Overview of Laser Hair Reduction

In this brief write up we'll try and answer some of the more frequently asked questions about laser hair reduction and compare its effectiveness to the other popular forms like waxing, shaving, Intense Pulse Light (IPL) and electrolysis.
A focused laser beam with the right amount of power and duration heats up the dark hair follicles and renders them useless; this technique works best for a combination of dark hair and light skin, although today there are various types of lasers that effectively cater to different skin and hair colors, for example, Ruby, Alexandrite, Pulsed diode array, Nd: YAG, etc. The Nd: YAG laser (usually pronounced n-deeyag) especially has been proven to be really effective for the darker complexions that are more common in the Indian subcontinent.

How Long until no Hair?

Since the laser can zap only the actively growing hair follicles (i.e. follicles in anagen), among others, at the various stages in hair growth, it usually takes about 8 to 12 sessions with a duration of 2 to 5 weeks in between each session, as advised by the cosmetologist. It may take up to 6 to 18 months for the process to complete until which it’s of paramount importance to stick to the prescribed schedule; to be able to catch as many of them growing hair follicles at their opportune times.

Is it painful?

Many people describe the heat from the pulses of the laser as a bit unsettling at first, but nothing of the sort that one can’t handle. The numbing cream and cooling mechanism in the laser probe, i.e. either cooled air or water help mollify the skin and make the sessions more bearable.

Any Downtime?

None usually. There’s rarely any peeling, flaking or redness of the skin observed after the procedure. Although, some precautions are advised to avoid the heat for a couple of days after each session. So stay away from the gyms, shower with lukewarm (preferably cold) water, use a moisturizer and avoid the sun. If at all you have to go out in the sun, use copious amounts sunscreen that’s at least SPF 30.

Comparison with shaving and waxing

Electrolysis is the process of burning out of hair follicles by passing a small electric current through their hair strand for 20 to 30 seconds. The process is effective in getting rid of hair but is extremely tedious. In comparison, lasers and IPL are almost 60 times faster and even more effectively!

Both shaving and waxing reduce body hair, but only for a short duration of time. Waxing can be an especially painful ordeal. Also lasers and IPL show results that may be deemed almost permanent.

Comparison to Electrolysis:

Comparison with Intense Pulse Light (IPL)

IPL uses a very bright light (e.g. xenon lamp) just like lasers to burn out the dark colored hair follicles. The pulses of light in IPL are filtered to the appropriate color (wavelength) to make it safer for the skin. Although IPL isn’t tightly focused like a laser, it covers a wider area and can make longer duration light pulses as compared to lasers. IPLs are on par with lasers and sometimes even better in terms of the effectiveness of hair reduction. Even the side effects and their duration are lesser in IPL when compared to lasers.
So in this brief write up we explained FAQ's about the hair reduction process and various techniques like Laser, Electrolysis and Intense Pulse Light(IPL). for further inquiry or to book appointment reach peachtree clinic.