Laser hair removal is one of the most common cosmetic procedures performed in the United States and for good reason!
Nothing looks and feels better than smooth, hairless skin! Do you want to get rid of your unwanted, dark, coarse, or excessive hair?
Here we explore your options for hair removal by laser to give you a better sense of what method will work best for you and your budget.
Why Undergo the Laser for Hair Removal?
Men and women experience hair growth in different places, some more prominently than others.
Your body is an amazing creation, designed to have hair across its surface to help regulate the body’s temperature.
The growth of hair, how much and how dark has a lot to do with genetics, ethnicity, and hormones.
Men are known to have more hair due to their bodies having androgens, which include a higher amount of testosterone than women typically have.
Women with higher levels of testosterone which may be correlated to genetics, hormonal changes with age, or from a medical condition, may experience a more prominent presence of facial and body hair as well.
If you are like many with unwanted hair, you may have spent more time and money to remove the excess shag, including at-home or salon wax treatments, razors, shaving kits, chemical hair removal products, tweezing, and more!
We want you to know first, that choosing the hair removal laser comes with longer-lasting results.
Let’s dive deeper into what to expect for a laser hair treatment, the results, the cost and if it is the best hair removal method for you and your image!
The Benefits of Hair Removal by Laser
The hair removal methods mentioned previously – shaving, waxing, tweezing and chemical treatments – add a significant amount of time to your personal grooming routine.
They also leave the skin vulnerable to irritation and ingrown hairs, causing an unsightly and uncomfortable result.
Laser hair removal is a lot faster and less damaging, especially in more delicate areas of treatment like the face.
Waxing, especially these sensitive areas, comes with the side effect of redness and swelling which can damage your image.
There is also a risk of over-waxing, which could strip the skin of a layer, or burning the skin if the wax is too hot.
Have you ever grabbed your skin instead of the hair you were trying to pluck? That leaves a painful mark too!
What is Laser Hair Removal?
Here is how this method of getting rid of unwanted hair works.
Whether using an at-home device or by receiving treatments at a medical spa, hair removal lasers use beams of highly concentrated light to penetrate the hair follicles.
The pigment in the hair follicles absorbs the light’s energy which gets converted to heat. The damage to the hair follicles decreases the ability for hair regrowth.
Many patients getting laser hair removal treatments at a medical aesthetics office request facial hair to be removed, especially on the upper lip or chin area.
Underarms, legs, stomach, back, and the bikini line are also common requests.
Other types of hair removal treatments can also be done at home for a less expensive option but, of course, at the price of more time and sessions to see suitable results.
At-Home Laser Hair Removal Devices
Home laser hair removers range in price from around $199 to up to just under $500. The more potent the power in the light beam, the more you can expect to spend.
The number of treatments will determine the effectiveness of achieving the desired amount of hair reduction or permanent hair removal for your ideal image.
Something to consider first with a home hair removal option is that many “laser hair removal” devices are actually not lasers at all.
Instead, they are actually Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) devices used to target the darker pigment in the hair follicle.
Here we look at the pros and cons of some of the most recommended brands and models of at-home laser hair removal devices.
Silk’n Flash & Go Compact Hair Removal Device – $199
- The first and cheapest IPL option on the list
- Use for face and body, ideal for smaller target areas like the upper lip, arms or bikini line
- Offers 150,000 pulses of light per minute
- The FDA has approved the Silk’n Flash & Go system for permanent reduction of hair
- Best results require users to have a treatment every other week for a two-month time period
- It is a compact unit which makes it only effective for targeted smaller areas of hair removal
The Remington iLight Pro Plus Quartz Hair Removal System – $270
- Another IPL hair removal system advertised to provide 94% hair reduction after 3 treatments.
- It is designed to cover larger areas of skin to make treatments faster and easier.
- Not meant to be used by every skin color. Due to the darker pigmentation in darker skin tones, this skin color is at more risk to burn under the light
Tria Beauty Hair Removal Laser Precision Device – $299
- A true at-home laser hair removal device uses a diode laser similar to the one used at an aesthetician’s office.
- The applicator is small making it ideal to target areas of the face that need close attention
- Has an LED display for ease of use
- Small applicator size makes hair removal on larger areas of the body less effective and time-consuming
Illuminage Touch Permanent Hair Reduction System – $311.50
- Uses IPL technology
- Effective on dark hair and light hair shades including red and blond hair colors
- Requires a consistent routine of use to see results
- The manufacturer recommends use once a week for up to seven weeks
The Silk’n Infinity 400,000 – $399
- This device has the longest lifespan of those listed here
- It is safe for all users’ skin tones
- Offers 5 energy strengths to customize to each hair removal needs
- Uses IPL emitting a broad spectrum of light
- The price of this little device is much higher than other products
Tria Beauty Hair Removal Laser 4x – $449
- Another actual at-home laser hair removal device and the only FDA approved laser hair removal system
- Provides 3x more energy than other at-home hair “laser removal” devices
- Similar results patients would experience at a med spa setting
- Very easy to use and effective with guided steps
- Designed only for use on darker hair pigments, light brown to black hair colors
- Requires consistent use every other week until the desired result is achieved
Remington iLight Ultra Face and Body Hair Removal System – $449
- This IPL system is ideal for use on the face to target hair removal on the neck, lip, chin, sideburns
- Works well on dark hair color
- Not effective on light hair color such as red, white, blond or gray.
A word of caution for DIYers:
While we have provided this list to compare products that may work for your hair removal needs. There is always a risk of causing damage to the skin if these devices are not used as instructed.
For best results and safety, follow the instructions provided with your at-home laser hair removal device.
Avoid overuse and overexposing the skin to the light energy of lasers or IPL devices.
The safest way to remove hair is to trust the professionals at a medical aesthetician’s office to deliver the best treatments.
The Professional Laser Hair Removal Approach at a Clinic Setting
Undergoing laser hair removal is considered a medical procedure. The use of lasers or intense light beams to safely remove body hair takes training, skill, and knowledge from a medical professional.
You can rest assured that the power of the laser is in good hands and you can expect to get the best results, to achieve the image you desire!
How many sessions of laser hair removal do you need?
The number of sessions required will vary based on the size and number of the areas needing hair removal. This will also determine the length of each session.
The average appointment usually lasts for about 20 minutes.
It may take 2-3 appointments before any results are visible and with appointments scheduled 2-3 weeks apart, it may take up to 2 months.
How much does laser hair removal cost?
There are different variables to consider when trying to decipher how much laser hair removal treatments will cost. Variables include:
- Which area needs hair to be removed (legs have more area to cover than the face)
- How much hair is in the desired area, as well as its thickness, and also how coarse the hair is
- Who is doing the procedure and where in the country you are getting the work done (more affluent communities charge more for their services)
The average cost per laser hair removal session ranges between $50 – $300 per session.
How permanent is laser hair removal?
Permanent hair loss is possible to achieve through a series of laser hair removal treatments.
It has been reported that after an average of 3 – 6 appointments 90 percent of laser hair removal patients achieved permanent hair loss.
Things to consider before scheduling laser hair removal treatments
Before scheduling any laser hair removal treatments, it is wise to review any restrictions that could either be harmful or affect the outcome.
Scheduling a consultation with the technician will bring these important areas to light as well as answer any of your questions.
Listed below are areas to consider as you are researching and reading the reviews of the best method and place to receive your laser hair removal care.
Do you qualify for laser hair removal? – Laser hair removal is not suitable for everyone. Your skin tone may determine if laser hair removal is safe for you.
Darker skin tones can be at a higher risk of burning than lighter skin tones.
Sun exposure – Make sure to avoid the sun before and after your treatment to better protect your skin.
The sun’s rays change the pigmentation of the skin as it tans which impacts the results of the laser hair removal process.
Avoid excess heat – Your skin just underwent a heat treatment from the laser beam and will retain the heat for about 24 hours.
Make sure to avoid excess heat from the sun, saunas, hot tubs, hot showers, and from your own elevated body temperature from exercise.
Limited upkeep options – While receiving laser hair removal services, your grooming technique is limited to only shaving your legs, underarms, bikini area, etc.
Waxing, bleaching and tweezing will affect how the hair removal treatment will work.
Is it worth getting laser hair removal?
We believe the countless reviews and experiences of those who have achieved smooth, hair-less skin prove it is!
Do you have your own laser hair removal experience or a question we didn’t answer in this blog?
We are here to answer your questions and help you be your most hair-free, beautiful self!
Join the conversation!