Laser Hair Reduction
Laser light energy targets melanin or chromophore with the goal to destroy the structures responsible for hair growth: the hair follicle papilla, bulge, and pilosebaceous unit. Laser pulse duration, light wavelength, and the method of cooling are carefully chosen to maximize the success of the treatment.
Individual results may vary.
A consultation is necessary to assess your own goals and unique needs. A consultation fee of $100 is applied to your visit and can be immediately transferred to your customized treatment plan.
Contact our office to schedule your cosmetic consultation.
Laser hair reduction is a noninvasive laser treatment for unwanted hair that selectively emits a beam of light that is highly absorbed in melanin, a component within the follicle that gives hair its color, and capable of sparing melanin in the skin.
How does it work?
Hair grows in three stages, and when hair is in the anagen stage (growth) it is most vulnerable to laser treatment. The laser technology selectively heats the full length of the imbedded hair follicle cutting off its supply of nutrients, thus disabling its growth. Because hair is not always in the anagen stage at one time, multiple treatments must be given over a period of time to treat it while it is in the anagen stage. Our clinician will design a treatment series to reflect your desire for hair reduction in particular body locations.
What other non-laser and light-based treatments are available?
Waxing, shaving, and the use of depilatory creams are well-established methods for hair reduction, albeit temporary. Electrolysis is the traditional tried and tested method for permanent hair reduction. However, it is often very time-consuming, painful, and not without complications. With rapid technology development, the most popular and effective method for hair reduction is the use of lasers or intense pulsed light, which are designed to damage and destroy hair in a brief period of time with reduced side effects. People are interested in laser or light hair reduction because the end results are consistent and predictable within a reasonable time frame that fits their lifestyle.
What areas can be treated?
Laser hair reduction offers patients a safe, fast, and effective alternative for dealing with unwanted hair. It is safe enough to be used on any part of the body (e.g., face, neck, underarms, bikini line, legs, arms).
Can all skin colors and tanned skin be treated?
Yes, all skin colors from light to dark can be treated, as well as safely treating tanned skin. Nevertheless, always inform your clinician if you have been tanning, using tanning products, or have experienced prolonged exposure to the sun within the last three weeks. Our clinician will then adjust your treatment regimen accordingly to give you the safest and most effective experience.
What happens during hair reduction treatment?
The procedure is gentle, noninvasive and typically comfortable. The area of your skin that is to be treated will be scanned with laser light. Treatment time will depend on the size of the area to be treated. Generally, there is no need for a topical anesthetic. However, your clinician may choose to use it on more sensitive areas. Laser hair reduction works best when the hair is one to two millimeters in length, so your clinician may ask you to shave or trim the area before your treatment.
Does treatment hurt?
Most patients describe laser hair reduction as feeling "prickly", or like the light snap of a rubber band against the skin. Afterwards, it might feel like sunburn. Each patient has his or her own level of skin sensitivity and pain threshold. Different areas on the body are also more sensitive than others. On the day of your treatment, plan on wearing clothing that will allow easy access to the area being treated. You may not need any type of anesthesia for your treatments.
Is there a risk for complications?
Temporary pigmentation changes are possible but seldom occur. Always discuss your concerns with our clinician prior to treatment.
What should I expect after treatment?
Some redness, tenderness and slight follicular swelling may be present in the area that has been treated but this should subside within a few hours. If any prolonged redness or swelling occurs, please consult your clinician immediately. Keep the treated area clean, use a sun block with a minimum SPF of 30 and keep the treated area covered and protected from the sun.
How long will it take to recover?
Your healing time will depend upon your actual treatment. In most cases, there is virtually no downtime and you may resume daily activity immediately. You may experience some redness after the procedure. Our clinician will answer questions about temporary changes in your skin color and how it may be camouflaged.
Is treatment permanent?
Typically, each laser treatment will be associated with some permanent hair loss. Therefore, in most cases, hair reduction can only be achieved after several treatments. The number of treatments will depend on each patient's individual response to the laser hair reduction treatment and the amount of hair to be removed. Remember that the goal may not be total hair removal. Many patients are happy with a reasonable degree of hair reduction. Also, the hair that remains is often lighter in color and thinner than the original hair prior to laser hair reduction treatment. As with other treatments for unwanted hair, there is no guarantee that laser hair reduction treatment will be permanent.
How many treatments will I need?
As previously mentioned, hair grows in three different stages. Hair can only be affected by laser energy when it is in its anagen stage. Additionally, hair located on different body parts has different growth cycles and percentages of anagen hair at any one given time. Due to this physiology, a series of treatments must be given over a period of time, usually 4-8 weeks apart to address the function of the hair.
Will my insurance coverage treatment?
Unwanted hair is usually a cosmetic issue, so in most cases you should expect to pay for treatment. In the rare instances where treatment is considered medically necessary, insurance may cover the cost of treatment. It's best to speak to your insurance company to clarify this question.