Hair & Beauty

Laser Hair Removal | The Low Down

By Iro Kotsimbos - 22 Sep 2014


Hands up, who wants smooth skin for summer? Errrmmm, who doesn't is more like it! 

With beach action just around the corner, some serious winter de-fuzzing is on the cards, meaning the market for laser hair removal in Melbourne is booming. Why so, you ask? Well, the beauty of laser hair removal is that it uses concentrated beams of light to target the hair follicle and reduce its likelihood of growing back. Yep, we're talking about long-lasting, hair-free skin for summer...hallelujah!

So, where does one go for laser hair removal in Melbourne? With so many shonky operators out there, it's important to book in at a clinic with highly qualified staff who, put simply, actually know what they're doing and can deliver results. 

It's comes as no surprise, then, that the Victorian Dermal Group is one of the busiest practices in town – the team here are armed with expert knowledge and industry leading technology, making the Kew based clinic the go-to place for non-surgical cosmetic treatments and laser hair removal.

Since we've got de-fuzzing on the brain, we thought it was high time we had a chat with Derya Koch, dermal clinician at the Victorian Dermal Group.

Keen to get the low down on laser hair removal my hirsute friends? Read on. 

So tell us, what exactly does the laser hair removal process involve?

Preparation is key! Prior to your treatment, you'll be asked to trim the hair to a few millimetres above the skin's surface. Once at Victorian Dermal Group, your clinician will adjust the laser equipment to suit the colour, thickness and location of your hair, as well as your skin colour. Afterwards you'll be given ice packs, anti-inflammatory cream or lotions, or cold water, which will help soothe any discomfort. 

Hmmm you mentioned discomfort…is it really painful?!

Laser hair removal has received a bad rap in the past – people seem to think it's really uncomfortable; however with the latest advancements in laser technology, the process is far more comfortable. At Victorian Dermal Group, we use the Candela GentleMAX Pro – this offers a built-in cryogen system, which feels like a burst of cold water.

Why laser over other hair removal methods?

Waxing and shaving are temporary solutions that are time-consuming and in the long term, quite costly. Laser hair removal, on the other hand, is long-lasting and therefore more cost-effective when you break it down.

Laser hair removal is also superior to IPL – there IS a difference! IPL is technically not a laser as it emits a broadband of light frequencies, rather than a single wavelength. Unlike a true laser, these light frequencies are less attracted to the hair follicle, which increases the chances of blistering and skin pigmentation after treatment. Ouch!

Sign me up! How many sessions are involved?

We suggest anywhere between 6 to 8 sessions (at 4 to 8 weekly intervals, depending on the area being treated) in order to achieve a 90% reduction in hair growth. (Huzzah!)

Laser hair removal works best on the hairs that are in their active growth phase, so in order to reduce the amount of hair growth, multiple treatments are required to capture more hair follicles in this phase. The interval between each session is decreased in areas such as the face, which has a shorter hair cycle. In terms of maintenance, we suggest roughly twice a year for the body.

Ahhh summer's around the corner…can I book in for laser hair removal now?

You sure can! Laser treatments can be performed at any time of year, including throughout summer, provided you don't sun bathe and always, ALWAYS, wear sunscreen.

Can anyone book in for laser hair removal? Or is it more suited to specific skin types?

The great news about laser hair removal is that almost anyone can have it done! Whether you're simply after smooth skin for summer, or just want to address medically caused excessive hair growth, laser hair removal is a safe and effective option.

Hooray! I'm booking in now…

Not so fast! While most people are suited to laser hair removal, those who have grey or white hair aren't. The reason? The laser simply can't pick up these hair colours.

How much can I expect to fork over?

It depends on the area being treated, the practitioner performing the treatment, and the technology being used. While it is more expensive than other hair removal methods, laser hair removal is incredibly long-lasting, which makes it much more cost-effective! (And seriously, who has time to always be shaving?!)

Okay, so once my laser session is over, is there anything I should be doing?

Absolutely! Here's a quick hit list…

  • Cleaning – Stick to quick, warm (not hot!!) showers for 24 hours after the treatment as you skin will be a little sensitive. Also take a break from exfoliating for at least 10 days, and keep any makeup to a minimum.
  • Caring for the treated area – Make aloe vera your best friend! Apply daily for at least 7-10 days, then following this period exfoliate no more than twice a week.
  • Exercise – No vigorous exercise for 48 hours after treatment! Chlorine in particular may irritate and heat the skin, so swimming in chlorinated water is best avoided.
  • Sun exposure – Keep this to an absolute minimum and always, ALWAYS, wear an SPF of at least 15+

GENERAL DOs AND DON'Ts

DO…

  • Do shave the treatment area 24-48 hours prior to visiting.
  • Do become a slave to sunscreen, both during and after treatment – the skin is sensitive and the last thing you want it to do is burn!
  • Do hold off on any skin peels or hydroxyl acid / retinol for 4 weeks after treatment. Your skin will need a little time to recover so it's best to stay away from products with a high amount of active ingredients.

DON'T…

  • Don't wax, tweeze or thread hair up to 4 weeks prior to your treatment, as this will reduce the efficacy of the treatment. Shaving and cutting the hair is fine though!
  • Don't apply any makeup, lotions, fake tans, deodorants, perfumes or ointments prior to a laser session – this blocks the pores and interferes with the laser.
  • Don't even think about sunbathing whilst undergoing treatment – that's just asking for trouble!

 

TUL Note: Today's List Love post is proudly sponsored by Victorian Dermal Group and endorsed by The Urban List. Our sponsored posts will never be a secret. Thank you for supporting the sponsors who make The Urban List possible.

Image Credit: Taylor Jewell

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