Excessive hair: treatments

In order to find the right treatment to put an end - or at least control - unwanted hair to the face, neck, etc., it is necessary to identify the causes.

The diagnosis

First, a visit to a dermatologist will determine if this excessive hair is constitutional, and if then a simple dermatological treatment is enough (laser hair removal, for example).

On the other hand, in order to establish a precise diagnosis of excessive hair growth, and more specifically of a hirsutism, a search for the cause carried out by a dermatologist, an endocrinologist or a gyneco-endocrinologist is recommended. The doctor will question the patient about possible family and gynecological antecedents.

He will also look for other signs of a hormonal disorder: hyperandrogenism (acne, hair loss, polycystic ovaries, menstruation disorders ...), or brutal androgenization (deep voice, clitoral hypertrophy) may suggest a tumor .

A biological assessment (blood test) will be prescribed to detect a possible endocrine disruption (hormonal)


In case of excessive hair, many very different treatments are possible depending on the diagnosis:

> Hair removal:

To get rid of hair quickly, hair removal is a good solution. Wax or epilator are the preferred methods, because they allow to pull the hair at the bulb, unlike the razor or depilatory cream that "break" the hair without tearing.

Be careful though, hair removal does not treat hirsutism; the hairs will continue to grow.

Laser hair removal, performed by a dermatologist, is indicated for certain types of hair and complexion (light skin and dark hair). It allows, after many sessions, to prevent regrowth of the hair by targeting the melanin of the hair bulb which is thus destroyed. However, laser hair removal is not definitive in all people. Sometimes, despite the repeated sessions, some areas will see hair growth.

> The creams:

A treatment in the form of cream may be prescribed by your dermatologist in case of facial hirsutism. Based on eflornithine, this cream should be applied to the affected areas of the face. It helps to slow hair regrowth, but its effectiveness can vary from one person to another.

> The drugs:

In case of hirsutism linked to a hormonal imbalance, the endocrinologist can propose a pharmacological treatment:

  • an estrogen-progestin pill may be prescribed. By resting the ovary, it helps to slow androgen production.
  • anti-androgens: by preventing the action of testosterone, they regulate the pilosity.

Note, however, that a hormonal treatment takes time to be effective: between 6 months and a year or more. It can therefore be combined with other techniques such as hair removal or the application of an eflornithine cream.

See also our video: Laser hair removal and the risk of infection

Complete hair removal is now fashionable, so it seems normal to wonder about the possible medical consequences of such a practice. We asked Dr. David Elia, a gynecologist.

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