Electrolysis vs. Laser Hair Removal: Which Should You Go For?
Published Aug 29, 2021
Shaving, tweezing, or waxing to get rid of unwanted hair can be tiring and time-consuming. There’s nothing wrong with body/facial hair, but many people find confidence if they get it removed. There are many options you can consider when it comes to hair removal that provides long-term results. Some of the best services out there are electrolysis and laser hair removal. At this point, you might wonder which one is better and ask, “electrolysis vs. laser hair removal?” In this article, you can determine which one is suitable for you.
How does electrolysis work?
Electrolysis is known as the only cosmetic procedure that ensures permanent hair removal. Electrolysis is a procedure that inserts an epilator device into unwanted hair follicles. The thin probe delivers an electric current to each hair follicle which damage and stops the hair from growing.
As stated above, electrolysis brings a more permanent solution when it comes to hair removal. This method takes longer sessions but offers promising results. The device is highly versatile and can be used all around the body, even in private areas. In addition, this procedure doesn’t use any chemicals which can be harsh on your skin.
Side effects and risks
Patients report feeling heat sensation and a pinch every time the needles damage a follicle. In addition, they experience minor side effects like redness and skin irritation on the treated area after the procedure. Some of them also see scabs or protective tissue on the skin, which goes away naturally. Side effects like pain and swelling after the procedure are rare.
Adverse effects that patients rarely experience are scarring or infections. This problem often occurs when the needles used are unsterilized. Having this procedure done by a board-certified dermatologist is safer and lessens the possibility of severe scarring and infections.
Aftercare and follow-up
After having the procedure done, your dermatologist may prescribe you an antibacterial cream to be applied to the treated area. Even though this procedure removes hair permanently, it still requires follow-up sessions for best results. Follow-up sessions remove new active follicles, making sure that follicles stop growing. Most people require follow-ups every week or every other week, depending on the treated area. Unlike other services, electrolysis doesn’t need maintenance. When you finish all of your sessions, you won’t need any treatments anymore.
Unlike some procedures, insurances don’t cover electrolysis hair removal. The price you will pay varies on the size of the area and the type of hair being treated. It can also depend on how many follow-ups you need. However, electrolysis costs less with each follow-up since the targeted area becomes smaller. Therefore, the cost of electrolysis may be less expensive than laser removal, depending on what area you want to be treated.
How does laser hair removal work?
Laser hair removal involves using lasers to damage follicles and reduce hair growth. This procedure uses radiation to damage hair follicles which can slow down hair growth. The settings for the laser will vary on the color, thickness, and what hair is being treated. Before the hair follicles are lasered, the technician would apply a cold gel to the skin to protect it from the radiation of the laser. Although it reduces hair growth, laser hair removal doesn’t remove unwanted hair permanently. However, as time goes by, the hair will eventually grow back.
Like electrolysis, laser hair removal can be used on any part of the body and face except the eye area. The laser has excellent precision when it comes to targeting hair. Long-term results can be achieved with 3 to 8 sessions. Even though the hair still grows back, the new hair grows lighter and less dense than untreated hair. In addition, if a laser device can treat hair at once, this procedure takes less time than with electrolysis.
Side effects and risks
Laser hair removal has minimal side effects that usually go away within the day. However, during the procedure, patients feel the pain is like their skin is being snapped with a rubber band.
Laser hair removal patients may experience side effects like the following:
- changes in pigment
Rare but possible side effects of laser hair removal patients are discolored skin, blisters, swelling, and scarring. Numbing products for this procedure have reports that show serious and life-threatening side effects.
You can lessen the possibility of side effects by receiving treatment from a professional board-certified dermatologist.
Aftercare and follow-up
Before exposing your skin to radiation, the dermatologist may apply an analgesic ointment to minimize the pain you’ll feel during the session.
You can apply ice packs to relieve discomfort if you experience side effects like redness or swelling. However, your doctor may suggest you take over-the-counter pain relievers or prescribe you steroid cream if you feel severe pain.
Dermatologists also recommend patients avoid sun exposure before and after getting the treatment to prevent pigmentation.
Follow-ups and maintenance are necessary for laser hair removal since this treatment is not a permanent solution for hair removal. Most people need a follow-up treatment every six weeks for best results.
Insurances don’t cover laser hair removal procedures. The overall price of this procedure depends on the number of sessions needed and what area of the body is being treated. The average cost for this service is usually $200-$500 per visit.
DIY or at-home laser hair removal treatment costs cheaper than a dermatologist-guided service. At-home laser or salon treatments are mostly not proven effective and comes with their risks.
Electrolysis vs. Laser Hair Removal: Similarities
Both treatments remove the unwanted hair
Electrolysis and laser hair removal treatments use versatile devices that effectively target hair from anywhere on the face or body. Both of these treatments remove unwanted hair from all areas of the body and face.
Both treatments take numerous sessions
Both services can’t stop hair growth in a single procedure. The treatment that electrolysis and laser hair removal offer requires multiple sessions. Patients from both procedures need follow-ups.
Both treatments do the job safely
Electrolysis and laser hair treatments are both FDA-approved and considered safe for hair removal. Both of these methods can lessen the need for shaving, tweezing, or waxing. However, these procedures are only effective if done by a board-certified dermatologist or professional.
Electrolysis vs. Laser Hair Removal: Differences
Laser hair removal requires fewer sessions and takes a shorter time. The device in laser hair removal can eliminate hair at once. This procedure only takes a few minutes because of its feature. It also requires 4-8 sessions which is is lesser than electrolyte sessions have. Laser hair removal treatments need maintenance, unlike electrolysis.
The procedure for electrolysis takes time longer than laser hair removal treatments do. In electrolysis, every hair follicle is damaged one by one, which is time-consuming, especially in large areas. In addition, since this treatment gives permanent results, it requires more sessions that can take up to 30 sessions, depending on the area chosen.
Which Service Is Best For Me?
Both of these treatments can stop you from having to shave, tweeze, and wax. They both provide long-term results and prevent hair from growing. If we weigh their advantages and disadvantages, electrolysis gives the best outcome since it allows permanent results. Electrolysis also comes with lesser restrictions, risks, and side effects. In electrolysis, you won’t need any maintenance treatment after your sessions.
However, electrolysis requires more sessions and time for treatments. Choosing the best treatment service for you depends on your personal preference. Electrolysis vs. laser hair removal? You can go with electrolysis if you want a permanent solution to your unwanted hair and don’t mind lengthy sessions. On the other hand, if you’re willing to wait on achieving a hairless body/face, you can get laser treatment.
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Four Seasons Laser Center is a highly renowned med spa in Boca Raton Florida. Our state of the art equipment is run by highly trained and experienced staff so you can rest assured that you are in good hands. We offer laser hair removal services for your whole body, PDO Threads facelift, safe and effective Plasma Fibroblast skin tightening, and other advanced medical beauty services to help you look your best. Contact us now to book a free consultation.
About The Author
Krizzia Paolyn is an SEO Specialist with a bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Before launching a career in SEO, she started as a content writer for various digital magazines and renowned publications. It has always been her passion to share her voice, and at the same time, to encourage other people to speak up.