Buying guide for best laser hair removal systems
If you’re looking for a sleek, fuzz-free body but are over razors, messy creams and painful waxing, laser hair removal (sometimes called electrolysis) might be the way to go. It offers a permanent solution to unwanted body hair and can be used on any part of the body, including the face.
The downside is that it requires multiple, pricey trips to the salon — that is until 2008 when the FDA approved at-home laser systems. These allow you to get similar results to those of a medical professional or technician in the privacy of your home at a fraction of the cost. Nonetheless, these appliances are not inexpensive, and with a variety to choose from, you need to make sure your investment will be suited to your needs to get the job done.
There are a few different technologies on the market. Lasers use diode laser technology and can be used to focus in on small areas. Other appliances use intense pulsed light (IPL) technology and can cover larger areas quicker.
How does laser hair removal work?
In a laser hair removal treatment, an electronic wand focuses a concentrated beam of light on specific hair follicles. The light is absorbed by the pigment in the hair, destroying the follicle enough to slow hair growth in that area.
To get rid of the hair completely, you must treat the targeted areas two or more times. The hair isn’t permanently removed, but the growth is slowed so you won’t need additional treatments for anywhere from several months to several years.
Because the laser or light is absorbed by the pigment in the hair, there must be a contrast between the color of your skin and the color of your hair. Thus, the best candidates for laser hair removal are those who have light skin and dark hair.
If you have dark skin and dark hair or light skin and blonde hair, there usually isn’t enough contrast between the two for laser hair removal to work. Gender isn’t a factor; it works just as well for people of all genders.
Keep in mind that laser hair removal only works on certain types of body hair, such as on the face, legs, arms, underarms, and pubic area. It shouldn’t be used on the genitals.
Laser hair removal system pricing
A laser hair removal system is a fairly costly purchase. In general, they range in price from $150 to $450. It is important to remember that you’ll pay considerably more for professional laser hair removal treatments, so it may be worth the investment if you want to lessen your amount of body hair economically.
If you’re only interested in removing small amounts of hair, a lower end system that comes in around $200 and requires replacement cartridges is usually a good option.
If you plan to use the device all over your body or for larger areas such as the legs or chest, a higher end model will cost about $449. One that require replacement cartridges may be a better value compared to paying less for the machine but buying new cartridges over time.