How Long Does Laser Hair Removal Last?

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Ladies, are you tired of shaving your legs and underarms every day? Are you self-conscious about the hair on your upper lip? And guys, do you wish you had a better hair removal option for your chest and back? Maybe it’s time to try laser hair removal, the most common cosmetic procedure in the country.

When a laser is aimed at unwanted hair, heat travels through the shaft and damages the follicle down to the root. This process doesn’t damage your skin because the laser targets the pigment in the hair follicle, leaving the surrounding skin unharmed.

As you consider investing in laser hair removal, you probably want to know if it’s worth the cost. This begs the question—is laser hair removal permanent? 

Before delving too deeply, know that most people who are well-suited for this procedure experience up to 90 percent hair reduction after the final treatment. With near-permanent hair removal, you can expect any hair that grows back to be thinner, lighter in color, and less noticeable.

Consider the answers to these laser hair removal FAQs to help you set reasonable expectations.

What Affects How Long Laser Hair Removal Lasts?

Results vary based on the following factors:

• Treatment area: The underarms and bikini area tend to respond best because the skin here is lighter, and the hair is thicker and darker. Since hair removal lasers target pigmentation, light skin with dark hair is a winning combination. On the other hand, thin, light-colored hair on the arms, upper thighs, or face (in women) may not respond as well to laser treatment.

• Hormonal changes: Certain conditions like pregnancy, menopause, and polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) can cause laser-treated hair to regrow. Even simply changing your hormonal birth control methods can cause this side effect. Fortunately, touch-up sessions are available to combat hormone-related hair regrowth.

• Type of laser used: Not all hair removal lasers are the same. As a result, many people wonder if different laser hair removal options last different amounts of time. At Titan Medical Aesthetics, we use the Secret Pro system from Cutera, a high-volume hair removal platform proven safe and effective for all skin and hair types. When used correctly, this solution offers optimal, long-lasting laser hair removal results.

• Skill of the technician operating the laser: To have the best chance of permanent laser hair removal, the technician must know how to target the hair properly and use the appropriate wavelengths based on hair color and skin tone. Otherwise, the laser may merely damage the follicle, not completely destroy it, allowing the hair to regrow.

How Many Laser Hair Removal Sessions are Needed?

Hair goes through four stages of growth—the growing phase, the transitional phase, the resting phase, and the shedding phase. At any given time, you have hairs in all four stages of growth. 

Laser hair removal is not a one-and-done treatment because the laser can only treat hairs that are actively growing. As a result, you may need four to five sessions spaced five to six weeks apart to achieve a desirable outcome.

How Long Does Hair Take to Grow Back?

Expect to continue seeing hair growth between treatments as untreated follicles enter the growing phase and become vulnerable to laser light. After your final treatment, body hair should be sparse and fine. You may not see significant regrowth for months or even years. Facial hair removal typically isn’t as permanent but should still be long-lasting if done correctly.

Rest assured that you can always get a touch-up treatment if your hair regrows. Many people find it worthwhile to schedule maintenance sessions about once a year to remain permanently hairless. Still, others don’t need touch-ups for several years after their final treatment.

Are There Any Tricks to Prevent Hair from Growing Back?

Here’s what we recommend:

• Avoid plucking and shaving between procedures.

• Calm irritated skin with a cool compress or soothing cream.

• Stay out of the sun for a few days following each treatment.

• Moisturize regularly.

• Keep hormone levels balanced with medications if necessary.

• Schedule touch-up sessions as needed.

Is Laser Hair Removal Safe?

After decades of improvement and innovation, today’s laser hair removal treatments are extremely safe. In fact, severe, adverse side effects are less common than with waxing. Even so, it’s wise to understand the potential side effects you may experience. The most common ones, if they occur at all, include:

• Burning, stinging, or discomfort during treatment

• Allergic reactions to the numbing cream

• Skin redness, inflammation, or blisters

• Temporary changes in skin tone, most common in people with dark skin

Serious but less common side effects include scarring, infections, and other lasting skin damage. Give your provider your complete medical history to determine the right treatment and reduce the risk of serious side effects.

Does Hair Color or Skin Tone Make a Difference?

Laser hair removal is most effective for people with dark hair and light complexions. The contrast between the hair and skin makes it easier for the laser to target the pigmentation in the follicle.

Currently, laser hair removal isn’t very effective for light-colored hair because there isn’t enough pigmentation for the laser to target. As for people with dark hair and dark skin, specific light wavelengths and a weaker melanin absorption rate are used to make treatment safe.

Schedule Laser Hair Removal Service in Newburyport, MA

At Titan Medical Aesthetics, we focus on providing customized care for each of our valued clients using treatments proven effective for the face, skin, and body. Led by double board-certified physician Dr. Guy Navarra, our team, consisting of highly trained medical professionals NPs and RNs, is committed to providing an attentive and personalized medical experience for each patient, regardless of their goals. We work hard to ensure each of our valued clients are heard and understood, and we help them meet a wide range of aesthetic goals, from anti-aging to figure-slimming. Call us at 978.355.7280 or contact us through our website to schedule a FREE consultation.  

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.