If you've ever had any part of your body waxed, you know all about repetitive expense and pain. You know about ingrown hairs, and you've had to allow unsightly, unwanted hair to grow between appointments.
Laser treatments can remove your unwanted hair permanently. Lasers leave the skin smooth to the touch, without irritation or razor bumps. Instead of contributing to ingrown hairs, lasers destroy the very follicles that create this troublesome condition.
Lasers emit a gentle beam of light that passes through the skin and targets the pigment in the hair follicles. The pigmentation that exists in black or brown hair attracts the laser light and causes it to convert to heat, which cauterizes the base of the hair follicle. The hair follicle dies and will never again produce a hair. The laser does not harm pores or the structures of the surrounding skin.
Call us to schedule a complimentary initial consultation with a licensed medical practitioner who specializes in laser work. This is a no-charge opportunity for you to learn what the laser can and cannot do specifically for you.
During this meeting, a trained esthetician will discuss your personal goals for laser hair removal. We will describe our process and will ask you to complete a brief medical history to establish that you have no contraindications to laser treatment. A test area may be treated if you desire. Prophylactic antiviral therapy may be prescribed if you have a history of genital or perioral (cold sores) herpes.
The laser's hair of choice is brown or black with a texture that is coarse. It will also remove hair that is fine, although more treatments may be required. Advanced laser technology is safe for all skin tones, including women and men of color and those who are tanned; however, not all lasers in use are appropriate for darker skin.
If your hair is white, gray, blond, or red, no laser is likely to achieve permanent results.
Laser treatment is not recommended for individuals who have been on Accutane® during the past six months.
The laser can be used for permanent hair removal from most body areas except around the eyelids. Typical areas of treatment include the back, chest, breasts, arms, legs, cheeks, upper lip, hairline, ears, underarms, back of the neck, bikini line, and genital area.
You might feel a little shy or self-conscious at first, but it's important to remember that medical professionals are accustomed to seeing the human body in all its many forms.
We routinely remove hair from the most intimate areas including genitals. Other than the shaping of the eyebrows, there are no parts of the body where the laser cannot safely go.
The evening before your appointment, you will shave the area to be treated as thoroughly as possible to remove any hair above the skin that could divert laser light from the base of the hair follicle. About two hours before your laser session, you may if you chose, apply a prescribed topical anesthetic to numb the treatment area.
Your clinician will conduct a patch test to determine the proper laser settings for your hair and skin type, and you will be asked to wear safety goggles to protect your eyes from any exposure to laser light. The laser light is then delivered through a hand-piece that the clinician moves lightly over your skin. Your skin will be cooled and protected before each laser pulse.
While your skin may be slightly reddened after laser treatment, this redness will recede and gradually disappear within a day or two. You should wear sun screen with an SPF15 or higher.
Immediately after the treatment your skin will be red. This redness may last from several hours to two days. Your skin may be slightly sensitive, but generally not painful. You may immediately resume your normal activities.
Over the next two to three weeks, the hairs that were treated will fall out, leaving your skin smooth and soft. You will need to wear a sun block with at least an SPF15 for a minimum of two weeks and must avoid prolonged sun exposure three to four weeks before and after treatment or until your nurse will allow.
You will be asked to return in six to eight weeks to treat new hair growth.
Everyone's hair grows in cycles. The laser can only permanently destroy hair follicles that are in the active growing cycle, and since only about 10 to 30 percent of your follicles are in this phase at any one time, multiple treatments give the laser a chance to treat the dormant follicles as they cycle through the active stage.
Typically four to six treatments will be necessary to reach the majority of the hair follicles while they are in the active growth phase. The number of treatments will also vary depending on skin color, hair color, and the coarseness of the hair being treated. We recommend spacing treatments six to eight weeks apart.
Once a laser destroys an active hair follicle, that follicle will never produce another hair.
However, no practitioner can completely guarantee that after an individual completes his or her series of treatments hair won't grow back on the treated area. This is because hair follicles can stay in the dormant phase for an extended period of time. Most clients experience a 75 to 90 percent reduction in hair. Hair that does grow back is much finer in texture and sparser in quantity.
From time to time, certain body changes, such as hormonal fluctuations, may activate dormant follicles. If this happens individual hairs or isolated patches of hair may appear on the treated areas, and touch-up treatments may be required. Once the laser cauterizes these newly active follicles, they will cease producing hairs.