Laser Hair Removal Facts & Frequently Asked Questions
HOW DOES LASER HAIR REMOVAL WORK?
Our Candela GentleLase is a high energy, long pulse Alexandrite laser. The laser creates a beam of high intensity light that, when it hits your hair, is converted to a therapeutic amount of heat. The laser is attracted to the melanin (type of pigment) in your hair shaft (the visible part of your hair). The heat travels down the hair shaft until it reaches the bulb (root) of the hair, which is then heated and disabled.
WHY DO I NEED MULTIPLE TREATMENTS?
Multiple treatments are required because the hair shaft must be attached to the bulb for the laser to work. There are 3 different phases of the hair cycle. They are the active phase, shedding phase, and dormant phase. The only phase in which the hair is attached to the bulb, is the active stage. This is when your hair is actually growing. In the shedding phase, the hair detaches from the bulb and begins to shed out. The dormant stage is where there are no hairs present in the follicle. Not all hairs are in the same stage at once, and we must target all of the hairs when they are in their active growth phase.
IS LASER HAIR REMOVAL PERMANENT?
Yes. Laser is considered permanent hair reduction. Once we have disabled a follicle, it is unable to grow new hairs. You are going to see best results of permanent hair reduction when using the correct laser, settings, and application techniques for your skin and hair type. For best results, you should have dark coarse hair, and light skin. However, we still see great results on clients that have darker skin type and lighter brown hair. The FDA has approved our GentleLase system as a permanent method for hair reduction. When this laser is combined with our hair removal experience, you will ensure that you have the best chance of permanent hair reduction!
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ALEXANDRITE, Nd:YAG AND IPL, and Diode Lasers
Alexandrite lasers, like our GentleLase, are the best at permanently removing hair due to their 755 wavelength. This wavelength has an easier time targeting both course and fine hair ensuring that you have the best possible results.
Nd:YAG lasers operate at a wavelength of 1064 nm. This means that they are successful at targeting course hairs, but they have a difficult time targeting finer hairs. They are best suited for those with extremely dark skin, where the laser may have difficulty telling the difference between the melanin in the hair, which it should be targeting, and the melanin in the skin.
Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) devices only produce light, and are not actually a true laser, even though they are marketed as if they were. They have a more difficulty getting to the bulb of the hair to permanently disable it
Diode lasers have a smaller diameter beam which means it can take twice as long to treat the same area, as well they are not as effective on some hair types as compared to the Alexandrite laser such as the Candela GentleLase. It has also been reported in Cosmetic Surgery Times that the LightSheer hurts more than the GentleLase on a per pulse basis.
WHY IS THE CANDELA GentleLase SO GOOD?
By taking a look at the specifications and available settings of our GentleLase, it is clear to see why it is so good.
Our GentleLase uses an Alexandrite laser operating at 755nm wavelength developed to provide optimum safety and results by:
-More effective melanin absorption, as compared to other similar machines including diode lasers. The absorption of the laser energy by the melanin in our skin creates a better transfer of energy and more effective destruction of the hair follicles and consequential hair loss.
-The Candela Alexandrite laser is more effective at removing finer, thinner hairs that other systems such as diode lasers cannot remove or require more and longer treatments to remove.
-The Candela GentleLase incorporates a skin cooling system for pain relief that effectively manages the short sharp pain that some people feel, most clients do not need further pain relief. Candela’s DCD (Dynamic Cooling Device) cryogen spray is the premium cooling system on any laser today. This guarantees a more comfortable treatment.
– Our GentleLase has variable spot sizes of 12mm, 15mm, and 18mm. This means that we are able to cover larger areas quicker, as well as get into smaller areas with ease. 18mm is actually one of the largest spot sizes available on lasers. This makes treatments quicker and more comfortable. When using a bigger spot size, it also allows for deeper penetration, so we are able to target the very deep bulbs.
-The Candela GentleLase is also designed and built for operator comfort to increase fine control and consequently improve application and provide safer and more effective treatments.
DOES LASER HAIR REMOVAL HURT?
The sensation is described as similar to that of a gentle snapping of an elastic band, with a little bit of heat. Some areas such as those closer to the bone, with more hair, and delicate areas are more sensitive. If you do experience significant discomfort, a topical anesthetic can be applied prior to treatment.
IS LASER HAIR REMOVAL SAFE?
Yes. Laser Hair Removal is safe as long as the before and aftercare are followed. We take every precaution to ensure that you have a safe and effective treatment.
The lasers that are used for hair removal do not carry any mutagenic radiation what so ever! They only have a heating effect.
WHAT ARE THE RISKS OF LASER HAIR REMOVAL?
Laser hair removal is known as a lunch time procedure. This means that there is no recovery time and clients can return to work or play immediately! The lasers that are used for hair removal do not removal and skin, so the risk is very low!
WHAT SHOULD I DO BEFORE MY LASER HAIR TREATMENT?
One of the most important thing to do before laser is make sure you do not have an active tan. Your skin needs to be as light as possible so that the laser can effectively target the hair and not the tanned skin. We also ask that you shave the morning of your appointment. If you are unable to we will shave the area for you for an additonal fee. Please let us know if we will be shaving for you as we will need to schedule extra time.
WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT AFTER MY LASER HAIR TREATMENT?
You should experience minor edema(swelling) around the follicles and erythema (redness) on the treated area . You may also experience minor skin irritation that can feel like a minor sunburn. These side effects can last anywhere from 24 hrs – 5 days. On smaller areas where the hair is finer, the erythema and edema usually subsides by the end of the treatment.
An SPF of 30+ should be used throughout the course of treatment, especially on facial areas. We recommend our Skin TX Physical Facial Block SPF 30, as it reflects the UV rays instead of absorbing them. You should also avoid any UV exposure for 2 weeks after treatment.
Within 1-3 weeks you should see the hairs in the treated area beginning to shed. To assist in the shedding and to prevent them from getting trapped we recommend using a loofa to exfoliate. You can also shave to help the shedding process along
HOW OLD DO YOU HAVE TO BE?
There are no age restrictions for laser hair removal. However, clients that are going through puberty will develop new hairs. This is due to the fact that hormones play a huge role in hair growth. They will require more touch ups to maintain the results until they are finished puberty. Older clients also usually have grey or white hairs that are unable to be treated, however they will see results if they have brown pigmented hairs!
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN YOUR LASER AND HOME USE LASERS?
Home laser hair removal devices such as Silk’n, Tria, and no!no! are low powered devices made for at home use for those with no formal training and the correct skin tone. Proffesional lasers, like our GentleLase, are powered by 220V whereas at home devices run on a small battery, so they have much less power.
WHAT TYPE OF RESULTS CAN YOU EXPECT WHEN USING AN AT HOME DEVICE?
Lasers in Surgery and Medicine, a leading scientific journal, recently published a study of the FDA approved Silk’n at home laser hair removal device. They studied 10 people that had 4-6 treatments. 4 weeks after their last treatment there was an average result of 36% hair reduction. However, 12 weeks after treatment most of the hair had returned, that amount is not considered statistically significant. 4 of the 10 people in the study actually had a higher hair count than when they started after the 12 weeks!
WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN ELECTROLYSIS AND LASER?
Electrolysis uses a small probe that is inserted into each follicle. It then uses an electric current to destroy the root, preventing any new hairs from growing. After the probe is removed from the follicle, tweezers are used to remove the hair. This process only treats one hair at a time.
Laser hair removal uses heat to destroy the root. They both have the same effect, however laser hair removal is much faster as it can treat many hairs at the same time. After laser hair removal the hairs shed out naturally. Multiple treatments are needed for both methods.