Hi. Can anyone provide me with a good photo example of skin blanching in the context of electrolysis / thermolysis? A precise explanation of that phenomenon would also be useful. I’ve tried to search the forum but didn’t find much - all I know about it is that it looks like white spots on the skin and that it may indicate overtreatment.

Your help would be much appreciated, as I need to determine whether what I’m getting with my treatments might be blanching or not (I DO see some ‘white-ish spots’ sometimes).

Skin blanching is instant rise of surrounding tissue around follicle, instant whiteness of tissue, sometimes will leak with clear fluid from follicles. There were good videos of French doctor doing over treatment with classic signs of skin blanching.
These links show over treatment. Maybe Josefa has the videos saved in her archives.

oh I just KNEW I shouldnt have clicked that link…

That was truly awful to witness. The worst excuse for "electrolysis " I have ever seen He’s freaking stabbing her cheek and you see the skin tend outwards with the needle extraction!

Thank you for those links Fenix. I can recall that there were a coulple of instances during my treatments (2 or 3 per hour maybe?) when the needle kind of sticked to the probe for a fraction of a second or, at least, that’s what it felt like because I obviously couldn’t see it. I have also sometimes seen some white spots on the skin after finishing a session but they looked different than those in the presented videos (or maybe they were just normal skin surrounded by the patches of red skin from freshly treated follicles, who knows?).

Some additional questions I would like to ask regarding blanching:

  1. How long do these white marks last (the ones from the video links)? Do they disappear immediately after the treatment?
  2. What is the usual short-term consequence (like the next couple of days) of such bad treatment? Heavy scabbing? Pain?
  3. Is blanching always followed by scarring / pitting later on?

have fun with this one fenix! I’m going to sit back and I’m curious to see what you come up with.

No-one willing to answer these questions?

I want to let electrologists with experience and formal training tackle these questions. I have zero experience dealing with skin blanching or formal training on it. But from what I understand, single episode of blanching will not automatically become a permanent scar. If there is repeated over-treatment like this then obviously the risk of scarring becomes very likely.

Kate Blue,

Nobody answer your questions because:

1.The questions concerning the Fenix’s video,I can not answer because i am electrologist. You can contact this clinic and ask them what is the outcome from their painful hair plucking treatment.I am sure they will have a lot of experience dealing with post treatment complications.

2.About your case. If you want concret answer you should provide relevant information (the best is close up picture).The electrologists will look at the picture and then will give you their opinions.


I highly doubt the practitioner at this clinic would admit to their mistake. They didn’t even remove that pitiful video…

OK - so this is one of my recent post-treatment photos (taken like an hour after a session on the upper lip, lower lip, chin and sides):

You can see that there are some white-ish, pustule-like small spots on the upper and lower lip. I keep seeing these rather frequently immediately after my treatments and I was wondering if they have anything to do with blanching. They usually disappear in 24 hours. No scabbing afterwards. They are also not clearly visible from all angles. Here’s another photo taken after the same session - this time, from the front: (notice how they are almost invisible in this shot).

Does that look normal?

This is very interesting you took these videos as an example. On hairtell, there are sadly "famous’ as "Marquis de Sade’ clinic (as far as I remember if I am not wrong).

For the big majority of doctors in France, scars are completely normal after electrolysis hair removal treatment (by them, since only doctors can provide this treatment according to the law).

One of my French client was disfigured after some electrolysis sessions by a dermatologist located in the south of the country. Now she get better and she is happy about the results.

I spoke with several dermatologists and all told me that scars occur with electrolysis. This is why almost all prefer providing laser hair removal.

An other interesting case : I contacted an other French physician, who was mtf transgender. She was doing electrolysis for her beard (white hair) by an dermatologist. She has a lot of scars on her face, pretty bad. But as a physician herself, she thought this is normal… I tried to convince her, but doctors don’t like to be wrong…

An other example of "normal electrolysis procedure by French doctor’ :

Nope, not going to do, I fell for that one once before…

Ahh crap.

Kate Blue,

I think that these “pustule-like small spots” are filled with lymph coming from the follicle.

You can read the following topic for some explanations:

“Excessive Lymph During Treatment?”


I think there is no lymph in them. They appear almost flat in real life (that’s why I referred to them as “pustule-LIKE” and not “pustules”). Like little skin marks where the insertions were. Maybe I used the wrong term.

I’m familiar with that topic and while there indeed is some plasma fluid coming out during my treatments on the upper lip, the leaking usually stops as soon as I get back home (and it’s not that excessive, after all). Skin surface on the presented photo looks kind of wet and shiny because it’s also covered with sun screen.

Kate Blue,

  1. Looking the photo I still think that this is overtreatment(but not so severe to cause blanching) due to high flash settings and using non insulated probes.
    If this is the case your electrologist should use insulated probes with size matching the hair size and decrease the settings a lot. Also the area should be tinned not cleared.Leave the time between 2 treatment 2-3 weeks and the treatment time should be no more than 15-20 min(upper lip).
  2. Your skin maybe is more sensitive to the flash thermolysis so it is good idea to try slow thermolysis or blend and to monitor the skin reaction.
  3. If you have always the same reaction of the skin on other areas maybe you have allergy to nickel and in this case the probe used should be gold plated.


Thanks for your commentary.

  1. My electrologist was using insulated probes all the time but you’re right that flash settings on her Apilus Junior were indeed quite high. The problem is, I have very thick and stubborn hairs on the upper and lower lips so lower settings usually result in those hairs being plucked (at least, my electrologist can’t get a smooth release when the settings are lower). My sessions take place every 3 weeks now and she works for around 30-35 minutes on the upper lip.

  2. I would love to try other modalities but, unfortunately, in my country it’s very hard to find experienced electrologists willing to use blend or manual thermolysis.

  3. I sometimes get similar reaction on my chin (not very often though) but it never occured on the cheeks for example.

If the hairs are thick and deeply rooted the electrologist has no choice but to use high energy to smoothly release them.
Your electrologist should experiment with different modalities, different settings, different types of probes and to choose what cause minimum skin reaction.
It is good to have cataphoresis at the end of treatment.
My suggestion is to have treatment even more than 4 weeks between 2 treatments, to really treat the hair not close than (2-3)mm of each other, to use insulated probe with the same size with the hair(the best probes for thermolysis, for me, are the Laurier probes.They required much less energy and the skin reaction is minimal).
The treatment time is irrelevant and subjective because the speed of different electrologists is different.The most important is to scatter the hair treated. It could take 5 min or 1 hour to finish the upper lip or chin(which is also very dangerous area and the strategy should be the same as the upper lip).