How does the laser treatment work?
An alexandrite laser, a Candela GentleMax, emits a beam of light that passes through the skin and is absorbed by the hair follicle. There the light is transformed into heat to destroy the hair. Clients with fair skin and dark hair will see the best results with this treatment. A series of 4 – 6 treatments is necessary to achieve the 80 – 90% permanent reduction in hair growth.
Is this a painful process?
Some patients may feel a slight discomfort often described like the snapping of a rubber band on the skin. This feeling does not last long and is minimized by cool air on the skin during the treatment. For some areas, a topical anesthetic may be used.
After the treatment, a cool compress or product administered by the laser hair technician may be applied. Any redness or swelling should lessen within a few hours.
Treatment preparation and side effects
Patients scheduled for hair reduction should avoid plucking, hair waxing, and bleaching for six weeks prior to treatment. Skin should be clean shaven, cleansed and dried, and free of makeup, creams, oils, topical anesthetics or self-tanning products. The treatment area should not be exposed to sunlight or tanning booths prior to or immediately after a laser hair service. In the days following a treatment, it is important to apply a sunblock (SPF 30 or higher).
Side effects are minimal but may include redness, swelling, pigmentation changes, or blistering in the treated areas. These side effects typically do not last more than a few days. Be sure to discuss your concerns during your initial consultation and when treatments are administered.
All the laser hair technicians at the Center for Cosmetic Dermatology are trained and certified through Candela Corporation. Additionally, our technicians have medical experience from their previous positions and are supervised by our medical director.