Time can be cruel to hair. There's too little in some places and too much in others. For women, the "too much" part means choosing between various methods of hair removal – none of which are perfect.
First, here's an explanation of why you may suddenly find whiskers sprouting on your chin or cheeks. As you reach the menopause transition, your hormonal balance changes and that can change the way your hair grows on your face.
Most of the time, it's not a sign of ill health although you should always check with your doctor if you're concerned about something. Although menopause is the likely explanation, unexpected hair growth could also be the result of medication you're taking.
What can you do about it? Here a some solutions:
Lose weight. If you've gained extra pounds over the years, losing weight can reduce facial hair growth.
Bleaching. Try products specially formulated to bleach facial hair. These are gentler than products for other parts of the body.
Waxing, sugaring and threading. All of these pluck hair out but can cause skin irritation and infection. Although home waxing and sugaring kits are available, they can be tricky to use. If you try a salon, check to see that the technicians are licensed and that the procedures are clean.
Tweezers. This is best if you're only trying to get rid of a few hairs. It will hurt less if you do it after your daily bath or shower.
Epilators and electrolysis. Both of these use electric current to destroy the hair shaft. Electrolysis requires several appointments over a period of many weeks. If it's done badly, you can have permanent scarring so check to make sure the technician is licensed.
Lasers. These use heat to destroy the hair follicle and work best with dark hair on light skin and newer products can be effective on other skin types. The FDA warns that using large amounts of a topical anesthetic with this procedure can be life-threatening.