Laser Hair Removal technology has been developing over the past 20 years. The safety and efficacy of this technology has improved greatly over the last few years. We will take a look at how lasers work in hair removal and what types of lasers are used in the treatments.
Laser hair removal works through the pulsing of high frequencies of light at varying wavelengths directed at target areas on the body. This is known as SPTL or selective photothermolysis. The directed laser of light is able to work on the follicle of the hair without affecting the surrounding skin. Because lasers also work on a specific type of light that is emitted during the pulse, different colors of light will affect the type of skin color that is effective for the treatment. People come in all different colors of the rainbow and the color of hair also varies. This is why it is helpful to have different types of lasers available to be effective depending on who is receiving the session.
The Ruby Laser: This is the original laser used for hair removal. The light emitted is a deep ruby red color at 694nm and is effective for fine and light hair. However, it is ot effective with skin colors that are darker or tanned. This makes the Ruby Laser limited in its ability to work with different skin types.
The Alexandrite Laser: This laser produces reddish light. It has a much larger spot size and high repetition rate. This particular laser is the fastest hair removal laser and is suitable for rapid treatment of large body areas. It is best with clients who have a light to olive complexion. An entire back can be treated in less than 30 minutes.
The Diode Laser: This laser emits “invisible” infrared light. It has a longer wavelength, which allows for deep penetration into the skin and safety for darker skin types. Because the diode laser has a smaller spot size, treatments take a longer amount of time. The LightSheer Diode laser is one type of laser from this category. It also contains a separate piece that includes a cooling mechanism that allows the skin to remain cool during the session to help diminish irritation.
The long pulse Nd:YAG: This laser can be used on all skin types, including tanned skin. The advantage of this laser is that it can address larger areas and work at a quicker rate. The disadvantage, however, is that it is less effective at removing fine and light-colored hairs than some other lasers.
The more lasers a clinic has access to, the greater the likelihood you'll be treated with the safest, most effective one for your skin color and hair type. Continue to ask questions of the professionals you are going to be working with to give you as much information as you need in order to feel comfortable with the treatment.