The Best Body Hair Removal Methods For Swimmers

swimmers hair removal

A few tenths of a sec­ond can make a big dif­fer­ence between fin­ish­ing first and sec­ond, and that is why swim­mers often remove body hair before a big race. This is done to decrease drag in the water and it is also believed to give swim­mers a psy­cho­log­i­cal boost. It has become a tra­di­tion in swim­ming since the 1956 Olympics when Jon Hen­ricks and Mur­ray Rose shaved before their races and won gold medals for Aus­tralia. Today, we are going to take a look at the best swimmers hair removal method:


This is one of the most com­mon meth­ods of swimmers hair removal, but it’s also tem­po­rary.It’s rec­om­mended that you trim down the hair on your chest, arms and legs before actu­ally shav­ing. It is a cheap method of remov­ing body hair and can be done at home before a swim­ming event, but if you have a lot of hair it can require sev­eral razors.

Is this the best swimmers hair removal method?

Shav­ing remains a pop­u­lar choice for many com­pet­i­tive swim­mers, but the hair is only cut off at the sur­face and will quickly return. Ingrown hairs and fol­li­culi­tis may also become a prob­lem. How­ever, it remains a cheap, effec­tive way of mak­ing your­self more aero­dy­namic for glid­ing through the water.


This is a good, albeit painful swimmers hair removal method of pulling out large amounts of hair. It is a method where warm wax is applied to the hair and then pulled out with a piece of wax strip paper. You only need to see the scene with Steve Car­rell in The 40 Year Old Vir­gin and know that it was real to under­stand how painful it can be. Still, the results will last longer than shav­ing and it is pos­si­ble to do it at home or get pro­fes­sional treatment.

Is this the best method?

Wax­ing can prove a good way of remov­ing body hair before a swim­ming event or com­pe­ti­tion, but you will need to have a good pain thresh­old. It’s also impor­tant to note that the hair must be a cer­tain length (0.25–0.5 inches) for the wax to grab and pull it out.

Swimmers Laser Hair Removal

There is lim­ited pain in the case of laser hair removal and it can treat just about any part of the body. You will need to visit a trained pro­fes­sional to receive treat­ment, though, because it is essen­tially a laser burn­ing away unwanted hair fol­li­cles at their roots. The treat­ment is not cheap com­pared to the two meth­ods men­tioned above, poten­tially in the region of $1,500 or more for a series of treat­ments, and the hair will grow back.

Is this the best method?

It is a method that is being used by more swim­mers, but whether or not it is the best will depend on indi­vid­ual dis­cre­tion. The cost will also need to be taken into account and can dif­fer depend­ing on where you go.

IPL (Intense Pulse Light)

IPL is dif­fer­ent to laser hair removal as it can treat an area in one go and can do so for a larger area. This makes the treat­ment quicker and reduces the level of pain. It takes a cou­ple of treat­ments to see results and it works best on darker hair and paler skin. Pro­fes­sional treat­ment can be expen­sive, albeit gen­er­ally cheaper than laser treat­ment, and there is the money sav­ing option of pur­chas­ing a home IPL system.

Is this the best method?

Once again, it’s going to be down to indi­vid­ual pref­er­ence whether or not IPL is a swimmer’s best method of hair removal.  Repeat ses­sions will be required, but these can be car­ried out at home with a pro­fes­sional bought system.

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