Hi, this is my first post, so I should start off by thanking Andrea for assembling such an informative website and forum, and everyone who has posted for sharing their experiences. I’ve found it all extremely helpful.
I’ve got a few questions though, if anyone would care to help me out.
Basically, I’m in my mid-twenties and I live in Sydney, Australia. For several years, I’ve been troubled with a lot of thick black hair on my chest, back, shoulders etc … just about everywhere. It has made me very self-conscious … so much so that I have deferred finishing my university degree so that I could work full time (and overtime) to save up enough money to do something about it.
While I think I now have enough money to get started on this, I really don’t have that much extra to spare, so I would really like to get this “right” and not waste money on ineffective options, if possible.
Glancing at a local magazine, I notice that, in the space of 2 pages, there are no fewer than 6 advertisments for places offering ‘permanent hair reduction’ – most offering either the Lightsheer Diode (or other similar Diodes), or IPL. One also offers an Alexandrite laser. All seem to claim that theirs is the best/most effective/least painful etc. While I’m glad I have a few options, I really don’t want to make the wrong choice.
A final bit of background: as I said, I have a lot of very thick/coarse and very dark hair, and my skin is very pale (I get teased at work for having a ‘moon tan’), so I’m encouraged to learn that I might be a ‘good candidate’ for hair removal.
Okay, with all that out of the way, my questions:
A lot of people seem to be singing the praises of the Lightsheer Diode around here … is that generally regarded as the most effective laser for my skin and hair type? I notice that Alexandrite lasers have more published data in favour of them, but is that simply because they are older? And what about IPL? … the ads seem praise it non-stop (but that’s to be expected, I guess), and what I read online seems to be either very much for or very much against.
I’m a little confused about what to expect in terms of results. Most places seem to imply all the hair will be gone forever, but, from this site, I know that is not true. However, even on these boards, there are people who have had 12+ treatments with only about 40% reduction and others who have had fewer treatments and 90%+ reduction. Does it really vary that much from person to person, or is it a case of some people being treated with older less effective lasers/devices or by practitioners who are not as experienced as others?
Does the fact that I have quite thick/coarse hair mean I will need more treatments (because there is more hair) or fewer (because it will respond to treatment better)? Is it even realistic for me to imagine that I will ever have this under control?
If there are any posters here from Sydney … can you recommend a good place??
I’m planning on doing a phone around this weekend to a few places, so I wanted to ‘arm’ myself with some facts from unbiased people who did not stand to gain thousands of dollars from me. (I am pleased to see that one centre – offering the Lightsheer, and boasting to have done thousands of procedures – has a branch in the same medical clinic where my family doctor is. I’m very tempted to go with them as I find the idea of my doctor being a few doors down very comforting, although I fear they will also be the most expensive.)
Anyhow, I’ve got heaps more questions, but I’ve bored you all enough.
THANK YOU VERY MUCH to anyone who replies.
[ November 14, 2002, 05:06 AM: Message edited by: need_help ]