Superfluous hair, whhhhhhy???!!??? Anyhow, as someone who has pretty successfully gotten her situation under control, wanted to share a few things that worked for me that might work for others: (Note that I likely have PCOS - there is no official test, it's a diagnosis of elimination - but that is the most common disorder which causes these things, and it's estimated that 10-12% of all women have it in some degree.) 1) EAT MOSTLY WHOLE FOODS. Refined, sugary foods spike insulin, which is one trigger of the superfluous hair condition (as well as acne!) 2) Vitamin D supplement. (I take 4,0000 IU/day. You need something like 50,000 IU/day over a period of about 6 MOs to get into overdose territory, just FYI...) People who have PCOS often have low blood levels of VItamin D. 3) Saw Palmetto Supplement (2000 IU/day) 4) Exercise. Also helps control insulin... I saw better results following this regimen than years of BCP management and really wish I had started down this path sooner. I think ovarian-cysts-pcos.com is a really terrific learning resource and it got me on the right path. (I take no BCP at all now and really don't need it if I keep on course with the four things listed above...) Finally, even if you get your hormones under control, you still have the visible remains - the dreaded hair. For this, the gold standard really is laser and it is WORTH EVERY PENNY. It's ultimately easier on your skin (no more plucking/waxing and it really is as close to permanent as you'll get) and just frees you to move the heck on to other things. Good luck! I always love your articles and was so happy to see you write this one!
@breezee, @comments, I used to be an electrologist. I got into it because I developed PCOS as a teenager and basically had a full, manly beard by the time I was in college. I was fully licensed and had a business in Berkeley, CA for several years in the early '90s, until the lasers put me out of business and I had to go get a real job. Couple things - 1) waxing does not make your hair come back thicker, but it can cause serious ingrowns if you are prone to them and not careful. Because of the way hair grows in cycles, after the first time you wax it can be substantially less painful if you maintain it on a regular schedule. Functionally, threading, sugaring, and waxing are all forms of tweezing. The way they differ is in speed, accuracy, and comfort level. Waxing and sugaring are not recommended for people who use retinoids or some other topical facial meds because they can pull your skin off with it. Check with a dermatologist about threading - most people should be fine because the threads only grab hair, not the skin like waxing does. 2) Lasers are a massive improvement over electrolysis if you are a good candidate. Lasers will work the best on people with dark hair and fair skin - basically you need to zap the follicles which can be 1/8 to 1/4 inch deep in your dermis depending on where on your body the hair in question is. The greater the color variation the easier it is for the laser to "see" the follicle. It hurts like you're being snapped with a rubber band. There are topical creams that can help by prescription. It's not bad though - if you can take waxing you can take this. 3) Electrolysis is expensive and painful, but can be the best option for people with darker skin, lighter hair or for serious eyebrow shaping. The way to tell if your electrologist knows what they are doing is to pay attention to what you feel as they are working. There are three possible pain sensations - first when they put the needle down next to the hair shaft - if you feel a poking or pricking sensation their aim is off. Everybody misses every once in a while, but if you feel it on every hair, find a different electrologist. The second one is a slight zap or buzzing feeling when they hit the electricity. This is normal and what you should feel, and it will be worst on your upper lip. Chin and eyebrows hurt, but I could take it for hours without a problem. The third thing to notice is if you feel them pulling the hair out - once the follicle is zapped by the electricity the hair should just slide right out. If you feel a tweezing sensation, they didn't do it right. A few misses in a session are normal, but if it happens every time, move on. Also, people prone to keloid scarring should not do electrolysis. If you are prone to it, you'll know already.
Whoa, I'm not sure I understand why everyone is being so harsh on this guy. I think for many people, "rich" is such an abstract thing that it's hard to recognize in your own life. When your day-to-day is taken up with mundane tasks and a lot of justifiable worrying about the economy, future college spending, perceptions of those around you (and it's pretty audacious to expect others' perceptions to *never* affect you), etc., I can understand how you wouldn't feel "rich." If you were flying off to TED summits every other weekend and sent your kids to boarding school in Switzerland, okay, that's pretty obviously rich. But for the vague amorphous "upper middle class," it's a very subjective line to draw between "financially rich" and "financially not rich." Also, anyone who was an active investor during the financial crisis can understandably feel much less secure no matter where their current income/investment levels stand. It was scary. Watching money basically evaporate and supposedly sound institutions (and their previously enviable employees' salaries!) disappear overnight leaves a bitter taste in your mouth for years to come. With that understanding and fear that nothing will last, it's hard to feel totally secure no matter where your income lies.
@Lily Rowan Oh, and also the thing about how hard it is to downgrade -- obviously people raise families on much, MUCH less, but everyone must admit that the prospect of losing what they currently have would be really painful.
I think coming from a place of thinking you have to pay for your kids' undergrad with cash is really hard, because of how crazy the costs have gotten. So he's thinking he'll need half a million just for college, not to mention private school, if they do that -- I don't know, I'm just saying I can see where an upper-class but not extravagant life is really expensive, and being a sole earner must be scary.
@seaermine Those are such great one things! I should schedule a doctor's appointment too. I have been avoiding it because there was an insurance switch and there is going to be paperwork and ugh. But the power of the one thing post! I love them too.
I started seeing a therapist! I don't know how I feel about this yet!
@seaermine Can I just say that these do one thing posts have had a HUGE impact on my life? I don't do my one thing every week but at least now I have a list of one things and I'm slowly going through it. Like over the weekend I cleaned out my computer, and this week I'll pick one or two things and because I can see them on the list and tackle them one at a time it's not so bad as knowing I have all these things to do and not being able to remember them or motivate myself to do them.
I made my doctors appointment! That I have been putting off since December. The closet appointment after 5pm is in July and it’s at 5pm so I’ll still have to find some way to leave early. Why don’t more doctors have evening hours? So annoying. I also completely paid off my credit card! I did not clean, which was my other one thing (well, the one thing I had chosen off my list of like 50 one things I need to do). Oh and I emailed Logan, which I've been meaning to do for a while, about a thing about rent and money. Aaaaand I half vacuumed my floor and stacked the dirty dishes in one area. Which doesn't sound like a thing but it is because I used to be a clean person and then depression and now I'm not and it's hard.