Threading Vs. Waxing: Best Way to Remove Facial Hair

With such a wide variety of hair removal methods, choosing the best for your face can be a difficult choice. Threading and waxing are the most commonly used methods for the face. Threading is an ancient Middle Eastern technique that consists of twisting individual hairs with a doubled-up strand of cotton thread and pulling them from their roots. Waxing is performed when warm wax is spread on the hair. A cotton strip is then pressed over the wax and quickly pulled off, along with the hair. Each option has its own pros and cons that can attract or deter individuals away.



Threading facial hair is highly sanitary. No tools or chemicals touch the skin other than the thread which is thrown away after every use. No harsh chemicals are used in threading. Risks due to chemicals, such as skin irritation, are eliminated. Threading is a very fast hair removal option. This is especially true if the process is completed by a trained professional. For example, eyebrows take an average of 2 minutes to thread. If performed routinely, threading can lead to permanent results. Frequent threading can damage the hair follicles, preventing them from growing back.


If performed incorrectly, threading can simply break hair follicles rather than pull the hairs out directly from the roots. When this occurs, hair grows back faster. Threading cannot be done on short hairs leading to slight stubble. Hair must be a minimum of 1/16-inch before the thread will wrap around the hair. There is a scarcity of trained professionals who perform threading in salons. This is because threading takes great skill and practice to do correctly. Some individuals find threading to be uncomfortable. The pain is similar to that of tweezing and can be annoying to those with a low pain tolerance.



Creates smooth results that last for weeks at a time. Waxing can be done on almost any length of hair and on any part of the face or body. Waxing reduces regrowth of hair over time. With repeated waxing treatments, hair will stop growing as fast and may stop entirely. Ideal for individuals who are going on vacation or for those who do not like to shave or tweeze. It saves time and can be completed in several minutes. Facial waxing can easily be performed at a salon or at home. The process can become inexpensive with the use of a home waxing kit.


Waxing is considered to be mildly painful. The sensation is close to that of burning and can linger even after the wax treatment is over. Complications can arise after the process, such as allergic reactions. Sensitive skin may become irritated, red or may break out in a rash. Splurging on routine trips to the spa can become expensive. Waxing must be done on a regular basis and can get costly with repeat visits. Individuals with certain skin conditions, such as dermatitis and eczema, are unsuitable candidates for facial waxing as it can make the condition worse. This is also the case for some acne sufferers.

Center for Sight: Waxing Frequently Asked Questions
Palo Alto Medical Foundation: Body Hair Removal – Threading

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