First time having electrolysis done on face, need some advice

An image would be helpful but I think the following:

Fine hairs growing dark and thick ( especially after a laser treatment ) is usually a case of paradoxal hypertrichosis ( Paradoxal laser hair stimulation). It’s common on darker or olive complexions and is 100% the result of the laser treatment . Such skin tones also tend to be prone to post inflamatory hyperpigmentation ( brown spots after scabs fall off heal over) and this is a TEMPORARY manifestation that will resolve completely. It can take a long time however, in extreme cases a year or more, but they always fade…completely. They are therefore not a treatment concern.
Using an insulated probe, carefully using just the right amount of treatment energy, is the best way to reduce or eliminate unwanted skin reaction such as scabbing.

I’ll answer more fully, when I’m not having my 30 seconds between clients .

Seana

Thank you for this reply!

Here is an image of my neck a day after the 15 minute session

And this is my jaw area also the next day BUT she barely did my jaw the second time due to the time limit so technically all these scabs are from last week.

I just do not understand how it stimulated hair growth on my neck especially since I didn’t shave or laser it!!

I did a patch test around a month ago, basically the electrologist did 4-5 follicles on my neck. It took a bit under 2 weeks for the scabs to fall off and I didn’t experience any brown spots under it. I do feel like 2 weeks is too long though and the electrologist says there isn’t anything she can do about it in terms of the technique or energy settings. I didn’t use any product on the area though other than moisutrizer and sunscreen so I don’t know if it took long due to a lack in aftercare or if thats just how my skin heals.
I don’t know if the fact that I used to take Accutane for a few months till January 2018 has an effect on the scabs or possible scarring, my electrologist said since it has been more than 6 months its not an issue. Also considering I lasered my jaw and my skin didn’t scar, she thought its fine to go forward with electrolysis.

What do you recommend I do? Is my skin reacting normally? And is there a way to help the with the healing process? I used polysporin a lot last week but changed to also vera gel after the second session.

Your skin does indeed have the exact skin tone I was concerned about for both hyperpigmentation and laser stimulated hair growth. I believe you when you said you didnt laser the neck, so there may be some idiopathic cause, but my money is still on the laser. as to cause of growth.
The scabbing that is there , is small and incidental. It will not cause scarring. It’s not perfectly ideal to cause that however. I can suggest some use of tea tree oil, perhaps slightly diluted with witch hazel, as an astingent and also because Tea tree oil can disolve scabbing and other necrotic tissues.So that will be a good first step.
Second, the scabbing in the upper areas of the hair follicle ( at the skin’s surface) is due to energy being dispersed near the top of the follicle. The solution is simple, dont release electrolysis energy with the surface of the skin exposed! You do this, via the electrologist using an insulated probe as I suggested, this limits the energy to the lower 1/3 of the follicle ( where the stem cells we are trying to destroy are located ) and prevents the energy from being dispersed in the upper follicle such that scabbing like this will not occur. Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation is similarly reduced, by limiting the inflamation ( and resulting PIH to the lower non visible part of the follicle.

I treat faces of indian, pakistani, Asian women every day with remarkably similar skin tones to your own, and this is how I prevent the same skin reaction in those clients.

Also, dont sweat the small stuff. Little nicks and scratches will happen through the course of your healing and treatment. In almost all cases, there is no lasting scarring or ill effects. Your treatment is completely normal and the skin reaction is well within reason.

Seana

I don’t think the electrologist I go to has insulated probes. I live in Montreal and have been to a few consultations all of which use the same typical probe, it’s difficult finding someone who uses an insulated probe.

Does the fact that this is laser stimulated hair growth affect the total treatment time? Would you say it would take more than 12-18 months? And should I go for longer sessions to clear it all at once or is scattering the best option?

Dimi is in Laval if I recall correctly, and definitely has insulated probes. Dectro makes probes and has insulated and are located right in Montreal as well so there are definitely electrologists in montreal that use them . I wouldnt have treatment with your skin type without them, but you can suggest your electrologist stops by at Dectro to stock up… Or alternatively you could come out to Ottawa once a month and see one of my 2 co-electrologists ( I’m afraid I cant tae on any more cases at the moment, but Ashly Barrie would be a good choice as she’s quite good) .
I dont know the entire history of your skin to talk about timelines, so I cant really advise on that, but I wouldnt expect a lot more than that , Laser stimulated hair doesnt tend to be as robust and in my experience can be a shorter removal in some cases without too many cycles of growth.

If I had a car I would definitely consider coming out to Ottawa however that is not possible. Thank you for recommending some electrologists.
I haven’t shaved the hair on my neck at all or removed it in away way prior to starting electrolysis, would that possibly effect total treatment for the better? Also, I tend to travel for a long period in the summer (2 months or even more) how long do you think I can go without doing electrolysis in that time? Would it affect my treatment in a bad way?

Well, it can actually effect the total treatment for the better, but, and this is a big if the electrologist is treating all of the hair regardless of it’s stage of growth. Clearing every hair on your face with every successive treatment and going after each hair as if it is the most important hair of their career. The thing is there’s a lot of electrologists that dont work this way. They remove all the bothersome anagen hair sure, but they deliberately ignore hairs in catagen and telogen or dont treat them sufficiently to get a good release of the hair. By doing this we dont get to treat those hair follicles until the next cycle of growth, extending your treatment time overall by months to years.
The same goes for the travel issue. By skipping periods of months ( more than 3 months is an entire growth cycle for facial hair ) you have gaps in your treatment that can extend your overall treatment by years. If possible you could find temporary electrologists willing and able to do that kind of work along your travels, but in many countries these are quite hard to come by good qualified electrologists.

Could you elaborate a bit more on why it is better to get a complete clearing every session?
Also, is the method for using an insulated probe different from that of using a typical stainless steel probe? I am thinking of buying the probes myself and asking my electrologist to use them but I don’t know if she will even know how to use them unless the methods are identical.

My electrologist tries to remove the thicker or anagen hairs first as she says the hair needs to be in this phase to be killed (for a lack of better term) properly. However, most of the hair (especially on my neck as you can see in the photos) are telogen and she tried to get as much done in the small time frame we had. I don’t think she wants to clear every hair at once and she likes to do it scattered. I think it could be because this way the skin is irritated less but honestly I do not know the reasoning behind it.

And THIS is exactly what I was taling about, when I said SOME electrologists dont work like I do. Alright here’s what I’m getting at.
many electrologists are taught an anagen only theory. That you can only “Kill” hair that is an anagen stage of growth.Well the problem is that YOU CAN kill hairs that are in catagen or telogen( and this has been proven time and time again by first rate electrologists on this board) whether or not you believe you can do so And if you don’t believe that you can kill them, you may never TRY to kill them or wont have any confidence in your results. So that means those hairs must wait until they shed, then come BACK as anagen hairs and be treated This can take months ( up to a year in fact) and that is addition to the 12-18 minimum number of months that is your baseline goal . So to be clear, to complete the job, any electrolysis job in 12-18 months requires treating the hair ( ALL THE HAIR PRESENT) within every growth cycle If you do not get enough treatment to remove all of the hairs in each cycle of growth, the total time frame of removal increases.

Thank you for explaining it to me, I understand what you are saying. I’ll bring it up with her next time and see what she says.
If you have the time, could you please answer the 2nd question I had, about buying and letting my electrolysis use insulated probes. It’s just so I know how to move forward from now and take the right steps about my treatment.

I am in total agreement with everything that Seana said.

I would like to emphasize that your after treatment pictures look great. You concerns are nothing to worry about.

You can purchase insulated probes, but you need to ask her what size. She may not have experience using an insulated probe. Insertions have got to be ace on perfect when using an insulated probe. She may not like using insulated probes, so explore that with her?? There should be plenty of great electrologists to choose from in Montreal, of all places, so get more consultations if you are not finding what you think you may need.

Lastly, I really like applying COLD, right out of the refrigerator, Aloe Vera Gel to a treated area, on women of color. The cold calms down the skin pigment cells and lessens hyperpigmentation that could result. Continue to use cold aloe at home, as liberally as you want, for two or three days and see what happens for you.

your electrologist would be able to buy the insulated probes from her regular supplier. You likely cannot as they are a restricted item and Dectro does not sell to individuals anymore. unless they are a certified Electrologist.And I’m going to emphasize what Dee said, your electrologist might not be able to use them well if she isnt practised with them.

Hi Deedra,
I have been applying aloe gel for more than 3 days post treatment and honestly I don’t see any improvement, I’m guessing my body/skin just takes a lot longer to heal.

Same here. This is all very good advice. The delicate skin around the mouth and on the neck needs careful treatment. Good aftercare can help speed up time to healing.

Hi again,

The scabs on my cheeks have been around for 2 weeks now, i keep putting on aleo gel (sometimes cold sometimes not) and I also put tea tree oil for the first 2-3 days. I also always put sunscreen on. Is there anything else I can do other wait and see when they’ll fall off?

You can give your electrologist feedback about your scabbing the length of time you have scabs. There is only so much that aftercare products can do. Aftercare products can be helpful, but the other part of the equation relates to the “recipe” your practitioner is using. The balancing of intensity and timing may be enough to give relief. Also, for any practitioner, making perfect insertions, that are not too shallow or too deep and using the correct probe size for the hair structures contribute to some or no skin reaction.

It is all temporary and normal to have some type of skin reaction, especially for the beginning load of treatments.

The scabbing in the images you provided is very normal and too insignificant to justify any concern. At this point, the aloe vera isn’t necessary unless you just like to use it as a regular moisturiser. Since the scabs have been there for two weeks, you can use a wet washcloth to gently wipe the area while showering, and you should see a reduction. If you wipe too hard, you may cause some scabs to fall off before they’re ready.

Hey, i have had the exact same reaction to you, i only had a few darker chin hairs i wanted to laser, now I am paying the price, and have been doing electrolysis once a month for nearly a year so far, I am so angry I wasnt advised to do electrlysis in the first place. i never would have been in this situation.

I really do understand what you are going through right now and with the pandemic it made matter worse unfortunately. How are your results so far?

its definitely working =) slowly but surely