Many individuals find that they may have the growth of hair on unsightly parts of the body. Many options exist on the market for hair removal, but all of these have a variety of drawbacks. Hair is a unique tissue and a unique area of the skin in that it regenerates constantly. The most straightforward option for hair removal, is shaving. Compared with other techniques, this is straightforward, but typically not durable. Even for areas of the body where hair regrowth is slow, shaving is usually only cosmetically effective for several days to a week.
Like other rapidly growing tissues in the body, hair has its own set of stem cells. This allows it to be rapidly replaced when it is lost. Options such as chemical depilatories, and tweezing are more effective than shaving in that they remove the entirety of the hair shaft, but the stem cells which can regrow a new hair shaft are still extant. As a result, while more effective and long lasting than shaving, chemical depilatories, tweezing, waxing, and other options which remove the hair shaft are still not a permanent solution. In addition, hair removal using these products and strategies may be painful for many individuals, causing irritation and bumps.
By contrast, laser hair removal is an entirely novel procedure which targets not only the hair shaft in the skin, but also the stem cells. It is a cosmetic procedure, often performed by dermatologists or other licensed physicians, in which laser light is used to selectively heat up the hair follicle. This paralyzes, or in many cases, destroys the stem cells which regrow hair. As a result, it has advantages and benefits as compared with other strategies for hair removal, in that it is more likely to be permanent. Once an area is treated via laser hair removal, the hair follicles are inactivated, and hair regrowth is extremely rare. This means that laser hair removal, if performed properly, is a one-time procedure.
Laser hair removal has relatively few disadvantages. Probably the most prominent is that it is more costly than other hair removal strategies on a one time basis. However, because it generally only has to be performed once (or in rare cases, twice) for a given area of the body, the cost is amortized over a long time period. It is extremely safe and has relatively few side effects or risks. Primarily, individuals may notice a transient and temporary redness or inflammation in the treated area. This typically dissipates over the course of one to several days.
Because of its safety and durable efficacy, laser hair surgery is an appropriate therapy to consider for most individuals wishing to permanently remove hair on a given area of skin.