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Types of Laser Hair Removal 

Laser hair removal most popular technologies, all FDA Approved 

There are many different types of laser hair removal machines currently in the market. Some lasers are painful, and some are not. Certain ones don't work on fair skin, whereas others do. Everyone claims to have the best laser hair removal results with the pain-free process. 

Unwanted hair is a big issue, and it is vital to find the best laser hair removal machine that would give the best and long term results. Meaning, a laser machine that works on all skin types and incorporates the latest technology in hair removal is quick and virtually pain-free.

Here are the most popular Laser Hair Removal solutions :

1. Ruby Laser

The Ruby laser is the original and first system of laser hair removal. This machine is best suited for those with light or fine hair and fair skin. The long-term results of Ruby laser hair removal machines are quite well documented, so you can reasonably envisage a long term loss of hair after treatment.

The Ruby laser machines are quite old fashioned now, so possibly not as efficient as the newer Alexandrite laser hair removal machines. This laser emits a red-colored beam which seeks out the target melanin inside the hair shafts and adjoining hair follicles Ruby laser can't be used on tanned or dark skin and white or light hair.

Compared to the newer laser technologies, the Ruby laser can be more time-consuming because it covers a smaller area of skin at a time.


• light: 694 nm

• Skin Type: Skin type I, Skin type II, Skin type III

• Common Brand Names: Palomar E2000 and RubyStar


2. Alexandrite Laser

It is an FDA-approved laser and most popularly known for hair reduction. Alexandrite is the most effective, comfortable, fastest, and it works for light-to-olive complexion and larger body parts. The Alexandrite laser's main advantages are that it has a shorter wavelength system compared to other types of lasers, and it can treat a larger area of skin faster.

The long-pulse Alexandrite laser has the ability of deep penetration into the dermis. The resultant heat build-up in the hair shafts disables the hair follicles in the active growth phase, which enables it to achieve effective laser hair removal. The risks with this laser are that it may cause temporary pigment changes (darkening or lightening) of the skin and is not suitable for darker skin tones.


• light: 755 nm

• Skin Type: Skin type I, Skin type II, Skin type III

• Common Brand Names: Candela GentleMax Pro, Candela GentleLase, Cynosure Apogee, EpiTouch Plus

3. Nd: YAG Laser 

Nd: YAG is known as a non-ablative laser because it doesn't affect the outermost layer of the skin. The Nd: Yag, laser hair removal machines, can successfully be used on darker skin types with minimal risk. The downside is that, since they are designed to safeguard dark skin from blistering, they are significantly less efficient on fine hair. It is suitable for all skin types depending on the machine settings.

This laser can deliver two different wavelengths of light. One is an invisible infrared light used for deeper penetration. This wavelength is used to get to deeper hair follicles. The other wavelength, a green light, is employed for treating hair follicles closer to the surface. In both cases, a laser emits rapid bursts of laser light to the treatment area, patients have reported these systems to be more painful than others, but promises more extended hair reduction solution.

• light: 1064 nm

• Skin Type: Skin Type V, Skin type VI (Can do lighter skin types as well)

• Common Brand Names: Candela GentleMax Pro, Cutera CoolGlide, Cynosure Elite, Altus Cool Glide, and Candela GentleYAG

4. IPL (Intensive Pulse Light)

IPL is light therapy and not a traditional laser. It is so popular because the IPL machine is cheaper than lasers. The average price of the per session is also about half of laser treatment. However, for specific hair types, you might need about double sessions to get the same results as you would with the laser.

It is not as effective at targeting the more in-depth, thicker hair. IPL is more successful when used to remove fine, thin hairs with shallow roots. Perhaps, IPL is a good option if you have the light skin and only need to reduce the density of hairs. This intense pulsed light uses different wavelengths of light to target and destroy the hair follicle in your skin, thus preventing hair from growing back.

These treatments require very highly sophisticated equipment, and as such, they also need a very well trained and experienced practitioner to operate them. Also, not everyone is the right candidate for IPL hair removal.

Certain hair types are much more challenging to work on, require much more treatments, and at times just cannot be appropriately treated. Most of the time, these problematic hair types are darker haired people who also have darker skin, as the risk of damaging the skin increases as the levels of pigment increase in their skin. Generally, it has higher chances of burning skin, especially for skin type IV, V, VI.

These are all issues to discuss with your practitioner before starting treatment with an IPL machine.


• Light: 590 - 1200 nm

• Skin Type: Skin type I, Skin type II, Skin type III, Skin Type IV

• Common Brand Names: Silk'n Infinity 400,000, Braun Silk-Expert 5 IPL, Iluminage, Venus Versa, Remington iLight Essential

5. Diode Laser

The Diode laser is one of the newest and most commonly used lasers today. It is designed for fair to medium skin tones. Compared to other lasers like the Alexandrite or Ruby, the Diode laser has a longer wavelength of light, reducing the risk of skin damage than lasers with shorter wavelengths. What is more, the Diode laser has a fast repetition rate, meaning it can treat large areas of the body quickly. The diode laser is an extremely proficient machine made up of tiny diodes or semiconductors assembled to produce light.

The diode laser has a longer wavelength than the Alexandrite and Ruby lasers. It thus is able to penetrate deeper into the skin, allowing treatment on dark-skinned people, unlike the other two lasers. The laser is also valid on white-skinned patients. It has a longer wavelength that has the potential to provide better results to dark-skinned people. Patients with black and brown hair are the most benefited.

The Diode laser is probably the best overall laser for all six skin types based on long term use and safety and is especially useful in people with skin types 1 to 4.


• light: 800 nm

• Skin Type: Skin type I, Skin type II, Skin type III, Skin Type IV, Skin type V

• Common Brand Names: LightSheer, SLP 1000, LaserLite, and SopranoXL

6. ELOS™ Technology 

Elos™ Technology hair removal uses a broad spectrum light (IPL) and bi-polar radio frequency energies to damage the hair follicle. This disables the follicle from growing hair, which means that gradually over several treatments, there is a permanent reduction in the amount of hair in that area.

Elos™ is the only technology that simultaneously harnesses the power of both Radio Frequency and IPL.

The Syneron ELOS Systems based laser had USA FDA approved and the only laser which removes white, blonds, redheads, or grey hair also. However, some clinical reports that it is not 100% successful, about 60% of light hair was removed after the course of 8 to 9 treatments.

• light: 680-980 nm

• Skin Type: Skin type I, Skin type II, Skin type III, Skin Type IV, Skin Type V

• Common Brand Names: Elos Plus

Types of Laser Hair Removal : Services
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FAQ

All you need to know

Types of Laser Hair Removal : FAQ

What Is Laser Hair Removal And How Does It Work?

Laser hair removal is a non-invasive method of reducing unwanted hair and has come of age and popular. The work principle is Selective Photothermolysis. The Laser emits a pulse, which travels through the skin and is absorbed by the melanin in the hair, the light skin around it reflects the light. The lasers then heats up the hair's shaft and root, destroying it without affecting the skin or follicle. Then the hair is prevented to regrow any further. Each type of laser machine emit the different wavelengths and they are used for different targets. The melanin is especially effective at absorbing shorter wavelengths, so, the longest light wavelengths are used for treating with very dark skin, the shorter wavelengths are for light skin tones.


There are three different stages in the life of a hair, the Growth Phase (Anagen), the Resting Phase (Catagen) and the Falling-out Phase (Telogen). At any given time, about 85% of your hair is in the Anagen. It worth noting that, the hairs are affected by the laser only during the Anagen. The laser can heat up and destroy the hair because the follicle is closest to the skin and the laser can reach the follicle during the Anagen. The other of hair phases are beyond the stage. The laser light must to be on long enough to heat the hair, but not too long to allow that heat to spread to the surrounding skin causing damage. So, it is more difficult to avoid injuring the surface of the skin while treating the hair for the dark skin.

What Type Of Laser Hair Removal Technology Is Right For You?

There are several types of professional hair removal technology commonly used at clinics now that are Lasers (Alexandrite, Diode, Nd:YAG, Ruby), Electro-optical Synergy (Syneron ELOS) and IPL. However what type is right for you? Refer to the following information find a suitable system to you: 

SKIN TYPE LASER DIRECTORY

Hair Growth Cycle And The Results Of Laser Hair Removal

Hair growth cycles has three distinct growth phases :

1. Active Growth Phase ;  

2. Regressive Phase ;  

3. Resting Phase

Medical research has conclusively shown that hair growth cycles differ on various parts of the body. The laser most effectively disables hair that is in the Active Growth (Anagen) Phase. Below, we take a look at the various hair growth cycle and the effects of laser hair removal treatment.

1. Active Growth Phase (Anagen Phase)

It is the PERFECT stage for laser hair removal treatment and it is the ONLY during this stage that we can permanently disable hair growth. The Anagen phase will lasts for 2-7 years and is genetically determined. At any given time, 85% of our body hair is in this phase.

During Anagen, the hair follicle is directly connected to the blood vessels and the hair has an abundance of melanin. Anagen phase is the best effectiveness of laser treatment because the laser target is just in the melanin of the hair. Laser will cut off the blood supply to hairs and all the hair in the target area will be affected but only the hair follicles in the Anagen phase will be permanently disabled.

Laser hair reduction treatments are done over time because there are not 100% of the hairs in the Anagen phase, but levels approximating 80 to 90% permanent is possible.


2. Regressive Phase (Catagen Phase)
The Catagen phase will lasts about 2-3 weeks, during which the hair stops growing but is not yet shed. The growth process has reversed itself and the hair is getting ready to shed. It is no longer connected to the blood supply and the moisture, water and salt have begun to dry up.

In the phase, the hair is not visible and capable of absorbing the laser light and therefore can not be destroyed. About 3 - 4% of our body hair is in this phase at any given time.

3. Resting Phase (Telogen Phase)

Hair is no longer connected to anything and it is preparing to fall out. For laser treatment the hair shaft is fully detached from the papilla, thus not allowing the laser to attack the melanin in the shaft and disable the papilla. The hair is not visible and capable of absorbing the laser light and therefore cannot be destroyed.

The Telogen phase will lasts 5 - 6 weeks, at the end of which the hair falls out and a new hair begins to form. Approximately 10-13% of our body hair is in this phase at any one time.

How many sessions are needed to see results? Are they permanent?

The number of laser hair removal treatments required depends upon your skin type, hair coloring, coarseness of the hair, depth of the hair follicle and the size of the area that need be treated. IPL need more sessions than laser.

Laser : Need 4-6 Treatments Spaced 6-10 Weeks Apart

Generally, 80-90% of good candidates will need at least 4-6 laser sessions spaced 6-10 weeks apart to experience 70-90% hair reduction. The cycle of hair growth has three phases and laser is killed in the active growing phase. 4 to 6 treatments are needed to target ALL hair in the active growth phase. But some clients may require additional treatments because of skin type, hair coloring and genetic factors.

IPL :Need About Double Sessions Than Laser

For Women:  Facial Hair : 8-12 Sessions ;  Body Hair : 6-10 Sessions
For Men:       Facial Hair : 12-20 Sessions ; Body Hair : 10-15 Sessions

For Hair Color & Skin Color:
3-6 Sessions   :  Dark Hair & Skin Type I,II,III
5-7 Sessions   :  Medium Hair & Skin Type I,II,III
8-10 Sessions :  Light Hair & Skin Type I,II,III
8-10 Sessions :  Medium Hair & Skin Type IV
Light/Grey/Red Hair Is Not Effective With Any IPL

After All Initial Laser & IPL Treatments

Many patients still need the maintenance once or twice a year for image ideal.

8 Things Must To Be Prepared Before Laser Hair Removal

Pre-Procedure 

1. Avoid Sunlight For 4-6 Weeks: 

Lighter skin is more conducive to laser hair reduction treatment, while darker and tanned skin are relatively difficult to work on. Increased melanin in the skin will compete for the laser energy intended for the hair follicle beneath the skin. The hair follicles won't receive enough laser energy to destroy them and it will make the laser less effective. The skin will get enough of lasers to be damaged. It is more susceptible to certain side effects including blistering or discoloration of the skin. Tanning can make the skin more sensitive. You can feel the more pain of laser therapy on your sunburnt skin. Use a sunscreen with SPF 30 or wear a hat before stepping out into the sun.

2. Avoid To Plucking, Waxing, Creams For 4-6 Weeks

These methods can disturb the hair follicle and interfere with laser treatment. The lasers works best by identifying the dark root of the hair in the follicle, differentiating it as a target from the lighter color tissue around the follicle, which allows the follicle to be destroyed and inhibits new hair growth. Waxing or tweezers pulls it out, damaging the hair follicle, but not enough to destroy it. This causes the next hair root in the follicle to grow in to be thinner and lighter and not enough pigment which makes it a poorer target for the laser. So the laser might not be as effective.

3. Avoid To Use Of Exfoliating Creams 2 Weeks

Such as Retinol-A, Alpha-hydroxyl, Glycolic acid, etc. Not only can exfoliation cause severe skin irritation, it can also create clogged pores.

4. Avoid Bleaching Regimen 

Do not do any bleaching regimen during treatments, including any time between treatments as this method will disturb hair growth cycles and will affect the amount of sessions you will need to achieve your final result.

5. Stop Some Medicine At Least 2 Weeks

Such as Antibiotic-regimen, Zovirax, medicine for Cold Sores & Genital Herpes.

6. Avoid To Treatment During Women's Period

This is the time when your skin is the most sensitive to pain.

7. Shaving 24 Hours Before Treatment

Laser hair reduction relies on transmitting energy to the hair follicles to destroy them. If there is hair above the skin, the light energy will be absorbed by the hair and not the follicle and the treatment will not be effective. In addition, it may increase the risk of a burn as the relatively longer hair shaft may burn the surface of the skin as it is heated. Some clinic will help you do it.

8. Avoid Any Creams, Perfumes Or Deodorants On The Day

Such application may contain substances that can refract with the laser, thereby interfering with the effectiveness.

How To Care For The Skin After Laser Hair Removal?
9 Things Must To Be Cared

Post-Care

1. Use Cold Compresses To Soothe The Skin Surface

After laser hair removal treatment, you may have redness or bumps. It is normal and means the laser has found its target and is affecting the hair follicles. The reaction subsides quickly and within a day or so the areas return. You may use a cold compress if needed. You can put ice packs or you can use a hand towel, dipped in cold water, and apply it repeatedly on your skin for 10 to 15 minute intervals. Do this for as long as necessary. Meaning, for as long as you couldn't feel any pain anymore. Normally, it takes 2-3 hours of doing this.

2. Avoid Excessive Scratching

Since your skin is left in an irritated state following a laser hair removal procedure, it is common for it to itch. Avoid excessive scratching or picking at your skin because it will only worsen the redness and swelling.

3. Moisturizer and skin hydration

A much more effective option is to utilize some type of soothing moisturizer (Aloe Vera, Chamomile or Calendula oil base) . This will speed up your skin's recovery time as well as help combat dryness. Makeup may be used sparingly, avoid using liquid based makeup to keep skin clear and fresh. Antibacterial creams are not necessary in most cases, they may cause further drying.

4. Avoid To A Hot Bath / Shower For 24 - 48 Hours

It is best to avoid having a hot bath/shower for 24 - 48 hours as it can cause skin irritation especially if you have sensitive skin. Also avoid swimming in chlorinated water for 48 -72 hours. If you need to shower please make it a cooler shower after a couple of hours and do not use anything abrasive.

5. Avoid Any Exercises For 24 Hours

You should avoid sweating. Do not exercise or do something strenuous. It is because sweating will cause irritation to the treated skin. However, you also need to avoid using deodorant, if the treated skin is on your underarms. Deodorant might irritate your extra sensitive skin.

6. Wear Loose Cotton Clothing

After laser your skin will retain heat in the follicle for a period of about 24 - 48 hrs, it is important that you wear loose cotton clothing after your treatment. This is very important if having your legs treated as wearing nylon tights or tight skinny jeans will cause heat to become trapped in the skin causing irritation.

7. Avoid To Sunlight For 4-6 Weeks

Must not expose skin to sunlight at least for 4 weeks. It is so important that will affect the laser results. The fact that the sun will most like aggravate the area that has been treat by laser is the reason the sun should be avoided. Even a small amount of sun exposure after treatment can cause severe burns and inflammation. So that it will prevent the heal and generate a layer of fresh new cells of the skin. Make sure use a sun block of SPF 30 or more every day to avoid getting a tan.

8. Refrain From Waxing, Twee-zing, Bleaching, Depilatory Creams

Do not do this any time during treatments, including any time between treatments as these methods will disturb hair growth cycles and will affect the amount of sessions you will need to achieve your final result. The only other acceptable regimen is shaving after 24 - 48 hours.


9. Avoid Exfoliation On Treated Area

Avoid having harsh treatments done such as chemical peels, microdermabrasion for at least 10 days. Not all hair follicles will be treated after each laser treatment. But for the ones that are dead, the hair growth will stop and the shaft will be shed without pain over the next few weeks. One week after, you can help the shedding process by gently scrubbing with a washcloth or sponge to help loosen the shaft and root from the pore. It may take 2-3 weeks after treatment for the dead hair to drop from the skin.

Clinical Studies & More

Types of Laser Hair Removal : News

Is Laser Hair Removal Safe ?

4 scientific studies based article 

Laser hair removal is FDA Approved and inherently safe.

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