Upper lip shadow?

I would so love the geniuses of this forum to give me a clue or two. :wink:

Right now I’m all but done with electro. My main worry right now is my upper lip. The hair that grows there doesn’t have much time left with the amount of electro I’m doing. I get about three or four dark hairs a day there - and most of the rest are almost colorless and fine - though you can see hues of them if you pluck them. I still get tons of these.

I still have that fraking shadow, though! Some days I can see it, some days I can’t - it depends on lighting. It makes me so self conscious! I pass so phenominally well - no one ever knows now that I’m stealth. I worry that this is a tell.

And I worry it means guys will feel the hair on my lips when I smooch them. :wink:

Can I expect this is something that will eventually be gone? Do I need to expect my electrologist to wipe all the velius hairs as well? Is this just damage from having so much work done? I have a good friend that has finished electro and she has that shadow too.

What’s the story here?


Shouldn’t be a shadow? The skin should look like nothing was ever there. How did you heal after each treatment? Can you go into more detail about your treatments? How many? How far apart? How long were your sessions each time? What kind of equipment? A newer epilator or older one? Probe choice? Magnification? Light source? Aftercare?

I don’t expect you to know the answers to all these questions, but it is not the norm for you to have shadow afterwards. None of my clients do and I have done a trillion upper lips.

What can you offer about your treatments and then maybe we can sort this out? I’m guessing this will all fade in time, but the goal is not to damamge the skin wilst trying to permanently remove hair.

Mucho thanks, Dfahey!

I did 6 treatments of laser. It barely affected the upper lip, though it really rocked for the rest of my face. After that, I had some work done with a Fisher SE-5. I started out having thermolysis done, because my electrolysis said it would be quicker. After hearing other information, I quickly decided to go to simple galvanic around my face, to minimize scaring risks. Right now I can tolerate a setting of 1.25- 2.0 on the machine for 35 seconds per hair on galvantic. Probe choice was a balet needle.

I think a main issue is that I’ve been plucking for about a year since going full time and having laser. I pluck on all the days I can’t have electro - I mean, I’m stealth and it’s just so embarrassing to be transsexual! I can’t imagine letting the hair grow out. But perhaps I’m sabotaging my own efforts.

Right now when I pluck it’s about 30-70 hairs a day, all on my lip and chin (But I am way anal about it, too). When I have electro done, it’s definitely less than that - but I do hear from my electolysist and friends that have finished that I am nearing a stage of just having velius hairs.

I’m healing fine, though my skin always seems broken in a place or two (or 5). I don’t know if this is my zeal in finishing this up, or in my zeal to pluck it all out on the off days.

Is it possible I am not as near being finished as I think I am?

I don’t know - I hope this answered your question.


Wow. Not sure how much of this forum you have read, but YES, YOU ARE BASICALLY WASTING MONEY ON ELECTROLYSIS BY PLUCKING IN BETWEEN. If you continue doing this, you will be going for treatments forever. Does your electrologist know that you are plucking? You can ONLY shave or clip the hairs while getting electrolysis. When you pluck the hair, it may not come back for months. If you do this consistently, you will be getting treatments forever like I said. You really need to read all the helpful information on this forum asap and take charge of your treatments.

The other thing that is incorrect in your post is that you assume that galvanic has less chance for scarring etc. That is absolutely not true. thermolysis or blend are just as good in good hands, only faster. You will get more bang for your buck if you switch to a good electrologist who does either one of those and who doesn’t let you pluck!

To echo lagirl - stop plucking - trim the hairs close to the skin.

I am a long way from being finished (MtF also), and I do not have shadow anywhere except for where I am still trying to get first clearance. I am switching to a new electrologist this week and I have heard she is very good from other MtFs in my area.

Wow - plucking stops hair from growing back for months??? Maybe I’m nowhere near as near being finished as I think I am.

So - if I’m understanding you correctly, what you’re telling me is that the shadow is there because I am plucking and those hairs are still growing beneath the skin? Am I understanding you?

Plucking has been the main reason I’ve been able to stay stealth while finishing this up. But - perhaps the hairs are light enough now that shaving and base will cover them up well enough. I’ll just have to see.

It’s like, on my cheeks it totally looks like nothing has ever grown there. But it’s just not that way on my upper lip. Hmmm. It totally sucks, since I can only wear muted lip gloss and not lipstick because I feel it draws too much attention to it.

Also, lagirl, just to restipulate my logic on avoiding thermolysis on the upper lip - I have a really great friend that’s gorgeous and passable in every way - but she also totally damaged her upper lip and scarred it with thermolysis. I just want to avoid that!

Anyway, thanks for the input, Nikki and lagal!


It’s hard to tell without pictures at least what the shadow is from, but it is possibly from the hair that’s still there. Or it could be from bad electrolysis. And yes, you may be farther away from completion than you think since you’ve been plucking. I would advise you to read up on hair growth cycles so you understand exactly what you’re trying to do here. You will see while plucking doesn’t make sense and slows down your results. Yes, once a hair is plucked, it takes a while for that same hair to grow in again, since there are 2 more cycles in between when other hairs are growing instead.

In terms of thermolysis, it sounds like your friend had bad treatments with a bad electrologist. That has nothing to do with the modality used and everything to do with the skill of the electrologist. What I am trying to convey is that if you can find a good electrologist using thermolysis or blend in your area, you will get finished a lot faster and cheaper. Try running a search here using your city or state to see if there are recommendations.

Keep in mind that best results are achieved when you get a complete clearance up front, so that you’re only coming in to get the new hairs that pop up when they’re still weak. If you follow this recommended routine, you won’t have much to shave in between treatments, plus you will be done sooner and will spend less money overall.

I’ve got some hyperpigmentation around my upper lip, too, from a combination of (I think) hormones, electrolysis (right along the lipline) and, sad to say, one or two sunburns I carelessly got while on vacation. Normally, I strictly avoid sun exposure but while in New York I got burned during a day out, not thinking I’d get enough sun amidst all those buildings to cause a problem. Anyway, now I am looking in to fade creams and possible skin resurfacing.

I echo everyone else about the plucking. You’re just wasting your time and will never get done with electrolysis. Just trim the hairs, and be sure to stick religiously to weekly appointments to get the incoming hairs zapped. That way, you catch them in their growing cycle and don’t have to go around with stubble for very long.

I have had 3 sessions of Laser hair removal treatment to my beard growth area, I’m mostly pleased with results, the upper lip area does seem to be lagging behind. I have 3 more sessions to go of the pack of treatment that I funded, plus my NHS funded laser and electrolysis sessions so I have good hopes the upper lip area will be clear sometime in the near future.

Thank you so much for simplifying things by including information about yourself in the signature. That way, we don’t have to ask a million questions about your situation.

It sounds like you are progressing as quickley as possible. This is another example of the value of using a combination of laser first, followed by electrolysis, to create a faster outcome . Do visit again and let us know how all this turns out for you.


After a year and a half of electrolysis and never plucking, my hair had pretty much zero pigment. Then when i was recovering from surgery this winter and had nothing better to do I plucked my whole face. About a month later it all came back in black. It was a nightmare. Now i have shadow on my upper lip that i didn’t have before. I used to be able to let my hair grow out a little. Now I have to shave pretty much every day which is going to make it a lot harder to work and get electrolysis treatments.

This is why we tell you not to pluck. Plucking can make hairs both thicker and darker, as you can now attest.

Be of good cheer. If you let the hairs grow out for one to three days, a good fast electrologist could clear it all out in one visit. Then you could keep it maintaned without anyone else knowing your secret, if your treatment schedule is kept just right, and you get full clearances each time.

Hi clparker:

Back in Black. That sounds like the name of an AC/DC album.

Seriously though that is a good lesson to be learned about
facial plucking. I have been seeing an electrologist for years
now and the upper lip is amazingly hair free. It did take a while
and dedication to continuing a regular schedule until I was really happy with the resuts.

If you are not stealth then growing the hairs out for a few days prior to treatment shouldn’t be a problem. If you are stealth then maybe you can make an appointment during a vacation week, grow the hair out a few days and make sure to get a full
clearance. Then if you maintain a regular schedule you should be able to keep everything under control until the hairs are
totally anihilated, exterminated or whatever they do with nasty vermin.


Hmm… I didn’t think it would take that long to get a small area like that cleared in years (maybe a year?). Did you have dense dark hair above your lip? How long were your oppointments?

Hi Angel:

Actually I had a pretty good moustache that many
guys were jealous of. Yes, dense and brown and may I add
very yucky.

Actually the upper lip did not take that long,
but considering I could only do 2 hours at a time
we started out clearing the upper lip and whatever
else we could get done in the 2 hour session.
Eventually the upper lip had less and less regrowth
and required less and less time.

Eventually I got the entire face and neck cleared within 2 hours, then 1-1/2 etc…

The story goes that I would take however long it took

until I was happy, even till my dying day. If we go in there expecting we are going to be completely done with electrolysis within a year we could end up being disappointed. You might still need cleanup sessions every couple of months
for a while after that.

I am getting another area of my body done now and I have her
remove the occasional stubborn hair from my face while I am there. But I don’t have to shave and any hairs that do come back
are usually fine and few.


To get to first clearance on an upper lip would only require one to, say, shave Thursdaynight, go to work Fridaymorning, and then get to the appointment Fridayevening, or Saturday sometime. Then the electrologist has enough hair to work so that it doesn’t take twice to three times as long to get the hairs removed.

I have Stealth girls who refuse to take a little time to let some hair grow for me, and they just have to pay for that in longer sessions to remove the same amount of hair that I could have removed in an hour if they just took some time out of the social calendar so we could strip it bare at a fast pace.

Rare is the upper lip that would take me more than 2 hours to clear out on the first day. After that, one would just have to get on schedule and stay in that zone.

Once a person gets to first clearance, one can keep it clear with electrolysis alone if one is on that most aggressive schedule, and the skin looks finished, even as one continues the treatments. For everyone else, they are shaving once or twice a week in between appointments.

Hi James:

I always had at least 3 days growth before friday afternoon appointments.

As far as first clearance on the upper lip, it probably
took close to 2 hours for the first clearance. We continued to clear that first each time and then worked our way to the chin with any remaining time.

Eventually we got down to 2 hours and less for the whole
face, neck, etc…

I started treatments before going full time and was in reasonable considerably thinned out condition by the time I went full time. If anyone is considering going full time tryto get as much done ahead of doing that.


I would agree with AliciaDarling on this one.

That is why it is such a great thing if one can find someone who can do, and is willing to do enough work to get full first clearance in a short time, so the work gets done faster, and the person can go full time sooner.

Hi James:

Two hours at a time was about all I could handle.
You can call me a wussy if you’d like.
Maybe if my electrologist had a more up to date machine
than the Sequentium 328 too it would probably have been
less painful.All things considered however I am happy to have
her as my electrologist and she is local.

I think some of us tend to rush into going full time
when some forethought and preparation might make for
a smoother transition. Just as a for instance how many
have come on here and said they need electrolysis but
are full time and don’t want to go a few days without shaving
prior to treatment?

A little research goes a long way.
Maybe some people should consider reading TS Roadmap or
other helpful sites before taking the leap.


I would agree.

You don’t know how many people come to me looking for magic, but refuse to do simple things like, let the hair grow long enough to allow me to work as fast as possible, and/or give me enough time to get them a full clearance, and/or get work done on schedule so we can get it finished as quickly as possible.

Then they want to complain that things are not going as well as they thought it would, or as fast as someone else they know got it done.

Well, if I have to scrape and pick for each hair because you shaved with a Mach IV THIS MORNING then you can’t get fast hair removal!