I'm ready to give up-severe hyperpigmentation


I was treated with an Alexandrite 775nm laser ~8 times and developed severe inflammatory hyperpigmentation on my face. I’m middle-eastern with tan olive skin and dark hair. My dermatologist recommends that I be treated with a YAG 1064nm laser to eliminate the hair.

I feel like all this excitment about laser hair removal is not based on hard evidence and that it’s really only a temporary fix. After all the Alexandrite treatments I don’t feel that I have less hair growth.

I am getting estimates of about $250 per treatment. I also read conflicting reports about the YAG laser not being as effective because it’s carbon-based. Are there YAG’s that aren’t carbon-based that are more effective? Am I going to spend ~$2000 and then end up having all my hair grow back again eventually? I am really considering just sitting all of the electrolysis treatments.


You sound like you might be a good candidate for the Nd:YAG laser. The only YAG that was carbon based (they used a lotion) was the Softlight but it was short pulsed and very weak. All the other YAGs (1064) are much more effective than the softlight.

I have been treated with an Apogee alexandrite, and Lightsheer diode lasers. I did have more scabbing pain and redness with the Apogee, but it was very effective. Pigmentation changes have not been a problem for me. I have type IV skin and tan very easily and my skin is very dark now, so I do not get laser or IPL treatments in the summer.

If your skin is type IV or less you may want to try the Lightsheer diode, it is very effective and if you can tolerate it you will get better results than with the 1064. You can always have a test spot done to see how you react. If it is not satisfactory you can go with the 1064.

Needless to say practitioner skill is very important.

So to summarize I would look into the Lightsheer and if it does not work for you then try the long pulse Nd:YAG 1064. Just stay away from the Softlight. I don’t even know if anyone uses it anymore.



Thanks for your reply RC. Why do you suggest trying the Diode first? Is it the cost or do you think it may be more effective?


In using light sources for hair removal we attempt to exploit differences in pigmentation between hair and skin. Where there is no difference to exploit, the treatment will fail.

Light sources are not magical instruments - but the product of engineers, just like cars. There is no best car. We should look for the best engineered solution for the individual.

Lasers are so expensive that very few practitioners will have more than one - so they use it to there best experience.

You can come up with a theoretical recipe. With my skin type and hair colour, I need say a 810nm diode laser with an experienced tech in Little Rock. Then you find there are no techs in Little Rock - actually no lasers within 50 miles - and then the compromises start.

The most important choice is not the technology but the practitioner.


Nerak: Alexandrite and Diode lasers are not appropriate for use on tan or olive skin, or anything resembling Type4-6 skin colors. The reason your treatments did not work was probably that the practitioner had to scale way back on the fluence (power) used, in order not to burn/scar your skin. The problem with that is you get ineffective treatment at best, with hyperpigmentation almost guaranteed. You must seek out an NdYag laser (the new ones are very high-powered machines, and extremely efficient with hair removal) and very experienced practitioner. You can reasonable expect 70-90% permanent reduction with any newer model laser, with the remaining hair being sparse, fine and somewhat lighter. Good luck, the hyperpigmentation will fade over time (sometimes it takes 6 months or so), and be sure to wear sun-block if you are out in the sun. :smile:


I am a type 4 and have been successfully treated with the Lighsheer diode laser. I do not get treatments in the summer when I tan. I went with the Lightsheer based on practitioner recommendation. They also have a Sciton long pulse Nd:YAG laser. They use it on darker skin types than mine that cannot tolerate the diode laser. However, the YAG is not as efficient and requires more treatments. But it is still preferable for the darkest skin types.

But still it all comes down to practitioner skill.



Hi All,

I have read your answers and would ask some help. I am using the lightsheer and because of my last treatment I am now burnt and hyper pigmented. I have cigarette marks and hyper pigmentation all over my back and shoulders.

This is because the new nurse was not experienced to use compression with high fluence, instead she has used the drag and glide technique which is the worse to be used with lightsheer.

I am trying to find a remedy for my skin. The treatment was 28 days ago and I still present severe hyper-pigmentation. I now that some of you have strong acument on lightsheer and particularly on remedies after treatments.

What do I have to do. I have used for the initial 5 days the hydro-cortison and for the following day (until today) the aloe vera. But the results are poor.

I would be glad if you could suggest me creams and other remedies to get my skin back.



That is why practitioner skill is so important. I would not get Lightsheer treatments without compression. The difference is like night and day. Compression is more effective and less redness results because the cooling system works better.