Is Laser Hair Removal Right For Me?
Defuzz is all the buzz
Laser hair removal is one of the most popular nonsurgical procedures performed in the United States for good reasons. It’s a relatively painless, fairly permanent and low-effort way to eliminate unwanted hair from almost anywhere on your body.
Beyond those general facts about laser hair removal, not many people know more about it or if they’re a good candidate. Before you sign up for your first appointment, it’s important to know about the benefits of laser hair removal, the process, and if it’s the right option for you.
What Is Laser Hair Removal?
The basic principle of laser hair removal is that it uses a laser to target the melanin and pigment in hair and destroy the strand all the way down to the follicle. Since the laser basically vaporizes the hair, it almost entirely inhibits future hair growth.
Benefits of Laser Hair Removal
It only gets better and better
Laser hair removal starts showing results after the first appointment and only gets better from there. According to the American Academy of Dermatology (AAD), while the hair does grow back eventually, regrown hair can take a few weeks to a few months to make a reappearance and is typically thinner, lighter and less noticeable each time.
You also don’t have to worry about getting too fuzzy between your appointments. Since laser hair removal doesn’t need long hair to work — unlike waxing which needs long hair to grip onto — you don’t have to grow out hair just to have it removed.
One of the best things that laser hair removal has going for it — other than the fact that it works — is that it has practically no downtime nor side effects. It’s an outpatient procedure that typically takes less than an hour to complete and only requires that you protect your sensitive skin from the sun for a few days after your appointment.
Most people who receive laser hair removal experience mild discomfort during the actual procedure, mild swelling and some residual redness and sensitivity. However, all these symptoms typically go away over the course of a few hours or a few days.
Long-term, it’s cheaper
Think of laser hair removal as a beauty investment in yourself. Add up all the razors, razor head replacements, shaving gels, waxing and anything else you’ll have to buy for the rest of your life to rid your body of unwanted body hair and a few appointments of laser hair removal are worth the investment.
You can do it almost anywhere
It’s easy to get laser hair removal pretty much anywhere on your body. The only area that is off-limits is the space around your eyes to protect them from damage from the light of the laser. The most popular laser hair removal treatment areas are armpits, legs, upper lip, chin and bikini line.
Downsides of Laser Hair Removal
While laser hair removal is much less painful than waxing, it’s not entirely pain-free. Most people compare the feeling of laser hair removal to that of being slapped with a rubber band or pinched. Many technicians will use ice or other types of numbing agents to numb the nerves in the areas being treated to cut down on what little pain there is.
Not one and done
The AAD says that most patients who choose to go after laser hair removal need anywhere between 2-6 sessions to have permanent results. After these initial sessions, some patients may need to have additional maintenance treatments if their skin and hair color make it difficult for the laser to fully eliminate the hair during these first few sessions.
Not always for everyone
Because of the way that laser hair removal works – the dark hair drawing the attention of the laser away from lighter skin – laser hair removal works best on people with dark hair and light skin. If you have hair color similar to your skin color, it’s harder for the laser to focus in on the hair and is not always as effective as it could be. Be sure to work with a team that offers laser hair removal designed for varied skin/hair combinations.
Laser hair removal is also not recommended by the AAD for people who scar easily, have ever had a raised scar, take medicine that is photosensitive, or have recently gotten a tan.
Start Your Laser Hair Removal Journey
Ditch the wax and upgrade to laser hair removal for your unwanted body hair removal.