Frequently Asked Questions about Laser Hair Removal, Electrolysis and Laser Genesis Skin Therapy
How does the Laser remove hair?
Laser hair removal works by sending a beam of laser light to a group of hair follicles with enough power to disable or destroy the root, but not enough power to harm the surrounding skin. This process is called Selective Photothermolysis. It is “selective” because it selectively targets only the hair and not the skin. The Laser beam finds the hair follicles by targeting the substance that gives skin and hair dark color - melanin. Photo means light and thermolysis mean destroying with heat. The light energy passes harmlessly through the skin, but is absorbed by the pigment in the hair follicle and hair shaft. By absorbing this laser energy, the hair follicles are disabled, impairing their ability to grow. The laser is effective on hair follicles in the active growth phase (anagen).
Laser hair removal works by destroying the hair follicle and bulb using intense light - a laser. The pigment (melanin) contained in the hair absorbs the light and is destroyed. This is why blond or red hairs are harder to eliminate, and that nothing can be done about white hairs, since they no longer contain melanin. In such cases, an alternate method such as electrolysis is preferable.
What Laser does QLEHR use?
We use the Cutera Coolglide TM YAG laser. The FDA has approved this laser system for permanent hair reduction. The Cutera CoolGlide™ was designed to be the most outstanding laser hair removal system on the market for all skin types, from light to dark, including tanned patients.
The Cutera Nd:Yag CoolGlide™ laser uses the longest available deeper penetrating 1064 nanometer wavelength. The laser reaches even the deepest hair roots, which can be 4-6 mm below the skin surface, in some cases.
The long 1064 nanometer wavelength of the CoolGlide™ makes it possible to safely and effectively treat all people – even those with tanned to very dark skin color. CoolGlide™ also allows us to adjust the duration of the pulse of laser energy to best suit the thickness and color of the hair shafts on different parts of your body. Some older laser systems lack this degree of fine control.
Is Cutera Coolglide™ Laser safe on darker or tanned skin types?
CoolGlide systems are the best laser hair removal systems on the market for all skin tones, from light to dark, including tanned patients. Their unique design, longer wavelength and innovative cooling design allow extremely effective, safe and permanent results. Because the laser targets pigment, people with dark skin run the risk of the skin around the hair losing pigment. This is much less likely with the Cutera Cool Glide laser system than with other laser systems. Cutera’s YAG laser is a specialized laser used to treat patients with darker skin types, as well as patients that may be tan at the time of treatment. In patient with darker skin types the use of a technology other than the Nd:Yag laser may reduce the effectiveness of the treatment and put patients at higher risks of complications. Patients of the following heritages should ensure that a provider will be using an Nd:Yag laser before undergoing treatment: Indian, Asian, Latin American, East Asian, African American.
Because the laser targets pigment, we prefer taking additional caution by performing a free test spot on some clients and waiting one to two weeks to ensure that there is absolutely no change in the pigmentation of their skin. Our primary concern is to have a safe and effective treatment with 100% certainty and comfort for every single client.
Will laser work for me?
This laser procedure may be used in women and men, teenagers to older patients. There really is no age limit, but we never treat toddlers. Young people that are not finished growing will develop new hair as they grow, and will require touch ups to maintain the results. We currently do not treat children under the age of 13. Any skin type may be treated including those with Asian and African American skin. The hair to be lasered must be pigmented, either brown or black. Because the laser targets pigment, blonde and gray hair are not removed with the Laser. For these clients I recommend electrolysis hair removal.
Am I a good candidate?
People of all skin colors can be treated. Hair which is naturally blonde, white, or light red does not have enough pigment in the roots, and it cannot be reliably treated with any type of laser.
CoolGlide™ laser hair removal is not just for cosmetic problems. Patients with excess hair because of medications, ingrown hair in the beard area and folliculitis under prosthetic devises.
Is laser hair removal safe?
Yes. Lasers were developed from years of research. CoolGlide systems are the best laser hair removal systems on the market for all skin tones, from light to dark, including tanned patients. Their unique design, longer wave length, and innovative cooling design allow extremely effective, safe and permanent results. The surface of the skin is protected by a gold plated cooling head, which glides over the skin (CoolGlide™) half a second before the laser beam. This selectively helps to protect the skin, while effectively treating the unwanted hair.
Are there any side effects with laser?
Side effects are rare, but may include redness, swelling, lip numbness, and or pigment changes. Scars may occur but are extremely rare.
How does laser hair removal differ from electrolysis and is the treatment permanent?
The main difference between this technology and the traditional method known as electrolysis, is that lasers can treat multiple hair follicles at one time, no longer requiring the need to identify and probe each individual hair follicle, as is done with electrolysis. Laser hair removal is relatively new technology. The FDA, however, has recently provided clearance that indicates lasers can achieve a permanent reduction in hair growth based on clinical tests with patients who have hair reduction two years after treatment completion. Most people need an average of 3-5 treatments. Hair grows in cycles and subsequent treatments are necessary to treat the follicles that are lying dormant below the surface of the skin. These dormant follicles contain little pigment and are often not affected by the first treatment. Laser hair removal is the most practical, least painful, most efficient, and probably least expensive professional method available to remove unwanted hair.
Does the laser treatment hurt?
Patients have described the sensation from laser hair removal as discomfort rather than pain; similar to the feeling of a rubber band being snapped against your skin with an awareness of heat. Typically, the treatment tends to hurt less for people with lighter skin tones and finer hair. Most people however, tolerate laser hair removal very well.
Topical anesthetic or icepacks may be used to help numb the skin before treatment. Cutera CoolGlide™ uses a cooling glide/tip to increase comfort during treatment. The laser's cooling system provides an additional anesthetic effect.
QLEHR center offers new clients a free-consultation and will perform spot tests so you can see how laser hair removal feels.
How long is the treatment?
The greatest advantage of laser is speed of treatment in conjunction with long lasting results. Treatment time can vary based on the area. The upper lip takes only a few minutes while the back or legs can take up to an hour. So it is especially great for large areas such as backs, or legs when compared to electrolysis, which is permanent but slow for large areas.
What does the treatment include?
Depending on the amount of hair and area treated, the procedure varies from patient to patient. Generally, the treatment will include: Safety eyewear to protect the patient's eyes during the procedure from the laser light. Most experience little discomfort at the treatment site. The sensation and the degree of discomfort varies with each person. In some cases, topical anesthesia is an option. Your physician will discuss this before laser treatment. Depending on the size or number of areas treated, the time will vary in length from minutes to hours. Patients can return to work or resume their normal activities immediately following treatment. The area may become slightly red and may last from a few minutes to several days depending on the area and skin sensitivity.
What are CoolGlide later treatments like?
As the name implies, the Coolglide cools and soothes the skin as it glides along the treatment area. When the pulse light is delivered, some patients experience a mild, stinging, or pinching sensation. No local anesthesia or pain medication is usually required. Some patients prefer a topical anesthetic when sensitive areas are treated. Because the CoolGlide incorporates a large spot size and a high rate of energy delivery, treatments are extremely fast and effective.
How many treatments does it take?
Most areas require 3-6 treatments, but the number of treatments you may require for optimal long-term benefits depends on various factors such as your hair's thickness, the area treated, and your hair's growth cycle. Interestingly, not all hairs are actively growing at the same time, but actually go through three distinct phases: growth, regression, and resting. Lasers disable hair that is in the active growth phase at the time of treatment. Since other hairs will enter this active growth phase at different times, additional treatments may be necessary to disable all of the hair follicles in a given area. Treatments are usually given at intervals of 4-6 weeks, or when new hair growth is noticed. People with hormonal imbalances or people who have waxed or plucked a lot may need more than average. Some patients with darker skin types may require more treatments.
What happens to the skin after treatment?
Immediately following your treatment, the area may appear a bit red and swollen. One to two weeks after treatment you may experience what seems to be re-growth of hair. Actually, most of these hairs are being shed as a result of your treatment, and are not re-growing. Between treatments you should not wax or pluck your hair, but it is permissible to shave. After two weeks we can “retouch” the area for hairs that have not been shed absolutely free.
What should I do after I am treated?
Following treatment, you can return to your normal activities, and treated areas should be handled with care. Avoid: Retin-A, alphahydroxy acids, glycolic acids, and astringents. You may clean the area using mild soap and water. You should avoid tanning and use a sunscreen on any treated areas exposed to the sun.
How can I begin?
Please contact our office for a free consultation at (718) 507-1921 or email@example.com.
How long has electrolysis permanent hair removal been performed?
The first research using electrolysis for the permanent removal of hair began in 1869 in St. Louis, Missouri. It was conducted by an ophthalmologist, Charles Michel who wanted a safe, effective way to remove ingrown eyelashes which frequently led to blindness. He published his first scientific paper in 1875.
The method was soon adapted by the medical community and then adapted for treatment of excess hair on other parts of the body. From that day until the present, the same basic technique has been used, only greatly improved and modernized.
How does electrolysis work?
A trained electrologist inserts a small metal probe into the hair follicle alongside the hair. A small amount of electric current is then delivered to the probe by a sensitive electronic device called an epilator. Depending on the technique used, the electric current destroys the hair root either by heat or chemical action and in some methods by both at the same time.
Galvanic (direct current): electrolysis-the hair is destroyed by chemical action.
Thermolysis (high frequency): electrolysis-the hair root is destroyed by heat production.
Blend electrolysis: a combination of Galvanic and Thermolysis where the hair root is destroyed by both heat and chemical action at the same time.
Is electrolysis permanent?
Yes. All follicles properly treated will not grow another hair. Electrolysis has been shown to be permanent in over a century of use. Its permanency has been well recognized by knowledgeable physicians and is also testified to by hundreds of scientific articles published in the medical literature. In addition to scientific recognition, there are over one million happy and satisfied people who have solved a very personal and embarrassing problem with the help of electrolysis.
Are the no-needle or electronic tweezing methods of hair removal effective?
From time to time, methods of hair removal have been advertised where the hair is grasped by a tweezer connected to an electric current source. The electric current allegedly travels don the hair shaft to destroy the hair root without any probe or needles. There is no published, reputable scientific data that I am aware of to support the effectiveness of this method of hair removal. It is my impression that the no-needle and electronic tweezing methods are no more effective in permanent hair removal than ordinary tweezing.
Do home-methods of electrolysis work?
Not very well. If the home method is one where the probe is inserted into the hair follicle, it has the potential for working. The problem with home methods is treating yourself which often requires mirrors or having an untrained friend help you.
The technique of electrolysis requires significant training for proper hand-eye coordination and is usually performed using a special light and magnification. Without proper training, adequate lighting and magnification, I feel the home methods, in most cases, will not be worth the effort and expense.
Is electrolysis safe?
Electrolysis has a 120 year history of safety and effectiveness. I am not aware of one case of significant disease being caused or transmitted because of electrolysis.
Modern well-trained electrologists utilize the most up-to-date effective methods of sterilization and follow guidelines set up by a major electrolysis organization in conjunction with the CDC (Center of Disease Control).
Is electrolysis painful?
Whether there is any discomfort during electrolysis is quite variable depending on a patient's tolerance, machine settings, modality used, as well as other factors. During most treatments a definite sensation should be noticed. It has been variously described as a slight Heat, tingling or stinging sensation. Your electrologist is trained to work within the comfort tolerance of his/her patients. Do not hesitate to let him/her know what you are feeling.
Is electrolysis expensive?
Considering the intense physical effort required of the electrologist, as well as the equipment, office space, insurance, etc., the fees charged by electrologist are thought, by most, to be reasonable. When compared to the prices of other health and beauty-care services and the cost of dealing with excessive hair using temporary means, electrolysis in most cases, is very affordable. Remember, the problem is being dealt with permanently and not just on a short term basis.
Are there any side effects caused by electrolysis?
Electrolysis has been performed for over 120 years and has proven to be an extremely safe procedure. Having read most of the medical literature on electrolysis, I am not aware of any serious complications or side effects. Occasionally a slight redness of the skin occurs during or immediately after a treatment, but this will only last a short time. You will be given home care instructions to help your skin return to normal.
What areas of the body can be treated?
Hair can be removed from almost any part of the body. Some common areas for women include the hairline, eyebrows, top of the nose, cheeks, sideburn area, upper and lower lip, chin, throat, neck, shoulders, back, chest, breasts, abdomen, arms, legs, bikini line, hands, feet, toes and fingers. Hairy moles may be treated with written permission from a physician. It is perfectly safe to treat pregnant women, but the breasts and abdomen are avoided after the sixth month of pregnancy.
Men often have hair removed from the hairline, beard line, shoulders, back neck, chest ears and nose. Electrolysis is very helpful for treating ingrown hairs which frequently cause irritation in the beard area.
How long does electrolysis take to achieve permanency?
Electrolysis requires a series of treatments given over a period of time. The length of time varies from person to person and is dependent on many factors. The density and coarseness of the hair, as well as the total area to be treated, are very important. How well you tolerate treatments and the consistency of the treatment affect the overall success. The cause of the unwanted hair and the temporary methods of dealing with the hair in the past are also involved in the treatment time. Many hairs will be permanently removed after the first treatment while some require additional treatment to achieve permanency. Treatment will be more frequent in the beginning and less frequent later on. The overall results- permanent, hair-free skin, are usually well worth the time spent.
Why should I choose electrolysis to solve my unwanted hair problem?
Time is one factor for choosing electrolysis in today's fast-paced world. Dealing with unwanted hair in a temporary way is tedious, costly, and never-ending. Permanent hair removal frees you from this daily routine.
Electrolysis also improves your physical appearance and self-image, lessens anxiety caused by the unwanted hair and helps you feel more attractive and socially acceptable. It is a choice that will enhance your own natural beauty and self-confidence.
Lastly, electrolysis has been proven safe and effective over many years of use and is recognized by physicians and the American Medical Association. You can be confident that permanent hair removal will change your life in a positive and lasting way.
How does Laser Genesis work?
By gently heating the upper dermis well below your skin's surface, Laser Genesis stimulates collagen regrowth. Additional heat is generated in dilated capillaries to reduce redness.
How many treatments will I need?
The treatment results are often subtle. On average, you may require four to six treatments in order to achieve optimal results. Every patient's condition and needs vary.
What are the possible side effects?
Although most patients report few if any side effects, the most common is a slight redness that disappears within a few hours of treatment.
What kind of textural improvements can you expect with Laser Genesis skin therapy?
Over the course of four to five treatments, Laser Genesis can help restore the skin's youthful glow and appearance by smoothing out uneven texture caused by aging, sun damage or scars. You will see a more even, healthy complexion as large pores are reduced in size, and minor imperfections are diminished. The individual treatment results are subtle, but the overall effect of multiple treatments can be quite dramatic.