Does Laser Hair Removal Work?

Mellori Velasquez

by Mellori Velasquez | August 16, 2010 @ 04:00PM

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                                     Everyone wants to attain clear, ultra-soft skin. From Skintimate and Nair to threading and waxing, there is a lucrative market aimed at both men and women in their pursuit of smooth skin. Yet with the continuously advancing realm of hair removal technology, such as laser hair removal, shaving creams, and jars of wax have become techniques of yesteryear.

Enter Susan L. Evans, M.D. - the Beverly Hills dermatologist who has appeared on Dr. 90210. In practice for over 12 years, she specializes in the art of laser hair removal for men and women.

Yearly, Dr. Evans treats an estimated 1,000 patients for laser hair removal, typically on a bi-weekly basis. She is simply "good at what [she] does," providing patients with consistent results that parallel their cosmetic goals. This procedure is a non-invasive, cosmetic dermatologic procedure that offers patients a more permanent solution to ridding their faces or bodies of unwanted hair.

As you search for a qualified specialist, here is some valuable laser hair removal information to consider: How does the laser hair removal treatment work?

Susan Evans, M.D.: This procedure is different from previous, traditional methods, wherein the laser technology waves "burn" the hair bulbs. In effect, hair growth becomes less probable.

Is laser hair removal permanent?

You have to be cautious when using the term "permanent." There is a degree of permanence, but the hair follicles will always be there, so regrowth may occur in the future, depending on each individual's circumstances, especially in terms of hormonal changes.

Who is a good candidate for laser hair removal?

Laser techniques have advanced to treat various skin types, allowing many people with different skin types to undergo the procedure. However, since the laser targets the hair pigment, a person with light skin and dark hair tends to be the best candidate.

How many laser hair removing treatment sessions are required, and how far should they be spaced apart?

We use the XEO Laser (Cool Glide), which has produced great results for my patients. It treats every skin color and type. Note, it is important that a test area be performed by the physician or technician on a discrete part of the patient's body, like the inner leg or arm, prior to the actual treatment. The treatment generally requires anywhere from four to eight sessions, spaced four to six weeks. Many patients begin to notice a change (i.e. less hair thickness) after the second treatment.

What are the possible risks, complications, and side effects of laser hair removal?

If the laser settings are not correctly set, the treated skin area can burn. Although my laser technician, who has over eight years of experience in the field, I will still instruct her on what kind of settings to use for each patient. After the procedure is performed, the patient may experience some redness up to one hour, depending on the sensitivity level of their skin.

How much does laser hair removal cost?

The procedure will run you about $75 to $300 per treatment, depending on which areas of the body or face area being treated. For instance, the bikini (line) area is $150 per session, whereas full legs will run you $600 for each treatment.


The Results of Laser Hair Removal

According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), multiple benefits are associated with this type of dermatologic treatment; it is "a non-invasive, gentle technique that eliminates undesirable hair from all parts of the body." Notes the ASAPS, this type of dermatologic treatment:

  • Leaves skin looking smoother and silkier
  • Treats larger areas effectively because it removes more than one hair at a time
  • Offers minimal discomfort
  • Replaces waxing, electrolysis and razors
  • Allows for immediate return to normal activities

Do your homework when trying to find a laser hair removal specialist who is right for you!

Attend a few consultations (some practices offer complimentary consultations), ask to see laser hair removal photos performed by that physician, get quotes, and do not be afraid to negotiate. For instance, if you are getting your legs done, ask about including your feet in that package at a discounted price or at no additional price. With your money and image at stake, it is important to be patient and smart when choosing the right doctor. 

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