Feeling Like The Beast

I’ll be 24 years old in 20 days. When I was in the 11th grade, someone noticed that I had long, dark hairs sprouting along my neck. Embarrassed, because I’d never really paid attention to it before, I ducked my head and when I got home…I took a ‘finishing touch’ personal groomer and shaved the area. I thought this was safe cause it was like a hair cut rather than shaving. Well, I decided I’d do the same thing to the sides of my face. My upper lip, strangely, I left alone and chose only to bleach it as the years went on. Why didn’t I just do this with the rest of the hair, I don’t know. I wish I could turn back the clock.

At some point, I decided to actually shave the areas. I don’t remember when this was and it’s one of those things that I’d do over if I could. Because it’s a habit that once you start, you have to keep doing. Every morning when I take a shower, I shave my sideburn areas, my jawline, corners of my chin, and my neck because I have to. For seven years now. I’ve invested in nice shaving lotions formulated for sensitive areas, like Coochy, and have a special razor that I only use on my face.

Dark hair covers my stomach with a line in the center (happy trail) and as I get older, where it used to be just a line up the center…the darkness continues to spread outwards. I used to just have long, dark hairs surrounding the areola but now it has spread all over my chest and seems to be making a path towards my shoulders. I had long, dark hair at the small of my back that I used to shave but nowadays I forget about it since no one sees it anyway. But again, the hair on the rest of my back had been blonde. Now it’s darkening with random really long/dark hairs in some areas. The hair on my arms is long and dark and I have hair on the fat part of my fingers as well as the sides of my hands. My toes sprout hair. The pubic hair…oi. It doesn’t help that I have very fair skin.

The last time I went to my ob/gyn, I spoke of my concerns about PCOS. But she kind of brushed it off and said that she didn’t feel any cysts on my ovaries and that PCOS was only really a problem if you were trying to get pregnant. I have to have a hormonal imbalance…I just have to!

I never stay off anywhere because I have to shave my face in the morning. Where some people can go a day or two without having a shower, I have to have a shower in the morning regardless so I can take care of this. And while it’s still not visible some 12+ hours later, you can feel it if you were to touch it. I’m terrified of getting serious with a guy and not being able to let him touch my face or forgetting to stop him and him recoiling because I have a 5 oclock shadow. Then if there was a morning after you know…having to jump up and shower before he wakes up. Because let’s be honest…what guy wants to date a girl who has to shave like he does? Then there’s the fact that cause the skin of my neck/chest turns red at the slightest aggravation, my neck is red for a little while after shaving.

I have acne. I’m overweight. My periods are irregular to the point where I’m doubtful if I can even have children…but this, THIS…this is the problem that debilitates me the most. That if this problem did not exist for me…my life would be so much better.

You gotta tell me there’s a light at the end of the tunnel here. I’m making an appointment tomorrow for my yearly physical and I’m going to talk about this with my gyno. I’ve heard about this cream called Vaniqa but that’s still something that only slows the growth, not get rid of. There’s a laser hair removal clinic in my area that I’ve thought about calling and making a consultation. The only areas I’d really want removed above all others is the face. The rest…bleaching and whatnot I guess I could deal with and I’d get a tan to hopefully make it not as noticeable. But it’s just the face…the face.

I’m tired of being hairy. So tired.

Hi there,

I hope your gyno listens to your concerns and does the appropriate tests or referral.

Sometimes it’s PCOS or a hormonal imbalance. Sometimes it’s not.

Either way, the solution to get rid of the hair you currently have, is electrolysis.

Invest your time in reading through the electrolysis forum and then find yourself a good electrologist to help you through this.

Have you ever let the hair grow to see what it’s like now? Is is thick? Is it dense?

There was a very inspiration post here a while back by PCOS sufferer who had changed her life around. Changed her diet, exercise and electrolysis for the hair. I wish I could find it for you.

On a place like the face…I really wouldn’t be able to let it grow out because I’d been too self-conscious about it. But I’ve made my appointment and I’m going to bring it up with my doctor. Unfortunately, the closes electrolysis place is something like 50-100 miles from where I live though there’s a couple of places that do laser right in my city. Electrolysis kind of scares me, tbh course I know it’s all about finding the good practitioner. The dermatologist my mom goes to does laser and I’m going to get her to ask about it for me when she goes next week. Until we can figure out what the underlying problem is, I don’t think I should jump the gun with any removal treatments so I just have to wait, I guess.

Laser is also all about the practitioner. Most people use crappy machines and ineffective settings that produce little to no results.

Also, laser only works on coarse dense growth. So it’s usually not an either/or situation. You either need electrolysis OR laser depending on the type of hair you have to treat. For most women, electrolysis is the only option on the face because the hair is too finer for laser and laser can actually stimulate MORE growth there.

Shaving doesn’t cause the hair to become different. This has been proven in studies. You were just at an age when most people develop more hair.

It sounds like you may potentially have PCOS. You should schedule an appt with an endocrinologist to get tested before you do anything else. Many regular doctors and OB/GYN are dismissive.

You should add your location to your profile.

I think with my insurance, I have to have a referral but I haven’t looked into to see if there are any endocrinologists in my area.

In the meantime, I’ve started an exercise regime and am going to work on my nutrition as I’ve read losing weight will greatly help on it’s own.

Is there anyway to tell if it’s truly coarse hair or if it just feels coarse because of the growth cycle?

I’ve also read that drinking spearmint tea twice a day can help. Does anyone know anything about that?

Being healthy always helps. So definitely continue with that regime. There are several books recommended on the forum. You may want to read the electrolysis sections.

The spearmint tea thing is likely a myth.

Coarse hair is the type of hair that leaves a shadow when shaved or stubble. Underarm and bikini and beard growth is usually coarse. If you have large patches of male-pattern coarse beard-like growth, then laser may be ok. If not, then only electrolysis would work. There seem to be quite a few electrologists in your area. Of course, you’d have to read our Electrolysis forum and get some sample treatments to pick a good one: http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&source=s_q&hl=en&geocode=&q=greenville,+nc+electrolysis&aq=&sll=35.759886,-77.156982&sspn=2.910551,4.63623&ie=UTF8&hq=electrolysis&hnear=Greenville,+Pitt,+North+Carolina&ll=35.609371,-77.347441&spn=0.043822,0.072441&z=14

LAgirl said: “Many regular doctors and OB/GYN are dismissive. [regarding PCOS].” And, I have discovered, that this statement is tragically true! They might start you on birth control pills to control symptoms, but you need to find someone who is a true specialist in this field.

We have “the guy” in California, and he has lectured several times to our association. If you think you have PCOS, start here:


IS your OB/GYN the only doctor you have seen? We don’t judge all electrologists or laser specialists by some in the profession that perform miserably and thus goes the same for the medical profession.

I am not aware of any statistics that say primary care physicians, OB/GYN physicians or nurse practitioners are mostly dismissive of PCOS concerns of patients. They know how to order the preliminary laboratory tests to check hormones, glucose and lipid levels. They know how to order a pelvic ultrasound. They know how to take a medical history and do a physical examination. This disease cannot be diagnosed with one test and they know this. I’m pretty darn sure that if they know who to refer the patient to if that even becomes necessary. Some communities do not have enough fertility specialists or endocrinologists, so the preliminary workup can be done by other non - PCOS specialists, in order to see if you even need to travel far and wide to be treated.

Most states have their centers of research and in North Carolina the Department of Medicine at Duke University Medical Center have their physicians who have clinical expertise and published articles in PCOS. If you want a couple names, you can contact me, but first pay a visit to another OB/GYN, primary physician or nurse practitioner and tell them your concerns and ask them what tests they will be ordering.

Weight loss is the number one thing you have to do and you are on it. If you need a nutritionist to help you out, then that would be money well spent.

For information about ongoing clinical studies in your area go to Clinical Trials Listing Service www.centerwatch.com . Maybe you will benefit from being involved.

I love this site and if you haven’t already visited it, you must!

I don’t know if they have the radio program up and running for PCOS’ers yet, but that sounds extremely cool.

This is hard disease to diagnose. That is why you need many different tests along with a physical exam and medical history. Hair removal can start anytime. Laser and electrolysis combined may be most helpful. Even if you don’t have PCOS, work on losing weight.

Just having a plan and doing something will make you feel better. Be dogged determine and suffer no more, Ashmatic! You can do this.



Awesome advice Dee

That was very inspiring. Thank you!

I’m glad to know I’m not alone in this.