Shaving vs. Waxing – Which is really better for your skin?

As women, it seems that we are inundated with societal expectations and ideals pushed upon us by social media, television, and magazines. Lately, there has been a welcome change in advertising for feminine depilatory products where we are actually seeing more real women with body hair in ads. This is helping to normalize females having body hair and choosing how to maintain themselves.

Shaving Vs. Waxing – Which Is Really Better For Your Skin?

Whether you prefer to be totally bare when it comes to body hair or pick and choose which areas to depilate, you may have asked yourself which is really better when it comes to shaving vs. waxing. If you choose to be bare, take a look below to see a breakdown between shaving vs. waxing. Each method of hair removal has its pros and cons, check out the list below to help inform your decisions. 

Read More: The Complicated Choice of Body Hair Removal

Shaving Vs. Waxing – The Positives of Shaving

Shaving Vs. Waxing – Which Is Really Better For Your Skin?

First up, let’s talk about the positive benefits of shaving. Shaving is a quick and convenient option when it comes to removing body hair. You can shave just about anywhere you have access to water, and can even dry shave in a pinch if you don’t have super sensitive skin. Shaving does not take long, and you can pick and choose how often to shave and which areas to shave. If time-saving is a factor in your decision between shaving vs. waxing, then shaving might be the best choice for you.

Shaving is virtually painless, which is a HUGE advantage for many. If you’re not one for pain but don’t like the look or feel of body hair, shaving is the best option for you. Just be careful not to nick a shin or ankle bone! If you hate pain & body hair; this benefit might be all you need to decide between shaving vs. waxing.

Shaving is inexpensive, especially now with all the razor options and subscription packages to choose from. You can get bulk packages of razors and blades from big package stores or sign up for any variety of shaving clubs or repeat purchase programs. Razors can be replaced on your own timeline and depending on your level of use. There’s really no need for shaving cream either, a little soap in the shower goes a long way.

Sites such as Joy&Glee or Women’s Shave Club offer razor subscription programs that allow you to select a plan option and have razors delivered by mail. This is a great option to help you save both time and money by eliminating the need to shop in-store for razors and blades.

You don’t need to wait for a certain amount of regrowth when you’re shaving. This means that you don’t even need to wait for body hair to become visible before shaving it away. This is a plus for many who want to bare legs or armpits without visible hair regrowth. 

Shaving is personal, and you don’t have to expose yourself to a third party for help removing body hair. You can shave any area you want in the privacy of your own space, and there’s no concern about bending all kinds of ways in front of a waxing esthetician. Shaving might be a better option for you if you are a more private person or for younger people who might not feel comfortable going to a salon for a waxing treatment.

Shaving Vs. Waxing – The Negatives of Shaving

Shaving Vs. Waxing – Which Is Really Better For Your Skin?

As with everything, there is another side to shaving that might cause you to rethink your options. Shaving can often cause ingrown hairs. This is especially true when using a duller blade, shaving against the grain, or shaving especially coarse hair, like pubic hair. Ingrown hairs can be painful, turn into pimples, become infected, and can often be very difficult to remove, sometimes requiring the help of a dermatologist. When it comes to choosing between shaving vs. waxing, this may be a deciding factor if you’re prone to ingrown hairs.

Shaving skin can cause irritation, particularly in areas which a lot of friction. Think armpits, inner thighs, and your groin. You might feel itching or burning after shaving. The skin might appear red or bumpy. Shaving also will cause discomfort if you hit the beach soon after because the saltwater will further irritate your skin. When it comes to deciding between shaving vs. waxing, each brings its own irritation. It’s important to decide which you would rather deal with.

It’s easy to cut yourself while shaving. If you rush through it or slip while shaving, you can cause a nasty cut that might bleed quite a bit. Scrape-type cuts generally bleed more, so your shower might end up looking like a scene from a horror movie if you’re not careful. 

The results of shaving are short-lived and shaved skin requires frequent upkeep to remain smooth to the touch. Generally, those who choose to shave have to do so anywhere from every one to three days to maintain a hairless appearance. This can be time-consuming and bothersome.

Read More: 7 Options for Hair Removal

Shaving Vs. Waxing – The Positives of Waxing

Shaving Vs. Waxing – Which Is Really Better For Your Skin?

Many estheticians will tout the positive benefits of waxing. Waxing generally causes fewer ingrown hairs than shaving. However, keep in mind that this is true when waxing is done by an experienced esthetician. When it comes to shaving vs. waxing, it’s important to consider that waxing is done best by a trained professional. It’s important to note this differentiation between the DIY method and a salon experience.

Waxing removes hair from the root rather than where the hair meets the skin. This means that hair takes longer to appear outside of your skin and allows for more downtime. To keep skin smoother for longer periods, waxing is the best option because it may take weeks for you to notice any regrowth. 

Waxing is a safe and simple form of skin exfoliation. When you wax your hair, the top layer of dead skin is pulled away as well and your skin will feel smooth and rejuvenated after a wax.

Hair feels softer and finer when it grows back after a wax. When you shave, you are cutting your hair at an angle, causing it to feel sharp and prickly when growing out of your skin. Waxed hair regrows as new hair from the follicle and the ends are rounded and soft. This makes the hair look and feel less noticeable. 

There is less long-term discomfort from waxing. Waxing removes any chance of cutting your skin and when done correctly, will allow your skin to remain soft, smooth, and exfoliated. 

Read More: What You’ve Always Wanted to Know About Home Waxing

Shaving Vs. Waxing – The Negatives of Waxing

Shaving Vs. Waxing – Which Is Really Better For Your Skin?

Waxing is not the best fit for everyone. Waxing takes time, both long and short term. Each waxing appointment takes a significant amount of time, depending on how much of your body you want to be waxed. Appointments with estheticians need to be scheduled and you need to be consistent. To see the long-term benefits of waxing might take up to a year. Hair grows in 3-month cycles, and you will need to wax consistently without shaving to truly see the benefits. Time tends to be a huge factor when women are choosing between shaving vs. waxing.

Waxing can be incredibly painful, more so on sensitive and delicate areas like armpits, inner thighs, and pubic area. Wax is applied at a very warm temperature and significant amounts of hair are ripped from the follicle. Many women who chose to shave when deciding between shaving vs. waxing cite intolerance to the pain of waxing as their deciding factor.

You have to allow time for hair to regrow between waxing appointments. This means visible regrowth. For those who are self-conscious or dislike the feeling of body hair, this might not be the best option for you. This can also cause difficulty when planning for events. You may be invited to a wedding and want to wear a short dress to show off your silky smooth legs but the date falls between waxing appointments.

Waxing can be pricey. Larger areas cost more to wax and depending on how fast your hair grows, appointments may be as often as once a month. Waxing is done best when left to professionals, rather than the DIY method. This means finding a waxing professional you feel comfortable with, regular trips to the salon, and a gratuity is typically given in addition to the waxing fee.


When it comes to shaving vs. waxing, waxing is ultimately better for the health of your hair and skin than shaving. It all comes down to what matters to you in terms of convenience, cost, and personal choice. Waxing will expose healthier skin with fewer ingrown hairs, no scarring or dark spots from accidental nicks and cuts and there’s no chance of razor burn. As with anything related to your body, hair removal is a personal and intimate decision. If you do choose to depilate – hopefully, this guide helps you select the best option for your lifestyle.

WANT TO READ MORE?
Still can’t decide between shaving vs. waxing? Check out Daily Mom’s article on laser hair removal options: Why Laser Hair Removal is Worth Every Penny.

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