If you are one of millions of women worldwide who prefer the smooth look, you will undoubtedly be more than familiar with the regular struggle involved in hair removal.

Whatever method you use is not without its own unique problems, be it waxing, shaving, laser hair removal or epilators. Shaving is painless but won’t keep hair away for long, while other methods are often considered painful and awkward, if not expensive. Many women prefer the speed and convenience of an epilator to tackle unwanted hairs at home. Is this a method that could work for you?

The following guide will take you through things you should be looking at if you’re shopping for a new epilator. Regardless of whether you’ve never used one before or are a seasoned user looking for an upgrade, we hope it will make your decision making process a bit easier and help you find the most suitable epilator to suit your needs.

The benefits of epilators over other methods of hair removal

Before we delve into the exciting world of epilators and how to pick them, here’s a quick run-down of the benefits of using epilators over other methods of hair removal:

  • Epilators are cheap – you don’t need to buy more razors, blades, wax or strips. Once you have the machine, that’s it, until it breaks (which shouldn’t happen for a while, if you’ve chosen a quality device).
  • This fact makes the epilator an environmentally friendly hair removal option, as it does not rely on disposables.
  • A good epilator will remove even tiny hairs much better than waxing. You don’t need to wait for your hairs to grow to a visible length before tackling them
  • There are no chemicals involved, so this is a method that works well for sensitive skin.
  • You can use the epilator as often as you want with no fuss and no mess
  • Hair grows back slowly – often after two weeks or more. The more you use it, the thinner the hair becomes over time, as the plucking weakens the hairs.

“But what about pain?” I hear you ask. Using an epilator is definitely more painful than using a razor and having a shave, but many manufacturers have taken major steps to minimise pain as much as possible, which we will discuss below. With regular use, the pain diminishes no matter which epilator you use.

Types of epilators on the market

Epilators generally involve a row (or several) of tiny, rotating tweezers that pluck each hair from the root as you move the device along your leg (or whatever body part you’re using it on). But while most devices on the market have this in common, there is a large variety of features and options available.

Epilators can be either cordless or corded, they can be used on dry legs only, or also used in the shower. They use various methods to minimise pain during and after the hair removal process and, of course, they vary in price. Different epilators are also sized differently and can contain more or less tweezers per row.

These are two factors that directly impact epilation time, as well as pain distribution. 

You need to think about what’s important to you when buying an epilator. Many of the bells and whistles will come at a higher price, but are worth it for some women. On the other hand, if you just want a basic, efficient machine, you may not need them.

Things to consider when buying an epilator

Efficiency

A good epilator will remove hairs quickly, within a few passes along your leg. It’s important that the hairs are actually pulled out from the root. If you are afraid of pain, it may be tempting to think that it’s enough to just get rid of the visible part of the hair, but if you’re going to do that, you may as well just shave.

Cleaning

You want an epilator that’s easy to clean after each use, as dead hairs and skin caught in the tweezers are a hygiene nightmare. Make sure you look at pictures or videos that show you how to clean the epilator and judge each device by how simple and straightforward this seems.

Lighting

Many epilators have built in lighting nowadays, which makes it easier to see the hairs you’re plucking. This is a good feature to consider if you are worried about missing hairs or are likely to do your epilating sessions somewhere that lacks strong lighting.

Head width

The wider the head, the more hairs are going to be plucked simultaneously, shortening the overall process. Hair removal is not the highlight of anyone’s day, so a wider head can only be a good thing.

Tweezers

Similarly, the more tweezers are per row, the more hairs will be plucked. If speed and efficiency are the most important thing for you, check these features and go for the device with the widest head and the most tweezers.

Pain

While all epilator companies set out to minimise pain, some do a better job than others. Check for things like the attachment cap – a common feature that helps minimise pain. Many companies also provide things like cooling gloves, creams and all kinds of other tricks to help make the process less unpleasant. Reading customer reviews can help you determine how painful a particular epilator is, but keep in mind that everyone’s different. Something that feels very painful to one person can be totally painless for another and vice versa.

Warranty / parts

What happens if things go wrong? Make sure you know the company you’re buying from, what their warranty is like and how easy it is to get replacement parts or repairs should anything go wrong.

Features

There are advantages to having multiple speed settings or a cordless epilator that can be used on wet skin in the shower (this can help minimise pain). If these features are important to you, it might be worth investing more money and getting an epilator that has them.

Price

Epilators are very cheap compared to other hair removal methods, as they are likely to last for years and don’t require peripherals to work. While a cheap one may be absolutely fine for you, it’s worth thinking of this as an investment and getting an epilator that has all the features you think you will prefer.

Conclusion

Epilators are a great way of removing unwanted hairs at home. If this is a method you think may suit you, it’s worth taking the time to do some market research using the tips above so you can get one that will last you a long time and make your hair removal experience more tolerable.

If you are buying your first epilator, we recommend opting for one that does well at minimising pain, so that you will continue to use it. There’s no point buying a machine that you will keep locked away in a drawer forever.

On the other hand, if you are aware of your pain threshold and just want something cheap and fast without too many frills, you can just opt for an epilator from one of the reliable, popular brands out there. The good news is that epilators are not expensive, especially when you consider the alternatives.