Think back to the hair removal creams you used in the ’90s. They probably burned, smelled, and stung…but what they didn’t do is get rid of all your unwanted hair. Depilatory creams have gotten a bad rap, but like your eyebrows and highlights, they’ve thankfully come a very long way since the ’90s.
Today, they are made with better formulas that contain nourishing and soothing ingredients, like vitamin E, aloe vera, and cocoa butter. Oh, and they actually work. That’s thanks to ingredients like calcium hydroxide, calcium thioglycolate, sodium hydroxide, and sodium thioglycolate. These actives break down the keratin bonds that make up the structure of your hair. Through this process, which can take anywhere from five to 10 minutes (a few minutes longer if your hair is very thick), the hair weakens and starts to dissolve, making it easy to wipe away—no razor required.
Here’s the thing: Body hair can be a touchy subject, and understandably so. No one should have to subscribe to the societal pressures of removing it. While the choice is all yours, if you do choose to get rid of your body hair, it might be time to give hair-removal creams another shot. The best hair-removal creams are completely painless, unlike waxing or laser hair removal, and remove the hairs from the root, unlike shaving, so you are hair-free for days longer.
If you’re ready to get rid of some unwanted hair and bare silky smooth skin this summer, check out the best hair-removal creams below:
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Best For Facial Hair
Sally Hansen Creme Hair Remover Kit for Face
Say goodbye to peach fuzz and hello to soft skin. The removal cream in this kit contains pumpkin seed oil, which helps brighten skin tone, while the skin conditioning lotion has vitamin E and collagen to keep your skin calm and moisturized.
Best For Sensitive Skin
Nad’s Sensitive Hair Removal Cream
The key to a good hair removal cream is a solid ingredient list, and this one from Nad’s makes the cut. Melon extract, aloe vera, avocado oil, and honey all work to keep skin hydrated and calm during the hair removal process.
Nair Hair Removal Lotion with Aloe & Lanolin
Summertime means bare skin, but there isn’t always time to keep up appearances. Nair’s Hair Removal Lotion works its magic fast—smooth on a thick layer to the desired area and remove it with a damp washcloth after just three minutes. You’ll be out the door and on your way to the pool in no time.
Best For Dry Skin
Nair Hair Remover Moisturizing Face Cream
If you’re prone to dry skin, the sweet almond oil in this removal cream will add an extra layer of moisture to keep your face soft and hair-free.
Best For Bikini Area
GiGi Hair Removal Lotion
There’s nothing worse than razor burn—or any kind of burn—on your bikini area. It’s important to choose a hair removal cream that factors in nourishing ingredients, like this one from GiGi. Cocoa butter and vitamins C and E offer healing benefits, while cucumber and aloe vera extracts keep inflammation at bay.
Best For Underarms
Nair Hair Remover Glides Away Nourish with Coconut Oil
This dye- and paraben-free formula is made with skin-saving ingredients like coconut oil and vitamin E—perfect for that sensitive underarm area. Bonus: Its touch-free application makes for a no-mess process.
Best For Body Hair
Veet Aloe Vera Leg & Body Gel Hair Removal Cream, Pack of 2
The gel consistency of this cream from Veet, packed with aloe vera and vitamin E, gives the skin a boost of moisture for gentle hair removal on larger areas like your legs and arms. And this two-pack will last you all summer long.
Best For Exfoliation
Nair Charcoal Brighten & Smooth Leg Mask
This charcoal mask does double duty by exfoliating the skin while also removing unwanted hair. Natural clay and pure charcoal work to give your legs a bright look and a silky feel.
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