Electrolysis Overview

Electrolysis is a cosmetic treatment for permanent hair removal, and can be used on the face and the body. One of the oldest permanent hair-removal options, today's electrolysis methods use heat or chemical energy to destroy hair. 

How does electrolysis work?

During electrolysis, each individual hair is treated by inserting a very small metal probe into every follicle, zapping it with heat or chemical energy, and then removing the hair with a tweezers. 

Proper insertion of the probe does not puncture the skin. Electricity is delivered to the follicle through the probe, which causes localized damage to the areas that generate hairs. This process destroys the hair growth tissue, and the regenerative ability of the hair follicle is permanently gone.

Electrolysis often requires several treatments, influenced by a person's needs, hormones, and heredity. After each electrolysis treatment your hair should grow back thinner and finer. Many people return at least weekly or biweekly for treatments, each lasting 15 minutes to an hour. 

Who is a good candidate?

Electrolysis can work for almost all hairs and skin types, but those who have deep, coarse hairs may need more than one treatment. Thicker, unwanted hair that has been waxed or tweezed will need more treatments than hair that has not been tampered with.

What else do I need to know?

There are few side effects from electrolysis, but a person might have a slight reddening of the skin. Today's methods are not significant in pain, but your provider can also apply a topical anesthetic to numb the area being treated. 

Home electrolysis kits are not recommended, and anyone considering permanent hair removal methods should visit a medical provider skilled in this area for a consultation before treatment. Many states require electrologists to be licensed or certified, so ask to see your practitioner's qualifications and certifications. 

Another method of permanently removing hair, laser hair removal is another popular option. Discuss with your provider which method is right for you.

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