Laser Hair Removal
If you have unwanted hair on your face, arms, legs or torso, laser hair removal could help you eliminate the tedious, ongoing chores of shaving and plucking by permanently reducing unwanted body hair. Laser hair removal kill the follicle, so in-grown hairs that often occur when waxing or shaving are not an issue.
How do laser treatments work?
The intense light of a highly-focused laser is directed at the hair shaft, where it is absorbed by the hair's pigment. Each pulse of light takes only a fraction of a second to administer so the procedure allows our specialists to treat many hairs at the same time. The absorbed energy damages the follicle, slowing or eliminating future growth from that follicle. Since hair grows in cycles, it can take 3 to 5 treatments to obtain the desired cosmetic results.
Who is a candidate for this procedure?
Because laser hair removal relies on the pigment's absorption to prevent future hair growth, the best results are seen in candidates with light skin and dark hair. Dark hair allows more energy to be absorbed by the hair shaft, while light skin prevents the laser energy from being absorbed by the skin and potentially causing damage. People with white or blonde hair typically are not the ideal candidates for this procedure and may have better results from a different approach.
What's involved in this technique?
Just prior to your procedure, a topical anesthetic may be applied to reduce discomfort, although typically this step is not necessary for most patients. One or more tests may be conducted to allow the laser's power and pulse frequency to be adjusted for your needs. Each pulse can treat multiple hairs, and some small areas, like the upper lip, can take just about a minute to complete. Larger areas can take up to an hour. During treatment, you may experience a slight stinging sensation or minor warmth.
Are there advantages in using a laser?
Perhaps one of the biggest advantages of this approach is that over time and with multiple treatments, the effects can become permanent. Even in patients where permanent removal is not immediately achieved, the growth of hair can be significantly delayed, resulting in months or years of non-growth.
The second biggest advantage is that it's very convenient and quick, with most treatments taking just 10 minutes or less, and treatment requires no downtime, which means men and women can return to their regular activities right away. Even larger areas can be treated in an hour or less.
This popular technique produces less discomfort with less irritation. Conversely, chemical hair removal products can cause severe irritation in some people. Unlike waxing, there's no painful removal of strips when the laser is used. Additionally, there's no need for frequent applications of creams or for regular shaving or tweezing to keep hair growth at bay.
Will I need follow-up treatments?
Most men and women find they need from three to five treatments to achieve the aesthetic results they desire. The number of sessions you need may vary based on your skin and hair tone. Treatments can prevent hair growth for several months to many years, and when touchup sessions are required, they're typically necessary no more than once a year. Our doctor will be able to help determine the exact number of treatments you need to achieve the desired cosmetic results.