First Thing's First: What is laser hair removal?
Laser hair removal is a medical procedure that utilizes a laser and damages the hair in order to remove unwanted body hair. During the laser hair removal procedure, a laser will emit a light that is absorbed by the hair. The light that is absorbed is converted into heat, damaging the hair follicles that produce hairs and either delaying or inhibiting future hair growth. While laser hair removal is extremely effective in delaying hair growth for long periods of time, this procedure does not typically result in permanent hair removal.
Initially, you will need to have multiple laser hair removal treatments for the initial hair removal. Depending on your hair growth patterns, you may also need to have routine maintenance treatments.
Why do people get laser hair removal?
Laser hair removal, or laser hair reduction, is often used in order to reduce unwanted body hair. The most common laser treatment locations are the legs, armpits, chin/upper lip, and the bikini line. Though these are the most common treatment locations, it’s possible to treat unwanted body hair with laser hair removal treatment in nearly any area, except for the skin surrounding your eyes. It’s also unwise to treat skin that has tattoos, as it can ruin the tattoo.
What are the risks of this hair removal option?
As with any treatment, there are side effects and risks. The risk of side effects will vary based on the individual’s treatment plan, adherence to pre- and post-treatment care, skin type, and hair color/type. Some common side effects of laser hair removal include:
- Skin Irritation – Discomfort, redness, and swelling may occur following laser hair removal. Signs and symptoms will usually disappear within hours. Ingrown hairs may also cause skin irritation as hair grows back.
- Pigment Changes – Laser hair treatment may darken/lighten the skin surrounding the treatment area. These changes can be temporary or permanent. Skin lightening most often affects those who don’t follow the guideline to avoid sun exposure before/after treatment, as well as those with darker skin.
- Rare Side Effects – In rare cases, laser hair removal can cause the graying of treated hair, excessive hair growth around treated areas, blistering, crusting, and scarring.
The risk of skin being damaged becomes higher the closer that the hair and skin color are in pigment.
Laser hair removal works most effectively on people with dark hair and light skin, but can be used successfully on all skin types and hair types. Advances in laser technology have allowed for laser hair removal to be an option for people with darker skin, however. Laser hair removal is also less effective for hair that doesn’t absorb light well, such as red/blonde/white/gray hair.
You can see more about the risks and how to prepare for laser hair removal here!
How does it work?
Prior to the hair removal procedure, the laser hair removal technician will prepare you and instruct you on how to prepare for the laser treatment sessions. This will often include going over your beauty routine, habits, and diet in order to instruct you on what to stay away from in the days leading up to your treatment.
During the procedure, the technician will press a hand-held laser instrument to your skin. When the technician sets the laser settings and presses the button on the tool, a laser will shoot through your skin down to the base of each hair follicle, damaging the hair follicles. Depending on the instrument that the technician uses, you may feel a slight warm discomfort at the location of the instrument as it is activated.
Following the procedure, the technician will be able to see how your skin is reacting immediately in order to determine whether or not you will have a large negative reaction to the treatment and effectively treat any big reactions immediately. They will also go over post-treatment care and instruct you on what symptoms to keep an eye out for.
Many laser hair removal treatments will involve multiple sessions in order to achieve the best results.
Maintenance Laser Treatments
In order to maintain results and target hair that will begin to grow back, you will likely need to schedule maintenance appointments. Consult the doctor/technician to see what the best treatment plan is for you. They will be able to work with you to decide when and what should happen in your treatment per session.
How do I prepare for laser hair removal?
If you’re interested in laser hair removal, you should make sure first and foremost that the doctor or technician that you’re looking at is board certified in specialty such as cosmetic surgery or dermatology. Typically, the best option is a doctor that is a board-certified dermatologist. You should always be wary of spas and salons that allow nonmedical employees to perform laser hair removal.
Prior to receiving laser hair removal, we recommend that you schedule a consultation with your regular doctor or the doctor performing the treatment in order to determine if the treatment is right for you. In order to determine your candidacy for the treatment, they will likely:
- Review your medical history
- Discuss risks, benefits and expectations
- Take pictures of your skin to be used for before-and-after assessments and/or long-term reviews
While you’re at the consultation with the technician performing the treatment, be sure to discuss the best treatment plan for you and related costs. Typically, laser hair removal will be an out-of-pocket expense.
According to the Mayo Clinic, specific instructions to prepare for laser hair removal might include:
- Stay out of the sun. Make sure that you follow your doctor’s advice for avoiding sun exposure both before and after treatment. Whenever you will be exposed to sunlight, be sure to apply sunscreen that is SPF30 or above.
- Don’t darken your skin. Stay away from sunless skin tanners as well as the sunlight. If you’ve recently tanned or used sunless skin tanners, your doctor may prescribe skin bleaching cream in order to keep your darker skin from affecting the results of the treatment.
- Avoid other hair removal methods. Hair removal methods such as plucking, waxing, and electrolysis can cause the hair follicle to be disturbed and should be avoided for at least four weeks prior to treatment.
- Avoid blood-thinning medications. Ask your doctor about what medications, such as aspirin or anti-inflammatory drugs, to avoid before the procedure.
- Shave the treatment area. Trimming and/or shaving the treatment area is recommended for the day before laser treatment. This removes the hair above the skin that can cause surface skin damage from burnt hairs but will keep the hair shaft and hair follicle intact below the skin.
Why should I use laser hair removal?
Many women have probably tried a variety of hair removal methods throughout the years. Shaving with a razor can cause razor burn and bumps, ingrown hairs, razor nicks to the skin, etc. Using hair removal cream can either cause itching/burning on your skin or not effectively cause hair loss. Waxing is painful and can cause trauma to your skin. As you go down the list of hair removal methods, the list is essentially a guide of which side effects you will need to sacrifice in order to remove hair, results that can be quite disappointing.
The benefits that you will see in the results of laser hair removal of the pubic region include being confident that your bikini area/panty line is hair-free, as well as all other pubic hair being removed, so you don’t have to worry about shaving, waxing, plucking, or anything else.
The treatment itself includes a variety of benefits compared to other hair removal methods as well, this includes:
- Speed – Your Brazilian laser hair removal treatment will typically take around half-an-hour, with no recovery time afterward.
- Precision – Your skin won’t be damaged during the laser treatment as the hair is removed. Lasers are more precise and, with the right laser specialist, you won’t have to worry about pain or skin damage!
- Reliability – Brazilian and bikini laser hair removal treatments have a reputation of success and proven results. After the initial hair removal treatment sessions, treatment clients should see the results that you’re looking for!
Total Body Wellness, Brownsburg: Your New Laser Treatment Center
Total Body Wellness, Brownsburg is excited to introduce our NEW laser machine, The Clairity II. A higher-powered 755/1064nm dual wavelength platform laser with breakthrough intelligent capabilities. It has been designed to enable faster more effective treatments for patients of all skin types while making the treatments easier and more efficient to perform.
You can check out all of the laser hair removal treatments that we offer here.
You can also find our other services and offerings here!
For any questions regarding our laser treatment service, contact us or, if you’re ready to get started on your treatments, make an appointment today!
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