Updated on January 20th, 2024
Laser hair removal is a medical procedure used to eliminate unwanted hair. This method operates by sending energy at specific wavelengths to melanin (hair pigment) using laser light. Melanin absorbs this energy and converts it into heat. This heat damages the hair root, preventing the hair from growing back.
The rays of laser hair removal devices can reach up to 5 mm below the skin, where hair follicles are located, ensuring no internal organs are harmed.
In laser hair removal, the hair follicles are not exposed to rays, but to amplified ultraviolet light. The light of laser hair removal is absorbed only by the melanin pigment, without traveling through the skin.
The laser hair removal light absorbed by the melanin pigment creates a certain destruction in the hair follicles and terminates hair production. In laser hair removal, which does not cause any damage to the skin, only the hair follicles in the active period are affected.
The main reason why the procedure consists of at least 8 sessions is to destroy active hair follicles in each session. Because not every root enters the active period in the same period.
Here are the effects of laser hair removal on hair follicles:
Hair removal devices are classified according to the systems they contain and their wavelengths. Therefore, when selecting a laser device, the laser system is essentially being chosen. Each device has a different laser system.
To get efficient results from the procedure, it is crucial to choose the right laser hair removal device. If the wavelength of the device isn’t effective on the hair root, it’s impossible to get positive results.
Wavelength: 755 nanometers. Suitable for individuals with fair skin and dark, thick hair. In Alexandrite laser technology, laser lights convert into heat, which is absorbed by melanin. This absorbed heat damages the hair roots, permanently ending hair production. It’s not recommended for people with thin hairs as it can sometimes increase hair growth and thicken the hair.
Contains a wavelength of 800-810 nanometers. Due to its longer wavelength, it can penetrate the skin deeper compared to other laser technologies. The pain felt during the procedure can be slightly higher, so a cooling gel is often applied. Suitable for individuals with dark skin and thin, light-colored hairs.
Can be applied in all seasons and is painless. It is a method applied regardless of hair color. During the procedure, a cold massage effect is felt. This method is highly preferred because it can be applied year-round and can even detect the thinnest hairs.
Wavelength: 1064 nanometers. Effective for different skin types, but most efficient on fair skin with dark and thick hair.
The efficacy of laser hair removal devices can vary depending on your skin type, hair color, hair thickness, and the type of laser used. To achieve optimal results, it’s essential to visit an experienced and trained professional who will use a laser suitable for your skin and hair type.
IPL is not a laser. However, it operates similarly to laser hair removal and is often marketed under the term “laser hair removal.”
Effective for individuals with fair skin and fine hairs. Generally not recommended for dark-skinned individuals as it can cause pigmentation changes.
To achieve the best results from laser hair removal, there are some ideal criteria:
The procedure, which is applied with the principle of destroying the hair follicles and preventing the formation of new hair, is an application that makes our lives significantly easier. We can list the advantages of the procedure as follows;
The success of laser hair removal depends on several factors. These include hair structure and color, skin and hair color combination, choice of device suitable for these parameters, and the treatment area.
Some argue that gender can also affect the outcome, but when the right device is chosen based on individual characteristics, gender doesn’t have a significant impact.
The decisive factor in laser hair removal is which device system is used. The device suitable for your skin color and hair structure is chosen. If the device is an Alexandrite laser; the area is treated shot by shot. For Diode laser hair removal; cooling gel is applied, and the device head is glided over the skin at a steady speed. Ice laser hair removal involves gliding a lop over the skin with gel applied.
Since laser systems destroy the hair root, you shouldn’t use hair removal methods that remove hair from the root, like waxing or tweezers, for 4 weeks before treatment. Avoid hair bleaching products. You can shave 2-3 days before or use a home epilator’s trimming head. If using the Alexandrite system, your skin shouldn’t be tanned.
For other systems, the wait time is shorter. (Click here for more information on the best time for laser hair removal). If you’ve had skin-peeling treatments on the face, you should wait at least 2 weeks before facial laser hair removal. Don’t apply any creams or cosmetic products before sessions. If necessary, remove before the session. Avoid wearing makeup before facial sessions. If worn, clean thoroughly before starting.
Protect your skin from the sun during the laser treatment period. Avoid hair removal methods that remove hair from the root between sessions. You can shower with lukewarm or cold water at least 8 hours after the procedure.
Stay away from aggressive and chemical skin treatments between sessions. Avoid skin-irritating activities like visiting hammams, saunas, and scrubbing for at least 4 days after the procedure. Use moisturizing creams as recommended by your specialist. Avoid using drying white soaps to maintain skin moisture.
Cheeks, chin, upper lip, neck, chest, underarms, arms, abdomen, back, waist, legs, torso, bikini area, and hands can all undergo laser hair removal. In short, the procedure can be performed on all body parts except the eye sockets, eyelids, and mucous membranes.
It can be applied to everyone over 18, provided they don’t have any conditions that might contraindicate laser treatment.
For facial areas, laser hair removal typically requires 6-12 sessions with intervals of 25-30 days. For body areas, sessions vary between 4-6 times, every 8 weeks. As hair follicle activation decreases, session intervals can vary and become longer. Hair density reduces by 10% to 15% with each laser session. For successful results, it’s important not to skip any sessions.
Initially, for body parts, session intervals average between 6-8 weeks, and for the face, it’s around 4-6 weeks. These durations can increase with subsequent sessions. The best time for the next session is when the hair has grown visible again. Visible hair indicates active roots that can be affected by the treatment.
The problem of hair density and darkening in hair color, which is experienced in parallel with the increase in melanin pigment caused by hormonal changes, passes when hormones return to normal after the end of pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Since the lights used in laser hair removal do not make any progress in the tissue, there is no evidence or case that it harms the baby during pregnancy. However, since pregnancy causes various hormonal changes, it is better not to have laser hair removal and other dermotocosmetic applications during pregnancy.
Another epilation method, electrolysis (needle epilation), which is applied by applying electric current to the hair follicle with needles, is not a recommended application for expectant mothers during pregnancy. Although the electrolysis application performed on the chest and abdomen in the last 3 months of pregnancy is not harmful for the baby, it is not recommended especially for expectant mothers who want to breastfeed due to excessive skin sensitivity.
Breastfeeding is a process that cannot be separated from pregnancy. The pain threshold is lower and the skin is more sensitive during breastfeeding, when the mother continues her hormonal changes due to milk production. Breastfeeding mothers may experience an increase in melanin pigment due to hormonal changes, which may reduce the effect of laser epilation.
Laser hair removal is just one of the methods to get rid of unwanted hair. Here are popular alternatives to laser hair removal:
Men can be as bothered by unwanted hair as women. In recent years, the number of male clients requesting laser hair removal has notably increased. Men’s hair generally has a darker color, and their hair roots and thickness are more prominent. With the right device selection, very successful results can be achieved for men. Laser hair removal can safely be applied to all areas in men, except for eyelids, eye sockets, and mucosal areas.
The prices for laser hair removal vary based on the treatment area, the recommended number of sessions, and the type of device used. To inquire about laser hair removal prices and any other details, you can contact us, and our experts will provide comprehensive information.