Last week, I was in a deep YouTube hole when I came across a video of a vlogger waxing her nose hair. While it's not something I've ever considered doing, the deeper I got into my YouTube hole, the more and more vloggers I saw doing it. My nosiness got the better of me as I worried that everyone I've ever met must have been repulsed by the sight of my hairy nose, so I talked to Dr Emma Craythorne, consultant dermatologist and dermatological and laser surgeon, Dr Max Malik, medical director and founder of Cosmetics Clinic, and Dr Ross Perry, GP and medical director of Cosmedics Skin Clinics, to find out more. Much to my relief, the three agree you shouldn't be waxing your nose hair at all.
"Nasal hair is like an air filter for your lungs: it lets fresh oxygen in while keeping dirt, bacteria, and toxins out," Dr Malik said. "The hair strands that line our nostrils also help to humidify the air we breathe in, which keeps the entire respiratory system from drying out and causing irritation." In other words, we need nose hair to function.
Dr Malik warned against waxing nose hair as it can lead to various health problems, a fact that Dr Perry agrees with: "By waxing the nose hair away, you're in fact removing a layer of protection." Without it, you are prone to ingrown hairs, infection, and a weakened immune system. "You could also do damage to the skin," he added.
According to Drs Malik, Perry, and Craythorne, plucking is just as bad as waxing and not worth the risk. If you insist on tidying up the area, Dr Craythorne says the safest thing to do is trim the hairs. If your reason for waxing nose hair is because they itch, Ross recommends using chia oil to soften the hair and minimise irritation.