“ Brand: Panasonic / Type: Epilator „
For many years now I've had an epilator, just a bog standard old thing that looks truly terrifying because it has no skin guards so the discs are directly on my skin and I always find myself thinking "if it grabs my skin it's going to tear a chunk out of me". That was one reason I wanted a newer model. The other reason is I could only use my old one on my legs and I wanted to be able to use it on my bikini line and underarms as well.
Step forward the Panasonic wet/dry epilator that promises to be gentle and has skin guards for the underarm and bikini line areas and it can be used with your skin in water and water dulls pain doesn't it? I bought one after a bit of debate for £19.99 plus £4.50 p&p on Amazon and eagerly awaited its arrival.
However, once it arrived I got cold feet and left it sitting in its box for a couple of weeks! I eventually bought the required AAA batteries and popped 2 in. The epilator is a girly pink and white, shaped with a waist so you can hold it easily and comes with a large skin guard for legs and a small one for bikini line and underarm and a small brush for brushing hair out of the discs when used dry. Now for the epilating test.
I'm not a regular epilating girl, I go through phases where I do it for a while then get bored and switch back to my razor but the thought of weeks of being hair-free again tempted me. I don't get on with waxing, it tends to rip my skin whether I do it or someone professional and I hate the smell, messiness and short term effects of creams so it's either razors or epilators for me.
I've been told the underarm is actually the most painful area followed by the bikini line and then the legs so for my test I started on my legs which have been epilated many times.
I wanted to try this wet so I read the instructions which I might add don't make alot of sense and are full of spelling mistakes! Apparently I should wet the discs then drizzle some shower cream or something similar onto the discs and wet my skin and apply some there too. No problem, although it felt weird running the epilator under the tap. At regular intervals you also run the discs under water to rinse off stubble.
So with a wet, creamy leg and epilator I got to work. As most of you know epilating is pulling the hairs out by the root, it's a fast way of plucking a large area. The discs rotate in a scary fashion and grab the hairs and yank them out as they go over them. For best results you should move the epilator against the direction of hair growth and you must pull the skin taut to prevent cuts.
The epilator didn't make much noise, my last one sounded like a pneumatic drill so this was a pleasant surprise. I haven't epilated in a while so I'd forgotten that it hurts and when I started moving the epilator up my leg it quickly reminded me! I use short strokes of about a couple of inches so I don't have to go over the same area loads of times. Even though this was used with water and foam it didn't reduce the pain at all. I really had hoped it would and kept thinking of all those articles I'd seen about not shaving your legs under the water because you won't feel it if you cut yourself. Surely then it must be because I wasn't actually under the water?
It epilated my legs fine, lifted the hairs out as good as my old one and didn't graze or nip my skin. I was left with the usual red dots all over my legs for the next 24 hours but afterwards they were smooth and hair-free.
I decided to immediately try the bikini line. When I refer to the bikini line and epilating I am not talking a brazilian or anything like that! The most you can do with them is the crease where your leg meets your body and on your lower abdomen if you want to tidy that area up. I switched to the small skin guard which shields about half the discs so you only have a small amount pulling out hairs rather than a large amount. I honestly wasn't prepared at all for the pain! It was excruciating and felt like lots of pinching and stinging.
I switched back to the normal guard and added even more water and shower cream but even though the normal guard hurt less it still hurt too much. The head on this epilator is just a line of discs about an inch and a half long so any hope of actually being able to get into the crease near the leg was, well, hopeless. It doesn't fit and it's very hard to pull the skin tight there, especially as you fight back the tears in your eyes from the pain! I had to abandon the bikini line as too painful and too difficult.
By this time I'd decided the underarm area would be far too painful done with water and foam but not actually under water so I decided to jump in the shower and point the hot water at my underarm and try it that way. I can tell you it was very, very painful and I put it on my skin twice before giving up. The water made no difference and I couldn't stand it.
I do know some people who epilate all areas and can stand it so I'm not saying this epilator made it more painful, it just didn't decrease the pain at all. The small skin guard makes it more painful for some reason when it's supposed to make it less painful. I also don't think you could really use this in the bath or shower for most areas because you need to be in a position where you can pull your skin tight, baths and showers don't really lend themselves to that.
I'm disappointed that this one is only going to be useful for my legs, if I'd thought the wet aspect wouldn't help I would have stuck to old faithful. I've read loads of reviews online about wet epilation and the opinion varies so I suppose it's down to the individual and I'm one of those who just can't take it! As for dry epilation with this model, it's exactly the same as all other models, painful!
Overall it's been a waste of £25 for me, the skin guards don't do much and the small one makes matters worse. Wet epilation is no less painful than dry and I can only use it on my legs. It's good it's battery powered so you could take it on holiday with you but if, like me, you're expecting wet epilation to hurt less it just doesn't.
I can't recommend or not really because it's down to the individual and your pain threshold. I have constant pain from many areas anyway so perhaps I'm more sensitive. I'll give it 3 stars and let you decide.
Gentle, convenient and quick foam epilation for the bikini area and underarms. Foam epilation improves epilation efficiency and increases overall epilation speed. The Skin Protection system for sensitive skin / eases stress on skin by preventing direct contact with the tweezing discs.