Laser hair removal is a technique used to remove unwanted hair by means of exposure to pulses of light that destroy hair follicles. The procedure first became widely available in the mid 1990’s, though it was tested and used experimentally for 20 years previously. Because of its long history, laser hair removal is now a widely excepted and practiced technique in the dermatology community. The procedure is also approved by the FDA for use in the United States. The procedure has become very popular with patients because of its speed and efficacy at removing hair.
Laser hair removal relies on a principle called selective photothermolysis. Using this principle, a dermatologist can match a specific wavelength of light and pulse duration so as to destroy the targeted hair follicle with minimal effect on the surrounding tissue and skin. This tightly focused nature of the procedure is another reason for its popularity.
While laser hair removal can significantly affect hair growth in targeted areas, permanent hair reduction is a long process that can require multiple sessions and is sometimes completely unachievable. Often, without continued treatment, hair in affected areas will eventually grow back as hair follicles regenerate or neighboring hair follicles come in. The cost of laser hair removal will depend on the number of sessions necessary to affect the amount of desired hair removal.
It is important to note that laser hair removal is just one of many dermatology cosmetic procedures that can be used to remove hair. Only by consulting with a dermatologist can one determine which proper dermatology procedures and dermatology products are for them.