Many patients ask us, "How does laser hair removal work?" But, more often than not, what they really want to know is, "Is laser hair removal safe and effective, and will it work on me?" Laser hair removal may sound like a terrifying procedure that involves shooting a laser gun at your skin like something from a spy movie. However, this is not how laser hair removal actually looks.
Laser hair removal is becoming increasingly popular, and it's easy to see why when you learn how effective it is. We'll answer your questions here so you can make the best choice for your lifestyle and skin.
Laser Hair Removal Is Safe
Obviously, the most important question to ask whenever you try a new skin treatment is whether it is safe. When you're out in public, everyone can see your skin. People are usually scared of the word "laser" when it comes to laser hair removal because it sounds dangerous. The truth is that the lasers used in laser hair removal are extremely effective at destroying only hair follicles while leaving the rest of your skin unharmed.
The US FDA strictly regulates all lasers used for hair removal to ensure their safety.
Hair removal lasers are referred to as "lasers" because they emit extremely concentrated light. This specialised light is absorbed by your hair follicles, which convert the light energy into heat. Heat harms your hair's follicle, which is responsible for hair growth. This targeted damage to the hair follicle is what removes unwanted hair and reduces the likelihood of it growing back. Hair removal lasers are designed to target melanin in the hair. Melanin is the pigment that gives colour to your body hair. The laser targets the hair from the shaft down into the follicle by using the contrast between the melanin and your skin.
Because laser hair removal works by reducing the ability of your hair follicles to regrow hair, it must be done gradually. The fact that the procedure is done over time contributes to the procedure's safety because the laser's level is low enough to damage only the hair follicles and not the surrounding skin.
Laser Hair Removal Is Worth Your Investment
Laser hair removal requires an investment of your time; however, when you consider how long the results will last, it is relatively inexpensive. Consider how much time and money you spend on your current hair removal method when deciding whether or not laser hair removal is a good option for you. For example, if you shave your legs, try keeping track of how much time you spend shaving each week. Then figure out how many razor-head replacements you go through in a week. Then multiply this cost by the number of weeks and months in a year to get the current, annual cost of hair removal.
The Time Commitment
Laser hair removal can take anywhere from 2 to 6 sessions, depending on your skin and hair type. The length of each session is determined by the size of the area being shaved. Small areas, such as the upper lip or armpits, can take 5-15 minutes, whereas larger areas, such as your legs or back, can take up to an hour per session.
You can expect to wait 4-6 weeks between sessions. This is due to the fact that hair grows in cycles, and the laser is most effective at killing your hair when it is actively growing. One of the most common mistakes people make with laser hair removal is going to a couple of sessions, seeing a reduction in hair growth, and then failing to return for their remaining sessions. What is actually happening when you notice this initial reduction in hair growth is that your hair is in a dormant period and will re-grow quickly once this cycle is completed. That is why it is essential to attend the recommended number of sessions.
How Much Money Do You Really Spend?
The average cost of laser hair removal is between $300 and $500. However, this varies greatly depending on the size of the area you're removing hair from and the number of sessions your hair requires. Many facilities offer financing for aesthetic treatments.
The initial cost of this hair removal method may appear to be high. Laser hair removal, on the other hand, is expected to provide months to years of smooth skin at a time. If you multiply the amount you currently spend on shaving or waxing over months and years, the cost is likely comparable to what you'll pay as a one-time fee for laser hair removal.
You may be wondering why, if laser hair removal works so well and is so inexpensive, not everyone is doing it. The truth is that there are numerous misconceptions about laser hair removal that deter people from using it.
How to Get Ready
There are things you can do to prepare your skin for a healthy laser hair removal session, as well as things you can do to care for your skin after each session. The best way to decide whether to commit to laser hair removal is to speak with your skin specialist about your hair removal options.