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Electrolysis Hair Removal

ElectrolysisElectrolysis hair removal is considered an alternative to either laser hair removal or IPL Hair removal. Whilst all 3 procedures are very effective electrolysis is the only technique that can be said to offer a permanent solution.

The treatment time for electrolysis is however significantly longer than both laser and IPL and it is therefore generally not recommended for treating large areas. Electrolysis can be used on any area of the body and face and is suitable for all skin types.

What is Electrolysis?

Electrolysis hair removal works by applying a tiny current of electricity directly into the hair follicles. The follicle is where the hair grows from and by destroying it the hair is prevented from re-growing.

There are 3 types of electrolysis and they are galvanic, thermolysis and blend:

  • Galvanic electrolysis produces the results by means of a chemical reaction.
  • Thermolysis produces the results by means of heat destruction.
  • Blend electrolysis is a combination of them both.

All 3 types of electrolysis pretty much produce the same results and certain practitioners will have a preference as to which type to use. It may also depend on your skin type and hair type which will be assessed during your consultation.

Electrolysis Procedure:

The procedure varies from one practitioner to another but the typical procedure is as follows:

  • An anaesthetic cream is applied to the area being treated to minimise the pain during the procedure.
  • The practitioner then inserts an extremely thin flexible needle into each individual hair follicle and applies a small amount of electric current which destroys the follicle. There is no pain at all when the needle is inserted into the follicle but you will feel a stinging sensation when the current is applied.
  • The treatment session can last for up to 2 hours but this depends on your tolerance to the pain.
  • Most people can return to work/normal activities immediately after the procedure as there is no recovery time needed.

Does Electrolysis Work on Everyone?

Electrolysis hair removal can be used on both men and women and works on all types of skin and hair types. It does however work best on people with fine hair which has not previously been waxed/plucked. Your practitioner will be able to advise you as to how successful your treatment is likely to be when they assess you during a consultation. It is not however recommended for large body areas such as the legs, as the time required to treat these areas would be too long.

How Many Treatments Will I Need?

This will depend on how big the area being treated is and on the amount and thickness of your hair. Repeat treatments will always be required to ensure the hair loss is permanent. The following gives a rough estimation of how many hours of treatment will be required for a particular area:

  • Upper Lip (moustache): 5 to 10 hours
  • Armpits: 5 to 11 hours.
  • Bikini line: 9 to 15 hours.

What Else Can Electrolysis Be Used To Treat?

Electrolysis is normally used for hair loss but skilled practitioners can also treat the following:

  • Thread veins.
  • Blemishes.
  • Skin Tags.

Electrolysis Side Effects:

Electrolysis is an extremely safe hair removal treatment which has no known long term risks associated with the procedure. There is however a small chance that you could experience a side effect following the procedure but they are generally mild and short lasting.

The most likely Electrolysis side effects are as follows:
  • There can be a moderate amount of discomfort during the actual treatment and this varies between individuals. Some areas are more sensitive than others such as the upper lip area.
  • Following electrolysis there is likely to be some redness and swelling which typically lasts for a few hours.
  • Some people may develop small whitehead spots and/or tiny scabs. These normally disappear within a few days and it is important not to pick them as this could result in scarring.

Following electrolysis it is vitally important that the treated area is thoroughly cleaned to limit the risk of infection. You should avoid direct sunlight for a few days following the treatment and avoid rubbing or scratching the treated area. Most people report little or no side effects following electrolysis and people can return to work / normal activities immediately after the treatment. As well as the side effects you should also familiarise yourself with the likely cost of electrolysis before you commit to having the treatment.

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