What is Laser Hair Removal?
Laser hair removal is a laser treatment that permanently reduces unwanted hair in the treated area.
How does it work?
During this treatment, a laser beam passes through the skin to the individual hair follicle. The dark pigment of the hair’s melanin absorbs the laser and transforms its energy into heat. This process disables the hair follicle while leaving the surrounding tissue unaffected. The laser “pulses” for a fraction of a second, and each “pulse” of light disables a large number of hair follicles that are actively growing, including follicles that have yet to produce a visible shaft to the surface of the skin. This kind of laser treatment best targets darker hair. It does not affect hairs that are not actively growing. White, gray or very fair hair does not respond well to laser hair removal at this time. We use the Candella Gentle Max Pro laser in our office.
What kind of results can I expect?
Laser hair removal treatment significantly slows growth and reduces hair in a given area, but occasional maintenance treatments are required after the initial reduction. The most common treatment locations include the upper lip and chin, underarms, legs and bikini line, but it’s possible to treat hair almost anywhere on the body except around the eyes.
How many treatments are necessary? How long will results last?
Although laser hair removal effectively reduces hair and slows growth, it doesn’t guarantee permanent hair removal. Multiple laser hair removal sessions are required to produce results. The number of treatment sessions varies by body area and hair type. Our Cosmetologist and laser hair removal specialist Kim Forster can best evaluate the number of treatment sessions required for a given area and hair type.
Laser hair removal has a high rate of patient satisfaction. 90% of RealSelf users rate the treatment as “worth it.”
What can I expect during the procedure?
Our laser hair removal procedures are performed by our Cosmetologist and laser hair removal specialist Kim Forster. Kim will review the treatment process and discuss your goals before beginning. She will then move the hand-held laser over your skin in the desired area, targeting hair follicles. This treatment is very well tolerated, but you may experience some discomfort depending on the sensitivity of the treatment area. We use a cooling gel to minimize discomfort. Topical anesthetics may occasionally be used in particularly sensitive areas.
How long does recovery take?
There is no down time associated with laser hair removal. Redness and mild swelling are the most common side effects following treatment. This typically resolves within 48 hours after treatment.
Is it important to minimize sun exposure in the treatment area following each procedure. Avoid sun exposure while your skin heals, and use high quality sunscreen on exposed treatment areas following recovery.
Is it safe?
Laser hair removal has a proven safety profile. In data collected by the American Academy of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, laser hair removal is consistently among the most popular non-surgical aesthetic treatment. To date, millions of treatments have been performed safely around the world. Like any laser treatment, however, there are risks associated with improper treatment. We recommend choosing a well trained provider, ideally a member of the American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery, and a facility with up-to-date and inspected equipment, staffed by an on-site physician. Simple things, like proper calibration and not treating if you have an active cold sore (see below) may escape lesser trained providers.
Who is a good candidate?
Good candidates are those with unwanted hair. Laser hair removal tends to work best on individuals with fairer skin and darker hair, but it can also be possible to treat those with darker skin tones. White, gray or very fair hair does not respond well to laser hair removal at this time. As with any procedure, good candidates are those who understand the procedure and post-treatment care, and have a realistic understanding of the results of the treatment.
How should I prepare for my laser hair removal treatment?
Laser hair removal can best be performed if you prepare for treatment by taking the following steps:
- Shave 1-2 days before treatment.
- Avoid sun and sunless tanners for at least 2 weeks before and after treatment.
- Avoid perfumes, lotions, deodorants or other such products on the day of your appointment.
- Do not pluck, tweeze, wax, bleach, or have electrolysis for at least six weeks before your treatment.
Please inform our providers if you have a history of cold sores or Herpes Simplex. If you do, we will prescribe you oral antiviral medication to be taken one day prior and for five days after treatment. If you have a cold sore in the area being treated on the day of your appointment, or if a cold sore appears after your treatment, please contact our office to inform us. We will prescribe an oral antiviral medication and reschedule your treatment. We are not able to perform treatment on patients with an active breakout.
Why come to Aesthetic Solutions for treatment?
Our laser hair removal treatments are performed by Kim Forster, a board certified Cosmetologist and member of the American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery. Kim was trained by Dr. Cox, an expert in the field, and has performed thousands of laser hair removal treatments:
- Dr. Cox and Aesthetic Solutions are recognized leaders in the use of lasers for aesthetic treatments:
- Dr. Cox began using lasers more than 20 years ago with Dr. Richard Fitzpatrick, a pioneer who developed laser resurfacing techniques.
- Dr. Cox went on to write several medical book chapters on the use of lasers, and trains other physicians in the use of lasers to resolve aesthetic concerns.
- Aesthetic Solutions has one of the most comprehensive array of lasers in the area, and the most experienced team to help you successfully, and safely, address your concerns.
If laser hair removal is in your future, you can be confident Kim Forster and the team here at Aesthetic Solutions will work together to provide you with the best possible results. Call us today at (919) 338 5007 to arrange a consultation.