In particular, there is a lot of confusion when it comes to understanding the differences between laser hair removal and electrolysis hair removal.
LASER HAIR REMOVAL
The laser beams a highly concentrated light through the skin with the goal of targeting the hair root.
Keep the following points in mind:
1. PIGMENT – The best chances for success with laser hair removal are achieved on light skin with very dark, thick hairs since the laser works by targeting pigment. Laser is NOT recommended for individuals with dark skin since it cannot differentiate between the hair color and the skin tone, so the danger of burning exists. Also, it is NOT recommended for women with light skin and light hairs since there is no pigment for the laser to target.
2. DENSITY – The greater the amount of dark hairs in a given area, the better the potential for reduced hair growth (i.e., armpit, bikini area, etc.). Refer to the above information on pigment to determine if you are a candidate.
3. SKIN THICKNESS – Thin skin tissue is required for the laser light to penetrate deep enough into the skin to reach the hair root and destroy it. Many women with light skin and dark hairs have good results on the bikini area since there is dense hair growth and the skin is thin.
ELECTROLYSIS HAIR REMOVAL
Electrolysis is performed using a thin wire that is gently inserted down the shaft of the hair follicle in order to concentrate heat on the hair root.
Keep the following points in mind:
1. PIGMENT – Electrolysis can be performed with great results on any skin color, any skin type and any hair color.
2. DENSITY – Not a requirement for the success of electrolysis treatments.
3. SKIN THICKNESS – Thin or thick skin can be treated with equal success.
BODY – CHOOSE LASER AND/OR ELECTROLYSIS
If you have fair skin with dark dense hair growth, this would make you a good candidate for successful laser hair removal treatment. Best results are in the bikini area. Depending on the amount and distribution of hairs, there may also be some improvement on arms, legs and armpits. Keep in mind that laser becomes less and less effective as the hairs thin out. When this becomes the case, it would be advisable to complete the job with electrolysis.
FACE – ONLY ELECTROLYSIS
Women should NEVER do laser on the face. It is especially dangerous when performed near the eye area and it may possibly harm the teeth and gums when it penetrates the thin skin of the lip. Additionally, women are finding MORE hair growth on their faces after having had laser hair removal. This phenomenon is known as “hypertrichosis” and is caused by an increased blood supply to the hair root due to the heat of the laser.
Laser hair removal is a relatively young technology so it is too soon to know the long-term consequences of repeated treatments. The word LASER is an acronym with the “R” standing for “radiation.” I wonder how many times can a single area be exposed to the light of the laser without causing damage to the cells. Additionally, it should never be done near the eye area. It has been reported that side effects include “damage to the iris, inflammation of the eye and irreversible cataract.” That said, I believe that the legs and arms may be the safest areas to have laser treatment. I would be cautious, however, when considering work on the armpit and bikini area due to the existence of lymph nodes in those areas. When choosing laser hair removal, ask a lot of questions so that you can be an educated consumer.
Electrolysis has been around for over a 100 years. It has withstood the test of time for safety. Furthermore, it is the only method of hair removal that has been approved as “permanent” by the FDA. When choosing electrolysis, remember that your selection of a competent, experienced electrologist is paramount to your permanent hair removal results.
Lori Weintraub is a Licensed Esthetician as well as a Master Electrologist with over 30 years of experience in the field of hair removal. To learn more about Electrolysis by Lori, please visit www.hairremovalbylori.com. Lori offers Skype consultations for women with PCOS and hormonal hair growth. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org and mention “Online Consult.”