Laser Treatment For Hair Removal – Here’s How it Works!

Laser treatment for hair removal has been around for almost 25 years now but it became a regular commercial practice only in the mid 1990s. The process, medically referred to as Epilation, makes use of IPL (Intense Pulse Light) epilators that emit full spectrum light. The process of removing hair through the use of laser is called photoepilation, commonly referred to as laser hair removal. This process is well accepted in the community of dermatology and is widely practiced all over the world.

The Mechanism

The laser is targeted locally to the required areas which heats up melanin, a substance that causes hair growth, without heating or affecting the skin. Most hair removal lasers that are available in the market primarily target melanin only. Melanin is a naturally occurring substance in the skin and gives it, and the hair, its colour.

Melanin is of two kinds, eumelanin, which is responsible for brown as well as black hair colour and pheomelanin which is responsible for blond and red hair colour. Owing to selective photon absorption, lasers of today are capable of removing brown and black hair only.

The Scope

Laser treatment for hair removal is preferred by both men and women over most other removal methods. Why? Firstly, it’s convenient and secondly, the results are long-term. It’s been extensively use for hair removal from chin, toes, arms, legs, chest, cleavage, neck, face, thighs, bikini lines, pubic area, buttocks, abdomen, underarm, back, shoulders, ear lobes as well as lips.


For long term hair reduction, a person may need anywhere between 5 to 7 treatments, sometimes up to 12, depending upon the skin colour as well as the type of hair. In most cases, a series of 5 to 6 treatments spaced around 4 to 6 weeks apart would suffice.

As we’ve already mentioned, the process of laser removal does not work on fine vellus hair as well as light coloured hair and isn’t permanent. For permanent hair removal, you may want to go in for the procedure of electrolysis, though it comes with its own set of shortcomings such as discomfort and a possibility of scarring, not to mention, the expense!


There are a number of risks involved with the process of laser hair removal but most of them are minor. The expertise of the personnel involved in the process matters a lot and will help in averting most of them. Some of them involve:

  • Burning of the skin

  • Skin discolouration

  • Hypo-pigmentation, i.e. formation of white spots on the treated area

  • Acne

  • Swelling.

If you are thinking of getting hair removal, you need to get in touch with a dermatologist to discuss all the options available today. Make an informed decision!

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Written by Mpitude

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