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Many of us have hair in places we do not really want hair to be.  It is generally an aesthetic issue but an issue, nonetheless, to be dealt with.  For example, a woman with hair above her upper lip (a mustache) is not an aesthetically pleasing area for facial hair on a female.  Men are not exempt from this problem.  Many men suffer from too much hair on their back, chest, upper arms, legs, genital areas and shoulders.  Men do not always want the hair completely removed (though some do); they often want it thinned out in order to look more acceptable.  The same can be said for any excess hair on the face (such as the eyebrows), ears, neck, or anywhere else on the body that is socially looked down upon in any particular culture as being untidy or unpleasant to look at.


While there are certain creams, bleaches and procedures, such as shaving or waxing, that can deal with excessive hair growth, laser hair removal is quickly becoming the most effective and the most popular route toward this end, especially for men laser hair removal.  Non-invasive medical procedures such as laser hair removal have become extremely popular in the past five years or so, especially for men.  The procedure is non-invasive, causes no loss of work time, and is safe and effective.


Just what, you might ask, is laser hair removal?   A laser is a highly concentrated, pulsating ray of light.  When used for hair removal, the laser passes through the skin’s outer layer to be absorbed by the pigment in the hair follicle, damaging it. The hair follicle is not destroyed, so hair can technically grow back, but it is very difficult to do so.  The follicle is where hair growth begins, so it is deep within the skin.  Getting to the root is a very good way to discourage new hair growth, and with laser hair removal, new growth will take a very long time, if at all.


Each treatment should ideally be performed in a medical spa, where procedures to treat cosmetic issues for the skin and face are done.  The treatments take roughly twenty minutes to complete and on average five treatments will be necessary, depending upon where on the body the hair is being removed, with each treatment having about a month’s interval in between.  Why are so many treatments needed?  Just one treatment addresses only the growth the hair in its growth phase.  Hair follicles go through various stages of growth and each treatment will arrest the follicle during each growth cycle. The results are very long lasting, with perhaps only an annual touch-up session needed.  The cost for laser hair removal can be anywhere from $400-$500 on average for each session of treatment.


Laser hair removal techniques have been used for the past fifteen years and is FDA-approved for permanent hair reduction.  Men laser hair removal is very popular now, though the technique was first mainly used by women. The technique is most effective on those who have light skin and dark hair.


A full service medical spa will often offer state of the art laser hair removal along with other services such as Botox injections, varicose vein treatments, vitamin usage and a variety of skin treatments.


The side effects of laser hair removal are minor, with redness and/or swelling near the hair follicle the most common, if any.  This may feel like the effect of a minor sunburn.  This minor side effect is actually an indication that the laser hair removal procedure is working to damage the follicle, a desirable outcome.  You can return to your normal, everyday activities immediately after a treatment.


Laser hair removal treatments are generally not painful, though there may be some minor discomfort.  It depends upon the area of the body being treated.  If the skin in that area is thin and/or sensitive, the pinprick of the laser’s action may become uncomfortable.  If that is the case, most medical spa providers will offer a topical anesthesia to alleviate any pain.


Most men seeking laser hair removal do so at a medical spa.  It is more comfortable and soothing than going to a doctor’s office.  It is, however, best to go to a spa that is owned by a dermatologist and has trained nurses on staff to oversee treatments.  The type of laser being used at the medical spa is also important.  One of the best lasers being used today is Lumenis, which is approved by the FDA and is the gold standard for laser hair removal.