Approximately 8 percent of women in the United States have a condition called hirsutism, which is the excessive growth of hair on the face, lips, arms, chest and legs, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. The condition is related to the overproduction of the male sex hormone androgen. It can also be related to certain medications including anabolic steroids and oral contraceptives. Various herbs and natural remedies can be used to treat the condition, but talk to your health care provider before using alternative treatments for medicinal purposes.
Taking calcium-D-glucarate twice daily may promote the detoxification of hormones and diminish symptoms of hirsutism, according to UMMC. A natural supplement derived from cauliflower and broccoli called diindolylmethane has anti-androgenic effects and may help the body adjust hormone levels. Talk to your health care provider before taking dietary supplements that may influence hormones.
Certain herbs have anti-androgenic properties and may relieve symptoms of hirsutism. Taking a twice daily dose of saw palmetto, black cohosh and/or chaste tree is a possible remedy for excess facial hair, according to UMMC. Spearmint appears to be an alternative to anti-androgenic treatment. A study published in May 2007 in "Phytotherapy Research" concluded that drinking 2 cups of spearmint tea daily may decrease symptoms of mild hirsutism. The study involved 21 women and was conducted at the Suleyman Demirel University School of Medicine in Turkey. Check with your doctor before using any herbal remedy.
Natural Hair Removal Methods
Plucking and shaving are quick and inexpensive but temporary solutions for unwanted facial hair. Plucking hair with tweezers is the most common way to remove undesired hair facial hair. Plucking can be painful and cause localized swelling. Shaving may cause new hair to appear thicker.
Eliminate Unnecessary Medications
Whenever possible, avoiding or eliminating drugs that are known to cause hirsutism may help reduce excess facial hair. Some oral contraceptives with progestin and bodybuilding steroids may contain androgens or have comparable effects. In addition, some drugs used to treat migraines, nausea, high-blood pressure and mental illness such as bipolar disorder and schizophrenia may indirectly cause the body to produce extra androgen hormones. However, don't stop taking prescribed medications until speaking with your physician.