Why are several laser hair removal sessions necessary?

Whether it's around the bikini line, under the arms or on the legs, hair is the summer's sworn enemy. Fortunately, there are several ways to get rid of them, including laser hair removal. This is a hair bulb destruction process that takes several sessions to achieve optimal results. The question here is why it must be done so regularly before it becomes permanent. 

What is laser hair removal? 

Laser hair removal is a principle of selective photothermolysis consisting of projecting a beam of light onto the hair follicle. The objective is to pulverize and destroy the hair bulbs with laser light pulses to get rid of hair for good and enjoy a quiet life.

Moreover, it is important to keep in mind that the specific wavelength is such that it destroys only the hair bulbs without damaging the surrounding skin structure. However, laser hair removal takes some time to be fully effective due to certain characteristics of the hair cycle.  

What is the hair cycle? 

The hair cycle, which lasts from 4 to 18 months, is broken down into three phases and determines the effectiveness of laser hair removal. 

Anagen phase  

This is the phase in which the hair begins its growth, the base of which is attached to the bulb. This phase conditions the pigmentation and the length of the hair. It lasts between 1 and 3 months depending on the type of skin and the area. 

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Catagenic phase  

During this phase, the hair undergoes a change in its structure and gradually falls out of its bulb. This is a very short phase of the hair cycle where the hair pierces the skin and stops growing. 

Telogen phase 

The hair having finished its growth, starts to fall to leave place to a new hair. This is the beginning of a new cycle. It lasts only between 3 and 6 months. 

The need for several hair removal sessions 

In the process of eradicating the hair and its bulb, it is important that it is in the anagen phase. Indeed, the root of the hair contains melanin, a substance that absorbs the laser and also serves as a conductor of light.  

However, it has been proven that not all hairs enter the anagen phase at the same time. While this phase is the most active regrowth phase of the cycle. It is therefore imperative to repeat the sessions in order to reach all the hairs as soon as they start growing at the beginning of the cycle. Then, the hair bulb can be effectively destroyed for a perfect result. You may notice that after the first session, the hairs are thin and grow more slowly.  

As for the protocol to follow, the expected results are only visible after 5 to 8 sessions. This implies that the body respects the hair cycle properly. It is also necessary to space out the sessions by five weeks at the beginning of the protocol, reducing them as the treatment nears its end.  

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You may have to undergo more sessions than expected for the face, as the treatment of hair in this area is considered very delicate. The same is true for the bikini line and underarms, where sessions can last up to several weeks depending on the rapid regrowth of hair in these areas, unlike the legs, for example. It is for this reason that it is often recommended to continue shaving the hair area in order to bring it closer to the bulb to be removed. 

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