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How long should one wait between laser hair removal sessions?

Women having laser hair removal treatment

When one decides to go for a permanent treatment like laser hair removal, many questions about the length and sittings arise. As laser hair removal is a more long-term treatment, to get the best results you cannot have just one sitting.

Although sometimes when you sit with people to discuss the time taken and the procedure of how laser hair removal works, many myths revolve around it. To be honest, a single sitting of a laser hair removal treatment can be anything from 10 minutes to an hour, but the entire process of the treatment is long. The minimum number of sessions recommended as per industry standards are 6 but you will need anywhere between 8 to 12 sittings for best results.

This blog focuses on making you understand the need for multiple sessions and the reason for the long process.

The process of Laser Hair Removal

Using a high-energy beam, the laser hair removal process is done. Here, a high laser beam targeting the melanin pigment of the hair damages the hair follicle which further stops the hair to grow over some time. This process may sound a little dangerous, but rather it is completely safe as the laser beam targets the area without damaging the skin tissues.

The hair follicle that is targeted needs to be damaged enough to stop its regeneration. Hence sometimes, one session is not sufficient. The hair growth cycle is also a factor that needs to be taken into consideration as a session targets only 18% to 20% of the hair on the body at the targeted area.

The cycle of hair growth

Hair growth plays a major role in deciding the number of sessions that would be required for laser hair removal on the body. The hair on the body grows in stages, where the first stage is the anagen, the second stage is called catagen and the third and final stage is called telogen.

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The first stage Anagen is the only stage where the hair follicle is connected to the hair ensuring the laser beam targets the follicle and damages it. If the hair follicle and the root of the hair do not meet, the laser cannot work. This phase is also the only one where the hair has the maximum melanin which makes the laser hair removal successful.

The hair on our body can remain in the first stage till 6 years of its growth, but at any given time only 20% of the hair is in this stage. When you decide to go for laser hair removal, one cannot know whether the hair follicle is in the first stage or not or since when. This will also make it impossible to know which follicle has been removed and which has not been.

The treatment plan you choose will take your hair growth cycle into consideration and the number of sessions along with the period in between. During the pre-laser hair removal, you can sit with your doctor and discuss the area to be targeted along with the plan.

Number of sessions needed

Age, medical issues, medication, genetics, and hormones are a few of the factors that determine the number of treatments you will need. You are eligible to get a free consultation to decide your treatment plan and guidance for the number of sessions with the technician before your first session.

Waxing is another factor that works towards deciding the number of sessions needed. Although waxing is not a permanent solution to get oneself rid of unwanted hair, it has a long-term impact on growth. Over the years, waxing will reduce the hair growth and that determines how many sessions will one need. Some people may need just 6 sessions for a targeted area and some will need more.

The time span between sessions

The best way to get rid of all your unwanted hair is laser hair removal, but you will need to wait for some time between the sessions. The reason for this wait is that the skin needs some rest before another session as it has to regenerate.

Too many sessions without the break will damage your skin as the UV rays used are aggressive to the skin putting it under stress.

Another reason is the regeneration of the hair follicle. Some of the hair follicles are resistant to laser hair removal and thus you might need more than one session to work on them. A repetitive target to the stern follicle will help in not allowing them to regenerate.

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Reason number three is the cycle of hair growth. This is different for every person who wants to get the laser hair removal done and for each body hair. Hence, the pre-treatment plan will help you determine the number of sessions required.

A six-week wait between the laser hair removal sessions is a good time to wait as the hair that is not in the anagen stage can enter it. The next session can determine the 20% hair and the laser can work on it.

As the hair can be in the anagen stage for six years, it becomes impossible to know which hair can be removed with laser hair removal and which cannot. That is why one needs to wait between the sessions so that the hair follicles that have been damaged can be differentiated from those that have not been. Only 20% of hair follicles can be removed in one sitting.

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Apart from several queries and doubts, one needs to be in safe hands when it comes to laser hair removal sessions. Only specialists who can handle the case with expertise while catering to all your inhibitions should be your ideal choice.