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What You Should Know Before Trying Home Laser Hair Removal

Woman trying IPL laser hair removal at home.

Laser hair removal is considered the holy grail treatment option if you want to get rid of unwanted hair for good. Some people may be tempted to try DIY hair removal methods at home. New products promise the benefits of traditional laser hair removal without the inconvenience and price tag of professional sessions.

While these methods may seem easier and more cost-effective, professional laser hair removal is still the better option for a number of reasons.

How Laser Hair Removal Basics

First, let’s talk about how laser hair removal works (this will be important later). Laser hair removal involves using a concentrated, specific wavelength of light energy to target the hair follicle. The energy is absorbed into the pigments in the hair, which then heats up and destroys the follicle. This prevents the hair from growing back, resulting in long-term hair reduction or removal.

Professional Hair Removal

Professional laser hair removal utilizes state-of-the-art technology and equipment operated by highly trained and experienced technicians. Lasers are able to target individual hair follicles without damaging the surrounding skin, which can be especially important for individuals with darker skin tones. Additionally, professional laser hair removal equipment is strong and effective, which means that it is able to achieve longer-lasting results compared to DIY methods.

DIY Laser Hair Removal

Recently, at-home laser devices that fit in the palm of your hand have become easy to order from various online sources. When your package arrives, you may be excited to permanently remove unwanted hair. But make sure to educate yourself about the real ins and outs of at-home laser hair removal before getting started.

At-Home Devices are Less Effective

As we mentioned, the light energy output of at-home devices is far less powerful than professional equipment. While they do damage the follicle and inhibit hair growth, they are simply not as intense and, therefore, not as effective. This means less hair is inhibited from growing. Furthermore, results are typically not permanent, and after stopping treatment, hair typically grows back.

They Only Work for Certain Skin Tones

Because lasers target pigments, many treatments rely on the contrast of dark hair on light skin to be effective. This is true for early professional equipment and at-home options. More modern professional lasers, however, can be effective for those patients with a wider range of skin tones.

Are They Really More Convenient?

It is true that professional laser hair removal requires several sessions spaced apart for maximum results. However, each session is short because the laser is efficient and powerful. Furthermore, after the final session, there is a good chance that treated hair will be gone forever.

With DIY devices, many recommend weekly or bi-weekly treatments for several months, then regular “maintenance” treatments thereafter. All of this means that you may require many more uses of your DIY device yet not experience the results you hope for.

Safety is a Concern

Finally, professional laser hair removal may be safer than DIY methods. Not all at-home systems are cleared by the FDA. Moreover, laser hair removal should only be performed by a licensed professional who has received specialized training in the procedure. This ensures that the treatment is safe as well as effective, which reduces the risk of complications or injury.

Do You Want Real, Permanent Hair Removal?

DIY hair removal methods may seem convenient and cost-effective, but professional laser hair removal is still the better option for most patients. It offers more precise and longer-lasting results, can be tailored to each individual’s specific needs, and is generally much safer than DIY methods.

If you are considering laser hair removal, do your research and find an experienced professional with the necessary training and equipment, so you get real, lasting results.

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