Waxing vs. Shaving vs. Threading

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Difference between Waxing, Shaving and Threading

We certainly have it good nowadays, what with the many options for hair removal around. Gone are the days when the only option was to shave or get the offending hairs plucked out–painfully. While shaving remains a viable option for many people, alternatives such as waxing and threading are increasing in popularity as well. This comparison article takes a look at each of these options.



After shaving, waxing has become the traditional favorite for hair removal in the past decades since the advent of razors, especially disposable razors, and it continues to be popular to this day. The term waxing refers to the process of covering a strip of fabric with hot wax, and using that to remove the hair by the roots.

Shaving basically involves removing unwanted hair with a razor, which may either be a straight razor which is less and less common, an electric razor, conventional modern razor, or the handy disposable.

Threading is a fairly new method offered in beauty salons but is an ancient practice. Both India and Iran claim to be its place of origin. It is most often used in removing unwanted hair around the eyebrow area and upper lips. Some women use threading all over the face.


Waxing typically involves applying heated wax directly on the skin in the direction that the hair grows and a strip of cloth or paper is placed on top of it to dry. As the wax cools, the hair adheres to it and the cloth is pulled off, taking the hair with it.

Shaving is the simplest procedure of the three, and it simply involves running a razor over the skin where you want to remove the unwanted hair. Most experts agree that shaving should be done in the direction that the hair grows, and that a shaving cream be used to enhance the smoothness of the skin.

Threading involves using 2 cotton threads which are twisted and rolled over the skin to remove or shape hair lines. This method is painful because the strands of cotton pull the hair roots out along with the attached hair. In most cases, the thread is attached to an entire row of hair.

Advantages And Disadvantages

One of the main advantages of waxing is that the hair will take a longer time to grow back than if you remove it with the other methods. The process is also quite inexpensive. Of course this process is a bit painful at the start, but most people soon get used to it. Another disadvantage is that some hairs may not be removed by the procedure.

The advantages of shaving are that it is easy to do, generally painless, and of course, it is very inexpensive. Unfortunately, shaving is also the most temporary of solutions, and you can expect the hair to grow back after a few days at most. Shaving may also cause irritation, redness or bumps.

Threading has a number of advantages, the most notable of which being that it can remove entire rows of hair quickly and cleanly. The disadvantages to this method however are the potential ingrown hairs and scars.

Similarities and Differences


  • Involves covering a strip of fabric with hot wax, and using that to remove the hair by the roots
  • Some hairs may not be removed


  • Involves removing unwanted hair with a razor
  • Is the easiest and least expensive option
  • Is also the most temporary of solutions
  • May cause irritation


  • Involves threading a strand of cotton to the hair and pulling it out along with the attached hair
  • Can remove entire rows of hair quickly and cleanly
  • Can cause ingrown hairs and scars


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