All you need to know about going under the laser to remove hair.
Are you tired of wrestling with razors only to achieve red, bumpy, itchy, and sandpaper-like skin, which needs shaving again several days later? Are you weary of being reduced to tears by bravely brawling with
wax strips, time and time again? Are you fed up with ineffective hair removal creams, which promise smooth, hairless results, which will last for weeks, when in reality hideous stubs of re-growth appear almost
instantly? If so, now might be the right time to try laser hair removal, to eliminate excessive and unwanted body hair, permanently.
The removing of unwelcome hair can be an arduous, painful and expensive procedure. Up until 1997 there were no permanent hair removal techniques as such, so the painstakingly slow process of stripping the skin
of hideous hair, had to be frequently repeated. But at the latter end of the 1990s came the birth of laser hair removal, which dramatically changed the whole trend of hair removal forever.
Because of the speed and
general efficacy of this relatively new form of hair removal, laser treatments have become widely practiced worldwide by both men and women, as a preferred option in hair removal.
How Laser Hair Removal works
The technology used to literally ‘blast’ hair away, essentially involves an invisible beam of light, which points heat to selected areas of the body. This intense heat penetrates into any dark matter it can find,
known as melanin. Melanin contains two pigments, eumelanin and pheomelanin.
Eumelanin is what makes hair dark and pheomelanin is what makes hair blonde or red, and all the shades in-between. All hairs containing
eumelanin are destroyed at the root by the heat from the laser beam. The surrounding skin remains protected from the heat by an ice-cold liquid solution, which is poured onto the area prior to the laser being
There are presently four different types of lasers used to permanently remove unwanted hair – Ruby, Diode, Alexandrite, ND and LP ND Yag. Although these names may be of little importance to somebody
musing over whether to go ‘under the laser’, it is important to know that all four of these types of lasers have been approved in the United States by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and have been widely
credited for achieving speedy, effective and painless results.
How to Achieve Optimum Results
For laser hair removal to work at its optimum proficiency, it needs to be targeting coarse, black hair on light skin as opposed to light, thin hair on dark skin. It is people who possess a combination of thick,
dense and dark hair, crawling over paler skins that are most pleased with the results laser treatments achieve.
For those with red or fair hair covering the skin, laser hair removal will unfortunately not have
any effect. This is because the laser is attracted solely to dark hairs (black or brown), because the absorption of photons in the beam can only remove darker hair, which contains the eumelanin pigment. Since
dark skin also consists of melanin and similar dark pigments, it is more susceptible to changes occurring within the pigment, such as skin discoloration or burning. The same principal is in play with suntanned
skin, it is therefore advisable to avoid having any laser hair removal treatments if you have suntanned skin.
Because of these potential complications and the fact laser treatments can only attack and kill dark
hair, hair which is black or brown encasing light skin, is the perfect combination for achieving optimum results with laser hair removal. Whilst it might be almost unbearable to avoid shaving legs, underarms or
any other hair infested part of the body, because laser treatments require the hair to be at least at a quarter length of growth, it is necessary to avoid shaving the hair at least one week before the treatment is
Also laser hair removal is most effective when it is at the ‘anagen phase’ – when the follicles are still actively growing. Although to us mere mortals, distinguishing when hair is in its ‘anagen phase’,
is an almost unattainable task. However, given that this ‘active growth’ phase lasts for several years and 85 percent of the entire hair on the body is always actively growing, it is almost guaranteed that the hair
we want exterminated is in the ‘anagen phase’ and will therefore be easily targeted and effortlessly destroyed.
As the efficacy of laser treatment widely depends on the experience, knowledge and general expertise
of the technician manoeuvring and manipulating the laser, finding a well established and reputable laser hair removal clinic is paramount in yielding good results. It is therefore essential that some research be
carried out to find a technician that is acknowledged and acclaimed to give the laser hair removal the justice it deserves.
The Advantages of Laser Hair Removal
Unlike many other methods of hair removal, laser treatments are relatively painless and the majority of literature and reports about the process, refer to the pain as being similar to that of a rubber band being
‘pinged’ onto the skin – a favourable sensation compared to the eye-watering pain of waxing.