Laser Hair Removal - Massachusetts Laser Clinics
What is laser hair removal? Is it safe?
The laser produces a specific pulsed high-energy beam of light, which passes through the skin to specifically target the hair follicles. Because certain tissues absorb specific energies, the laser does not affect the surrounding tissue. The procedure usually takes between 20 to 60 minutes. You can return to regular activities, immediately following the procedure. We use the laser on just about all areas of the body including the face. It is significantly faster and easier than other methods of hair removal.

What is the physiology of hair growth?
Hair growth consists of recurrent cycles of growth, regression, and resting. The resting hair lies high in the follicle, where it forms an easily shed stubby hair bulb. Growth begins with a burst of activity where the hair bulb cells divide rapidly and keratinize (keratin is the protein of hair) to form a new hair shaft that dislodges the older resting hair. In the adult scalp, 85% of the hairs are in a growth state, 14% in a resting state, and 1% in regression. Considerable variation in timing of the hair cycle occurs from one region of the body to another. The duration of growth determines the length of hairs.

There are two types of hair on the body. Vellus hair (fine, soft, short, and non-pigmented) is commonly found on "non-hairy" areas of the body). Terminal hair (coarse, long, and pigmented) is found on typically hairy areas of the body. Our Gentle laser treats terminal hair in the growth phase.

Why use laser hair removal instead of other treatments?
Traditional hair removal techniques, such as shaving, plucking, waxing, and depilatory creams provide only temporary solutions. Until recently, electrolysis has been the only recognizable way to remove hair permanently. Electrolysis is tedious, time-consuming, and uncomfortable. We treat facial and bikini areas with minimal discomfort in less than 15 minutes; of course, legs, backs, and larger areas take longer.

Is the laser hair treatment permanent?
The treatment provides a substantial permanent reduction in unwanted (terminal) hair. Results are typically excellent; however, everyone is different. Hair color, skin color, and hair thickness are all factors determining the optimal effectiveness.

Who is a candidate for laser hair removal?
During the initial consultation, we determine a patient's skin type and determine realistic expectations. Laser hair removal is slightly less effective for individuals with light blond, red, gray, or silver hair.
How long should the hair be to perform laser hair removal?
It is preferable for the hair to be short, namely one to 2 mm (one to two days of growth) at the time of the procedure. Hair may be clipped or shaved prior to the treatment, but waxing or plucking should be avoided for 2 to 3 weeks prior to the treatment.

Will the laser treatment negatively change my skin?
No. The laser energy goes through the skin and only targets the hair and the hair shaft.

What are possible side effects?
There may be temporary darkening of the skin color, especially in those with darker skin tones and those with tan skin. There may also be lightening of the skin color (hypopigmentation), though this is quite rare. The risk of permanent scarring is very rare.

What areas of the body do we treat?
We treat all areas of the body, including the face, neck, under arms, bikini lines, legs, backs, nose, and ears. We avoid treatment on the eyelids.

How long do laser hair treatments take? How many treatments are necessary?
The number and frequency of treatments depends on the concentration of hair in a given area, the hair color, and the desired results. Typically, there are 4 treatments, spaced 4-6 weeks apart. Multiple treatments are required because hair grows in cycles. The laser disables only the follicles in the growth phase. Treatments last from 15 to 60 minutes depending on the size of the area treated.