Hi guys! I am a lonnnnnnng time lurker from Orlando, Florida. I am a 21 year old female with fair skin and awful, dark dense hair. I have been longing to have laser (and prob eventually electrolysis) treatments ever since I heard that such a thing existed.
So I finally got the balls to make an appointment, and today was my consultation! I am going to start a journal here (and hopefully it ends on a successful note) so I can be inspiring/helpful to others as many of you have been for me over the last 4 or so years. :slight_smile:

Unfortunately I was SUPER nervous so when I got my test spot done, I failed to even inquire about the laser or the settings used. My b.

The waiting room was comfortable and the staff were nice. My appointment was on time. I chose this place because they do both laser as well as electrolysis and even offer schooling in their services. This way, their staff are all trained at the same place, and kept updated on technology changes. Oh! and they are connected with an OBGYN clinic.

This is what I intend to have lasered: underarms, brazillian (butt D:), forearms, lower legs. I also want to get electrolysis on a few areas with finer hair, like on my stomach, lower back, and facial hair. Taking it all one step at a time!

First I had to fill out some paperwork and sign a bunch of stuff saying that I understand laser isn’t always 100% etc, lol.

The practitioner was a very polite and helpful [10+ years hair free] lady. She explained to me about how laser works but I already knew mostly everything from… well, this forum, haha. So I didn’t really have any questions about how it all works etc. She did 3 spot treatments at different settings on my left armpit. I didn’t note the name of the laser, but it had one of those “cooling devices” to alleviate the pain. It stung a bit during and after but was definitely bearable. I could smell the hair burning on the last one. IMO any amount of pain is worth it to even reduce the amount of hair I’ve got. :stuck_out_tongue:

I am paying per treatment because I am a poor college student. I realllly want to do my bikini area first because it is THE WORST and all scarred up from ingrowns, but I want to try it somewhere discreet and cheap first so I am comfortable with the technician before I show them my world (lol).

It is $150 for both underarms. My first real appointment is this Friday at 9am, wish me luck~ I’ll take pictures. So far I am pleased with everything.

The name of the place is Orlando Institute of Electrolysis.

Well few things, their website shows they charge for a test spot? That’s crazy it should always be free. $150 is expensive for underarms, it should be around $60-100 max I think.

As for the laser type used, almost all will have a cooling device attached to it. I was just pasting tons of images to help you identify it but I’d just give them a call instead and ask what type of laser they use. That’s VERY important before you do any treatments. Call them as soon as you can to find out first then we can definitely help more.

You have to watch with forearms, most women don’t have coarse enough hair on their forearms for laser.

Thanks for the input!
I looked at several promising places in my area and test spots seem to have a price tag at all of them.
Luckily, it is a one time fee. All future test spots will be free so I don’t think it is a big deal.

Also, maybe the cost is high because it is done by a physician? I’d be skeptical if it was anything under $100. I’ve seen underarm treatments listed even as high as $250! D:

The cost is probably high because of the physician but keep in mind that doesn’t mean it’s better. Doctors do everything so generally it’s better to go somewhere that only does laser, since at those places people do laser every day all day where a doctor may do it a couple times a week. I pay $60 for mine, I’ve had 3 sessions and have almost no hair left after just 3 :slight_smile:

For the machine, try to find out what laser it is. How did the cooling work, was it a separate machine blowing cold air onto you or was it built into the laser head?

Underarms at my clinic are $75, and my old clinic charged $90. I definitely think $150 is expensive (Both my legs are only $125 total, and my bikini/butt is $150 for full brazilian), and charging for a test spot sounds ridiculous and insulting, I would find a new clinic on principle alone after being told to pay for that.

But that being said, prices like that DO vary and aren’t as important as the results. If you really think this clinic is going to perform great treatments, and you don’t mind the price, then go for it.

But since you didn’t get the info, you cannot make that decision yet. Sounds like you need an alex laser. Find out what type of laser, and what the joules/spot size are and pulse width (if variable).

hmmm. I will look more into it and report back on Friday. :slight_smile:

How many clinics have you called and checked out? Have you read our FAQs below? Have you read our other tips on finding a provider below?

I feel you’re jumping into the treatment too early. As you probably know from reading the forum, we advise to do thorough research and check out several clinics with the right lasers (i.e. only going to a clinic with the laser you know you need for your skin type). While at the appt, you should ask for settings. You can also call afterwards and ask for the name of the machine and settings. Then you should wait 3 weeks for shedding of treated hair on your test spot to occur.

I agree that $150 is on the high end of things. I also wouldn’t pay for a test spot, though some physicians do charge. It’s not necessary to go to an office with an MD. It doesn’t mean they know anything about hair removal or how to operate their device well. You need someone who does hair removal all day every day.

I know Ideal Image has clinics in FL. They have good lasers, though can be expensive. However, what you’re paying is also expensive.

Update: I went ahead with the first treatment because I was able to get a discount, making it $50.

The technician is also the co-owner of the facility. She has been performing laser since the mid 90’s, and electrolysis even longer. This place seems to be family-operated.

The laser used was GentleLASE Alexandrite, which I am relieved about! Settings used were 16 joules, 40/40 cooling. It hurt more than the test spot, but she put aloe on it immediately after and everything has gone away. She was thorough and attentive. The whole procedure took maybe 7 minutes.

Sounds good! GentleLASE is very good and 16j (providing it was the 18mm spot size) is also decent as well. You had your underarms treated I assume?

Sounds good to me as well. 16J and 18mm on a GentleLASE are good settings. And $50 for underarms is a terrific price.

My armpits are CRAZY itchy right now, haha. D: It is normal, but what’s this caused by?

Possibly a histamine reaction. One of my clinics recommends Benadryl for this, and the other gives small tubes of cortisone cream.

I prefer to use neither, and just deal with the itching (which tends to last a few hours up to a day or two on my legs). Once I did pop a Benadryl when it was really bad and I was worried I’d scratch in my sleep. Worked well.

I also think if your itching is just caused by basic healing, then some aloe will help. Aloe is very soothing for sunburns (which are similar).

Buy some clear aloe vera gel, the kind sold for sunburns. cool it in the fridge and apply several times a day. It’s normal to have a bit of itching.

Underarms are totally fine now, I’ve been exfoliating every day. Going to get some aloe vera for next time.

I found another place that uses Alexandrite lasers so I am going for a consultation on Friday to see if there is a drastic price difference between the two.

They also offer electrolysis, which I am thinking of starting on my stomach. The price runs about $112 per hour. The other place is $110. Is this pretty much standard as far as prices go?

I have really lonng, fine but DENSE dark hair covering my entire stomach. I know laser won’t work for it. Lately I started bleaching it because it gets all prickly from shaving which I hate. I don’t even really need full clearance besides my happy trial, you can really just notice the other hairs because there are SO many of them.

Anyone have a similar situation? Any idea how long one electrolysis session will take? I really have no clue! I will probably inquire about it at my consultation.

That’s relatively expensive for electrolysis. I think rates in major cities are about $65-100 and closer to $60-70 in smaller cities. You can sometimes negotiate cheaper rates if you’re prebuying a number of hours.

An average electrologist removes 5-10 hairs per minute. You’ll need to go in for about a year as well due to hair cycles. You’ll start at every 2 weeks and will gradually go down to once a month or so. Look for someone using the fastest thermolysis method of electrolysis and it would be great if they have a newer machine liek Apilus.

I guess Orlando only offers expensive services. :frowning: Thanks for the tips, very helpful!

I can pull out my underarm hairs with no effort now. Am I accurate in saying that these hairs were properly treated and killed?

Yes, that’s shedding hair. If it’s coming out without resistance, it would have fallen out on its own.

I would look around some more. Have you tried using the Candela’s zip code search for a provider on their site? Use our tips listed in the last link below.

I used the Candela search engine and found a nice place about 2 minutes from where I work! There were not very many nearby places that use the Alexandrite GentleLASE, and I don’t really want to go to Ideal Image bc the one closest to me has pretty bad reviews lol.

So I had my consultation today… boy am I glad I went. this is the place! One of the first laser centers in this city.

The owner, Cathy, discussed everything with me for about an hour. I felt so much more comfortable than with the other place. Back then I wasn’t sure what to expect, so I assumed the 5-10 min consultation I received was standard.

She went over EVERYTHING! We discussed the individual places I wanted treated, she explained the phases of hair, and made sure I knew what types of hair and skin her GentleLASE would work on. We even went over my family’s medical history. She also went into detail about the laser itself and the settings she would use and how important it is to know what you are doing when operating it. Cathy is really thorough and anal about getting every hair, apparently. She uses a magnifying glass when working with the laser. AND she is not afraid of high settings.

I had questions about rather or not my forearms would respond to laser and she scrutinized them under a lighted magnifying glass before telling me I would have to grow them out a bit more for her to tell for sure.

We discussed before and after preparations. They offer prescriptions for numbing cream, which she recommended I would want for at least getting my brazillian done.

She gives out her cell phone number to clients in case of questions, and insists on personally calling every person after 21 days of treatment to see if any free touchups are needed. I like that she seems super adamant about her clients getting their moneys worth.

Oh, apparently in Florida “laser surgery” is required to be overseen by a physician, so there is a one time $50 fee for that at every laser center here. lame!

I did not feel rushed or a single bit of pressure to buy anything right away. They have a package deal going on where the first area is 50% off, and any second area is 75% off (for 6 treatments, not just the first one. i have a feeling she would adjust this if I needed more/less than 6). Because I wanted a bunch of small areas done (happy trail, underarms, perianal in addition to brazillian) she said I could have them all for 75% off if I was so inclined. It is good to see that pricing was negotiable. Without the % off, the prices would be close to the other place I visited, $150 for underarms, $300 for brazillian etc. Seems like a standard in Florida. I think it is a pretty good deal, and I can afford to do it.

What do you think? Sounds promising?

Sounds very promising. Did you write down the settings? It is nice to find someone who actually cares about the results and offers touchups without having to beg. I would start with one treatment on one small area like underarms and decide on what to do after based on the results you see at least after shedding.

I did not get a test patch done today. I will probably schedule an appointment for that next week. :slight_smile: