LASER HAIR REMOVAL! I have to say that as a Greek/Italian woman laser hair removal has always been something that peaked my interest… On the other hand, the idea of lasering my body sounded really painful and kind of scary. But – after years of shaving (and razor burn and bumps) I was finally ready to try this out and thought I would start out with an area that would be easy enough to test out – underarms.
My first session I was definitely nervous but I knew I was at a highly-rated medi-spa with a highly educated technician. You go in clean shaven (reduces the level of pain) and you’ll get a pair of glasses to wear to protect your eyes from the laser. Total time for underarms is probably like 5 minutes? It goes by so quickly! And honestly – it didn’t hurt bad at all (I’ll talk more about that in a little bit.) After a few sessions (and realizing it wasn’t so bad) I decided to go ahead and do my bikini too. Eeek! For the bikini area it was recommended I use numbing cream (which I gladly accepted). My first session I was definitely nervous, more nervous than underarms for obvious reasons. I will say – it was a lot more painful. A lot. Even with the numbing cream I was definitely cringing. BUT – I kept telling myself how annoying it was to shave constantly (especially living in Florida and always being in a bathing suit) and how much I hated those red bumps and I said I’m doing this, no going back now.
I will mention this, because I’m olive skin toned I had to use a different laser that is safe for darker skin tones. Using a laser for lighter skin tones could cause hyper pigmentation on a darker skin tone. The laser I had to use is known to be more painful than the lighter skin laser so I think it’s also fair to mention if you are using the lighter skin laser it won’t be as painful as my experience. I say this because just recently on my latest session I went 2 weeks without being in the sun so I could use the lighter skin laser and it was much less painful!
After doing a few sessions of the underarms and the bikini I decided to do my lower legs as well. I mean, while I’m at it may as well get all those trouble spots over with right? I was warned that legs can be really painful, even more painful than bikini (good grief) but my experience was totally different, even with the darker skinned laser! I used the numbing cream on my legs and honestly feel almost nothing. No pain really, minor discomfort at times but nothing bad at all. My upper leg doesn’t really grow hair (weird?) so I didn’t want to pay for an area I rarely shave anyway but lower legs were so annoying! Deciding to the laser hair removal there has been awesome. And then, I decided to add on the upper lip because waxing always hurt so bad and left me sometimes getting blisters so I felt like doing the laser hair removal would be awesome. It was! Barely hurt.
I know your probably still have tons of questions (I know I did) so I compiled a list of most commonly asked questions and I’ll do my best to answer based on my personal experience!
What’s the healing time like?
Other than a little redness right after the laser session there isn’t any down time at all. I’ve always been given some aloe right after the session to rub on the layered areas and within a few hours all the redness has subsided.
Does laser hair removal hurt?
Like I mentioned before it varies based on the area! Underarms, barely. Bikini, pretty painful. Legs, not really at all. Lip, sharp snapping pain but goes so quickly it’s hard to complain.
Is it worth the money?
YES. 100% yes.
Does laser hair removal truly make the hair disappear long term or does it just grow in way less?
The package I purchased came with 8 sessions (every 6 weeks) I’ve probably done about 12 sessions now (my package also came with a 2 year maintenance package where you can continue to come if there is still hair growth) and while the hair growth is super slow growing and much finer, it’s not completely gone. I know this could vary based on person to person but for me, even though it’s not completely gone, only shaving once every 2 weeks and having thin, fine hair has been totally worth it in my opinion!
What does it cost?
On average, the cost of laser hair removal in the smaller, bikini area is between $350 and $500. By contrast, the cost of treating a larger area, such as the back, averages between $600 and $900 per treatment session. However, treatment of the chest will only cost between $350 and $600. For the upper and lower legs, patients can expect to pay from $600 to $850 while the arms, on average, will cost only $350 to $500. The underarms are the cheapest area to treat, with a cost range of $250 to $350. But removing hair on the face and neck is comparable to the cost of laser hair removal on the back, with prices averaging $600 to $900 per treatment. The medi-spa I go to also has membership pricing!
How many treatments are needed?
This will vary! My package came with 8 sessions and then 2 years of maintenance sessions. I’m on 12 sessions now and plan to continue to go throughout my 2 year maintenance package.
How often do you need to go?
Every 6-7 weeks.
How long does a session last?
Varies depending on the area being lasered and how many areas being layered. I do underarms, lower leg, bikini, and lip and it takes about an hour, hour 15 minutes!
Any side effects? Redness? Swelling? Bumps?
Some redness and swelling which dissipates within a couple hours of the session. I have never gotten any bumps!
Laser Hair Removal vs Waxing?
Waxing was 10x more painful in my opinion. I couldn’t do it! Plus, waxing isn’t permanent and I would still get the red bumps I got from shaving too.
What kind of laser should I be using?
When researching places to get laser hair removal done finding out what type of laser they use is one of the most important things. There are so many different lasers. The best laser for laser hair removal is the Gentlemax Pro by Candela. Its the laser that is used at Ideal Image the largest laser company. It has two different type of lasers in one, an alexandrite laser for light skin and a yag laser for dark skin. You definitely don’t want to go somewhere that uses and IPL machine for laser hair removal, it works awesome for treating sun damage or redness/vessels but is inferior for laser hair removal.
Hope this helped! If you have questions I didn’t answer or wanted me to elaborate on anything feel free to send me a message and we can chat! All in all, I definitely recommend!