Our first hair-removal memory brings us back to the tender age of 12. Mom handed over a pink bottle of Nair, performed a demonstration on our leg, and left us with an exhilarating smoothness -- that unfortunately came at a goopy, stinky price. Pee-ew!
So it was with surprise that we surveyed Nair's newest offerings at a New York press event, where new gels and creams smelled shockingly fresh and clean, and nothing like how those bottles of yore used to smell.
That distinctive depilatory scent comes from the active ingredient potassium thioglycolate, which technology can now completely camouflage, says Nair Research and Development Manager Bernadette Devaney.
"We've learned that efficacy and fragrance are equally important to the consumer, you can't sacrifice either one, or people just won't be satisfied. We work with a fragrance house that really understands what causes that odor, and they know how to perfectly mask it," Devaney tells StyleList.
A new Cool Gel will debut as the first of its kind from the brand, with a hydrating gel texture that cools as you remove hair, a feature that warm-weather users will find refreshing.
Another new launch is the sensitive-skin version of the classic Silky Sensations lotion, which substitutes calcium thioglycolate as the active ingredient for a gentler removal. There's just one catch: You'll likely need to let the product sit a couple minutes longer than the typical five-minute wait time for the original.
And while depilatory creams are Nair's number-one-selling product in the American market, the brand's at-home waxes are the hot favorite in Europe and Canada, where waxing is more culturally accepted as a form of DIY hair removal.
Milk & Honey Roll-On Sugar Wax is prepped for 15 seconds in the microwave, and then smoothed on with a roller-ball applicator that is designed to dispense the right amount of product directly on skin. Each bottle comes with 10 cloth strips for convenience.
Devaney says that Nair chooses sugar over a synthetic wax base because it's water-soluble -- meaning, you can rinse it right off with water and not have to worry about scrubbing off residue -- and it sticks to the hair instead of the skin for a less painful wax.
All of the new goods will launch at drugstores in April and retail for less than $10 each. You can grab a $3 discount coupon good for the purchase of two products at NairChallenge.com.
The boys will also have something to look forward too, with a Shower Power thick cream formula that is stronger to work on men's more resistant and coarser hair. After applying a layer and going about your usual shower routine, the cream is removed last with the included sponge, leaving smooth skin behind.
Devaney says that an increase in male desire for bare chests and smooth backs has caused an uptick in depilatory use.
We're thinking a gift case of the stuff could make the male cast of "Jersey Shore" a bunch of very happy life-long customers.
And speaking of Jersey, check out what Sammi "Sweetheart" Giancola is about to launch.