Laser hair removal has become very popular among women, and men alike. Replacing constant shaving, waxing and other depilatory treatments, laser hair removal allows for permanent hair removal after 8-10 sessions relinquishing the need to ever shave again. But since the treatment targets hair follicles themselves, the stage of the hair growth cycle is important.
To give you a brief understanding of what stages of the hair growth cycle there are, we will provide a short description of each stage below.
- Anagen stage
This is the stage where new hair is beginning to grow. Just visible above the skin’s surface, these hairs can be seen popping out replacing the previous hair that was lodged there. This active phase lasts from 30-45 days, and since the laser treatment targets attached hair in the follicle, appointments are scheduled 10 weeks apart ensuring targeted intact hairs are removed.
- Catagen stage
This is the inactive phase in the hair growth cycle. In this phase, the hair stops growing and sheds. Laser treatment is ineffective in this stage. Luckily, the stage only lasts 2 days.
- Telogen stage
This is the dormant stage. In this stage, the hair follicle remains empty and the growth of a new hair does not occur for days to years. If laser treatment is done on such a hair follicle it is rendered useless. Hair growth can occur years after treatment if, unfortunately, dormant hair follicles were targeted.
What can I do to maximize the results of laser hair removal?
- Shave a few hours or the night before your laser appointment. This will cut down long hairs from the skin surface allowing better penetration of the laser to hair follicles.
- Do not moisturize after shaving or before your appointment. This can affect the results of your laser treatment.
- Do not wax, use depilatory treatments, pluck or perform threading on hair before your appointment. The root of the hair must be intact in the follicle for laser hair removal treatment to be effective.
After your session.
You might experience some sensitivity in the area that was treated for several hours after your session or even the next day. Avoid shaving so as to not cause further irritation. Exfoliating the skin after your appointment should be avoided for about a week as skin tissue is in its recovery phase.
After treatment, the targeted hairs will shed. Permanent hair removal is achieved by 8-10 sessions, each session is approximately 10 weeks apart. The number of sessions needed varying depending on the amount of hair, hair growth capability of the patient, skin tone, type of hair, etc.