Laser Hair Removal Vs. Electrolysis
It's never been easier or less expensive to permanently remove unwanted body hair. But before you throw out your razors and cancel your waxing appointment, consider which hair removal method is best for you. Dr. Niketa Sonavane, celebrity dermatologist in Mumbai and founder of Ambrosia Aesthetics, spoke with us about the differences between laser hair removal and electrolysis. HOW DOES LASER HAIR REMOVAL WORK? In laser hair removal, highly focused light is pulsated deep into the skin, where it is absorbed by the hair pigment. Surprisingly, laser hair removal is a popular cosmetic procedure in Mumbai. It is similar to but not identical to IPL therapy (IPL). This procedure generates heat, which kills the hair follicle and prevents future hair growth. Treatments must be performed every four to six weeks to coincide with the hair growth cycle. The laser's light absorbs better in the hair's active growth phase, generating enough heat to destroy the hair follicle. Each session targets a new set of follicles until the body is hair-free. WHAT TO EXPECT DURING LASER HAIR REMOVAL? "My clinic's laser hair removal sessions have been compared to a hot stone massage." Laser hair removal, like waxing, can be painful. The treatments are usually only a few minutes long and only mildly painful. It can take 5 minutes for a small area like the top lip or chin to an hour or more for larger areas like both legs or the entire body. According to Dr. Sonavane, each laser hair removal session should be done after a new hair growth cycle. For dense hair and rapid regrowth, monthly treatments are advised. Patients must wait until their hair grows back before re-treating. Slower hair growth means more frequent treatments. According to the dermatologist, some patients start with four-week treatments and progress to six- to eight-week treatments, then eight to sixteen-week treatments. The LHR treatment is simple and easy to prepare for. The manufacturer recommends shaving the day before and not using skincare products the day of the treatment. To avoid irritation from shaving before laser hair removal treatments, Dr. Sonavane advises patients to trim their hair first. WHO CAN HAVE LASER HAIR REMOVAL? Because the laser energy is drawn to the pigment in the follicle, patients with darker hair are ideal candidates for laser hair removal. The most common combination of light skin and dark hair for laser hair removal is this. Blonde people may find that lasers like the Diode or Ruby, which are designed for people with less pigmentation, are more effective at removing unwanted hair. The treatment's success is highly dependent on your skin and hair colour, so a consultation is required to discuss your specific skin and hair colour. Otherwise, your doctor can recommend a treatment that is better suited to your skin type and condition. Remember that results are not always guaranteed, regardless of skin tone. Some people notice hair regrowth months or years later, while others never need to use a razor again. CHOOSING A LASER HAIR REMOVAL CLINIC Price is an important factor when choosing a laser hair removal clinic, but it should not be the only one. Laser hair removal in Mumbai can cost anywhere from Rs 1000 to Rs 20000 per session, depending on the area treated and the laser used. Research thoroughly before choosing a dermatologist, and only work with someone who has extensive experience and positive patient reviews. IS LASER MAINTENANCE SESSION IMPORTANT? The most important aspect of post-laser hair removal maintenance is to keep up with your laser hair removal sessions. After each session, the targeted hair will fall out in about two weeks. While you will see some improvement after your first treatment, it usually takes six sessions to see significant improvement. Because of this, Dr. Sonavane recommends additional treatment sessions if the skin is darker than expected. After six sessions, most people report a 75-95 percent reduction in hair growth. After all, the method will need some upkeep. For the best results, additional sessions should be booked once a year for the first few years. Electrolysis. WHAT IS ELECTROLYSIS AND HOW DOES IT WORK? Unlike laser hair removal, electrolysis uses shortwave radio frequencies to inhibit hair growth rather than light. Unlike laser hair removal, electrolysis is considered permanent by the FDA (FDA). To remove hair, an epilator, a needle often thinner than a single strand of hair, is inserted into the skin through the hair follicle's natural opening. The epilator works by delivering a mild electrical current to the follicle, killing it and preventing hair growth. THE PROCEDURE OF ELECTROLYSIS. Depending on the size of the treated area, electrolysis sessions can last from 15 minutes to an hour. Like laser hair removal, electrolysis can cause some minor discomfort or pain. Many people describe the sensation as a prick or a shock. Precautions for laser hair removal are the same as for any other procedure. Preparation with ibuprofen or numbing cream can also help. If you have symptoms, Dr. Sonavane advises you to avoid all stimulants, including caffeine. They "may make it difficult to sit during electrolysis sessions," says Dr. Sonavane. “Being relaxed and well-rested before any hair removal therapy helps to reduce discomfort.” Just as there is a proper way to remove laser hair, there is a proper way to keep your hair. Dr. Sonavane also suggests clipping the hairs if necessary, but they must be long enough for the technician to pick them up with tweezers. Because these hairs will not be available for treatment during their next appointment and will grow back untreated, it is best to avoid plucking or tweezing between laser hair removal or electrolysis treatments. The main difference between electrolysis and laser hair removal is the number of sessions required. Electrolysis takes a lot of time and effort. Depending on the location and the patient, up to 30 sessions may be required. WHO CAN HAVE ELECTROLYSIS? Because electrolysis uses radio frequencies rather than light, it targets the follicle rather than the pigment, making it suitable for all skin tones. Tweezing and waxing prior to the procedure may make it more difficult. Tweezing and waxing can change the shape of hair follicles, making epilation more difficult. Avoid tweezing and waxing. Aside from that, electrolysis is only for the committed, as the full effects of treatment can take up to 1.5 years. Ask your nurse what to expect before surgery. HOW DO YOU CHOOSE AN ELECTROLYSIS PROVIDER? Electrolysis is less expensive than laser hair removal because it requires fewer treatments. A single session can cost between Rs 5000 and Rs 9000 per person depending on location. As with any cosmetic procedure, you must first consult a dermatologist. Any treatment plan should always be preceded by a consultation. ARE MAINTENANCE SESSIONS IMPORTANT LATER? Electrolysis, like laser hair removal, requires periodic touch-up sessions to maintain results. Dr. Sonavane says the number of treatments required depends on the volume of hair being treated, the technician's pace, and the hair's thickness. If the area is large and densely haired, it may be necessary to divide the treatment sessions.