Laser hair removal has gained a lot of popularity, because of its safe and painless procedure.
The areas that can be treat by laser for hair removal are –
- Face, chin beard, neck
- Legs, arms and under arms
- Chest and nipples
- Back and abdomen
- Bikini line and thighs (1)
The ideal candidate for laser hair removal is –
Laser hair removal is especially for people who are looking to get rid of unwanted hair on a long term basis. It suits the best for people who are have to repeatedly use short term hair removal mechanisms like waxing and shaving and wish to get rid of it.
The effect of permanent hair removal may vary from person to person, laser hair removal provides permanent hair reduction. And one needs to be aware that laser is not for people who are looking for permanent hair removal.
Laser hair removal suits the best to people with dark hair and light skin.
HOW DOES LASER WORK –
Laser hair removal technique acts on melanin; the pigment that gives skin, hair and eye the dark colour. Melanin is present in both, the dark and light skinned individuals. Probably that’s the reason Laser as a device works best on light skinned individuals. Laser technique is safe and suited to all skin types.
Laser-assisted hair removal offers many hair removal systems that are all equally effective. They are:
- ruby laser (694nm),
- alexandrite laser (755nm),
- diode laser (800nm), intense pulsed light source (590 to 1200nm) and the
- neodymium:yttrium-aluminium-garnet (Nd:YAG) laser (1064nm), with or without the application of carbon suspension.
The functioning of each laser system varies. Laser works on the basic principle of selective photothermolysis, wherein the melanin present in the hair follicles acts as the chromophobe. Irrespective of any of the above system used, effective reduction in hair requires multiple treatments. After repeated sessions, around 30 to 50% of hair reduction is noticed (&&&).
Since laser hair removal technique focuses on the pigment melanin, the results are more assuring in people who have light skin.
Multiple sessions are involved to finally eliminate the hair. The duration and the number of session depends on the thickness of the hair and the area of the body where the treatment needs to be given. The effect is noticeably seen from the first session onwards in the form of thinner and lighter looking hair (3).
ADVERSE EFFECTS OF LASER HAIR REMOVAL-
- Most common side effects are erythema or superficial reddening of the skin as a result of the procedure that resulting in dilatation of blood capillaries and perifollicular edema.
- Development of vesicles, hardening or crusting and vesiculation at the treatment site, altered pigmentation resulting in darkening or lightening of the skin
- Most of the side effects are transient. Lightening of the skin post laser irradiation is apparently due to suppression of development of pigment melanin in the epidermis.
- To minimise the side effects one should avoid sun exposure prior to laser treatment. It is recommended to avoid sun and take considerable sun protection post treatment as well (3)