Laser Hair Removal in Boston

Laser Hair Removal Dermatologist Located in Boston

Laser hair removal, offered by our board-certified dermatologists, is an effective laser treatment to reduce the hair on the body and face. The results are long-lasting and reduce the need to do at-home hair removal methods such as shaving, waxing and plucking.  Most patients who undergo laser treatments can reduce hair in an area for several years.  It is very important that the treatment be performed by a skilled and experienced physician to get the safest, most effective treatment.  There are many different types of lasers and machines used in offices to get rid of hair but not every machine is the same.  We use the highest quality equipment in order to safely treat our patients and give them long-lasting improvements.

There are many myths out there about laser hair removal, so it’s always best to speak to a board-certified dermatologist to get the facts about this popular treatment.

Common Laser Hair Removal Treatment Areas

Laser hair removal is a highly versatile and popular treatment option and can be used on almost any area of the body. Hair on the body or face can be reduced, thinned and removed with the help of laser treatments.

Some patients want to do laser hair removal to help ease the burden of ingrown hairs.  Other patients want to do laser hair removal to reduce the hassle of shaving or waxing.  Some want to do laser hair removal because they believe that it gives a better appearance.

It is important to remember that we do not employ laser treatment to get rid of hair from the following areas: eyebrows, ears, and around the anus.

Is Laser Hair Removal Right for Me?

Laser hair removal can be safe for treating all skin tones, including darker tones, BUT, you want to make sure that your provider has the correct laser for your skin type. Using the wrong laser can result in burns. With Elite+ by Cynosure, we can customize every treatment to encompass lighter or darker skin types, as well as different areas of the body.

At our Boston office, we have lasers and the expertise to treat patients with a wide range of needs. Laser hair removal works best on patients with dark hair (black and brown). It does not work on blonde, white or grey hair. Red hair may also be stubborn to get rid of with lasers.  The lasers we have work well for both coarse and fine hairs. One of the most important things to know before going in for laser hair removal is that patients cannot undergo treatment if they have a suntan.

Before and after three laser hair removal treatments

How Laser Hair Removal Works

Pulses of laser energy are used on hair follicles to destroy them, making it so they are no longer able to grow new hairs. This is a very safe hair-removal process and can be applied to sensitive parts of the body like the face.

Laser hair removal is also quite effective. In fact, thanks to technological advances, it is so effective that a particular chromophore can be targeted by the laser wavelength to impair the basal stem cells inside follicles.

Laser Hair Removal Treatment Process

During laser hair removal treatment, the laser can feel sensitive on the skin, and when treating areas such as the groin or upper lip, topical numbing cream can be used to minimize discomfort. Most patients describe the feeling as a slight snap against the skin. Treatment only takes a few minutes.

Important Things to Know About Laser Hair Removal:

After a Laser Hair Removal Treatment

After laser hair removal treatment, patients are able to go about their days as planned as they generally notice no symptoms. In some patients, there may be slight residual pinkness, but this often resolves within an hour.

Depending on the area of the body being treated, laser hair removal on average requires 4-6 treatments to achieve desired results. These treatments should be spaced apart 3 – 4 weeks to ensure a new round of hair growth. In between treatments, patients should not be waxing, threading, or plucking hairs in the areas being treated. Shaving is okay and actually recommended just prior to treatment.

After the treatment course is complete and desired results are achieved, the results are considered semi-permanent. This is because several years down the line, patients will report individual stray hairs in treated areas. Patients can then return to the office for 1-2 treatments to tackle these hairs that have grown back.

Learn More During a Dermatologist Consultation

Laser hair removal in Boston is simple and convenient thanks to the skilled physicians at The Dermatology Institute of Boston. Contact us today!

Laser Hair Removal FAQs

Does laser hair removal really work permanently?

Laser hair removal can reduce or eliminate hair semi-permanently in the targeted area. Eventually, the hair does grow back, but most of the time it will be very fine and light compared to before treatment. The chances of obvious hair returning can come down to the type of hair you have. Thick hair may require more treatments to destroy the follicle completely. However, each treatment may make the hair lighter and less noticeable.

Many factors come into play in regard to the results of your laser hair removal treatment:

  • Color and texture of hair: It may be more difficult for the laser to “see” lighter-colored hair follicles, and darker, thicker hair may require more treatments
  • Melanin in skin: it may be more difficult for the laser to distinguish between skin pigmentation and hair follicle on darker skin tones

The above-mentioned considerations make it all that more important that you seek a highly trained professional to perform your laser hair removal treatment.

What are the negatives of laser hair removal?

Overall, people report laser hair removal as a worthwhile and positive experience. It is considered a more effective and longer-lasting approach than shaving or waxing, which generally saves people more time.
There are no reported long-term side effects of laser hair removal. However, as with any treatment, there are some short-term side effects and considerations to keep in mind.

  • You may experience redness and tenderness at the treatment site. Some people compare it to the sensation felt after a sunburn.
  • People may experience hyperpigmentation or skin darkening following treatment, but it usually fades over time
  • Blistering, crusting, and scarring are rare, but can occur.
  • Occasionally, laser hair removal may cause the treated hair to turn gray or grow back thicker
  • The process is only effective during the hair’s growth cycle, so numerous treatments may be required to treat each follicle at the appropriate growth stage.
  • Hormones can impact hair growth, so if you experience increased testosterone, you may need more treatments to maintain desired results. Note: it is not unusual for people to experience hormonal changes and thus hair growth during menopause or pregnancy when hormones are significantly impacted

Is laser hair removal really worth it?

When considering laser hair removal prices, you may wonder if the process is worth it. While it may take several sessions to achieve desired results, many people appreciate the reduced appearance of hair and the need for less shaving.

Busy people may wonder if laser hair removal is worth the time investment. Smaller areas, such as the chin, may only take about 5 minutes to complete, while larger areas, such as the legs, may take up to an hour. Overall, the process is fast and straightforward.

Do you shave before laser hair removal?

Yes. You should shave the night or morning before your treatment. Doing so ensures the laser’s energy isn’t focused on long hairs. You should absolutely avoid waxing at least one month before your appointment because it removes the follicle completely, making it impossible to laser.

Some other tips for prepping for laser hair removal treatment include wearing sunscreen and protecting your skin from the sun, and avoiding tanning beds, sprays, and lotions before and immediately after your treatment. Following the treatment, you should avoid putting on perfume or taking a hot shower for at least 24 hours.

How painful is laser hair removal?

Laser hair removal does involve some mild discomfort. Many people indicate that it is far less painful than waxing. However, it may be a little uncomfortable for some people because there are nerves attached to the follicle which are impacted by the laser. Following the procedure, you may experience mild irritation and discomfort in the target area, which usually subsides quickly. It is said that the first one or two treatments are usually the most uncomfortable. After that, the hair is thinner and easier to manage.

Here are a few simple tips for reducing the chances of pain during laser hair removal:

  • Get enough rest the night before so that your body is not depleted. Lack of sleep can make you more irritable and even influence pain receptors.
  • Try to avoid hair removal right before or during your menstrual cycle. Fluctuations in your hormones can impact your pain tolerance.
  • Stay well-hydrated. Some studies suggest that being dehydrated can make you more susceptible to pain.
  • Reduce caffeine. Caffeine consumption may make you more sensitive to pain.

Apply ice before the treatment. Ice may help relieve burning and redness following the treatment.
An over-the-counter pain reliever may help reduce some of the minor pain you may experience during or immediately following the treatment. Taking the medication about a half hour before your scheduled appointment is a good idea.

Please talk with your provider about their suggestions for making the treatment more comfortable for you. Sometimes, a topical numbing cream is applied prior to treatment to minimize discomfort.

At what age is laser hair removal most effective?

While there is no definitive age restriction for laser hair removal, there are some considerations to remember. For instance, teenagers undergoing significant hormone changes may also experience increased hair production. However, it is usually more effective to wait until after age 18 to get hair removal because the results are more consistent and long-lasting without the concern of hormonal influence. It is also important to remember that laser hair removal is ineffective on gray hair, so that may be another age consideration to remember.

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Dear Patients,

Our goal here at The Dermatology of Institute of Boston is protect the health of our patients and staff. To continue caring for our patients during these uncertain times, while strictly adhering to the guidelines set by the CDC, we will be only offering virtual consultations. For some patients, an in person visit is best, but if you feel that your concern could be addressed online, this may be a convenient option for you.

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