There is an assumption, you might even say a claim, that it is not normal for women to have body hair in certain places.
This, however, is a fallacy and not biologically true, as women grow hair in many places naturally. The main reason for this we will get to later, but it is basically due to testosterone.
Why is Female Hair Not Acceptable?
The main reason hair on women has become unacceptable is that we have become a nation of trichophobics who follow fashion and everything that it dictates. In fact, fashion has dictated the hairless trend for so long that even when Julia Roberts sported hairy armpits at the premier of Notting Hill in 1997, people did not and could not accept nor follow the trend. Many celebs over the years since then have tried to make hairiness work for them, but none have succeeded.
Most women would be embarrassed to be caught with hairy arms, legs or spider legs when wearing their swimsuit or bikini. But this is not where it ends for some women, as a few may develop facial hair that is noticeable, and even chest and back hair. These conditions are absolutely devastating for most women and they often feel like they have nowhere to turn.
What is Hirsutism?
Hirsutism is the excessive hairiness on a woman in those parts of the body where terminal hair does not normally occur or is minimal. An example of this would facial hair and even a beard.
There is again an assumption that women do not grow facial hair, but many actually do. There is however a difference between tweezing one hair that can be a nuisance and shaving, which can distressing and hard to conceal.
Many doctors who have had worried or distressed patients who suffer from hirsutism have told them that this condition is hereditary and that there is nothing to be done. While it is certainly true that some people are more genetically prone to hirsutism or ethnically prone, it is not true that there is no help out there.
How Much Hair is Normal?
Despite the popular belief, women do have testosterone in their bodies, although at a far lower level than men. Comparing the two, women should only have five to 10 percent of the testosterone levels that men have. Levels of testosterone rise in both men and women during puberty and this sets in motion hair growth under the arms and pubic hair.
Unfortunately, some women’s testosterone increase does not stop at the natural levels and this causes them to develop excess hair in places, such as the face. Studies showed that half of the women in the U.S. remove hair off their faces once in a while, while 10 percent shave two to three times a week. There are also a few who have to shave every day, possibly twice a day.
Treatment for Female Testosterone Hair Growth
Women with excess hair can choose from various options to remove the hair. These include various home treatments such as shavers, razors, hair removal cream and epilators.
None of these home treatments is permanent. They will need to be vigilant to remove their hair on a regular basis, depending on the level of hair growth.
A more permanent solution is the use of electrolysis carried out by a professional. Although the removal of existing hair is permanent you may need to keep going to sessions, as new follicles will open and produce hair. There is also the option of having laser treatment although this is not suitable for those with light or dark skin. Long term studies of these procedure are also lacking.
Medications for Excess Hair
There are a few medications available for the treatment of excess hair and these include oral contraceptives, which can lower testosterone by half.
Both spironolactone and finasteride successfully block the effects of testosterone. Vaniga cream slows down the metabolism of the hair follicle, but can take three to four months to show results.
The truth is that most women develop hair in places they would rather not, but most find it easy to deal with, especially the odd hair. For those with lighter hair, it is not noticeable at all, so therefore they don’t have to do anything about it. Those that do develop it often feel stigmatised and outcast with no sign of a solution anywhere. There are solutions for female testosterone hair growth and they are easy to find. The main thing is to determine the reason for it, so a doctor’s visit and hormonal testing could help.