Hair Today Gone Tomorrow
The Lowdown on Laser Hair Removal
By Christi Blevins
Are you ready to toss your tweezers, get rid of your razor, wave bye-bye to waxing and bleaching, and find a more permanent solution for your unwanted hair? The latest laser hair removal technologies might be for you. If you are picturing the painful procedures of the 1990s, it’s time to get some updated information for 2021.
The technology is suitable for any area except the scalp and the skin around the eyes. It is safe and effective for all skin tones. Darker, coarser hair usually responds to treatment more quickly. Platinum blondes, certain shades of red-heads, and people with grey hair may not be suitable candidates.
All Hair Is Not Created Equal
Laser hair removal works on most areas, including:
Upper lip Chest
Preparing for Treatment —You will be asked to arrive with your natural skin tone. Stay out of the sun and tanning beds. Avoid self-tanner. People often wonder if you can shave prior to treatment and the answer is a resounding, “Yes!” However, you will want to refrain from tweezing, plucking, and waxing before and during the procedure. Consult with your medical professional on all preparation requirements.
What to Expect? — During the procedure, your medical professional will press a laser instrument to your skin. The laser is directed onto the desired areas and damages the follicles with a controlled amount of heat.
Will It Hurt? — It’s time to get down to the nitty-gritty and talk about the question on everyone’s mind. How much will it hurt? Or, to put things in classic art terms: On a scale from Da Vinci’s “Mona Lisa” to Munch’s “The Scream,” how painful is it?
People sometimes compare the sensation to a pinprick or snapping a tiny rubber band against your skin. The process is much faster than in the early days of laser hair removal, which means that most people experience minimal discomfort. If necessary, your medical professional can apply a topical numbing cream to alleviate the pain.
How Long Does It Take? — The length of each session depends on the size of the area being treated. Getting rid of a few hairs on your chin or underarms will take less time than removing the hair on your legs. Small areas can be treated in well under half an hour.
Smooth-ish Sailing — Although the laser is a bit like a magic wand, the unwanted hairs don’t disappear immediately. There’s a little delay to this magic. Hairs are shed over a period of days or weeks.