Laser hair reduction
Laser hair removal is done by delivering light at a specified wavelength from handpiece into the skin, where the laser targets pigment in hair. This is done in order to cause thermal damage to a hair follicle while sparing surrounding tissues.
Laser hair removal can be achieved with the use of several available lasers. Hair removal that lasts several months can be done in almost all patients, however, permanent laser hair removal is possible only in low percentage of patients while hair reduction is achieved in almost 70 to 80% of persons.
Laser hair removal is not painful, but it is uncomfortable: this is simply because every hair follicle is surrounded by nerve endings. It is simply not possible to benefit from one or two treatments, not in the long term. Most patients require three to six treatments, or when hair is darker and coarse, as with male beards even more.
The advantage of laser hair reduction is that laser requires very little time: upper lip takes about 5 minutes, while full face is done in about 15 minute but requires multiple treatments, which are repeated approximately once a month, and require three to six treatments or even more depending upon the skin color and nature of the hair.
The most evident advantages of laser hair removal is that there is a great chance of permanent hair reduction, but if regrowth of hair occurs, it comes back lighter in color or finer in texture. At that time laser will not be able to help to remove the hair growth.
Laser is most appropriate for people with dark hair and light skin, but not for un-pigmented (grey) hair or white hair or blond and red hair and withe persons with dark skin and lighter hairs.
Improper laser treatment can cause burns, lesions, patchy patterned skin and skin discoloration which can last several months or can be even permanent.
Laser Hair Removers
There are two types, one of hair laser hair removers use an actual laser and there are IPL or Intense Pulsed Light units that use a high intensity xenon light.
Both units are usually called laser hair removal systems as the work by the same principle of using high intensity light to generate heat that acts on the hair follicle.
The heat is repeatedly applied until the follicle is disabled or the root is destroyed resulting in permanent hair loss.
Heating by light energy or photothermolysis is how laser hair removal works.
The laser penetrates the skin by acting on the melanin contained in the hair follicle, the light travels through the skin acting only on the follicle, as the property of the light is to be absorbed by black color more than white, therefore the light energy is absorbed by the melanin pigment which is black, which ultimately heats up to burn the hair root, resulting in hair follicle being shed spontaneously.
Now the problem arises in the dark skin when the pigment in the skin is also melanin and that also absorbs light, leading to the skin burns or depigmentation of the skin leading to white patches.
Indian skin is also on the darker side therefore chances of laser burns are high, laser hair removal work best on persons with light skin and dark hair. This allows for successful penetration of the skin by the laser. They can be used anywhere on your body for both men and women, except near eyes, ears and genitals.
Repeated re-applications of the laser are required for permanent hair reduction, as heating on a single session is not enough to burn the hair roots. As all users are different, the number of treatments will vary from 6 to 12 sessions of laser therapy.
Most users can see visible results within the first 2 or 3 treatments and permanent hair reduction is seen with as few as 5 treatments with the laser hair removal.
You will have to wait 4 to 5 weeks between each treatment depending on your skin tone and hair color, for the skin to recover from the damage from light.
Few users report discomfort with the usual side effect being redness, itching or swelling, while some darker skin persons can even have laser burns and depigmentation.