Laser Hair Removal
What is Laser Hair Removal?
You shave, pluck, wax, or use harsh chemicals to get rid of your unwanted hair. Then in a few days or weeks, you get to do it all over again. At Keamy Eye & Laser Centre, we have a better way — laser hair removal. This FDA-approved procedure is very effective, can be done just about anywhere on the body, and is great for both women and men!
How Does Laser Hair Removal Work?
While you may think of lasers as they are used in sci-fi movies, hair removal actually comes down to heat. Melanin in your hair provides its color (it also gives the skin color). When laser light energy pulses are directed onto an area of unwanted hair, the melanin absorbs the laser light energy and it converts to heat. That heat then travels down the hair shaft into the follicle damaging the follicle and preventing it from producing hair.
Common Areas Treated
Laser hair removal can be performed in numerous areas of the body, the include but are not limited to:
- Bikini Area
Is Laser Hair Removal Permanent?
The FDA approval is for “permanent hair reduction.” This is because laser treatments can’t remove all the unwanted hair permanently due to a couple of reasons. First, lasers only damage hair in the anagen (growth) cycle. Second, damaged follicles can rebuild with hormonal changes. Plus, if a follicle is only partially damaged, it may heal and begin to regrow hair.
Bottom line, numerous studies show the degree of permanent hair reduction to be from 85 to 90 percent.
Does Laser Hair Removal Hurt?
Dr. Keamy uses the XEO Laser for hair removal. Patients tell us the feeling during the laser pulses is similar to that of a small rubber band being snapped against the skin, followed by a cooling sensation. Some areas are more sensitive than others, but when you compare it to shaving the area umpteen thousand times…
How Many Sessions Will I Need?
Again, this comes down to catching the unwanted hair in the growth phase. Since hair is always rotating in and out of this phase, multiple sessions are required to catch as many hairs as possible in the correct phase. We’ve found that 6 to 10 treatments achieve the degree of hair reduction that pleases most patients.
How Long Is a Single Session?
The length of your session depends on the size of the area we are treating. For instance, your underarms may take just a few minutes while your legs can take up to an hour. You should plan on between 10 minutes and one hour per session.
Does Laser Work on Lighter Hair Colors?
Since the laser energy targets the melanin in the hair, light hair isn’t as responsive to laser energy. For that reason, removing blonde or white hair is not as successful as darker hair.
Do Tanned or Darker Skin Tones Affect the Procedure?
The laser needs to be set to the wavelength of the melanin in the hair. If the surrounding skin has a high degree of melanin, the laser isn’t as effective at differentiating. For our laser to work on people with darker skin tones or those who have tanned skin, we have to reduce the energy level of the laser to avoid damaging the adjacent skin. For that reason, we advise our patients not to do any tanning before their hair removal treatment.
Laser Hair Removal Side Effects
The most common side effects after treatment include skin irritation such as redness and slight swelling on the treatment sites. This usually passes within a few hours. Otherwise, Dr. Keamy’s expertise makes the procedure very safe and effective.