Does Laser Hair Removal Actually Work?
April 1, 2021

While it seems like a modern convention, the removal of facial and body hair is an ancient practice dating back at least 100,000 years. Our early ancestors removed hair to prevent water from being trapped against the skin and causing frostbite. Now, in North American culture at least, we remove this hair as part of our regular grooming routines or to create a more youthful appearance. 

But depending on the amount and location of the hair, traditional at-home hair removal may be inconvenient, time-consuming, and/or ineffective. 

Laser hair removal treatments can provide people with a more complete and permanent solution but do these treatments work?

If you have been considering laser hair removal but have been wondering if it is worth it, we’ve got the answers to your questions!

How Laser Hair Removal Works

Plucking, shaving, waxing, and applying creams can be a real chore. And to make matters worse, their effects are temporary and the costs can add up over time. 

Luckily, science has advanced enough to find a better way. While first used in the1960s, laser hair removal has been in popular use in the United States since 1997 and is approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for permanent hair reduction. 

Laser hair removal works by damaging the hair follicle to minimize new hair growth. The laser will emit a light that is absorbed by the melanin, or pigment, in the hair. The heat from this light will damage the follicle, inhibiting, or delaying, hair growth. 

How Long Does Laser Hair Removal Last?

Unfortunately, laser hair removal treatments do not permanently eliminate hair growth, they just dramatically reduce it. Electrolysis is the only FDA approved treatment that permanently eliminates hair. 

But, the good news is that laser hair removal can reduce new growth enough as to render shaving and other grooming techniques unnecessary. 

The effects of this treatment are cumulative so it may take time for you to see the effects of the treatment. Typically, you can expect to need 3-6 sessions, with around 6 weeks between each one. And it is important to understand that some hormonal changes and medical conditions can cause you to experience new hair growth down the road. 

But generally speaking, laser hair removal can eliminate unwanted hair and leave you feeling confident and free. 

How Much Does Laser Hair Removal Cost?

There is no set cost for laser hair removal. The ultimate cost will depend on the size of the treatment area, geographic location, the time spent administering the treatment, and the number of treatment sessions needed. 

But on average, the cost of laser hair removal is around $235 per session. Some providers may offer financing options, especially if you will be requiring multiple sessions and treatments to meet your goals. Don’t expect medical insurance to cover hair removal as it is considered a cosmetic treatment.

Pros and Cons of Laser Hair Removal

Laser hair removal does actually work in reducing new hair growth and has many benefits than more traditional, do it yourself, hair removal methods. But, as with any cosmetic treatment, there are also some potential drawbacks. Here’s a quick look at some of the pros and cons of laser hair removal.

Laser Hair Removal Pros

  1. You can get it done anywhere on the body. And because the machine can cover a large area, removing hair from legs, stomach, back, and arms can be done relatively quickly. 
  2. No ingrown hairs! For people with sensitive skin, ingrown hairs are a common side effect of most hair removal options. With laser hair removal, it is no longer a concern. 
  3. Little to no downtime. Laser hair removal is so quick and easy that you do not need to take time for recovery. In fact, depending on the size of the area being treated, you can book a session on your lunch break and be back to work without anyone knowing what you were up to. 
  4. Saves money. While you are paying over $200 for each session, once you are done, you’ll never have to pay for hair removal again! No more buying razors or paying for waxes. 
  5. Versatile treatment option. Laser hair removal can be performed on both men and women and on any area that grows hair. Some men may not feel comfortable going to a salon or spa to have their chest or back waxed, this treatment option can eliminate these concerns or discomfort. 

Laser Hair Removal Cons

  1. It can take a while to achieve the desired results. While some areas may only take minutes to “zap” in a session, it can take anywhere from 3 to 6 sessions to reduce hair growth for good. And, you may have to wait 6 weeks between treatments. 
  2. May be less effective for certain skin tones. Because the laser identifies hair by its pigment, it is most effective for fair skin with dark hair. It is less effective for darker skin tones or fair hair. In these instances, electrolysis may be the more appropriate treatment option. Always speak to your practitioner first to ensure that they are equipped to handle your specific needs. 
  3. It might be painful. For most people, laser hair removal is relatively painless and is little more than an irritation. For others, it can feel unbearable. This factor will depend on your pain tolerance and the size and area being treated. The good news is that the treatment becomes less painful as you move through the process. 

Find a Licenced Provider Through ageEnvy

One of the keys to successful laser hair removal is identifying the right provider! At ageEnvy, we’ve attempted to remove the guesswork and put you in touch with the top providers in your area. 

Our unique platform is full of anti-aging practitioners from across the country so you can easily identify local providers that provide the treatments you are seeking. With real user reviews and a resource library covering a range of topics from aging concerns to anti-aging treatments, ageEnvy allows you to do all of your research in one place. 

Laser hair removal is a commitment and investment in YOU. Find a provider today to get started!