Laser hair removal is the way to go without a doubt. After all, who wants to battle with endless depilatory creams that might burn the skin, the frequent agony of waxing or the unsightly stubbles of shaving?
How it works
Laser hair removal uses a concentrated beam of light. And the melanin in the hair absorbs this light. The light energy is converted to heat, which damages the hair follicles. It’s precisely this damage that inhibits or delays future hair growth. And the best two lasers for this are the Alexandrite and ND:Yag lasers – which is what Lasermed uses.
The Alexandrite wavelength is ideal for treating skin tones 1, 2 and 3 (fair and light skin tones). And the Nd:YAG wavelength at 1064 nm is ideal for treating skin tones 4, 5 and 6 (4 is tanned skin and 5 and 6 are darker skin tones).
Although laser hair removal delays hair growth for long periods, it’s not a once-off procedure. You’ll need a number of treatments for initial hair removal. Thereafter, you may have to go for maintenance treatments. The maintenance frequency varies from individual to individual.
On areas with fast hair growth – such as the upper lip – it might be necessary to repeat the treatment in four to eight weeks. On areas of slow hair growth, such as the back, the treatment might be every 12 to 16 weeks.
While laser hair removal is successful on all skin types, it’s at its most effective on people who have light skin and dark hair. Because the principle is that the pigment of the hair, but not the pigment of the skin, should absorb the light. That’s why a contrast between hair and skin colour results in the best outcome.
Barring the eyelid or surrounding area, as well as tattooed skin, you can have laser hair removal done on any area of the face or body. But the most common treatment locations are legs, armpits, upper lip, chin, back and the bikini line.
How to prepare
Number one is to avoid the sun for a month prior to treatment and apply a broad-spectrum, SPF50+ sunscreen whenever you go out. Also, don’t use tanning creams.
Don’t pluck, wax or have electrolysis for at least four weeks before treatment.
We recommend trimming and shaving the day before laser treatment to remove hair above the skin that can result in surface skin damage from burnt hairs.
You’ll shed hairs over a period of days to weeks, which may look like continued hair growth. But rest assured, it isn’t. The reason for the repeated treatments is because hair growth occurs in a cycle, and laser treatment works best with hair follicles in the new-growth stage.
Some people might be smooth for months, while others might be hair-free for years. Luckily though, when hair regrows, it’s usually finer and lighter in colour. So laser hair removal is the way to go.