What is Laser Hair Removal? What Do You Need to Know About It?
Laser epilation is an alternative cosmetic procedure that can be preferred by people who are not happy with shaving, waxing or other epilation methods for unwanted hair. Laser epilation, which is among the frequently performed procedures in cosmetic applications, is roughly accomplished by firing high-energy beams into the hair follicle. The pigment in the follicle absorbs these rays and thus the hair follicle is damaged.
What is Laser Hair Removal?
Laser epilation is a cosmetic method that removes unwanted hair using high-energy concentrated beams. During laser epilation, the brown-black melanin pigment in the hair follicle captures and absorbs these rays. The high energy of the rays turns into heat energy after being captured by the pigment and causes damage to the tube-shaped sacs of the hair follicle. After this damage, new hair production in the follicle is delayed or stopped.
Various body areas where laser epilation can be applied are as follows:
- chest area
- bikini area
- upper lip
What are the Types of Laser Epilation?
Laser epilation types are classified based on the wavelength of light emitted. Which laser with different wavelengths is preferred depends on the skin and hair color of the area of the person’s body to be treated. While Nd:YAG and diode laser epilation types are preferred for individuals with darker skin, IPL applications may give better results for individuals with lighter skin color.
How Does Laser Hair Removal Work?
Laser epilation is a cosmetic procedure that works by firing concentrated light at the follicle responsible for hair growth and development. Melanin in the hair follicle absorbs light and the hair is eliminated by the effect of heat. The more abundant the melanin pigment that absorbs light, that is, the darker the hair, the more effective the result of laser epilation will be. Especially individuals with white skin color and dark hair color can be described as ideal candidates for laser epilation.
In individuals with dark skin color, special laser types may be required to detect hair follicles of similar darkness. If the hair color is light, the effect of laser beams on the follicle that is not pigmented enough is low and this may result in not achieving the desired result.
What is the Laser Epilation Session Duration and Intervals?
Laser epilation session duration and intervals may vary depending on the body part where this application is performed and the hair density. When determining the intervals, it is taken into account how long it will take for the hairs in the applied area to grow back. Cosmetic application can be repeated every 4-8 weeks on body parts where hair grows faster, such as the mustache area. In areas where hair tends to grow slower, such as the back, the application interval can be extended to 12-16 weeks.
How many sessions does it take to complete laser epilation?
Even immediately after laser epilation, individuals may observe some reduction in their hair. It should not be forgotten that after approximately 2-8 sessions, a slight increase in hair density may be detected in the applied area. This generally occurs because different hair follicles react differently to laser beams. At first glance, up to 25% hair reduction can be achieved in most of the individuals treated. After the following 3-8 sessions, permanent hair loss is usually achieved.
What are the things to consider before and after laser epilation?
In the period before laser epilation, physicians can make various suggestions to individuals in order to increase the effectiveness of the application and prevent undesirable effects:
- Avoid sun exposure a few days before the application
- preventing skin irritation
- Avoiding other epilation practices such as waxing
Avoiding non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs that may increase the amount of bleeding during application are some of the issues that should be taken into consideration before laser epilation, with the knowledge and recommendation of your physicians. There are various applications that can be done after the laser epilation process as before. These applications can be generally summarized as follows:
- Leave at least 4-6 weeks between laser epilation sessions
- not getting tan
- Not using cosmetic products that provide tanning
- Do not apply cosmetic products containing perfume or various aromatic chemicals to the application area.
- Do not apply deodorant to these areas, especially after applying it to the armpit area.
By avoiding such wrong practices, applications such as applying cold compresses to epilation areas or applying prescribed creams can be carried out with the knowledge and advice of your physicians.
What are the factors affecting the success of laser epilation?
The most fundamental factor affecting the success of laser epilation is the person’s hair life cycle. The fact that this cycle is quite fast in some people is effective in the variability of the response to laser epilation compared to other individuals. Apart from the life cycle of the hair, its physical properties are also among the factors that affect the success of laser epilation.
Skin Color in Laser Epilation
Individuals for whom laser epilation gives the best results are light-skinned people with dark hair color. When the pigment level is high and the surrounding area is light, it becomes easier to target the laser beams to the follicle.
Who Can Have Laser Epilation?
Laser epilation is generally considered a safe and well-tolerated procedure. No specific side effects have been identified that are associated with this procedure and that may negatively affect the individual’s health in the future. In some individuals, various minor side effects may occur after laser epilation.
The most important group that should stay away from laser epilation is pregnant women. Hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy can trigger the development of unwanted hair in various parts of the body. It should not be forgotten that although this increase in hair growth may be cosmetically negative, it will tend to spontaneously regress after pregnancy.
Are there any side effects of laser epilation?
Redness, discoloration and edema are among the common temporary side effects after laser epilation. In order to avoid such undesirable effects, physicians examine the individual’s skin and hair characteristics and decide which laser type is the most suitable before the application.
Are There Any Harms of Laser Epilation?
Laser epilation applications are among the cosmetic procedures that are non-invasive and cause mild discomfort to the person. However, if the following situations develop, which may occur for various reasons, it is recommended to contact healthcare institutions and get support from experts:
- Increase in edema
- Burn wound or vesicle development
- The feeling of pain on the skin does not go away despite the prescribed cream applications.
- Wound development or increased pigmentation changes at the application site
- Signs of infection such as increased temperature, redness or discharge
Are Laser Epilation Results Permanent?
Removing the hair follicle with laser epilation is a practice that often gives permanent results, but it should not be forgotten that hair growth may occur again in the area after a while. Generally, after the appropriate number of sessions, hair growth is stopped in the applied area. In some people, this process covers all the hair in that area and a permanent hair reduction can be achieved. The hairs that grow back in the application area are generally lighter in color and less noticeable than the previous hairs.
Laser epilation is among the effective applications that can be performed to get rid of unwanted hair. You can get support from specialist physicians by contacting healthcare institutions to determine whether you are a suitable candidate for this application or whether your expectations will be met after the application.