I still remember that day on the beach very vividly.
I was just about to jump into the water, when my boyfriend, two years into our relationship, asked and pointed “What’s that?”
I looked down and embarrassingly asked him what he meant.
“That!” He said and pointed below my belly-button. I was dying somewhat within.
I took a big breath and thought about how I didn’t want to be the person to tell him this. The truth about girls, the way media and movies never portait as something normal. His image of me or any other woman will forever be changed.
I told him casually, “It’s hair.” And pointed towards his bushy belly, “Just like yours. Women can have it too. It’s normal.”
He digested the thought and asked why mine looked like that.
And I I told him “It’s because I tweeze.”
He took it better than I expected without teasing me about it, and I felt less embarrassed. Like, okay, he learned something new, but he didn’t see me as less of a woman. In fact, he forgot all about it until next year.
On the same spot, he asked the same question.
“I’ve already told you, it’s hair! I tweeze! It’s normal!”
“Oh, okay.” He said acceptingly, just like last time. And we continued our day without discussion.
The unspoken normality
Acne isn’t the only thing puberty brought with it. Since becoming a woman, I’ve had issues with hair growth below my belly-button (uh, how ironic?). While it’s more commonly accepted and known for men to have a “happy trail”, and it is seen as “masculine”, it’s less known that women have it too and that it’s in most cases perfectly normal and due by genetics.
I’ve been lucky to have several friends who’ve been like, “I have that too!”, and I’ve actually met very few who don’t admit to having some form of dark hairs growing towards their pubic area. Knowing that basically that the majority of women have it has made me feel that I’m not less of a woman. In fact, my friends and I are very open with each other and I know many of them get San Diego Waxing in their intimate area to keep everything maintained! It’s not something to shy away from or fear at all.
However it has still caused a lot of insecurities, especially towards summer and wearing bikini in public. But most of all, I’ve dreaded what a guy would think if he ever were to find out. It even went so far that I concluded in my teen angst that I’ll never have a boyfriend because of it.
While men know about and can accept that women do grow hair on their arms, legs, and armpits, some women prefer undergoing body hair removal procedures such as Semper Laser Hair Removal Treatment or the ones like it, to get rid of the body hairs. Additionally, it’s not much discussed or shown at all that women can have hair growing on their tummies and chest just like men. I actually have this one little fella on my left boob that comes to visit every now and then. Peter doesn’t know about him yet…
I even had laser done to reduce the hair growth below my navel. However, three treatments in I quit my job and could not afford to do them anymore. You generally need about six to ten sessions. So after a year, it started to grow back again. But during that full year, I was really happy to be hairless in that area and would definitely do it again or try any at-home laser treatments.
Since then tweezers has been my main choice of weapon. They are not recommended as picking can lead to scarring (luckily I haven’t had that issue). But because my hair doesn’t grow “full bush” but rather a couple dark thick hairs here and there, shaving or waxing is no point, not even bleeching. However, a lot of times they grow inwards, resulting in tiny “picking”-scabs. What’s worse, tiny hairs or looking like you’ve been poked by a bird? So you can guess my excitement when I found out about Deciem and stumbled upon their Inhibitif-line!
EDIT: As I was writing this review I came across an article in Vogue about, you guessed it, happy trails! However, I feel like the fight is to normalize it among men, as we women already know we have it, right?
Inhibitif | Intimate Care
Part of the Chemistry Brand, which is one of the many brands under Deciem’s umbrella, Inhibitif intimate care liquid gel is primarily made to be used on shaved or waxed intimate areas. However, I haven’t really been testing or using it down there. The reason I bought it was because both the body serum (first choice) and the face serum (second choice) was out of stock, and I couldn’t wait for it to restock as I was going on vacation soon. Plus, the Intimate Care was cheaper overall.
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What it does and promises
According to their website, it has advanced technologies to visibly minimize hair regrowth, irritation, redness and ingrown hairs. Also includes hyaluronic acid to hydrate deeply.
- Plant-based active molecules
- Visible results from 2 weeks
- Reduces irritation & redness
- Targets ingrown hairs
- Hydrates with Hyaluronic Acid
- Suitable for all skin types
How Do You Use It
Should be applied once a day on shaved or waxed intimate areas until hair growth, density, and thickness appear reduced. The liquid gel is slightly yellow and sinks in quite fast without leaving a sticky surface. No fragrance.
After two months you can reduce your application to once every other day to maintain visible results.
OBS! I’ve been more vigilant about applying it to my tummy than anywhere else, and so I can’t speak much of the results of reducing bikini-line hairs. But I’m guessing same results may be applied?
Though it says to be used only once a day, I’ve had periods, especially in the beginning, where I would apply it twice. No adverse effects noted.
Just as the claim, I saw a remarkable difference within two weeks! But even within a few applications, just the appearance of hair was greatly reduced!
After two months of daily use, I started to only use it a few times a week as maintenance. When I stopped for a whole month, the hair started growing back within a month again but was just as easily inhibited by using the gel again. And I could much easier and faster go to maintenance-mode.
It doesn’t fully reduce ingrown hairs though. And during summer I had trouble with a couple of hair strands that needed “surgical” removal with my Tweezerman point tweezer. But the gel also helps to heal and fade any tweezer scabs quickly.
Besides that, my only issue has been with the texture and maybe the packaging. This gel is very liquid and I felt like a tube packaging maybe wasn’t the best choice for this one? Maybe a cream consistency would’ve been better? But that’s about it.
IT WORKS! But note, it doesn’t reduce the hair growth completely, but enough to make me happy and repurchase.
I have not tried any other inhibiting hair growth products, this is my first one. So I can’t speak of how well this compares. I’ve generally always been skeptic towards these types of products, but something about Deciem as a company made me trust them to at least try this one. The Inhibitif products are also very inexpensive and you need the smallest amount depending on the area you’re treating.
Thanks to this product I’ve been able to feel more feminine, confident and careless in a bikini and wearing crop tops without feeling like I need high waisted shorts or skirts (even though I prefer the look). The times I’ve had to tweeze my happy trail this year has been minimal.
I sadly forgot to make a before picture, and the one below is my “after”. You can still see small redish and dark spots as I’ve been lazy at applying during winter. But imagine them, but 10x more all over. I now look like I shouldn’t really complain.
Repurchase? Yes. When I’ve used the tube up I will stock up on the body serum and maybe even try out the deodorant too!
Where To Buy
Deciem | Amazon | Lookfantastic | Victoria Health
Note that some still sell with the old packaging!