Whether it’s the season for slipping into your bikini or donning a risqué holiday dress, unwanted body hair is never a welcome companion. While some of the more traditional hair removal options have long been go-tos for many women, beauty companies are constantly launching new products that promise to remedy the issue. But the Does at home laser hair removal work? question that likely pops up first in your mind, particularly when considering at-home laser hair removal, is one that many women are asking and that we aim to finally answer.

The most compelling draw to any laser hair removal is the elusive promise for permanent removal. Most women love the idea that this form of hair removal is a “one and done” deal. Once it’s done, you can cross it off your beauty task list for good. The problem? In-office laser treatments are expensive and time-consuming. The at-home alternative is designed to be more cost-effective and consumer-friendly. But the question remains – Does at home laser hair removal work?

What To Expect

Philips Lumea Comfort IPL Hair Removal System

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If you have ever experienced a medical version or an in-office laser hair removal (or even if you haven’t), you likely are considering an at-home alternative with equal parts anticipation and skepticism. At any rate, knowing what to expect before you try an in-home hair removal kit is important for a successful trial.

The specific instructions and indications will vary depending on what kind of treatment you are using; however, at the very least, your kit will come with a lengthy instruction manual. For the best results, you’ll want to read the manual thoroughly and determine that you are an ideal candidate. It is also good practice to test a small patch of skin first. Most systems monitor the skin tone in the area to be treated and will lock up and prevent further use.

Each system will also indicate appropriate areas for use as well as areas not intended for use. Laser hair removal should not be used on:

  • Eyebrows;
  • Ears;
  • Nipples;
  • Genitals;
  • Male facial hair;
  • Tattoos;
  • Moles;
  • Children.

It is also best to consult your doctor or dermatologist prior to treatment. While there are dangers present with at-home treatments, each system is designed with safety features to prevent injury.

Guidelines for Treatment

permanent hair removal machine

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Again, reading the specific indications for your selected treatment is essential to achieve the best results. However, most systems suggest a treatment once every two weeks. Many treatment solutions will include a suggested amount of hair growth reduction to anticipate. The most common expectation is a reduction of 60 percent within the first three weeks and more modest reduction after that.
You’ll want to consider your skin’s sensitivity and select an intensity setting and treatment duration to start with. For most individuals a mid-range setting is a good place to start.

To accurately use the device, you’ll need to hold the system flat against the surface of the skin. Most systems are designed with foolproof safeguards to prevent you from using the device incorrectly. Like an in-office treatment, you can expect a bit of a hot sting with each laser application. You’ll also likely experience some minor soreness and redness following treatment. However, the inflammation should subside within 12 to 24 hours. If it doesn’t you may want to consult a doctor. You will also notice more irritation as you increase the intensity of your treatment.

Does At Home Laser Hair Removal Work?

While individual results will vary, if you follow the guidelines prescribed in your system (and choose a high quality treatment system), you can expect a 60 to 70 percent hair reduction with 2-3 months of treatment. That is comparable to in-office results, and it comes at only a fraction of the cost. (Think in the ballpark of $300 to $400 instead of $2400.) So, does at home laser hair removal work? Yes, and it will give you results similar to that of in-office treatment options.

Things to Know

It’s important to note that in-home laser hair removal isn’t quite as simple as we might like to think. (There is a reason that the doctors get paid the big bucks.) That said, with a few simple tricks, you can get great results at home.

1. To get results, you have to be consistent

Contrary to popular thought, laser hair removal isn’t a one treatment does it option. You’ll need to use the system roughly every 2 to 3 weeks for 6 months+ to maximize your results.

2.Your results will be permanent from month three

Notice this doesn’t say that you will be hair free after three months. What it does mean is that by three months in, you will notice significantly less hair, and the hair that you’ve removed will remain gone.

3. Laser hair removal is not a quick fix

Depending on what part of your body you are treating, you’ll need to set aside anywhere from 10 to 30 minutes or more for a treatment. So this isn’t something you can do in a rush before work in the morning.

4. Fall or winter is the best time to start

You need to be free of a tan to perform laser hair removal because the device works best when the contrast between your darker hair and lighter skin is greatest. So it is best to start in late autumn or early winter to allow your skin tone to be at its lightest.

5. You can shave between sessions

In fact, it’s not just that you can shave between sessions, you should shave. Shaving the day before or morning of will make your skin smooth and make your treatment that much more effective.

6. Different skin types will experience more (or less) pain

Depending on the texture and color of your hair, you may experience a different level of discomfort. Even so, most people consider laser hair removal as slightly uncomfortable but not painful.

Summing Up

If you’ve been considering laser hair removal but were previously off put by the cost of in-office treatments or the skepticism around at-home options, it is time you give it a try. So to answer the question Does at home laser hair removal work? it is well worth the investment and will help you get results. Just be sure to follow the product guidelines and suggested tips above.