LASER HAIR REMOVAL Laser hair removal is a fast, safe, affordable, and effective treatment for the removal of unwanted body hair for both men and women. Traditional hair removal techniques, such as shaving, tweezing, waxing, and depilatory creams provide only temporary relief. Electrolysis is uncomfortable, tedious, and time consuming. Laser hair removal is a medical breakthrough. Treatments are comfortable, treating hair follicles in a fraction of the time of other methods, using only the gentle power of laser light.

At our office, we use the Candela GentleLASE laser system, a long-pulsed high-energy alexandrite laser that incorporates a Dynamic Cooling Device (DCD). This laser is FDA approved, and is one of only a few types of medical hair removal lasers that are able to use the word “permanent” to describe its results after a course of treatment. Our team of qualified staff has been thoroughly trained in the use of this laser system.

At the initial consultation, which is always free, Dr. Norkiewicz will determine if your hair type and skin type is suitable for treatment. If your hair type is treatable, a patch test can be performed using the laser machine if necessary. This is important in darker skin types to be sure there are no complications with the skin, such as pigment changes or scarring. If the patch test has been completed successfully, or you elect to proceed with treatments without a patch test, you may undergo your first treatment.

About The Procedure
The Candela GentleLASE laser emits an intense pulse of light that is absorbed by the dark pigment of hair shafts and follicles. The energy is converted into heat, which destroys or severely injures the hair follicle. This either completely stops hair growth or damages the follicle so that it can only produce a barely visible, fine, thin hair that replaces the dark, visible hair. Epidermal melanocytes, or the pigment-containing cells of the skin, compete as a target for the specific wavelength of light used in hair removal. The DCD, or cooling device, sprays cryogen onto the skin immediately prior to the pulse of light, to increase patient comfort and protect the skin. Safety considerations are important during the laser procedure. The patient and all personnel in the treatment room will wear protective eyewear during the procedure to reduce the chance of damage to the retina. The laser hair removal treatments are performed in the office, and done by Dr. Norkiewicz and his fully trained staff. The laser feels like the snap of a rubber band on the skin. There is both warmth from the laser, and cold from the cooling spray, but the discomfort is minimal. Of course, the degree of discomfort varies with each person. Topical anesthesia may be needed in rare cases. Immediately after the procedure, the treated area will feel like sunburn for a few hours. The application of ice or cold compresses during the first few hours after treatment will reduce discomfort that may be experienced. The swelling and redness that occurs may last 2-4 days. Aloe Vera gel will be applied after treatments, and should be applied 3-4 times a day for 3-4 days. Darker pigmented people may have more discomfort than lighter skin people and may require the gel longer. A complete list of post procedure instructions will be given to you and discussed with you prior to leaving after the procedure.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know I am a candidate for laser hair removal treatment?
Each patient is different, but typically light skin and dark hair is best for laser treatments. Grey, silver, white, or very blond hair will not absorb the laser energy, and will not be affected by the treatment. During the initial consultation, which is always free, the doctor will evaluate your hair growth to determine if laser hair removal treatments will benefit you.

Is the treatment more effective than electrolysis or waxing?
Waxing is done to remove hair, but the follicle is not damaged, so the hair will grow back. This is how tweezing, and most depilatories work as well. Electrolysis is a hair-by-hair process that involves a small needle inserted into each hair follicle. A combination of electricity damages the hair follicle. This can be tedious, time consuming, and uncomfortable. Laser hair removal has been shown to be more effective than any other hair removal method currently available.

How many treatments will I need?
The number of treatments required depends upon the density, color, and location of the hair. The usual number of treatments is from two to four or sometimes more. The average patient requires three treatments.

Does the procedure hurt?
The laser light feels like a rubber band snapped across your skin followed by a mild heat that lasts for a few seconds. There is also a pulse of cold from the DCD cooling spray used with the laser. Most people describe it as a tingling sensation, or as an uncomfortable sensation.

How long does each session take?
The time required depends on the size, extent, and density of the hair of the area to be treated. Laser treatment can take from 15 minutes to one hour or longer.

How will my skin look and feel after treatment?
Most patients have discomfort like a sunburn for a few hours after treatment. The skin develops redness and swelling, which may last 2-4 days. Cold compresses are applied after treatments to help minimize the swelling.

Are there any side effects?
As with any laser treatments, there are potential side effects or complications. These are more common in darker skin types, and include changes in the color of the skin, with lightening or darkening, scarring, infection, and poor patient satisfaction with the results of treatments.

What is the follow up schedule?
Laser hair reduction treats hair only when it is in a growth phase. At any one time, only a portion of the hair in a particular area will be in growth phase, and the others will be in a resting phase. Therefore, to treat all hair while it is in a growth phase, follow up treatments are required generally 4-12 weeks apart, depending on the body area, hair density, and growth rates. We will typically schedule a follow up at 4-6 weeks, but it may take longer to grow hair back for some people. Please call us 48 hours prior to your scheduled appointment to inform us if there has been no hair growth in the treated area, and we will postpone your scheduled appointment until the hair does start to grow.

What else does the Candela laser treat?
The Candela GentleLASE laser system is also useful in treating dark blue/black pigmented spider veins. This works on the same principle as hair removal. The dark colored vein absorbs the laser energy, which gets converted to heat. The veins get a bruised appearance for 2-4 weeks, and over time are absorbed by the body. This may take 2-3 treatments. This can only be done on fair skinned people (types 1-2), with small, blue veins. Red veins will not be affected due to the red crystal in the laser. The cost for the procedure is $3.00 dollars per pulse with a minimum fee of $30.00. The Candela laser also has the effect of improving the appearance of active acne. This happens because the laser light gets converted to heat, and kills the bacteria responsible for acne. It also damages the sebum sack in the sebaceous glands, causing them to get smaller. Laser treatments usually clear 70-90 % of moderate, inflammatory acne in four to six weeks, and usually help control breakouts for four to eight months. After that touch ups may be required.

Payment Terms
Multiple area discount: Clients who wish to have multiple areas treated will receive a 10% discount off the total cost. This does not apply to already discounted prices. Prices are as stated for the first four treatments on any specific area. Any treatments after the fourth on any specific area are half off. Package prices are good when paid in advance of the second treatment. Touch-ups are $3.00 dollars per pulse, with a 25-pulse minimum. No hidden fees. Prices are the complete cost for the areas listed. Gift certificates are available in any amount. Please ask us about gift certificates. We accept: Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express, Cash, and Checks. Prices are subject to change without notice.

Click to Download an Acrobat PDF of Laser Hair Removal Pre And Post Treatment Instructions