Photo Credit: syneron.com
One of the biggest challenges for laser hair removal has been the inability to treat all skin types. Treatment on darker skin carried the risk of burning, and subsequent scarringâ€”that is, until the new Gentle Hair Removal System from Syneron was launched recently.
â€œI canâ€™t believe how incredible this laser is. It made the grade for us to bring it on,â€ said New York dermatologist Dennis Gross, MD, who runs a prominent dermatology practice at 900 5th Avenue in Manhattan, and is the founder of the uber popular Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare who brought us Alpha BetaÂ® Peel Pads. â€œEven darker skin can be treated effectively and safely with Gentle Hair Removal,â€ he said at a recent press event.
The upgrades in this system are twofold: an advanced cooling system prevents surface skin from burning, a real risk for skin of color; and it features two lasers, an Alexandrite laser and a Nd:YAG laser, which gives your skin care practitioner the necessary flexibility for speedy, effective, and risk free treatment.
The cooling system uses bursts of liquid cryogen before and after each laser pulse. When I tried it, the bursts felt like a brush of cold water. Considered painless, the laser treatment can feel like rubber bands are being snapped on your skin. The coolant also minimizes and distracts you from this sensation.
For skin of color, the cooling system is particularly important, Darker skin tones absorb more laser energy, which causes the risk of burning. Quite literally, the coolant mitigates that.
â€œThe coolant is very important because you are protecting the skin from getting too hot and burning,â€ said Dr. Gross. â€œThe key thing about this device is how gentle it is on the skin.â€ For some people with darker skin tones, hair removal becomes a medical, not just a cosmetic issue, because of beard pumps, ingrown hairs, and post inflammatory hyperpigmentation, so effective, gentle treatment is a necessity.
The new system is also faster, thanks to a bigger hand piece that effectively treats larger body areas. In addition to legs, Gentle Hair Removal can be used on all parts of the body, including face, sideburns, beards, plus underarms, hairy backs and shoulders on guys, and more.
Like all laser hair removal systems, the number of treatments depends upon your hair growth cycle. Hair grows in three stages: growth, transitional, and shedding. Laser hair removal is most effective during the growth stage when hair is thickest and darkest. Generally it takes four to six treatments for long term or permanent hair reduction, and some touch-ups may be required down the line for hairs that were missed. But once a hair follicle is destroyed, a hair will not grow back in that place. Unfortunately, laser hair removal does not work well for light colored or grey hairs, so blondies, sorry you have to continue plucking.