Candela 18mm spot: 10J 1st 3, now 12J, 16 never!

I’m getting treatments to get chest and abdomen done. The machine is candela gentlease 18mm. Treatments have been spaced 7-8 weeks apart, and for my first 3 treatments, I got treated at 10J, then finally, after imploring the tech to up the joules on my 4th treatment, I was treated at 12J. I’ve had 3 different techs do the treatments, the first tech did my 3rd treatment. Anyway, on my 3rd treatment I asked to have a spot test at 12J, and everything was just fine afterward. So on my 4th treatment, I asked this new tech to go up to 12J, and she was very much against it, but I said I’ll take the risk. So we went ahead with 12J. As I was treated, we discussed expectations, and I said that I’ve read that 10J doesn’t really get a good permanent reduction as per what I’ve read (from what I read, people who go in for several treatments at lower levels might be satisfied at first, but a year later it all grows back… I do NOT want that. I want a significant permanent reduction), and that I’ve read that I should expect results when treatments go on at 14J at the very least. So I said I expected to progress as we went. So the tech replies that for my skin type never in a million years would I be treated at 16J. And that I’ll definitely burn (the two previous techs didn’t seem to have this opinion). But I recently tolerated 12J just fine. I do get the odd hyperpigmentation spot here and there, but I’ve had electrolosis before (on some areas that I know are prone to the paradoxical hair growth stimulation from lasers) too which caused hyperpigmentation on occasion, and I know that in time it fades. It’s not even very noticeable, and not really a concern based on my past experience.

I seem to be between III and IV on the fitzpatrick scale. I’m attaching a picture. Areas that aren’t in the sun do look pretty light (especially the inside of my upper arm)… just not pasty. She said only people with very fine light hair and porcelain skin get 20J, and that I will see great results if I keep up the treatments at 10J, and saw no need to take it up to 12J… She said I might tolerate their lightsheer better, and they can up the level a bit higher. She did a spot test with it (that vacuum tickles!) at 6J (seemed kind of odd, given that I just finished a treatment on candela gentlelase at 12.

So… my questions are: Is it really unheard of for someone like me to go to 16J? Will I get good results at just 12J? I do have somewhat coarse dark brown (if not black) hair. I have a package of 6 treatments, with up to 3 follow ups (basically 9), so 5 treatments left, and I want to make them count!

PS: My experience has been like this… 1st treatment: plenty of edema bumps around the hairs immediately after, lots of pepper spots. The hair in the first few weeks were easy to pull out – virtually no resistance at all… 2nd treatment 7 weeks later: some regrowth, considerably less density, but obviously hair grows in cycles, so if I did a wax it’d probably be like this anyway. The hairs did however seem obviously less thick. The post treatment experience was pretty much the same as my 1st… 3rd treatment 7 weeks later: pre-post treatment experience was the same as 2nd, maybe a tiny bit less regrowth… 4th treatment 8 weeks later, finally increased to 12J: pre-post treatment experience was the same as 3rd (well, have to wait a bit more to see how things regrow 7 weeks from now, when I’ll go in for the 5th treatment, hopefully at 14J).

qwerty Attachments


10-12 is way too low you’re wasting your money. I’m darker than you and have done 18mm and 18 joules with no issues. If they won’t go higher than 12 then they don’t know what they’re doing. Even 14 is very low still, I’d find another clinic.

I’ll insist on trying 14J (maybe before the treatment ask for a spot test a few weeks in advance)… but are you sure you’re darker than me? 18 sounds pretty high, seeing that 20 is the max.

Also, they have a new LightSheer TM Diode machine. If anyone thinks that’s a better choice, what settings should I start at, given that I’m tolerating 12JX18mm on Gentlelase with no problem at all. Obviously, I want to go with what is most effective. Help me Hairtell forum!