How many hours of my life have I spent removing my unwanted hair? GOOD LORD, it’s WAY too many! I know it’s like that for most of us and that some of just have more hair than others – so we end up spending a lot more time removing it all. I so feel your pain. It was so liberating for me when I got my goatee removed. It was very lush when I let it grow. I also got rid of a bunch of kitty whiskers, too. And, don’t forget the random black, thick, coarse whiskers on my neck that would pop out randomly
If you’ve got an idea that electrolysis hair removal might be right for you, here are some things you might want to know about the treatment!
What is Electrolysis Hair Removal?
Electrolysis hair removal is a form of removal that is permanent and approved by the FDA. The process involves the use of a microscopic probe (skinnier than your hair) that we insert into your hair follicle and then apply some energy to the probe directly into the hair follicle shaft, destroying the follicle and its ability to regrow or support new hair growth. (We are trying to kill what nourishes the the hair follicle – it’s called the dermal papilla.)
Electrolysis hair removal is the only 100% FDA-approved hair removal treatment on the market. Unlike other treatments that claim to be “permanent” until those little patches of hair start to creep back to the surface…the effects of electrolysis are really, truly permanent. (Laser is hair reduction. Electrolysis is hair removal.)
Also, electrolysis is for ALL hair colors and skin colors!
The reason I put the pic of the calendar on the blogis because we are going to have to put a PLAN together for your hair removal goals. And, if you commit to the PLAN we create together, we will save you money in the end. If things happen and you have to go off of our plan, what may happen is that you may need more appointments in the end.
Am I a Good Fit for the Electrolysis?
When it comes to any cosmetic procedure, there are usually some factors that can determine how thorough the results will be on any given patient. The same is true when it comes to electrolysis.
For electrolysis, contrast between the hair and skin makes little-to-no-difference! No matter how fine or fair, dark or coarse the hair, you’re probably a good candidate for electrolysis hair removal! (Laser works best for people with dark hair on light skin.)
How Long Does it Take?
The length of the procedure itself will vary based on a number of factors, including the amount of hair and area of the body being covered. In general, treatments can last between 15 minutes and 1 hour from start-to-finish.
In terms of the amount of time it takes to begin seeing results from your electrolysis treatments–well, this may not be quite so speedy.
Many patients find that they require several treatments before they’re satisfied with the outcome from their electrolysis treatments. This sometimes means patients receive 20 to 30 treatments to any given area before the treatment has thoroughly taken hold. (Hair grows in stages. So, having a series of appointments let’s me see your hair growth in the various stages.) Some people may not need that many – some may need more. This is just an example.
Since hair grows differently in different areas of the body, electrolysis is often able to work more quickly on certain regions of the body. Electrolysis treatments on the forearms, for instance, may take hold after just 16 weeks of treatments. Hair on the head, however, could take up to 3 years. (Again, these are just examples. Every single plan is unique and will be personalized for your own body and hair.)
In general, completion of most areas of electrolysis treatment can be expected between 6 and 18 months, if the suggested treatment plan is followed. Larger areas of the body full that are very heavy with hair growth can take 18 months to 3 years. Each of you will be completely different.
Does it Hurt?
When it comes to electrolysis, the answer is, MAYBE . 🙂
Many people’s first question before considering any cosmetic procedure is, “Does it hurt?” I think of it more like discomfort, not pain. The machines nowadays are so much faster and so much more efficient – so if your great great Grandma told you it hurts like hell – that’s because it did in the 70s, 80’s, and 90’s.
Similar to most other treatments (and even things like tattoos), the level of discomfort patients experience depends largely on the area being treated and the patient’s overall sensitivity to pain.
Electrolysis treatments are described by some as feeling like a tiny shock every other second. Others report a feeling of heat or tingling across the affected area.
After the procedure, most patients experience some minor redness and burning discomfort on the skin that lasts for a couple of days. Patients can apply creams to soothe this pain, though.
Are there Any Side Effects?
As with anything medical or procedural, there is potential for some side effects following electrolysis hair removal.
There can be some temporary scarring or redness. This scarring should be extremely subtle if it’s present at all. Most of it will go away in 24 hour.
Because of the raw nature of the skin, there’s also a very minor risk of infection–although this really only happens when patients neglect to keep the treated areas clean. Follow your electrologist’s instructions and you’ll be totally fine in this area. DO NOT TOUCH IT for 12 hours after your treatment. I know it’s difficult to not touch it, but remember how much bacteria is on your hands and fingers. STOP! It will heal so much better if you can NOT touch it a bunch.
And, as I mentioned, STICK with our plan we map out at your first appointment.
If we determine you will need 12 appointments over 20 weeks and that each appointment will last about 15 minutes, then sticking to that plan will mean that I will be able to see your growth cycle. I will be able to see your hair when it’s first growing and when it’s in the shedding cycle. (Anagen, Catogen, Telogen in our jargon.) The goal is to “zap” your hairs when they are in the early Anagen stage for the best results and the most permanency.
If you skip a few appointments and do not stick to the plan, we will like have to add on more than the 2 appointments you missed. We may have to add on 3 to 6 appointments – so it ends up costing you more money.
(Every single person’s plan is going to be unique. Just using this 12 appointments over 20 weeks as one example.) Some clients can end up coming for a year to 3 years depending on what they want done and how much unwanted hair they have.