Laser hair removal has become an increasingly popular method of removing unwanted hair among both men and women. However, there are several misconceptions surrounding laser hair removal, despite the many tangible benefits that it offers. To help clear up doubts and set the record straight, we debunk some of the most common myths about laser hair removal.
Learn More: What Is Laser Hair Removal?
Myth 1: Laser hair removal is painful
It is a common, yet understandable, misconception that undergoing laser hair removal is a painful process. While some discomfort may be experienced, the procedure is generally very tolerable. Most patients describe the sensation as mild stinging, similar to a rubber band snapping against the skin.
Some areas of the body may be more sensitive than others, but any discomfort is usually momentary. If patients do feel pain, they can inform the dermatologist who can then adjust accordingly. Modern laser hair removal machines are also equipped with cooling mechanisms that reduce discomfort for an overall better experience.
Myth 2: Laser hair removal leads to long-term damage
Another common myth about laser treatment for hair removal, has to do with the idea that it is damaging for your skin in the long term. When properly done, laser hair removal targets the pigment in the hair follicle, while the surrounding skin remains relatively unharmed. A greater contrast between body hair colour and skin colour leads to the best results.
In some cases, laser hair removal can cause redness, itching, pigment changes or swelling. These side effects are usually temporary. In extremely rare cases, scarring may occur. However, this is usually due to poor technique or incorrect use of the laser. If you are planning to go for laser hair removal, you should not have to worry about any long-term damage, but speak to your skin dermatologist if you have any doubts.
Myth 3: Laser hair treatments lead to more hair growth
Some people may believe that laser hair treatments can actually lead to more hair growth. This is due to misunderstandings about how the procedure works. Laser hair removal works by damaging hair follicles, which reduces their ability to grow new hair. In some cases, it might be years before any hair regrowth is seen, although this is dependent on several factors.
A caveat is that hair follicles can recover from the heat treatment received during laser hair removal. A single laser hair removal session also may not be able to damage sufficient hair follicles, and there might be a few stray hairs that regrow in a few months. In any case, no matter how resistant your hair follicles might be to the treatment, laser hair treatments are unlikely to lead to an overall increase in hair growth as compared to before the procedure.
Myth 4: Laser hair treatments are permanent
Laser hair removal is not permanent, although it is usually highly effective. Ideally, you should need a few sessions to ensure that all the hair follicles have been targeted in the chosen areas to achieve the desired results.
Factors that influence the number of laser hair removal sessions required include thickness of the hair, size of the treatment area, and the contrast between patient skin and hair colour. Hormonal fluctuations and prescription medication also influence hair regrowth and can affect how soon you will need to go for follow-up sessions. Generally the results from laser hair removal can last for years, with many patients experiencing significant hair growth reduction.
Learn More: FAQs On Laser Hair Removal
Laser hair removal is well-researched, safe, and effective, but misconceptions about this cosmetic treatment abound. Before deciding if it is right for you, learn more about the procedure and consult a qualified practitioner who has at least a few years of experience performing laser hair removal. While it is not permanent and can be uncomfortable, laser hair removal can significantly reduce hair growth and regrowth thickness, making it a valuable investment for many patients.
At Thomson Specialist Skin Centre, we provide evidence-based, scientifically-proven medical services for all our patients. Reach out to us today via our contact us page if you have any questions or want to schedule an appointment at our clinic.