Laser hair removal is currently one of the most popular cosmetic procedures. The procedure can remove unwanted hair in specific areas of your body while leaving the surrounding skin undamaged. Many laser pulses are emitted in one second, making it quite efficient.
The laser can treat small areas like the upper lip very quickly, sometimes even in under a minute. Larger areas like the legs or back take longer, up to an hour or more. With an average of five sessions over a period of time, most people who have been treated with laser hair removal will see permanent hair reduction.
After all the necessary sessions, if the hair does regrow, it will only be after several months, and the hair texture will be finer and of lighter color. The regrown hair can be removed again.
One of the most effective laser hair removal treatments is with a 755nm long-pulsed Alexandrite laser like the GentleLASE. It works extremely well on lighter skin tones, because melanin picks up this laser type very well. The 755 nm wavelength makes it more precise in targeting coarse as well as finer hair.
How It Works
Laser hair removal involves the application of highly concentrated light on selected areas of the body, which will penetrate down to the hair follicles. Pigments in the hair follicles absorb the concentrated light, which then destroys them, thereby destroying the hair.
How to Prepare for Laser Hair Removal
Before the procedure, your surgeon will look through your medical history and examine your skin while asking you various questions.
If you have any relevant information to share with your dermatologist, it’s very important to communicate it, because the success of the procedure depends on a variety of factors. If you have a tendency to scar or develop keloids, if you get cold sores, if you take acne treatment medicine, if you take aspirin – all of this is relevant information.
Before going in for any laser treatment, you should avoid the following:
• Sunbathing and tanning beds
• Wearing perfume or deodorant on the selected treatment area
• Chemical peels and collagen injections
• Aspirin and other anti-inflammatory drugs
The selected area will be cleaned and the hair trimmed before the procedure beings. You’ll be given protective eyewear. If your skin is sensitive, numbing gel will be applied on the area. A cooling device or a cold gel will be applied to protect the skin. The laser will produce a warm sensation on your skin, along with small pricking sensations. These are completely normal.
After the Laser Treatment
There may be some swelling and redness, so you will be given ice packs or anti-inflammatory gels/creams to ease the discomfort. At home, you can continue to apply cold compresses to the treated area as needed.
You can resume daily activities directly after the treatment, as there is no real downtime after a laser hair removal procedure. One thing to keep in mind, though, is to avoid direct sun exposure for at least a week after the procedure.
If the treatment area was on your face, you may continue to wear makeup as normal. However, stop wearing makeup if your skin is blistering and only continue after the skin has fully healed. Finally, follow any instructions given by your physician as closely as possible.
Dr. Brian Eichenberg, a board-certified plastic surgeon, is an excellent choice for laser hair removal. To make an appointment for a consultation to find out more, contact our office.