PCOS and Unwanted Hair: How to Cope

Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is a condition that affects how a woman’s hormones work. It comes as a result of hormonal imbalance, with sufferers producing male-like hair.

If you have PCOS, you are probably already familiar with these main signs and symptoms:

  • Irregular periods
  • Fertility issues
  • Excessive growth of dark, coarse hair (hirsutism), particularly on the face, back, chest or buttocks

All of these symptoms can cause frustration and distress. Thankfully, a visit to an endocrinologist, a hormone-specialist doctor will usually help in overcoming some of these unpleasant symptoms.

There are several options PCOS sufferers can consider to manage their condition.

Dealing with Unwanted Hair

PCOS affects a surprisingly high proportion of women; estimates often come in at around one in 10 women of childbearing age.

To help alleviate the unpleasant side effects of PCOS, a trusted permanent hair removal clinic in Dubai and Abu Dhabi offers hair removal services to women with PCOS. They also share the following advice for those struggling with issues that come with excess facial and body hair.

1.  Get Help with Troublesome Excess Hair

Unwanted hair growth frequently affects the self-confidence of PCOS sufferers. It is typical for sufferers to feel very self-conscious about hair growth on their face and other body parts, which can affect many aspects of their life.

If this applies to you, you may have noticed that you avoid certain situations, such as swimming, or steer clear of some styles of clothing such as tank tops or sleeveless clothes no matter how much you used to love wearing them. You may also feel very self-conscious or anxious in specific social situations, or you may avoid going out altogether.

Hirsutism, on its own, is unpleasant enough; but if you’re also suffering from heavy, painful periods and fertility issues, it can all get too much to bear. Excessive hair growth is something that is relatively easy to deal with, so don’t delay in getting help if it’s negatively affecting your life.

2. Select the Right Hair Removal Method for You

There are several options for removing excess hair, with varying degrees of cost, comfort and permanence. Here are some of the main hair-removal methods:

Short-Term Methods

Most short-term methods are inexpensive and many can be done at home. Results are not long-lasting, with effects varying between from just a few days to a few weeks. However, many of them offer some distinct disadvantages for ladies with PCOS, albeit temporary.

  • Shaving

While inexpensive, quick and easy, shaving is definitely not recommended as a treatment for hirsutism. The main reason is the visible stubble that will inevitably grow back between shaves, which usually comes out coarser and darker. This will likely cause just as much embarrassment as the hair, if not more.

  • Bleaching

This may help in the short term for some, but bleach needs to be applied frequently to maintain results. It is also very possible that this method will irritate the skin and it can also, in the long term, discolor the skin.

  • Waxing, Plucking, Threading and Epilation

These are all popular methods of non-permanent hair removal that involve pulling hairs out from the roots. They offer good, immediate results but many people find these treatments quite painful. When you pluck them, the hairs grow back faster and thicker as you are provoking a faster flow of blood to the area.

They also have a clear downside for PCOS sufferers. Hair needs to regrow to a reasonable length before subsequent treatments can take place. This means that you will need to put up with periods where your excess hair is visible.

  • Hair Removal Creams

These creams can work well in large areas but only offer results for a short time. Because only the visible hair above the skin is removed, regrowth occurs quickly. They are also potentially very irritating to many skin types, so they should be used with caution.

Long-Term Methods

These methods offer great, longer-lasting results. However, they are not at-home treatments. The costs of long-term hair removal treatments should be considered an investment and may not be actually more expensive when you add up the cost of countless short-term treatments.

  • Laser Reduction Hair Removal

Powerful light beams are used to destroy individual hairs. This hair reduction treatment offers long-term but not permanent results. Side effects can include redness and changes in skin color or texture, and it is not suitable for all areas of the body.

  • Electrolysis

Electrolysis is the only hair removal method to offer completely permanent results, confirmed by the FDA and the American Medical Association. It uses localized heat to destroy both the hair and the follicle from which it grows. It is effective on all skin and hair colors and types.

Downsides include the length of each session if treating a large part of the body. However, unlike any other reduction or temporary method, it cannot create faster or worse re-growth.

Because of its unparalleled and lifelong results, electrolysis is highly recommended for PCOS and all hirsutism sufferers as a way of removing their unwanted hair for good.

3. Choose the Right Hair Removal Clinic

If you have decided that electrolysis and permanent hair removal is the right choice for you, you now need to spend some time choosing the right provider.

Here’s what to look for:

  • Look for a center that offers a consultation prior to the date of treatment. There will be a lot to discuss with your technician including how long your visits should be and also your medical history and current condition, including your lifestyle which could lead to unnecessary unwanted growth.
  • They should be able to supply you with all the information on electrolysis and permanent hair removal you would like to know.
  • A center should be open about the possible side effects, and how to avoid them.
  • Choose a clinic that invests in regular staff training and the latest equipment. A highly-trained technician using state-of-the-art electrolysis equipment will offer faster, more efficient treatments that will save you time and money in the long term.

A Smooth, Hairless Future

There really is no reason to suffer from the embarrassment that PCOS and excess body and facial hair cause.

Seek out the right help from professional hair removal services, and you can look forward to the smooth, beautiful and hair-free skin you have always dreamt of so you can have the freedom to truly be you, and do what makes you happy.


Mariela Marcantetti is the Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Furless with centers in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. The company offers the latest and only FDA-confirmed treatment to provide permanent removal results to unwanted hair. Mariela is deeply committed to responsible corporate practices and has an active role in her staff’s professional and personal advancement within the electrolysis field and beyond.

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