The stress, the time consumption, the nicks, and the prickly skin. Shaving has never been fun or easy, but it was the only way (besides painful waxing) to remove hair from unwanted places. Well not anymore! Goodbye outdated razors, hello modern technology. Laser treatments to be exact. Oh, yes. Laser therapy isn’t just for removing tattoos or treating acne. The oh-so-handy laser has been used to successfully remove hair and it’s easier than ever before.
Laser hair removal is considered a cosmetic procedure in which pulsating laser beams are passed over the skin to zap away hair.
There are five different types of lasers that can be used in the procedure; Ruby, Alexandrite, Intense Pulse Light, Diode, or Nd:YAG. Each of them emits at a different wavelength and will be chosen based on your skin complexion. During the procedure, the area being treated will be exposed to pulses of laser beams. These beams target the melanin within the hair follicles. Once it’s “locked on,” the basal stem cells within the follicles interact with the light and ruptures, thus ultimately destroying the follicle. Soon, the hair will fall out and struggle to regrow.
Unfortunately, not everyone can experience laser hair removal. First and foremost, remember how lasers target melanin? Well, melanin is the pigmentation in our skin. The more melanin that is present, the darker our hair and skin are. Since the laser light is attracted to melanin, those who have light-colored hair are less likely to receive positive results from laser hair removal. Individuals with skin conditions should also avoid laser treatment. Some types of medication can cause photosensitivity, which may be harmful if exposed to laser beams. Pregnant women are also advised not to undergo any laser treatments or therapies.
Laser hair removal is a very quick procedure and may be completed in as little as 30 minutes. Wearing protective eyewear, you’ll be comfortably seated in a chair as the laser technician passes a handheld device (the laser system) over your skin. In certain cases, the tip of the device will have a cooling gel to protect your skin from the heat as the laser penetrates down to the hair. If the gel is not present, you may feel tiny pin-pricking sensations, however it will not be painful. This will go on for a short while as the technician works on certain areas. Once the procedure is over, your skin may be slightly irritated and you may experience redness and minor swelling for a couple of hours. The dermatologist will ask you to avoid UV rays including both sunlight and tanning beds for six weeks.
Results won’t be immediate and you may require multiple treatments before hair growth slows down considerably. Laser hair removal will not permanently remove unwanted hair, so you’ll need another treatment each time it regrows. Nonetheless, your hair will be gone and your skin will be smooth without ever needing to use a razor again.
If you’re ready to get rid of your unwanted hair and are in Cincinnati, Ohio, our experts at The Dermatology Group will gladly help you go over your treatment options and questions while providing you with resources and advice. Give us a call today!