do wish I had thicker brows. I'm so glad you've gone and acted as a guinea pig and reported back to us all. I still remember that your Brazilian waxing post was one of the first ones I ever read. :)

    Kristi, Live and Love...Out Loud

  6. Too funny, I am so going to look into a good place to get this done! You have motivated me to go and check it out because I have the same problem you did! And to be hair free is worth the pain to me (I say that now LOL) Thanks for the info!

  7. I had my underarms lasered about 5 years ago and it really is the best thing ever. However, I must have a high tolerance for pain (which I didn't know that I had) but it wasn't that painful for me. I think facial microdermabrasion hurts more then having your underarm lasered. Beauty is pain! :(

  8. I'm really glad this worked for you...because I'm cringing just thinking about it. I can't imagine how furious I'd be for you if it HADN'T worked.

  9. I had my first underarm laser treatment last week. Although uncomfortable, I didn't find it intolerable. I cannot imagine enduring that uncomfortableness in the nether regions though. 5 more treatments and I'll be pit-hair-free. Yee haw!
    Thanks for the post. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

  10. That is awesome! I didn't know that it was painful though, that is a bummer.

  11. I´m sorry you were in such pain! I really loved your post. You are very a good writer! I´ve been thinking about lasering my legs for months now. I use wax and I don´t really like it.

  12. I'm jealous!! My pits are so annoying to shave b/c there's a dip I can't EVER seem to reach!!

  13. So apparently there are advantages to being 25% asian, as I don't grow that much hair ;). Your ordeal sounds awful (worse than CHILDBIRTH?) but it sounds like it's worth it (hmmm... like childbirth?). I screamed when I got my ears pierced so I just can't even imagine....

  14. I have SO wanted to get that done!! Along with my boobs (vain I know!) I have had it done on my upper lip (not too bad!) But never in the nether regions!

  15. I have thought about this too, and I am not only chicken BUT cheap, too! I would love to do my pits and bikini line....the pain scares me, but you had excellent results! I think you may be my new hero...

  16. I really want this. I am so tired of shaving my pits! wanna try. Hope it will work:)

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  18. I am attempting to find new blogs each day, in pursuit of expanding my own universe.
    Gotta tell ya, I love your sense of time you clean your closet, I'll take your left-overs!

  19. Deforestation? Did you really use -that- particular word to describe your hair removal? Dear God, Alicia. I hope they brought out the big guns for that!

    Just the thought of lasers being anywhere near my sensitive spots scares the crap out of me. But congrats on being the hairless wonder!

  20. I've also gotten laser hair removal under my armpits. And I am also quite, ahem, hairy. I feel you, sister! But I'm not going to legs and my bikini area are very unshaven right now. Like you said, it's too much to keep up with sometimes.

  21. Wow. I gotta give you credit for going through this. I'm just like you, the type who at bedtime feels the need to tell my husband that yes, I DID shave my legs this morning, even though they now resemble a cactus.

    It's good to know there's HOPE!

    Speaking of hope, I hope all is well. Drop me a line if you get a chance and let me know what's up!

  22. Too funny! Hilarious that you tell how incredibly, unbelieveably painful it was yet we should do it! Uh, no way! I am jealous of your smooth pits though! I guess I just do it and don't really think about it!

  23. You just completely and totally terrified me from lasers... I don't know if I can handle that. Maybe I'll just find a lover from a european country that thinks bushy women are awesome.

  24. Oh my. I have been wanting this for years. I have PCOS and feel your shaving the pits pain (plus I have to plug and wax my face practically daily.) I am so calling.

  25. This made me chuckle. Call me disgusting, but I´m a European woman, and I DON´t SHAVE AT ALL!
    Well, ok, maybe if there´s a wedding in July and I´m wearing a nice neckholder dress - maybe then.
    But right now, I´m sitting here with my legs looking like the legs of a footballplayer, and I´m fine with it.
    I mean, did my husband EVER even consider shaving his body hair? So why should I feel under pressure?
    But I´m glad you found a way to get rid of the pressure, too :)

  26. Just dropping by to say hi and see how things are going for you! Hope you and the family have a wonderful Thanksgiving!

  27. Love this post. I've had this done and it changed my life. hehe

  28. I had my upper lip done once and my money had to be returned because the girl did it incorrectly. The smell of burning flesh was crazy!