Hair "dots" after treatment?


I’ve had my back + shoulders treated with epitouch laser many times over the past few years, and in general it’s clearly working – after a treatment it probably takes up to 3 months for any real regrowth to occur, and even that is much finer than it used to be.

However, the annoying thing is that after the treatment there are hair “dots” left in my skin. The dots are the remains of the singed hairs from the laser. The hair external to the skin is mostly fried off during treatment; the dots are underneath and cannot be shaved. They do not come out easily, and seem to stay put until the hair starts to regrow. That’s right – it can take over two months for the last of the dots to go away. Since I have light skin and dark hair, they are very noticeable.

Now I’m pleased to be hairless, but it’s not all that great to have dots all over!

I was wondering if anyone else gets this. If so, what laser do you use? How do you get rid of the spots? How long do they stay for? I was considering switching from the epitouch (alex) to a lightsheer (diode) if I can find a practitioner in the area. Any know if this makes a difference?

I’d be thrilled to have 3 months of useable clearance.

[ July 07, 2002, 09:29 PM: Message edited by: qrashid ]


I get the dots too. I had them with the Apogee and the Lightsheer. They are normal. They will come out eventually. After they have been there for awhile shaving with a blade will remove a lot of them. You may try a loofah to help loosen them. There is not much else you can do that I know of. They will go away eventually.

The dots mean that the hair was thoroughly zapped by the laser. The dots from the Lightsheer are actually more stubborn but are starting to go away after 6 weeks. The Lightsheer has been more effective for me but the Apogee did a good job too.



Ok, I was thinking of the wrong laser. It’s not surprising that the lightsheer leaves the dots as well. Both lightsheer and epitouch are long-pulse lasers which will fry the hair off from the surface, leaving the partial hair shaft embedded in the skin.

After a bit of research, I realize I’m actually interested in the SLP1000, a diode laser that does not fry the hair. I’ve posted another topic about that here

Incidentally, my theory is that the dots stay until the hair follicle grows another (hopefully finer) hair that pushes the old dead hair out. I’ve noticed that the dots tend to stay around until there was some noticeable regrowth. The dots stay around longer these days because the treatment is starting to work – the downside is there’s really only a small window where my skin is both mostly hairless and dotless. Arrrgghh!


After my last treatment with the Lightsheer this year I noticed that most of the dots did not have any hair growing beneath them. That’s probably why they took so long to fall off. That’s a good sign.



In the hair removal industry, these little dots are called “tombstones,” and they are usually pushed out of the skin in time. They happen with electrolysis (especially thermolysis), too.

You can help them on their merry way by keeping the skin moist, exfoliating inn the shower, and using a product like Tend Skin.

As RJC notes, it’s a sign you were getting enough heat in the follicle to cause damage. That’s a good thing. Don’t try to force them out by pinching or squeezing-- this can damage the skin. Try to coax, not force, them out.