Why Do I Have Hair On My Breasts?

hair on chest female

Most women appreciate the look of smooth, hairless skin, and will often go to great lengths to remove hair from their face, armpits, and legs, and even their stomach, forearms, and toes if needed. Some women might also notice that they tend to get hair on their breasts, growing around the nipple or skin surrounding the nipple.

While hair on the breasts is often quite natural and doesn’t signal any type of health condition that needs attention, it can be embarrassing. To better understand how to manage this type of hair growth, it’s good to note some reasons why you might get more hair on your legs, face, and breasts than other women, and then also note some tips for removing this hair while keeping your skin protected and healthy.

Why Women Grow Hair on Their Breasts

The human body is actually fully covered with hair, but most of this hair is very short, fine, and thin, and invisible in all but the brightest of lights. Body hair tends to get thicker in certain areas as a protection; for example, eyebrows and eyelashes work to catch and trap dust, dirt, and other irritants before they reach the eyes. Pubic hair is also meant to trap bacteria and other irritants before these can enter the groin area.

Thick hair can also protect the skin from sunburn, chafing, injury, and the like. Hairy legs, for example, might be less prone to sunburn or dry skin. Hair on the forearm can also protect the arms from sunburn and chafing. Because thick hair is meant to protect the body in these ways, it could be that hair on the breasts is meant to protect the nipples from dirt and bacteria, or from chafing and irritation.

Why Women Have Excessive Hair

While body hair is quite normal and even beneficial, some hair is excessive especially for women, and might be considered unattractive and unnatural by some. Many women suffer from a condition called hirsutism, or an excessive amount of unwanted and unnecessary hair, especially on the upper lip, chin, neck, and the breasts.

Hirsutism has many causes, but is usually the result of a fluctuation of hormones and specifically the overproduction of testosterone, the male hormone. Testosterone stimulates the growth of body hair, which is why men usually have more body hair than women.

In turn, when a woman’s system produces too much testosterone or doesn’t produce enough estrogen to balance out that testosterone, she may suffer from excessive body hair. This overproduction of testosterone or hormonal imbalance can also have many causes, including:

Hair Growth and PCOS

Another common condition that causes hirsutism is called polycystic ovary syndrome, or PCOS. This condition causes a hormonal imbalance, and the presence of excessive amounts of androgens such as testosterone compared to the amount of estrogen.

PCOS can lead to diabetes and heart conditions, and also interfere with a woman’s menstrual cycles and her ability to get pregnant. However, for many women, the most bothersome symptom of PCOS is the growth of excessive hair, usually around the face and neck but also around the breasts and nipples.

How to Remove Excessive Hair Growth

Since a woman might have excessive facial hair as well as hair around the breasts and nipples, it’s good to note how to remove excessive hair growth in both areas. Remember to be very careful when removing hair so that you don’t cut or irritate delicate skin, and be sure to see a doctor if you notice bleeding, discharge, discomfort, or other such abnormalities around the breasts while removing hair.

  • Tweezing is a very easy way to remove random, stray hairs around the breasts and nipples, as well as under the chin, on the upper lip, and in the front of the neck. Be careful you don’t pull the skin taut when you tweeze as this can lead to ingrown hairs, and be sure to grasp the hair as close to the skin as possible so you pull it out.
  • Hair removal wands are small, handheld tools about the size of a razor, but with a comb-like blade that runs vertically along the handle. Hair removal wands have an on/off switch; when you turn on the wand, the blade moves back and forth, creating a cutting action. You then run the wand over the hair so it’s cut near the skin. Be very careful when using this type of device around your nipples and on your sensitive areola, but this tool is good for thin hairs that are difficult to grasp with tweezers.
  • Waxing can be good for facial hairs, but hot wax can easily burn the sensitive skin on your nipples and areola. Using pre-waxed strips that don’t require heating can be an option for hair on the nipples, but you might also consider visiting a hair removal salon and having a professional apply wax to hair on the breasts as needed.
  • Electrolysis involves applying a small electrical charge to the hair root by use of a tiny needle inserted into the pore of the skin. This procedure can be effective and eventually result in the hair dying off completely, but electrolysis can also be a bit expensive and uncomfortable for the area around the breasts.

When to Seek Medical Intervention for Hair Around the Breasts

If you’re a woman with very thick and bothersome hair on the breasts or face, and you notice other symptoms related to hormonal imbalances such as fatigue, weight gain, and irregular menstrual cycles, it’s good to see a doctor. You might need medication to help balance your hormones and keep you healthy, and to ensure you’re not so self-conscious about your appearance!

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