Are you sick and tired of razor bumps irritating your skin after you shave? Do you hate the way your skin burns after using a depilatory cream to remove unwanted hair? If so, you may be a good candidate for laser hair removal at Rejuvalase Medical Spa in Santa Barbara, CA. To help you decide whether this safe, effective hair removal technique is right for you, today, we’re answering some of the most frequently asked questions about it, including how fast it works.
Laser Hair Removal: How Quickly Do You Get Results?
You will start to see the results of laser hair removal approximately one week after your first treatment. However, you shouldn’t expect to see your final results any time soon. It usually takes months for the final results to become apparent because multiple treatment sessions are usually required. Laser therapy for unwanted hair removal works by destroying hair follicles in the treatment area that are in the anagen stage of the hair growth cycle.
However, not all of the hair follicles in your area of concern will be in the anagen phase at once. After roughly three weeks, all of the treated hairs will fall out. However, you will have to wait approximately four to six weeks between sessions for more hair follicles in the area to enter the anagen phase of the cycle. Therefore, if you need six sessions spaced six weeks apart, it will take around 39 weeks for your final results to become apparent.
Other FAQs Answered
Do I Have To Wait Four to Six Weeks Between Treatment Sessions?
How often you come in for laser therapy sessions is up to your body. Remember, only hair follicles in the anagen phase of the hair growth cycle can be destroyed by the laser treatment. Also, keep in mind that it often takes between one and three weeks for your destroyed hair follicles to shed the hairs that they were growing.
It is possible that the hair follicles in your treatment area enter the anagen phase a week after your treatment session. It is just most common for hair to start growing in the treatment area four to six weeks after each treatment session. Keep in mind, though, that you may not want to come in as soon as you see stubble in the targeted area start to grow. Hairs should be approximately a quarter of an inch in length for the laser to target the follicles effectively.
Am I a Good Candidate for This Treatment?
If you’re interested in a safe, effective hair removal technique that provides long-lasting results, there’s a good chance you’ll be considered a good candidate for this treatment. However, an initial consultation is required to find out for sure. There are certain medical conditions that will preclude you from this treatment, including pregnancy. Furthermore, you won’t qualify if your doctor says you can’t stop taking drugs that cause sensitivity to light to prepare.
What Preparation Steps Are Required?
There are a number of preparation steps required in advance of your treatment, and one of the most important steps you must take is to prevent sun damage. Your treatment must be rescheduled if your skin is irritated on the day of your appointment, so you should do everything you can to prevent getting a sunburn in the treatment area. Also, it is highly advisable that you do not use tanning beds, tanning creams, or spray-on tans in advance of your treatment.
The greater the contrast between your hair color and skin color, the more effective your treatment session will be. Another very important step to take is to not use any hair removal techniques that may irritate your skin, like depilatory creams, waxing, or tweezing. In fact, it is ideal that your hair extrudes at least a quarter of an inch past the surface of your skin so the laser can target it more effectively. Other preparation steps include:
- Not bleaching the hair in the area
- Not applying cosmetics to the area
- Not using drugs that can affect treatment efficacy
How Long Will My Treatment Session Take?
How long you can expect your treatment session to take depends on several factors, including the number of areas you are targeting for treatment and the size of the areas you are targeting for treatment. You can generally expect your treatment session to take between a quarter of an hour and a third of an hour. However, we can give you a better idea once we have evaluated your areas of concern and reviewed your goals thoroughly.
To give you an idea of how significantly the size of the area being treated affects your expected treatment time, it will only take around five minutes to treat a small area, like your underarms, chin, or upper lip. On the other hand, it can easily take half of an hour if you are treating a larger area, like your legs or back. You can expect your session to take roughly 1.5 hours if you are treating several large areas, like your chest, abdomen, and back.
How Many Treatment Sessions Will I Need?
How many treatment sessions you will need depends on numerous factors, not the least of which is your goals. If you are simply looking to thin out the hair in an area of concern, like your chin, upper lip, or arms, you may only need a few treatment sessions to achieve your desired results. On the other hand, if your goal is to eliminate all of the hairs in an area of concern, you may need half a dozen sessions or more. In some cases, 10 to 12 sessions are required.
Another factor that affects how many treatment sessions you will need is the contrast between your hair color and skin color. The greater the contrast there is between your skin tone and hair color, the more effective the laser will be at destroying the hair follicles in the anagen phase of the hair growth cycle. Moreover, people with coarser hair tend to find laser therapy more effective. If you have pale skin and thin blonde, gray, or red hair, you’ll need more sessions.
How Effective Is This Treatment?
If you’re on the fence about whether laser therapy is the best hair removal technique for you, you’re in good company. It is natural to have questions about treatments that you may wish to undergo. However, you should know a couple of things. First, you won’t feel any pain during your treatment thanks to the application of a topical anesthetic. Second, this treatment has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for both safety and efficacy.
To reiterate, the efficacy of this treatment varies based on individual circumstances, like the thickness of the hair in the treatment area. The efficacy of this treatment is also affected by the contrast between your skin tone and targeted hair color. However, you can expect this treatment to remove anywhere from a quarter of the hair in the treatment area to 70% of the hair in the treatment area. The more follicles there are in the anagen phase, the more effective treatment is.
What Should I Expect During My Treatment Session?
During your laser hair removal session, you should expect your treatment areas to be inspected very closely for irritation. You should also expect to receive special eye protection regardless of where your areas of concern are. You will also be given a topical anesthetic to keep you comfortable.
What Should I Do After My Treatment Session?
Once your treatment session is complete, you are free to return to work. However, there are a number of things you should keep in mind during your “recovery” period. For example, it is vital that you protect your skin from sun damage in the weeks following your treatment session. It is also very important that you keep your skin moisturized and stay hydrated during your recovery period.
The Bottom Line
The bottom line is that you will start to see your hair removal results just a few days after your first laser therapy session. However, it may be several months before you see your final results depending on your goals. If you think you could benefit from laser hair removal, contact us today at Rejuvalase Medical Spa in Santa Barbara, CA to schedule your initial consultation with Dr. Gregory Keller. We can’t wait to help you achieve the skin of your dreams.