How Does It Work?
Because of the varying sizes of treatment areas, one session of laser or IPL hair removal can take anywhere from about 15 to 90 minutes to perform. Patients often report a mild stinging sensation, similar to a rubberband, snap during treatment, but various methods of cooling may be used during treatment to help reduce this. Anethesia is generally not needed.
The light, which is directed at the hair follicles in the area of treatment, penetrates the skin and is absorbed by the follicle beneath the hair. As the light is absorbed, it is converted to heat, destroying the follicles’s ability to grow new hair without harming the surrounding skin. Laser or IPL hair removal needs to be performed in stages because hair grows in stages. It is only in its active stage of growth that hair can be removed successfully.
What To Expect After Treatment?
Patients can continue on with normal daily routines immediately following treatment, but do need to keep the treated areas out of the sun. Some redness may be existent, but should only last several hours, or occasionally up to a couple days. This is easily camouflaged by clothing or makeup.
How Many Treatments Will It Take?
Hair removal is both temporary and permanent. During a short series of treatments, patients will rarely have to shave, tweeze, or pluck. However, if the treatments stop, some of the hair will return in a few months which will be finer and lighter than before.
The more treatments, the less hair will ultimately come back. Hair grows in cycles. Some hair follicles are actively growing while others remain in a dormant phase. The laser or IPL hair removal eliminates only hair follicles in the active growth phase. Approximately four weeks later, additional hair follicles enter the growth phase. Usually 4 to 6 sessions, 4 to 6 weeks apart, are necessary before all hairs can be treated.
Are Treatments Safe?
The Palomar Medilux Laser is FDA approved for hair removal. Treatments are non-evasive and very safe. Rare complications include burning, blistering, and extra pigmentation. All of which will usually resolve in a few days to a few weeks.
Do Laser Or IPL Treatments Cause Cancer?
No, the light is in the visible range and has never to shown to produce cancers of the skin or any other organ.