Have you finally decided to take the plunge? Are you ready to give it up? Do you need a more permanent solution? Something that lasts more than a few weeks or days or even, in some cases hours?
I’m talking about getting rid of that stubble on your chin, that shadow above your lip, the fur under your arms and the bush, well, you know where that is! You have tried to shave it off only to do it over and over again. You might have tried to wax it off. Painful, yes, but it lasts a few weeks until the hairs start popping up again. Pesky little things, aren’t they?
There are two solutions that are more permanent. Electrolysis and Laser Hair Removal, but only Electrolysis is allowed to be advertised as permanent hair removal by the Federal Food and Drug Administration. Laser Hair Removal can only be advertised as permanent hair reduction.
During Electrolysis the electologist inserts a wired needle into each hair follicle and initiates a small electric current. An average electrologist can do about 300 follicles in a fifteen minute session. Not all follicles will be affected. Only the follicles which are in the anagen or growth stage will be processed. Researchers say there are about 2500 hair follicles per square inch of skin but only about 100 of them will be showing at any given time either in the Anagen (growth stage,) Catagen (shedding stage,) or in the Telogen (resting stage.) Even if all 100 showing hairs in a square inch are in the anagen stage and all eradicated you can see that there are still at least 2400 more that will probably appear in the future. If the electrologist was able to eradicate all 2500 (active and potential) hairs in one square inch it would take at least eight fifteen minute visits for each square inch of skin area treated!
Electrolysis is a long drawn out, multiple session ordeal . It is somewhat painful and it takes a long time to see the effects. But the FDA does say it is permanent. A fifteen minute session of electrolysis averages anywhere from $30 to $50. At 8 sessions per square inch it can end up being quite expensive.
The other solution is Laser Hair Removal which the FDA says can only be advertised as permanent hair reduction. In this process the operator focuses a concentrated light beam to the skin which targets the melanin in the follicle. The hair must be in the anagen (growth) stage to be effective. Usually a specific target area is selected for laser hair removal and several sessions are required for each specific area. No one, not even your doctor, can predict how many sessions will be required for the hair to no longer appear. The session may only last a few minutes and is less uncomfortable than electrolysis.
Laser Hair Removal is now known as the best long term solution for hair reduction. Until recently it was too costly for many people but the price has come down considerably during the last few years making it one of the most popular cosmetic services available.
Michelle Sternberg, CCE, CME, is a licensed electrologist and laser technician in Aventura and also services clients in Hallandale, North Miami and the North Miami Beach areas of South Florida for over 34 years. She uses an FDA approved Palomar IPL , is the owner/operator of Laser by Michelle, and has removed hair from literally tens of thousands of body parts, including many celebrities. She relates many of her zany and bizarre experiences in her blog: http://michelle-starr.blogspot.com