My sister and I had Braun Silk-Ã©pil epilator units in the late â€™80s, early â€™90s (my mum says they were better than the higher-profile Epilady versions -- remember those?). The rechargeable shaver-like unit featured a section of discs that rotated in opposite directions to seize and pluck out hair from the root as you moved it over the skin. (Ordinarily, I'd use the word "tweeze," because as my friend Deborah says, "plucking is for chickens." But here, I think pluck is the more appropriate term.)
My mum bought the Silk-Ã©pil kits for us as a cost-effective alternative to disposable razors. The idea was neat, but ouch, the thing pinched! It was weirdly untidy: plucked hair flew about as well as got stubbornly stuck inside the unit's head, resisting the eviction efforts of the stiff-bristle cleaning brush that came with. And it wasn't particularly effective on a girl who, instead of inheriting her Chinese mum's naturally smooth arms and legs, takes after the hirsute European side of the family -- thanks, Dad. Plus, I hate regrowth -- it's decidedly unpretty against my pale skin. So, the epi-thing languished in a drawer for ages and ages after the first few trials. Nostalgic revisits were brief because the machine, even plugged in, slowed to sports-replay speed. New battery required, but as if.
Apparently, though, the mechanical yank-out-the-hair concept has remained strong all these years. And Phillips has stepped up with the Satinperfect Epilator, offered as a better, more effective incarnation. BeautyEditor.caâ€™s Michelle Villett has been raving about it these last few weeks. Click here to catch up on how it's changed her life.
Image courtesy of Phillips.