Facial Hair - SW Virginia?

Pre-EVERYTHING, totally closeted to everyone but two friends and my partner with whom I cohabit. Live in the bible belt in southwestern Virginia. Have a steady job and a stable home. Mid-twenties. Need to pursue facial hair removal over the next year with a practitioner as close to me as possible that will not freak out if they find out what’s going on. Plan to move away to another state next year and want to have as much facial work done before then in order to go full time once I move away from this horrible area. Have searched online for months and cannot seem to find listings for electrologists that are competent (experienced with removing mass amounts of male facial hair), transfriendly, and local to me. I might be a good candidate for laser, and if there are absolutely no feasible options in my area for electrolysis I would consider it just to clear my face, but I’d rather go with the permanent solution as quickly as possible.

Please advise with any possible solutions. Personal experience would be appreciated. Thank you so much for participating in this forum and reading this cry for help.

I just read your post "swimmer.”

I’m going to give you a BIG WARNING! Do NOT JUMP into anything without careful research! I have a client coming in (actually from Virginia) that spent $5,000 on electrolysis and got nothing. And this from a self-described super-electrologist.

Here’s what you want to see:

  1. Photos of real work (in progress if possible), NOT just “testimonials” (testimonials mean absolutely nothing!)

  2. Actual hours of what the electrologist required to cause full beard removal on other clients (70 hours? 200 hours? 400 hours? You get the idea.

  3. Under NO circumstances EVER pre-pay ANYONE the full amount of your proposed treatment hours. When you pre-pay, you have just given up all your RIGHTS.

In 40 years, I have never required “pre-payment” and I have never been cheated by any client (and there have been thousands of clients)!

I suppose a “deposit” is acceptable (I don’t do it), but FULL payment? What if you get there and the electrolysis “stinks?” Then what? Demanding a full payment = “SCALAWAG!” he he he

Over-and-over I have seen that desperate clients get in trouble by “believing in miracles” and then JUMPING into a treatment … and usually spending a small fortune for NO RESULTS!

Do your research, and when you think you have the answer … do MORE research and get reassurances from the proposed therapist. (Oh, and forget about laser for your beard!)

Great tips.

I’ve never demanded anything that could be considered pre-payment. Not even when the customer has booked 3 full weeks of my time. Nobody who has booked several days or several weeks has stopped coming to the appointment. I had only two cancellations and they canceled more than one month before the scheduled date due to compelling reasons, such as health problems or work.

Karin M. Lynch, CPE, CLT
6720 Commerce Street
Springfield, VA. 22150
Phone : (571) 228-1974
Email: klynch937@aol.com
“I treat all clients.” and “I do laser hair removal, electrolysis and all types of skin care. I have several TG clients.”

Maureen Schantz, CPE
Alternative Health Associates
215 N. Washington St.
Alexandria, VA 22314
Phone : (703) 683-5736
Email: maureenschantz@aol.com
Website : http://www.althealthassociates.com
“I have been treating Transgendered clients for 25 years. I provide electrolysis and laser hair removal services and also skin care.”

Bertie Overton, CPE
408 Oakmears Crescent, #101
Virginia Beach, VA. 23462
Phone : (757) 497-2997
Email: beoverton@cox.net
“I do treat Transgendered clients and have had several in the past.”

Electrolysis by Rita
4323 Tillman Drive
Virginia Beach, VA. 23452
Phone : (757) 962-3767
Email: verrita757@aol.com
Website : http://www.electrolysisbyrita.com
Accepts Transgendered Clients Hours : 8A - 9P 7 days a week Galvanic, Blend, and Thermolysis modalities

Elaine Pristouris Electrologist
NV Electrolysis & Laser Center
386 Maple Ave East, Suite 110
Vienna, VA. 22180
Phone : (703) 537-0310
Cell : (202) 674-2393
Email : laser.nvec@gmail.com
Website : http://www.vainstituteofelectrolysis.com
Men & Women are Welcome! “I offer: 50% off first Electrolysis Appointment. Discounts on Laser Packages. Electrolysis Prices: 15 min $30. 20 min $40. 30 min $45. 45 min $61. 60 min $76.”

Monique T. Burghart, LPN, PE, MA, NA.
JustSmart Electrology Studio LLC
The Executive Building
4936 Cleveland Street, #106
Virginia Beach, VA. 23462
Phone : (757) 718-5294
Email : nurse4angels@yahoo.com
Website : http://www.justsmartelectrology.com

ere’s a list of tg friendly electrologists in Virginia. I have no idea who’s close to you, but all of them have been used by people transitioning:

Thanks to all who participated, but unfortunately this does not really get me going. The listings which were mentioned are all 4-5 hours from me - there would be no feasible way of going to them on even a weekly basis, especially since I’m still paying off a used car which is in bad condition and isn’t really safe to drive more than an hour away. As far as the notes on doing my research, they are great and very helpful, but if there’s no one near me to research in the first place, I don’t know what to do.

Maybe give a better indication of your location?

Thank you, but I really do not feel safe being any more specific than I have been already (Southwestern Virginia, 4-5 hours away from any of the locations listed in the thread). I never release my location to others online.

Then perhaps you need to travel to another state. Perhaps this is closer:

North Buncombe Electrolysis
Weaverville, NC.
Phone : (828) 645-4601

Otherwise, start here: http://www.hairtell.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/forums/91/1/Virginia.html

Pick some close to you and give them a test run

I’m currently working on an article (exposé) about the “desperate patient” and how they get ripped-off by the unscrupulous (or just rotten operators). This article will eventually show-up on my website and is based on four real-life experiences of “in-a-hurry, gotta do this now” clients. Photos too!

Nobody ever died from too much hair!

If you cannot find the perfect place that offers you some semblance of a guarantee (money back is best), don’t do it! Think about this possibility: you spend $10,000 and get zero results!

Real-world clients in my article? One spent $12,000 (laser); one spent $10,000 (electrolysis), one (TG) spent $8,000 (electrolysis) on her neck and got ZERO results! Another lost $6,000 pre-paid and didn’t get her money back after being unable to finish.

Maybe wait until you move out of State? YES! Attitudes are much different in different States! Quality of electrology is also not universal. Give it a break, take your time and forget about being “in a hurry!”

Oh yeah, and PLEASE take it easy on that UPPER LIP! A mangled upper lip is NOT a very feminine appearance! That upper lip MUST be perfect … like you were born without hair. It’s a focal point of the face and RUSHING to get the hair off can lead to disaster! Work only with an expert who knows what’s she’s doing!

(THANKS Brenton for helping in this situation! Please, talk to others, like Brenton, who have tons of real-life experience and are so willing to share!)

Michael I’m going to semi-disagree on one point.

Yes, you are absolutely correct that “being in a hurry” can lead one to bad treatment and that one should take their time, evaluate the electrologist to ensure good and effective treatment.This is something we at hairtell can and should be able to help with

HOWEVER this person still should begin hair removal as quickly as possible and make as much progress as they are able to before they start any transition. It is something you will hear transgender people repeat over and over again when they talk about regrets…Not beginning hair removal as much in advance of transition as is possible. "Waiting another year " is NOT an option and makes all the difference in self confidence when they do begin hormone treatment and other transition steps. It really is that important to them. So are you right that they should seek out the best and most effective treatment possible? Absolutely, with no compromise. But I definitely understand their desire to make this happen as soon as they can, and it is a realistic goal.There are qualified electrologists in this persons area that can do a fantastic job, but we need a better answer than “wait until you move to another state” at which point hey are presenting on a daily basis and excess facial hair outs them in their preplanned new environment.

@ Justkeepswimming Michael has some good advice on finding someone qualified. He’s 100% correct that you shouldnt compromise on quality of treatment. What you may find though is you get better referrals if there is a transgender support group nearby and you attend one. Not being familiar with Virginia I’m not sure what is in your area. I have a document produced by Catherie Mateo for reddit you can access here:
It lists Informed consent clinics for both Virginia and North Carolina many of which are planned parentlhood clinics, and will surely have references for Support groups, and possibly electrologists as well. Hopefully this will provide you with access to many more resources than just hair removal.

And, might I say congratulations on being able to identify for yourself an end goal and be at peace with your transition. Being sure of your decision is 99% of the process, the rest is just taking the steps to make it happen. Keep being you and be at peace with yourself.


Thanks for all the responses and information; sadly this does not help remedy my current situation at all. Seana was the only one who really addressed my concern, and unfortunately the PDF she provided has only two facilities listed for Virginia (neither of which seems to have anything to do with hair removal?). As far as attending a transgender support group, I refuse to attend a transgender support group - I want NO ONE to have ANY suspicion in my small town of who I actually am. I may anonymously reach out to them for referrals though. I’m so disappointed that there aren’t more resources and knowledge out there about trustworthy hair removal practitioners, especially on this site.

The pdf wouldnt have electrologist referrals in it. The suggestion was that these were places if you contacted MAY know of someone competent in your area and who can give you a referral, one other TG have used before with success.Unfortunately it’s the best I can do not being from or familiar with SW virginia.
That said, I think you are making a mistake not taking advantages of the resources that ARE out there like support groups. Believe me I do know what it is like to live your life in fear, transphobia is a pretty horrible thing, particularly in bible thumper regions.But do reach out to those resources that are in your area for transgender folks. They will know where to go.

That said I do have some additional suggestions. You mentioned you were “pre-everything” which I would assume means pre-hormone treatment. This is probably because you have felt you arent ready for such. You may want to consider though visiting an informed consent clinic anyway. Even if you dont start hormones right away they can start you on an anti-androgen ( Spironolactone or Cyperoatone(ABSOLUTELY DO NOT TAKE ANYTHING UNLESS IT IS UNDER A DOCTORS PRESCRIPTION AND SUPERVISION)
) .This has the effect of lowering your testosterone levels which is what is currently stimulating NEW hair growth. Anti-androgens wont make you change body fat distribution or grow breasts or anything else likely to out you. but it will stop new hairs from forming so the situation is gets worse rather than better. Unfortunately it wont make the existing hairs go away.

The other option is to save up a bunch of cash and have a large amount of work done at once out of state.Sometimes the professionals will arrange to do a chunk of work in advance and get paid over time, several here have suggested they work this way) A 5 hour drive is a lot to go for a 1 hour appointment, but not as big a deal if you are going for a week and getting 30-40 hours of work done. There are some pro’s here that work exactly this way ( Michael, James, sometimes even Josefa) .Heck I’d help you out (I do a lot of free work for transgender folks ) but I’m all the way up in Canada.

A few words of wisdom, from someone who has travelled your path: Transgender support groups generally GO OUT OF THEIR WAY to make things anonymous and safe, so you cant be outed in your town. Just about every transperson faces these fears (I know I did!).Unfortunately some continue to suffer because they cant get over their fears. Don’t let fear rule over you. Going to support groups is one cases where there is nothing to fear but fear itself. You wont get outed. You will find out what resources are available to you. Take that first step, because if you continue to hide in the closet you will stay in there forever.

( From someone who hid in that closet for over 20 years, and wishes she hadn’t)


You could also call one of the tg-friendly electrologists listed and ask them directly if they have recommendations for people closer to you

Dear Swimmer,

Hairtellers often do fairly well referring others to either laser or electrolysis practitioners. … But, here’s a warning.

Sometimes the referral is based on having known a practitioner for a long time, or having a close friendship. Sometimes the recommendation is based on what the person says about himself or herself, directly or indirectly. Almost none of us zapperettes, here on this site, have actually been TREATED by the people we recommend. Think about that for a minute!

Still, these recommendations are valuable. However, don’t rely too much on any recommendation or, especially, a “testimonial” you might read on a practitioner’s website, or on Hairtell. Lots of testimonials are just plain FAKE! What will work for one patient might not be appropriate for you. Indeed, you are going to have to test and evaluate the practitioner yourself. Take time in your selection.

ALWAYS, over the years, the kids that get themselves into the biggest trouble are the TG patients! Remember: YOU are NOT a second-class citizen and therefore should never be treated “less than!” You should always expect the highest standards in all the procedures you will be requesting. My God, could I tell you stories about my beautiful TG clients … and family members too! (Anybody ever heard of Dr. Brown, Los Angeles?)

My earlier statement here was about being “desperate,” and in your case not wanting exposure. Believe me, I’m “in your camp” and support you 100% … just PLEASE take this slowly and have due diligence before committing large sums of time and money to something that might not work, or even be deleterious to your situation.

I used to recommend others because I assumed all offices were “spotless” and up-to date, and that, if they were in business for decades, were doing superior work. I have learned that this is not necessarily the case. At the moment, I’m only comfortable recommending TWO colleagues. Yep, that’s it!

Don’t let “small town” mentality get you down or think poorly of yourself. You have as much RIGHT to be YOU as any of us. I’m proud of you right now … and, you should be too. At some point you will realize this and then wonder why you worried about what other “idiots” might be thinking. Seriously, they don’t count! (Or as my Italian/New Yorker father would say, “Screw ‘em Michael!”)

I agree with Mike, you have to do your due diligence but After you do your due diligence you just have to go for it. If you walk into an electrologist’s office and there is nothing but chaos, filth and an electrologist who does not want to wear gloves you run for your life, or you run for the beauty of your skin. There’s enough information on this website to get you going in the right direction. Just remember sound and feel. If the electrologist is using HF and you hear sizzling bacon you got problems. Feel, go to your bathroom and grab a pair of tweezers then pull a hair out of your face. If you feel multiple sensations like what you experienced in your bathroom then get up and leave, because any good practitioner knows what traction is. There are a lot of electrologist out there who will do a good job, you just have to give them a chance.

Thanks again - I will seek some referrals from the resources provided.