Laser Hair Removal: An Overview

Hair removal can be a frustrating process. Shaving costs itchy rashes and burns; waxing is painful and often causes tough skin; plucking may leave unsightly holes in pores; and electrolysis requires several treatments and can result in ingrown hairs and is hardly worth the pain. This is why so many people are turning to laser hair removal tactics.

Laser hair removal involves safely and easily removing unwanted body hair without the pain and nasty side-effects that some of the other methods contain. Laser hair removal has been proven to cause less damage to pores and will not change the quality or structure of delicate skin. It is also a relatively fast procedure; laser hair removal of the face or bikini line can be completed in less than fifteen minutes, while laser hair removal of the legs or torso may take up to forty-five minutes.

During laser hair removal, a thin coat of clear gel is applied to the area where hair is desired to be removed. Laser pulses are then applied quickly and evenly to the area, which is essentially painless. Some patients report a “tickling” feeling, similar to what you might feel when rolling in dry grass, while in sensitive areas (the bikini line, for example), there might be a light stinging sensation.

Sensitive skin might develop a redness for several hours following laser hair removal, but this is considered normal, and will go away on its own. Some laser hair treatment centers will provide a mild anesthetic cream to reduce the sensations during laser hair removal. Slight swelling is also nothing to be concerned about.

Laser hair removal continues to gain following, especially since the results are permanent and require very few treatments. Women of all ages are flocking to treatment centers to rid their bikini lines, underarms, legs, face, back and buttocks of unwanted hair that would otherwise be removed by less comfortable treatments. Even men have undergone laser hair removal for the face, back, buttocks and chest. The number of treatments necessary to completely stop hair growth varies according to the individual.

Laser Hair Removal is gaining dramatically in popularity – mainly due to the permanent results – and hence the amount of new Laser Hair Removal clinics is mushrooming.

This process works because lasers cause selective damage to targeted hair follicles and does not damage surrounding skin. This practice is called selective photothermolysis because the laser targets dark matter in the area, called chromospheres, which can occur naturally or be artificially introduced.

Again, the results from laser hair removal are varied by individual case, including factors such as skin type, skin color, hair pigment and skin elasticity. It will not work on hair that is the same color or lighter than the surrounding skin, and it doesn’t work as well on people with extremely dark skin. However, there are specialized lasers that have been developed for darkly pigmented people.

A typical laser hair removal session costs $400-500, depending on the extent of the covered area, and at least four sessions are usually required to permanently stop the growth of hair from the skin.

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