When laser hair removal becomes a razor hair removal

Beauty in Seattle on 31 Jan 2007 at 11:41pm

Laser hair removal was today's big activity.  I finally decided I was done with the upper-lip bleaching.  And I'm too chicken to wax.  laser hair removal begins with razor hair removal

My appointment began with a very youthful 20-something cosmetic aesthetician offering reassurances that she only burned one poor soul.  But never worry, with my pale-as-the-moon skin tone, I would be safe.  She declared my skin type a Fitzpatrick  3;  which put me in safe territory.  I tuned out her explanation of who Fitzpatrick was/what he did.  I was also told that laser hair removal sessions reach only 20 percent of your hairs each time.  Somehow this translated into 8 to 12 sessions.  I'm no math major but...

Despite a sinking feeling I had made a bad decision, I followed the aesthetician into the treatment room.  Upon arriving she fired up the laser, handed me green tinted goggles, and then....oh - my - GOD...she picked up a $0.50 men's bic razor. 

At this point I threw off the goggles.  I was NOT going to have my face shaved.  Surely I would need 8-12 sessions after I get a man's 5 o'clock shadow!

Her comment that the laser hair removal works best on clean shaven female faces simply didn't help.  Off went the laser, out the door I went.  Didn't even pretend to make a follow-up appointment.

Maybe the hair bleaching isn't so bad afterall.  Anyone think this was a normal experience?  I'm feeling no remorse for my laser hair removal quick escape.

Comments (6)

Yes I just went to a counciltation with the American Laser Center and the price and the procedure sounded right. Then the lady told me that I had to shave my lip. This really scares me because i never did any type of hair removal out of the fear that the hair would grow back thicker. I am Puerto Rican with dark hair so if I shave the hair wont it be thicker and more corse? Has anyone gone through this process? I do not want to have a 5 oclock shadow like a man!
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hey There cannot be any hair on the surface on the skin for the laser to work, the root of the hair has to be there though, thats when you get the best results. the laser targets the root, not the surface hair it hurts less when the hair is shaved. I was skeptical at first but i've been having it done for a few months now and i would definately recommend it. Being asian the hair is noticible, but when it is shaved before or after the treatment you cannort tell and even if you let it grow back its much finer.
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You should really give the shaving a chance. I recently had one session for my underarms and 2 weeks after the procedure, all the hair just fell out. I haven't shaved under my arms in a week and it's cleaner and smoother than it was when it was freshly shaven in the morning before just one session. The laser kills so many hair follicles so much faster than shaving could increase them that it would be impossible for you to develop a 5 o clock shadow. You'll probably only need to shave your facial hair once every 2 weeks (since your facial hair is much much thinner than underarm hair) and treatments should be once every 5 weeks, so you'd only have to shave once or twice between sessions. The amount of "five o clock shadow" (which there is no way you're going to get) is completely negligable when you see all those pesky hairs coming right off. It doesn't sound like the center you went to was very informative (or maybe you were so freaked out at the idea of shaving your face you weren't receptive), so you might want to try a different center. When you go in, they should be very friendly and send you into a room where you will watch an informational video. Also make sure your technician is board certified and really knows what they are talking about; ask a lot of question to see if they know their stuff. And make sure they've never burned anyone!!! And FYI, it will probably only take 5 or 6 sessions for your upper lip, maybe less depending on your ethnicity. Give it a chance, it's worth it!!
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I also had a BIG problem with the shaving part (and occasionally still do) but once I got past it, everything worked out.  If it's any comfort, you will be noticing that you will need to do it less and less as your get your treatments done.  Also, in between sessions, as the hairs grow back, you might consider using a fine-tipped pair of scissors rather than a razor to reduce the amount of visible hair.  This way you get less of a "stubble" look since you can more easily target a certain hair or two at a time.   Good luck!

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I also had trouble with the "shaving part" of the procedure, but it seems to be working.
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my laser hair removal experience wasnt that bad but i did have the same fear from burns. my skin is olive tone. turned out that my problem was pain. it HURT so badly to get zapped. That was not expected. If i were you i would reconsider. if you can tolerate the pain and number of sessions, the laser does get rid of hair for good.
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