First consultation

I went to my first consultation today, with a dermatologist who uses the LightSheer. I was really optimistic going in, but…I was almost in tears coming out.

First of all, the consultation cost $55 (there’s no charge if I were to get the treatment done on the same day, but I didn’t want to do that). I know that a lot of places don’t charge for consultations, but I decided it would be worth it because I wanted to ask questions about some other problems I have with my skin as well. I had mentioned this to the receptionist ahead of time, because I didn’t want to pay that much just for the hair removal consultation, and she said that would be fine. I seriously thought the $55 would get me a half-hour with the doctor to talk about whatever I wanted.

But it didn’t turn out this way. She basically talked to me for 2 minutes, did the test patch, and then kicked me out. I told her that I was thinking about doing my legs first, and I was unsure about other areas because I wasn’t sure where she thought the laser would work best, or where there would be the least risk of damaging the skin…but she didn’t even look at my legs or any other areas to see what my growth was like. She just said that it’s up to me and that it would work anywhere. I specifically asked if it would work better in areas that have darker hair rather than fine/lighter hair, just to see how she would respond, but she just kind of beat around the bush and didn’t really answer the question.

Anyway, she seemed a bit annoyed when I asked for a test patch. I was hoping to get one on my legs because that’s the area I was considering doing first, but she only gave me one on my stomach. And the worst part is, while she was doing it, she said “You really do have a lot of hair!” - which is probably the most hurtful thing you can say to someone who is hairy and obviously has a problem with it!

She refused to tell me what settings she used for the test patch. (Is this normal?)

I asked for a price list for different areas, and this was also refused. They said that I had to tell them which area I wanted done, and then they would give me the cost for that area. But how am I supposed to decide what I want done, if I don’t know how much it’ll cost???

I had decided to get a consultation here because 1) the dermatologist does the treatments herself, and 2) she’s been doing this for a long time. But, after meeting with her today…there’s just something about her demeanor I didn’t like. I thought she was very arrogant, and that she was in a hurry to get rid of me. So…I’m very disappointed.

The doctor didn’t seem very interested in providing much information. IMHO that’s not a good sign. She could have at least been willing to give some ballpark prices for different areas. Normally you get more for your money if you have large areas done. For expample, my first laser treatment ever on my back and chest was $1,400 for 2 treatments each on the back, chest and abs. By contrast having the chin done would have been about $200.I would get consultations with some other practitioners. Also you should ask the first place how much it would be to have your legs done, so you have something to compare to.How did you respond to the test patch?RJC2001

I would run quickly from that place. Our excess hair growth is a sensitive area and we don’t anyone treating us like crap when we want to deal with the problem.

The woman who does my treatments is awesome. She started me off by looking at the hair growth. She showed me a picture of herself in high school with bushy arms and told me a bit about her experiences with laser hair removal. Since she looks so great now, I would have been not as comfortable with her thinking she was one of the ‘blessed’.

But if you think about it, all a treatment requires is an analysis of the skin to determine the best laser setting, then pointing and shooting… trying to cover the most area with laser without overlapping much (or at all) to damage the skin. Arizona allows trained technicians/aestheticians to perform the procedure which has brought the cost down significantly here. In fact, the place I go is near the airport because she has several clients who fly in because it’s still cheaper than doing it locally.

If you didn’t get the impression that the staff wants you to be hair-free and is committed to making it happen, then don’t waste your money there and don’t trust them with your skin. That’s my 2 cents.

My skin was a little red for an hour or so, and then it went back to normal. I don’t feel any itching or irritation, and there are no marks.

As for the cost, I had to ask the receptionist about a specific area, and then she would write down the price for that area. This was awkward because there were other people waiting, and I was embarrassed because I knew they could hear anything I said…And it just seemed silly because she had the price list right there in front of her, and she wouldn’t let me see the list!

Anyway, the package of 5 treatments for the legs was $5125, which seems like a lot to me. But I guess I shouldn’t be surprised since the consultation was a rip off.