Three best epilators
Most hair removal is messy or requires frequent maintenance. An epilator is an ideal alternative to the usual shaving, waxing, and depilatories because it not only removes hair without a mess but lets you go longer between hair removal treatments.
It can be tough to find the right epilator, though, because there are so many models on the market. You'll need to decide on the right type and the features that are best suited to your hair removal needs.
Our shopping guide is chock-full of tips to help you find the best epilator. If you're still feeling confused, check out our specific product recommendations for even easier shopping.
Considerations when choosing epilators
When shopping for an epilator, you can choose between three types: tweezer, rotating disc, and rotating spring epilators.
Tweezer epilators are the most common type and feature a number of metal tweezers that pull out hairs that are 0.5 mm or longer.
Rotating disc epilators
Rotating disc epilators use metal or ceramic discs that catch hairs and pull them out at the root with a spinning motion.
Rotating spring epilators
Rotating spring epilators are the original type of epilator. They have coil springs that rotate to catch hairs and pull them out at the root.
Number of tweezers
Since modern epilators usually use tweezers to pull out hair, it's important to consider the number of tweezers that a model offers. The more tweezers that an epilator has, the faster you'll be able to remove your hair. However, models with more tweezers sometimes result in more painful hair removal.
Corded vs. cordless
Epilators are available in both corded and cordless models. Corded options must be plugged in for use, while cordless epilators can be used anywhere because they run on batteries. Cordless models use either standard batteries or a built-in rechargeable battery.
Corded epilators are usually more powerful, but cordless models offer greater mobility and tend to last longer.
Some people find it easier to use an epilator on dry skin, but you may find that warm water helps relax your hair cuticles to make the process less painful. If you prefer using your epilator on wet skin, choose a model that offers wet or dry operation so that the appliance is waterproof and can safely be used in the shower or bath.
Keep in mind that epilators can't be used in wet mode if they're plugged in--they must be fully charged for wet operation.
Some epilators have multiple speeds, so you can choose between high and low speed options. If you have particularly coarse hair, you may prefer an epilator with this option because a higher speed is usually more effective for thicker hair.
If you want to guarantee that you remove every single stray hair, opt for an epilator with a light attachment so it's easier to see even the finest hairs.
For versatility, some epilators include additional attachments or interchangeable heads, including a shaver head, trimmer cap, skin contact cap, facial cap, and exfoliation brush.
In general, an epilator with attachments is a better value.
Epilators usually cost between $25 and $125. Models with fewer tweezers and not as many extra features fall on the lower end of the price range, while those with 70-plus tweezers, multiple speeds, a wet/dry option, and attachments are found on the higher end.
Q. How long can I go between epilator uses?
A. An epilator removes the hair from the root, so your skin can stay smooth for anywhere from three to six weeks, depending on how quickly your hair grows.
Q. What areas of the body can I use an epilator on?
A. Epilators usually work best on the legs, but you can use them on your bikini line, underarms, arms, and even the face.
Epilators we recommend
Best of the best: Braun Silk-épil 9 Wet and Dry Electric Epilator
Our take: The best and highest-tech epilator on the market for reliable, effective hair removal.
What we like: The new model features a head that's 40% wider for quicker hair removal. Patented MicroGrip tweezer technology can remove even short hairs. It includes a facial brush, too.
What we dislike: A more expensive option, though you're paying for quality.
Our take: A affordable epilator that's easy to clean and prevents ingrown hairs more effectively than much of the competition.
What we like: It boasts over 70 antimicrobial silver ion tweezers for effective hair removal.
What we dislike: This epilator can get hot during operation, particularly when used repeatedly over certain areas of the body.
Choice 3: Panasonic Wet/Dry Epilator and Shaver
Our take: A well-constructed, quality epilator that's made by a trusted brand.
What we like: The ergonomic handle is easy to hold. It features an angled head for easier hair removal.
What we dislike: Some users experience ingrown hairs after use.
Jennifer Blair is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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