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Hair Remove Basics

Finding the facts on hair removal can be a pain, especially because every shop will claim that their method is the best... and so on. Hair removal is a lengthy and expensive process, this guide seeks to help you make better understand your choices to minimize the amount of time and money this process will consume.


Most (all?) health care insurance providers consider hair removal a `cosmetic' procedure and will not cover it. If anyone has experienced something different please update this section.


Depending if you are seeking laser or electrolysis there are a few things one needs to know about hair removal in general. They are as follows:

Do not pluck!

Do not tweezes or pluck hair you would like to have removed. Doing this causes the follicle to `warp' and may cause those to require more treatments. Your electrologist or laser operator should tell you this on your first visit.

Numbing the pain

The pain from laser and electrolysis varies from person to person. Electrolysis in general is more painful than laser (in the authors humble opinion). However at the same time, I personally have fallen asleep during electrolysis sessions.

You can numb the pain with a topical anesthetic. The most common and effective over the counter topical anesthetic is Lidocane. Lidocane varies from 3%->5% over the counter. We recommend the strongest (5%). Apply the Lidocane about 45 minutes before your laser or electrolysis appointment. It is recommended you cover the area you are getting worked on to prevent evaporation. Another tactic is to simply frequently reapply Lidocane any time the area starts to dry out (about two or three times over 45mins), this however wastes Lidocane. It is important you tell your operator you applied Lidocane before your sessions starts, so they can wipe away any residuals that could interfere with the hair removal process.

Over the counter pain medications such as tylenol or ibuprofen work great. It is important not to use aspirin or anything that could thin your blood as this could lead to scaring. Ibuprofen has the added benefit of reducing any swelling after treatment.

Laser or Electro?!

This answer is different for everyone. The fact of the matter is, electrolysis is a slow processes but has a very high kill rate on all skin types with both light and dark hairs. Laser is much faster, but only works best on people with light/pale skin and and dark hair. Some laser shops have special machines that are more effective on darker skin with dark hair, ask your laser technician if this is a possibility for you. Laser is not effective on light hair, with any skin type.

In general, the cheapest and most effective way to remove your hair is to start with laser for theure -> six sessions (depending on your budget and results), and then have the rest removed with electrolysis. This will only really work if you have dark hair. If you have lighter/clearish hair, electrolysis alone may be the best option for you.



The most important preparation to make for laser hair removal is to use sunblock (SPF 30 or higher) on any exposed area you want to have treated. It is very important you remember to do this! You should start a month before your first treatment, and continue this routine of applying sunblock every morning for at least a month after your last treatment. Ask your technician for more details.



Please see the common **Preparing** section above. There are no electrolysis specific items.


More research is required.

Metadata -- keep at end of page Summary: The basics of permanent hair removal


Categories: PersonalCare

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Page last modified on April 03, 2016, at 02:26 AM