For a long time, having dark skin meant that you couldn’t choose one of the most popular and long-lasting options for removing unwanted facial hair and body hair: professional laser hair removal. Not only were early laser hair removal devices ineffective at removing hair on darker skin tones, but they also weren’t safe. But thanks to the growing demand for inclusivity and some serious advances in laser technology, there are now a handful of excellent laser hair removal options for darker skin. – COSMOPOLITAN
How does laser hair removal work?
Laser hair removal is ideal for anyone looking to stop or slow hair growth on specific parts of the face and/or body. At-home laser hair removal devices exist and can be effective when used properly and consistently, but the best results typically come from professional laser hair removal treatments administered at a dermatologist’s office, like here at Lavish Wellness.
Why was laser hair removal not safe for dark skin?
Until recently, laser hair removal was not advised for those with darker skin tones, especially black or Asian skin. This was because the laser’s energy has a specific target, one of which is pigment in the hair, and many old-school lasers had trouble differentiating between dark skin and dark hair, thus they carried risks for dark-skinned patients, like hyperpigmentation, blisters, and scarring.
Because the pigment in the skin is shallower than the pigment in the hair, the laser may be drawn to the skin rather than the hair pigment. As a result, darker skin may be vulnerable to burns. Now we have modern lasers that can be set to different wavelengths so that the surrounding skin doesn’t absorb as much light, reducing the risk.
With recent technological advancements, it’s safe to perform laser hair removal on dark skin, as new technologies can bypass the epidermal melanin and target only the melanin pigment in hair follicles.
How Does Laser Hair Removal Work On Dark Skin?
When treating darker skin tones, a longer wavelength is required to ensure that the laser only targets the follicle and not the skin pigment.
At Lavish, we will use the Fitzpatrick scale to evaluate your skin type, which will allow us to choose the best laser for you and modify the wavelength accordingly. Based on how much pigment is naturally present in your skin, the Fitzpatrick scale depicts the six main skin types, ranging from extremely light to very dark.
Laser hair removal works by sending a wavelength of light into the skin, disrupting the nutrients that allow hair to grow. Darker skin tones can benefit from laser hair removal in the same way that lighter skin tones can.
Using our medical-grade lasers, the light will convert to heat, destroying the individual hair follicles at the root. This process will slow down the regrowth of hair in the treated region as well as reduce the texture of the hair.
Which laser hair removal treatment is best for dark skin?
While laser hair removal is now an option for dark skin tones, it’s important to remember that not all lasers are created equally.
The two main types of lasers that are best for people with darker skin tones are the Nd:YAG laser and the diode laser. They both work on patients with dark skin and darker hair.
Meet the Technology for Black or Brown Skin – Splendor X
According to aestheticians, one of the most effective devices on the market at the moment is the Lumenis SPLENDOR X system, which is a combination of a diode and a Nd:YAG, and that’s what we have here at Lavish Wellness.
SPLENDOR X uses a binary laser emission of Nd:YAG (1064nm) and Alexandrite (755nm) wavelengths with synchronised and adjustable proportions. The system means that hair removal is completely customised across a wide range of skin tones like never before. In one session, even the finest hairs can be removed and in much shorter treatment times, making it less painful. A full body top-to-toe laser hair removal can be done in under 30 minutes.
How Long Does Laser Hair Removal Take?
Laser hair removal vaporises existing hairs beneath the epidermis and at the root. As a result, it can only attack hairs in the anagen (growth) phase. That’s why it takes numerous treatments, spaced out, to remove all of the hair in a given location completely.
Hair will continue to grow during the course of your laser treatments. Some of it will be regrowth, but the majority of it will be natural hair that has not been treated. Many years after your treatment is completed, you may not see any regrowth.
The outcomes of laser hair removal on the body can be permanent or very long-lasting. Any hair that returns overtime should be sparse and thin.
Cost of Laser Hair Removal
Generally speaking, you should see a noticeable reduction in hair growth after six to eight sessions of laser hair removal treatments, but you may require as many as ten. The cost of your treatment will vary depending on the type of treatment you receive, the size of the area covered, and where you receive it.