Is Laser Hair Removal Permanent?

Blog, Laser Hair Removal

Laser hair removal works by heating the hair follicle to stop new hair from growing. Although the procedure is often praised as a form of “permanent” hair removal, laser treatment only reduces the number of unwanted hair in each area during the growing phase of the hair follicle

Even though the hair may eventually return, if the laser does its job on the targeted follicles, it will usually appear lighter or thinner upon any regrowth. This is entirely normal, and the appearance of your unwanted hair is a solvable problem that later follow-up treatments can quickly remedy.

On the face, laser hair removal isn’t typically permanent but may be long-lasting. Some clients see no hair return after a course of treatments while others may require annual touch-up treatments to keep unwanted hair at bay.

5 – 10% hair reduction can be expected 6-8 weeks after your first treatment. After each treatment, you may notice 5-10% of hair is affected by the laser on any given treatment with up to 80% hair reduction after an entire course of treatments.

Over the years and with the proliferation of laser hair removal, the Pulse Light Clinic has seen increasing cases of stimulated hair growth. This is where individuals receiving laser hair removal develop more hair rather than less. Most hair stimulation cases are usually located on the face as hair growth in this area can be affected by hormonal activity. However, this can also occur in other areas of the body and is known as “Paradoxical Hypertrichosis” (Hair Stimulation) a condition that is not completely understood but allows the hair to grow back faster and thicker than usual. Although there is no scientific explanation for why this may happen in laser hair removal patients, a few factors may contribute.

After laser hair removal treatment, hair not targeted in the growing stage will appear. This is due to the hair’s growth cycle. The active hair follicles are destroyed when you get laser, typically falling out between 1-4 weeks and will not reoccur.

In a rare number of cases of stimulated hair growth, we have found the most common reason is when a certain type of finer hair, known as vellus hairs, is stimulated into growth by the light from the laser.

When looking into the theory of photo thermolysis, the hair follicle and surrounding cells are destroyed at a temperature of 65 degrees; in theory, anything below 65 degrees could contribute to more hair growth. At Pulse Light Clinic we have developed methods to combat this adverse effect associated with laser hair removal and have developed preventative protocols to ensure it does not occur in the first place.