40% reduction of hair after each session true or false?

Wondered if anyone can help me…I am a beauty therapist who waxes and also does electrolisis of all types on my bikini line. I am fed up of ingrowing hairs and have seen an advert at my local salon saying “Laser hair removal 40% reduction of hair after each treatment” I am a non-beleiver. Am I correct to not believe?

I was also interested in having my underarms done as I now shave them because I can cope in painful ingrowns.

I have medium/fair skin and my hair in these area is dark and course, can anyone offer advice on what would be best to do. Thank you :smile:


  If i were you i would not go to anybody who said 40% reduction after each treatment. I have had 9 treatments on my back and have maybe 50% reduction 4 months after my last treatment and i have a long way to go.It sounds like they just want your $$$$$$.

40% hair reduction after one treatment is possible, but it would be the ideal and could not be guaranteed every time. There are diminishing returns as the number of treatments increases. As the hair gets finer and lightens in color it is more difficult to treat. I noticed this more with the Apogee laser than with the Lightsheer. The Lightsheer was operated at a higher fluence so it was more effective on the finer hairs.


It is impossible to promise 40% hair removal after your first treatment, frankly you should get almost full clearance after your treatment but a percentage will grow back as per discussed below. The max permanent reduction you can get on your legs per treatment is about 20%.

I’ve just recently become a member of this forum and I am surprised at what is going on in the marketplace for laser hair removal and what passes as medicine and science.

One of our early clients in our Virginia Beach Sona Laser Center had 19 treatments on his back and had as much hair as when he started. Laser hair removal is a science with a little art added in, but mostly science. It should work for most people trying to remove non-grey or blond terminal hair and you should get very good clearance after 5 treatments spaced the right time apart based on the area of the body being treated.

Sona Laser Centers does many thousands of procedures each year and has developed procedures and parameters to give our clients both safe and effective treatments.

First, not all lasers are created equal. We use what we have found to be the most powerful, fastest and most effective laser on the market (Cynosure’s Apogee 9300, or their YAG for type 4 and 5 skin types).

We couple the right laser with proprietary treatment parameters, the “Sona Concept” we have learned over thousands of procedures and based on the science behind how lasers remove hair, we treat each area of the body at the window of time the hair cycles through new growth phases. Each area of the body has different time frames that the hair goes through the anagin phase (growth phase) and different percentages of the hair that is in the growth phase at any one point of time (ranges from 85% on the scalp to 20% on the legs)which is the only time a hair can be permanantly disabled. Each client needs to have a specific treatment calendar based on the specific body areas being treated. We have found that our clients are very satisfied with their hair removal results after 5 treatments using this “Sona Concept”. After each treatment most hair will fall out but a percentage that was not in the growth phase will grow back since it was not permanently disabled.

Who should you have do your laser hair removal? The main issue we have found is not that a doctor is doing the procedure (any doc can buy a laser and begin treating with 4 hours of training, or worse yet hand the operatig manual to a nurse and say, “learn this”). But that a doctor is adequately supervising a well trained nurse using the right laser and using the right treatment parameters and time between treatments.

You can find out more about all this from our site www.sonalasercenters.com

I checked out the sonalaser site and found it interesting. They claim with the Meladine additive they can treat light colored hair. I wonder if it is similar to the carbon lotion used with the Soft Light. Sona uses the Apogee which is a better laser than the Soft Light. Have the darkening dyes ever been tried with other lasers?


Meladine was developed by Creative Technologies and is being used by laser hair removal practices around the country.

It isn’t really a dye-- it is natural melanin encapsualated in liposomes. The liposomes penetrate the hair shaft and deliver the melanin into the hair so the lase can target it. It neither visually changes the hair color or skin color. Practice shows it is very effective on vellus and blond hair and takes longer useage on thicker courser hair like grey hair.

I posted a couple of questions about Meladine in another post. Perhaps we can start a new thread to discuss Meladine, its use, and any data you have on its effectiveness. It sounds good in theory, but earlier attempts to use a carbon-based chromophore with Nd:YAGs (the SoftLight method) were not especially successful. Do you have further information on melanin-based chromophores with alexandrites, especially claims that it can get long-term or permanent results on blonde or gray hair?

In order for me to consider meladin for my gray hairs on my chest i must first get some results on the dark hairs. I seem to get the same pattern after laser treatment even after i switched over to the apogee 9300. It takes 2 weeks to shed, is smooth for 4 weeks after the shedding and then it all comes back the same way. First 8 were with gentlelase 15m-30j 3ms. Apogee settings are 15m-23j 20 ms. I will insist to raise the settings to 15m-25j 40ms from here on out other wise i will be getting laser for a lifetime.

rcrules, treatment parameters will vary depending on your skin type and how much sun you currently have. with a 15mm spot size, your tx at 23j and 20ms should give good results with the 9300. going to 25j and 40ms is kind of going against itself. the 25j will deliver more power but be less effective at 40ms than at 20ms. This factor is related to the thermal relaxation differential between the skin and hair. Both have melanin which attracts the power of the laser, but like putting a nail and a sheet of tinfoil in an oven, then removing them- the nail is still hot but the tinfoil is OK to touch sooner. Same is true of the hair and your skin, the hair retains the energy more than the skin. Reducing the ms gives more power at quicker intervals so you really need to be careful or the skin can retain too much energy and can burn, etc.

A normal tx will remove most hair after 10days to 2 weeks, abd the hair that was not in the growth phase will grow back but you should have less hair after each Tx. The chest has about 30% in anagen phase so your max removal per Tx will be 30%. Common error is to treat too soon between treatments. On your chest this should be 3 months or more, otherwise you are retreatig follacles that have already had hair removed. You can not fool mother nature/ God has created us this way. Can’t just keep treating every month and get good results.

Hope this helps

That was a good explanation of relative thermal relaxation time between the skin and hair.

I was under the impression that longer pulses were more effective. Does it just mean that longer pulses allow the use of higher fluences without damaging the skin?

BTW, Lumenis recommends 3 month treatment intervals with the Lightsheer too.

This raises another question. Does laser treatment alter the growth cycles of the hair in the areas treated? Does it change the length of the cycle, cause a change of cyce after the treatment or both?


RJC2001, Whew you are going past my knowledge base and perhaps beyond what science has been able to determine.

I have seen studies in the past that show the long pulse alexantrites more effective than the short pulse alexandrites. The problem with all scientific studies is you need to know who is “sponsoring” the studies to see if they can be really independant. Scientists are people too and have axes to grind and careers to build.

I found a good explanation of the long pulse laser on the following page of the Cynosure web site: http://www.cynosurelaser.com/TKS.html

I don’t know of any definitive research on affects of laser treatments on growth cycles of hair but would love to see any if someone knows of them.

I would tend to think there is too much varience and subjectivity to get a great result from such a study. The Richards- Merhag table for instance lists the anagen duration for the scalp at 2 to 6 years. This is a 3x variation on just one body area. Other areas have 2x variations. Who is to say which hair follacles are permanently disabled and how that relates to these variations if no effects were present. Plus as I understand hair growth all of us can have vellus hair converting to terminal hair in different life cycles (puberty, memopause, etc.) and maybe all the time.

[ November 06, 2002, 09:11 AM: Message edited by: TRN ]

One of the links on Andrea’s hair facts site had an article on laser by a dermatologist (don’t remember the name) who suggested that low fluence laser treatments may force follicles into a dormant state. If all the follicles were in a dormant stage, then eventually a lot of them may reach the growth stage at the same time and more of them can be destroyed at one time.

That may have been more hypothesis than an actual observation though based on how the article was worded.

I typically get my laser treatments from January through May. That is when I am least tan. I always wondered if not getting treatments during other months hindered my progress at all. Probably not is my conclusion. I have, at most,only about 10 percent of my chest hair left compared with when I started laser treatment. It is still a noticeable amount though because I was extremely hairy when I started.

I go boating a lot in the summer so I wind up with a very dark tan. This summer I had a lot of mechanical problems with the boat and it was in the shop for almost half of the time. If I would have known that was going happen I would have stayed out of the sun, used SPF 30 all of the time and continued the laser treatments to finish up. Damn!


Yes, RJC2001, there are a lot of people who believe that laser can help “synchronize” hair growth cycles by causing a similar interruption in the cycle of all hairs in an area. This still needs a lot more clinical data before it’s certain.