All of us have some part of our body where we don’t want hair to grow. In the summer, many women want their legs and bikini area free of hair while men may want the hair removed from their back. Wherever it is growing, all of us have unwanted hair. For that reason, there are plenty of options for removing, some more effective than others.
Permanent or Temporary Hair Removal
When removing hair from our body, most methods are temporary. Removal can last as little as one day or for years. It all depends on the method of extracting the hairs. Any method that cuts the hair will not last longer than a single day as it only cuts the hair above the skin, not down at the root. Methods that pluck the hair from the shaft last for a couple weeks or longer. Ones that target the root, damaging or destroying it, last considerably longer.
Making hair removal permanent is not an easy feat. Only when hair is destroyed during the correct stage can it be made permanent. Since hair grows in different stages and at different speeds, it is difficult to catch it during the right stage. The growth phase lasts about 2 to 6 years or longer, depending on genetics. The transitional phase lasts around 2 or 3 weeks. The resting phase lasts about 100 days, ending with shedding.
Using hair removal creams to remove hair is another method that may last 1 or 2 weeks. The process involves applying a chemical to the skin, then waiting a specific amount of time to allow the chemical to dissolve the hair follicle. It is possible to burn the skin by not removing the chemical in time, resulting in red or blistered skin. These chemical creams are designed for use on specific areas, so look at the label before applying it. Face, body, and pubic hair removal products should only be applied to the area they were intended for.
These devices were first introduced for use in clinics. They use electrical currents of energy to attack the follicle. Using metal probes or cylindrical electrodes, the charge moves down the follicle to destroy the root. It has been FDA approved to permanently remove hair, but is not possible without as much as 30 sessions.
These personal use devices use coils, springs, or rotating disks to pull the hair from the skin. They should not be used in areas with delicate skin as they can “burn” the skin with the friction they produce. Application of this procedure feels much like pin pricks as the hairs are randomly caught in the coils and pulled out.
Using Lasers to Remove Hair
There are many different hair removal appliances and tools available on the retail market. However, they are not as effective at removing hair for long periods as laser hair removal services. Lasers use light-based energy to focus on the hair follicle, creating heat to destroy the entire follicle and root. Most hair removal appliances simply cut the hair or pull it from the skin, which does nothing to hinder further growth. It does take repeated sessions, around 3 to 7, to make it last as long as a year or more with another session once every 1 or 2 years to catch any stray hairs. When hair grows back after laser removal, it is finer.