Do At-Home Hair Removal Devices Work? Yes and No.

 

Do At-Home Hair Removal Devices Work 2

Shaving, waxing, depilatory creams – men and women will do almost anything to remove unwanted hair. These methods do work, but not for long. You have to keep doing them over and over and over. It’s so frustrating, not to mention time-consuming. Shaving can leave you with bumpy, irritated skin, and waxing just plain hurts. There must be a better way!

Then you see online that numerous devices you can buy to remove hair “permanently” at home. This sounds great! Should you get one? Do they work?

Well, yes and no.

Some of these devices are really just glorified shavers. Hair grows back, but it’s quick and easy to remove it once again. Most at-home devices use intense pulsed light (IPL). The device targets melanin (pigment) in the hair and delivers a pulse of light energy which is absorbed by the follicle. This damages the follicle, preventing new hair from growing. Products available to the public vary considerably, but in general, here’s what you should consider.

The Pros

  • At-home hair removal devices can be pricey. However, purchasing one will save you money over time, compared to buying endless supplies or paying for salon appointments for waxing.
  • DIY hair removal also saves time over repeatedly heading out to the salon or shaving day after day for years.

The Cons

  • Technology such as intense pulsed light can be dangerous if used improperly, so it is vital to follow the directions carefully. Devices sold for at-home use are deliberately made to be less powerful than professional grade tools found in med spas, but even so, safety can be (and should be) a concern to avoid unwanted side-effects such as burns.
  • Less-powerful devices also deliver lower quality results.
  • IPL does not permanently eliminate hair although if the at-home device is used regularly, you will eventually only need an occasional touch-up.  
  • Because IPL requires contrast to distinguish hair from skin, those with light-colored hair and those with darker skin tones do not benefit.

We offer medical grade IPL treatment here at Image Surgical Arts. And, although it can be an option for removing fine facial hair it’s far from the gold-standard of hair reduction. There are much better methods that we recommend. IPL is primarily intended for skin rejuvenation – reversing signs of aging such as fine lines and wrinkles and sun damage.

What Really Works? Laser Hair Reduction.

For hair reduction that provides the kind of results you really want, we use laser treatment specifically designed for this purpose. Lasers work similarly to IPL, targeting the pigment to damage the follicles and roots so hair does not regrow. But the type of light energy lasers deliver is more powerful than IPL, and it is also more precise, so it is more effective and more versatile.

Laser hair reduction is a great choice for most men and women who want to get rid of unwanted hair anywhere on the body -- the face or underarms, bikini lines, tiny areas such as your toes or between your brows, large areas such as your back or legs. Like IPL, lasers require contrast to work well, but the latest advancement in laser technology have greatly increased the effectiveness of lasers for those with lighter hair or darker skin.

It does take multiple treatment sessions to achieve best results, because hair grows in cycles and the laser only treats actively growing hairs. But once we’ve achieved maximum results, they are nearly permanent. (Some hairs may regrow in the future, but we can get rid of them with a quick update treatment.)

You may spend a little more with laser hair reduction than you would for professional IPL or, certainly at-home hair removal, but the results are better. And isn’t that the point? Request a consultation today by submitting a form on this page or call 615-499-4224 to learn more about the best procedure for your hairy needs.
 

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