All you wanted to know about laser and IPL hair removal and more.....
Unwanted hair is a problem common to many men and women and can be a cause of embarrassment and a lack of confidence. Conventional ways of dealing with this problem such as shaving, waxing and depilatory creams provide only short term solutions and are time consuming and costly
How does it work? IPLT:
Intense Pulse Light Technology
IPLT hair removal treatments work as the IPLT energy is adsorbed by the melanin (colour) in the hair. This heats the hair which destroys both it and, if the hair is in the right stage of growth, the germinative cells of the hair follicle. The destruction of the hair follicle will mean that it will not grow any new hair.
The Hair Growth Cycle
Every hair has its own individual growth cycle so they are all at varying stages of growth. Hair grows in three stages; anagen (active growth), catagen (shedding) and telogen (resting). The laser will only work on hair that is in the anagen stage.
In this stage, whilst the hair is still actively growing, there is a great deal of activity. The cells of the hair matrix are dividing rapidly and are in intimate contact with the follicle and its blood supply. Laser treatment can thus destroy both the hair and the germinative cells in the follicle.
In the catagen stage (changing stage) active growth slows and stops. The hair moves away from the base of the follicle which in turn loses its blood supply. On IPLT treatment most of the hair is destroyed but the germinative cells in the follicle remain largely intact because they are not in contact with the hair itself. The follicle can redevelop to form new hair. Part of the hair shaft can remain in the follicle after treatment but, because it is damaged, it will fall out over a period of up to 21 days or more after treatment. This can give the appearance of treated hair growing, whereas it is only the old follicle pushing the damaged shaft clear of the skin.
In the final telogen stage the hairs may be quite long and are completely detached from the germinative cells and blood supply. They will eventually be shed from the body. At this stage the hair removal treatment is ineffective, although the hair present in this stage will normally be destroyed. The follicle then redevelops to form a new hair thus starting the cycle again. Some follicles however can, having shed their hair, remain dormant for a considerable time, sometimes months or even years. When they eventually return to the growth cycle they too, can give the impression of hair growing from a previously treated area. The nature of this growth cycle explains why several treatments are necessary so as to catch the unaffected follicles as they produce new hair in the next anagen stage of growth. A noticeable reduction in hair density of new hair should be visible after three or four treatments but no guarantee can be given to how many treatments will be needed or if full clearance can be obtained.
Laser & IPLT:
(Intense Pulsed Light Technology) machines. All laser and intense pulsed light hair removal treatments work on the basis of what is called selective photothermolysis. This means that they rely on the hair heating up more quickly than the surrounding skin and blood. This is important otherwise the skin will be damaged and can cause blistering, scarring and pigmentation changes. Lasers emit light that is all of the same wave length. Intense pulsed light machines use light that covers a wide wavelength range.
IPL hair removal has been used on thousands of patients with excellent long term results. IPL treatment is very effective and long term hair reduction can be achieved after multiple treatments. It is necessary to return for treatment at intervals of four to six weeks, depending on the area treated. This ensures that hairs are more likely to be treated in the anagen stage resulting in improved results. We are unable to guarantee results but will give you realistic ideas on what to expect.
Consultation and Test Patch:
A consultation is essential to evaluate your needs, expectations and eligibility for treatment. The therapist will provide you with all the information you require so that you can make an informed decision on whether or not to undergo treatment. Your hair and skin type will be assessed in order to prescribe the treatment and rule out any contra-indications. The possible side effects of any medication you are taking will be assessed. You will be advised on a realistic expectation from the treatment and the required interval between treatments. You will be asked to sign a consent form to signify your agreement to the treatment. If you decide to proceed and are found suitable, a test patch will be carried out. This is to determine the required energy level for effective treatment on your hair. The test patch will give some indication of how the treatment will feel. If any adverse effects were to develop on the test patch area, the treatment plan would have to be reassessed. Adverse effects however are possible at any stage of the treatment. We will always aim to give you the best treatment. Your after care is very important. Especially sunscreen.