Last Updated On January 30th, 2019
You will be hard-pressed to find someone who hasn’t battled with hair removal. In this article, we take an in-depth look at laser hair removal and laser hair removal cost. Let us help you decide if it is the right option for you.
Whether you struggle with the razor before putting on your favourite dress, or regularly get your chest waxed; everyone knows how frustrating body hair can be. Unsurprisingly, this ongoing hassle has prompted more people to opt for longer-term solutions. Such an example of the pursuit of beauty and convenience is laser hair removal.
What is Laser Hair Removal?
Laser hair removal is a form of body hair removal which has semi-permanent results. It uses focused laser light energy to target the highly pigmented areas of your skin which contain hair follicles
1. How is it done?
During your treatment, a concentrated light beam heats up these areas to a high temperature and damages the hair follicles. As a result, the damaged follicles shrink, which inhibits further hair growth. With regular treatments, hair growth can be eliminated from the treated area altogether.
2. What skin type does it suit?
Highly pigmented areas more easily absorb heat energy from the laser beam. For this reason, laser hair removal is most effective for individuals who have light skin, but dark hair. The dark hairs have more pigmentation than the surrounding skin. Thus, it draws the light energy away from the skin towards themselves.
3. Who is it for?
Both men and women can have laser hair removal. Women are able to use laser hair removal treatments in almost all areas of their body. Men cannot have laser hair removal treatments for facial hair as this hair is simply too dense.
Neither men nor women are able to have the genitalia, nipples or the top of the scalp treated. These areas are too sensitive for laser hair removal.
Does Laser Hair Removal Work?
Laser hair removal is incredibly effective. Those who receive laser hair removal treatments often experience at least an 80% reduction in hair growth overall. The results are semi-permanent but unfortunately will not last a lifetime.
Nevertheless, laser hair removal is certainly the best method to get long-lasting results. Even if you do experience further hair growth post-treatment, the damaged follicles will no longer produce hair in the same way.
Hair re-growth is usually much slower, thinner and finer than before your treatment. Once you have had enough sessions and are happy with your results, you may find you need occasional top-up treatments to maintain them.
You can try it at home by using the Philips Lumea. Read our review here.
How Long Does Laser Hair Removal Take?
One of the biggest benefits of laser hair removal is that it is quick and convenient, with no downtime required. You can go straight back to your office or other daily activities with little discomfort.
The length of time your appointment will take depends heavily upon the area being treated. For example, a treatment for the back will take much longer than the lower leg. Even so, laser hair removal is still one of the quickest hair removal treatments you can get.
Generally, the longest a single session will take is around 1 hour. Most of the time you will be in and out of the clinic in as little as 30 minutes!
With regard to how many treatments will be required, this varies with each individual. The rate at which your hair grows will be different to that of your friends. Therefore, some people may require more treatments than others to achieve the same results.
Is Laser Hair Removal Safe for Everyone?
Laser hair removal is an incredibly safe treatment for most people. However, there are some conditions and circumstances which are not compatible with this method.
If you are thinking about booking a treatment, you should make sure you do not have a history of any the following conditions:
- Autoimmune diseases – including Scleroderma, Vitiligo and Lupus
- Herpes or Cold sores
- Keloid scarring
- Recent blistered sunburn
- Any implants beneath the skin
- Large, raised moles
You also mustn’t undergo treatment when pregnant or breastfeeding.
How Much Does Laser Hair Removal Cost?
The cost of laser hair removal varies according to the size of the treatment area and the number of sessions required. Usually, the cost will fall somewhere between £40 and £400 with treatments ranging from 4 to 6 sessions. These treatment sessions are often spaced out across 4-6 weeks.
Clearly, laser hair removal costs much more upfront than your usual waxing treatment. However, it is worth considering. You’ll get more significant savings in the long-run.
If you add up all the money you will spend on waxing, razors, and shaving foam over the year; laser hair removal may not seem so expensive after all!
Laser Hair Removal Risks
Laser hair removal is very safe. But as with all cosmetic treatments, there is a risk of side effects. These are usually minor and short-lived. Most people find that their side effects have completely disappeared after 24 hours have passed. On rare occasions, symptoms can persist for a couple of days.
For some people, laser hair removal can be uncomfortable. It is often described as feeling like a rubber band being repeatedly snapped against the skin. Fortunately, any discomfort you may experience subsides rapidly after the treatment has ended.
By far, the most commonly experienced side effect of laser hair removal is skin irritation. Some individuals will experience itchiness, swelling, tingling and redness after treatment. This is completely normal and is no cause for concern. Usually, this irritation will go away after a few hours.
In very rare cases, laser hair removal can result in more serious side effects such as:
- Intense swelling lasting many days
- Crusts or blisters which take more than days to heal
- A change in skin colour which lasts for months
- A skin reaction known as ‘erythema ab igne’ (EIA)
- The rare condition ‘livedo reticularis’, which causes skin mottling
If you want to get rid of your unwanted hair, laser hair removal can be a fantastic solution. The procedure is quick, safe and relatively painless, with no recovery time required. Above all, almost any area of your body can be treated. And, results are easily maintained with occasional top-up treatments.
While it may initially appear expensive, laser hair removal will actually save you money in the long-run. If that isn’t reason enough, just imagine how much time you could save if you woke up hair-free every morning!
Overall, if you are someone who hates the day-to-day struggle of hair removal, this treatment could be the answer to your prayers. Similarly, you can do laser hair removal at home. Check out our review of the Philips Lumea.