Looking for a way to permanently remove hair on your face or body?
Well, you have probably already heard of laser hair removal technology, with this having been around for quite a while now.
IPL lasers are what have been traditionally used when it comes to hair removal, but there’s a new player in town now…
The three-wavelength diode laser, which is the hair removal tool used by the Introlift Medical Spa, has proven to be advantageous over other forms of laser hair removal in so many ways.
How Does Laser Hair Removal Work?
Laser hair removal is often touted as being the only method to bother with when it comes to permanent hair removal, but how does it actually work?
Many think that the laser targets the hair itself, but this isn’t actually the case…
Instead, the laser targets the melanin in each hair follicle. It heats the melanin up to such a high temperature that the blood flow to the hair follicle is destroyed, along with the root of each hair. This then puts a permanent end to the hair growth from that follicle.
Do the hairs immediately fall out once the follicle has been destroyed?
Not immediately. This will usually start happening after a couple of days, and will continue to happen for a few weeks.
Different Types of Laser Hair Removal
While the concept of laser hair removal remains the same across the board, the lasers that are used for this differ.
There are two main types of laser used:
- IPL (Intense Pulsed Light)
Both of these provide permanent results, and can be used just about anywhere on the body.
So, why does the Introlift Medical Spa use diode lasers rather than IPL lasers?
Diode Laser Versus IPL Laser
Although both types of laser permanently remove hair, there are some differences when it comes to the way in which they work…
IPL lasers use a broad spectrum of light, meaning that the light contains several different wavelengths. On the other hand, diode lasers use just a single wavelength of light.
You are probably thinking…
Doesn’t that mean that IPL lasers are better, since they make use of more light wavelengths?
The melanin in each person’s skin is different, and everything from your skin tone to your hair type can have an effect on how well the different wavelengths actually work. The fact that IPL makes use of multiple wavelengths means that the laser is not able to focus precisely on each hair follicle. Instead, it targets the skin around that follicle, but does also damage the follicle in the process.
As you can imagine, this means that your skin itself would end up being affected by an IPL laser. This is why one of the side effects of the IPL laser is dark or light patches on the skin around the areas being treated. For this reason, those with darker skin tones are often not suitable for IPL laser treatments.
Wondering how the diode laser differs?
As mentioned earlier, it uses just a single wavelength of light. This wavelength is longer, meaning that it is suitable for all skin tones, and is also so much more precise. It can target individual hair follicles, rather than the larger area around them, meaning that a diode laser is also painless too.
This is important, because laser hair removal requires multiple treatments. While IPL laser treatments can hurt, diode laser treatments can actually be quite enjoyable, feeling more like a massage.
The precision that diode lasers offer also mean that they only require about half as many sessions in order to do the same job as an IPL laser.
What about the three wavelengths?
The diode laser used for hair removal by the Introlift Medical Spa features three different wavelengths.
This means that the wavelength of light utilized for your treatment will be adjusted beforehand in order to match your skin type.
The Laser Hair Removal Process
Considering booking yourself in for the laser hair removal treatment at Introlift?
If so, you are probably wondering what the process is actually like…
Preparation actually begins about six weeks before your treatment. Although your doctor will advise you more about this, the general steps that you would usually need to take in order to prepare for laser hair removal are:
- Avoiding sun exposure – this usually begins six weeks before your treatment
- Skin lightening – in some cases, especially for those with a darker skin tone or a new sun tan, your doctor may prescribe a skin lightening cream. You should also avoid using any products that cause your skin to darken
- Avoiding other forms of hair removal – this particularly applies to plucking, electrolysis and waxing, as all of these can disturb the hair follicle, meaning that your laser treatment won’t be as effective
- Avoiding certain medications – this only really applies to medications that thin the blood
- Avoiding certain skin care ingredients – such as alpha hydroxy acids, beta hydroxy acids, chemical peels, retinol and reinoids, and hydroquinone
- Shaving – a couple of days before your treatment, you will likely be required to shave the hairs in the area that is about to treated. This prevents any damage arising from burnt hairs, but leaves the actual hair shaft in place for the laser to target
- Limited physical activity – some patients are required to limit their physical activity two hours before, as well as after, each treatment. This helps to keep the body’s temperature and blood pressure stable
On the day of your treatment…
Your skin may be shaved again if necessary, and a cooling gel will be applied to your skin.
This just helps to keep your skin more comfortable, since the laser does deliver quite a bit of heat into your skin. You will also probably need to wear goggles to ensure that your eyes are not damaged in any way by the laser light.
Keep in mind that your skin does need to be clean before you undergo this treatment. If you are having laser hair removal done on your face, your doctor may ask you to cleanse your face before beginning.
Your doctor will then hold the laser (it is usually a hand-held device) onto your skin, before turning it on.
How long does the treatment take?
This all depends on the area getting treated. If you are only doing a small area, such as your upper lip, the treatment would only take five or ten minutes.
However, for larger areas, the treatment could take an hour or two.
Keep in mind that multiple treatments are also required in order to ensure that results are permanent.
Because each of your hairs will be at different stages of their growth cycle. Lasers work best with new growth, so undergoing multiple sessions ensures that all new growth has been targeted.
Nevertheless, you will still likely see a hair reduction of about 30% after each treatment.
Wondering if laser hair removal hurts?
IPL lasers usually do hurt a bit, but diode lasers are painless, feeling more like a gentle massage.
Laser Hair Removal Aftercare
There is not really any downtime required after a laser hair removal treatment, and patients can resume their usual activities immediately after.
However, due to the heat that the skin has just experienced, some patients do experience a bit of redness or swelling.
Fortunately, this is easily treated with the following:
- Ice and cold compresses
- Aloe gels or lotions
- Creams with anti-inflammatory ingredients
Any redness or swelling will usually subside within a few hours.
You will also need to avoid sun exposure for six weeks after your laser hair removal treatment, as well as in between your treatments. A broad-spectrum sunscreen is essential for whenever you step outside, but you should keep yourself away from the sun as much as possible in order to prevent changes in your skin pigment.
It goes without saying that tanning beds are also a big no-no!
Is Laser Hair Removal Completely Permanent?
Laser hair removal is about 90% permanent.
There will always be those stray individual hairs that manage to return, but when they do grow back, they are usually much lighter in color and finer in texture.
However, many patients find that they go years before this starts to happen.
Of course, in order to experience these results, you do need multiple sessions.
How many sessions will you need?
Most patients find that six is a good number to begin with, with each treatment being carried out about three to four weeks apart. After the final treatment, patients can then wait a while to see whether they require more treatments for long-term hair removal.
Laser Hair Removal Side Effects
As with any treatment, laser hair removal does have a couple of side effects.
These are much rarer when using a diode laser over an IPL laser, but it is still worth being aware of the risks. These include:
- Skin irritations, such as redness, discomfort and swelling
- Changes in skin pigment, with the skin turning lighter or darker
- Blistering and scarring
Side effects can also be prevented with the proper care, both before your treatment as well as after. Staying away from the sun and strictly following all of the other preparation steps mentioned above will go a long way in ensuring that you do not experience any side effects whatsoever.
The Cost of Laser Hair Removal
After finding out that you will need multiple laser hair removal sessions in order to experience the best results, you are probably wondering how much this will cost you…
Laser hair removal is surprisingly cost-effective, especially at Introlift. Here, you can choose from a few different packages, each one offering six treatments for a discounted rate.
Of course, laser hair removal does cost significantly more than waxing or shaving, which are two of the most common hair removal methods out there.
However, not only can waxing be uncomfortable, but both of those methods are extremely temporary, and will take away so much of your time.
Can Laser Hair Removal Be Carried Out Anywhere on the Body?
Laser hair removal can be carried out on most parts of the body.
The exception would be the skin around the eyes, as well as the eyebrows and eyelids.
Because the chances of severely damaging the eye with the laser beam are too high to risk.
At Introlift, the different parts of the body are divided up into sizes, to give you a better idea of your treatment length and price.
Some examples would be:
- Large areas – the entire leg, the abdomen or the back
- Medium areas – the entire face, the neck, half a leg or the arms
- Small areas – the bikini line, the upper lip, the chin or underneath the arms
Is there anyone who cannot have laser hair removal done?
If you are pregnant or suffer from epilepsy, then you may be better off looking for a different form of hair removal.
A Customizable Treatment
As mentioned earlier, the Introlift Medical Spa makes use of a three-wavelength diode laser.
This means that the wavelength used for you will be adjusted to what suits your skin the best.
There are other parts of your treatment that are customizable too, from the frequency of each session to the aftercare ingredients that you use.
This is something that Introlift encourages, as it means that each and every patient can achieve the best results. Your doctor will suggest different customizable options to you, so that you can both reach a good decision together.
When it comes to effective and permanent methods of hair removal, laser hair removal usually wins hands down. The fact that the three-wavelength diode laser used by the Introlift Medical Spa also offers a completely pain-free experience should be enough incentive to get yourself booked in for your treatments today!