The Pros and Cons of Laser Hair Removal

With over 2.79 million recipients in 2017 alone, laser hair removal is one of the most commonly-performed cosmetic treatments in the country.

Considering the hassle and amount of time many of us spend shaving, tweezing, and waxing, its popularity isn’t surprising!

Laser hair removal can be performed on virtually any part of the body, including the legs, back, face, and arms. The procedure works through a device designed to blast highly-concentrated quantities of light into hair follicles, which the skin’s pigments absorb. This process destroys the follicle and makes it unable to sustain further growth.

Laser hair removal is a generally low-risk procedure that provides patients with long-term relief from annoying hair removal routines.

There are several things you should know before deciding whether or not laser hair removal is a good choice for you and your body–read on for more about the process, its benefits, and downsides!

The Benefits

1. It’s Quick

One of the first and most appealing aspects of laser hair removal that comes to most peoples’ mind is how much time the procedure can save longterm.

There’s no way around it: shaving, waxing, and tweezing are time-consuming and annoying.

Depending on the total area being treated, however, a laser hair removal treatment can be completed in a matter of seconds. Larger areas such as the legs might take closer to an hour–but the procedure is still relatively quick, and its results last far longer than your everyday shaving routine’s.

2. It’s Super-Precise

Ever manage to miss that same spot on the edge of your knee every time you shave?

Hand-in-hand with its timeliness is the precision laser hair removal treatments can offer its patients. Laser hair removal targets all the hair present on an area of skin and gets rid of it all at the same time, so you can never miss that one finicky spot.

This fact is especially helpful for patients looking to have treatments performed around the mouth or eyebrows; no chance for razor-slips or over-waxing!

3. There are More Painful Things

Shaving is painless, but tweezing and waxing can be especially irritating to anybody’s skin, no matter how often or where on the body it’s done. The sensation of laser hair removal, on the other hand, can be described as only mildly uncomfortable.

Most technicians take care to treat the targeted area with ice before and after treatments for numbing and soothing purposes and recommend that patients apply moisturizing cream and ice as necessary after the fact.

As treatments continue, they become progressively less uncomfortable, since the remaining hair grows finer. That’s a big upper-hand over the consistent pain of tweezing, waxing, and electrolysis!

4. You Can Forget About It

Well, not until after your treatments!

Although laser hair removal isn’t technically approved, like electrolysis, as a permanent hair removal solution, the procedure is super effective in cutting down on the presence of hair over a significant length of time.

Most patients find that, after between three and seven treatments, they’ve experienced a drastic reduction in overall hair growth and are able to forget about shaving altogether.

The Downsides

1. Fairness Matters

You learned that on the playground, right? Well, in hair removal, too, fairness matters.

Since laser hair removal works by way of the contrast between a patient’s skin and the color of the hair being targeted, the procedure works better in patients with paler skin and darker hair.

Laser hair removal can sometimes work fine in patients with dark skin, although it often requires more treatments and more precise equipment to get the job done. Treatment facilities with lasers will be more likely to provide successful treatments to darker-skinned individuals.

For more about laser hair removal treatment for darker-skinned or fairer-haired individuals, you should look into skilled and highly-equipped clinics with top-of-the-line equipment, like Albany Laser and Cosmetic Center.

2. Recovery Can be Prickly

In severe cases, individuals might walk away from laser hair removal treatments with painful blisters and scarring, although permanent damage is rare.

For most patients, the aftermath of laser hair removal treatments will probably look and feel something like a sunburn. Some people can experience uncomfortable swelling, as well, although this all usually goes away in a day or two.

To protect treated areas on the face and neck, patients are typically advised to wear makeup and sunblock on the affected areas, in addition to protective coverings like hats and clothing, as the skin is far more prone to damage from the sun in the days following laser hair removal treatments.

Despite the overall hassle and discomfort to the affected area, most patients won’t notice hair loss until about a month following the procedure.

3. It Doesn’t Come Cheap

Exact costs of treatment vary depending on the size of the area being treated, as well as where in the country and by whom (a doctor or other technician) the treatment is performed.

Regardless, perhaps the biggest downside of laser hair removal is the average cost–according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, laser hair removal costs around $429 per session.

Bills for a single laser hair removal treatment usually fall between $150 to $500. Multiply that by the three-to-seven treatments you’ll likely need, and it really adds up! Since most insurance companies won’t cover an elective procedure such as laser hair removal, covering this cost is totally up to the patient.

So–Is Laser Hair Removal Right for You?

Despite the negative aspects associated with laser hair removal, the procedure’s benefits remain, and you’re certainly not alone if you still feel like the treatment is worth it!

The fact of the matter is, laser hair removal is far less painful than options like waxing and electrolysis, and, once the treatment really takes hold, it can save patients a ton of time in the long run.

If you’re considering laser hair removal treatments, you’ll want to be sure to do plenty of research into facilities and physicians to ensure you’ll get the best possible treatment that’s well-worth your money.

For more about laser hair removal and other skin care therapies, check out our website!