Just got my first laser treatment

I just returned from a laser clinic in Tempe, AZ. I read a LOT about laser hair removal before I took the plunge. The woman who ran the place was VERY knowledgable as a former hairy-type. She looks GREAT now, but she had pictures of herself before getting lasered. She’s been in the business for a while… she was one of the first to get lasered back before they even had a cooling blast.

I wouldn’t say it felt like a rubber band… it was more like tweezing pain, like pulling one really deep-rooted hair… even though it was actually singing several hairs. She used a Candela GentleLase plus with the nice cooling blast. It’s been two hours since my treatment and my skin is fine. I even have extremely sensitive skin and am prone to breakouts of eczema which I control with daily topical steroids (betamethazone dipropionate). I am also the “ideal candidate” as far as really dark black hair and pale skin since I avoid the dreaded “day star”.

I will keep posting my experiences as I go through this. I have another appointment in 3 weeks to be zapped again. The pain sucked, I will admit that. It brought tears to my eyes, but it’s what I have to do, and it’s worth it. I paid $100 for sideburns, chin (all the way down to the neck) and upper lip. It’s really helpful having this done by someone who suffered excess hair, too.

Thank you so much for your posting. Your experience is helping others…Yes, keep us posted.

It’s day #2 and the hair is definitely not growing as fast (or should I say “coming out” since the folicles aren’t supposed to be growing hair anymore). From my understanding it’s really just working itself out of my skin, but normally 24 hours after shaving I should have been ready to shave again but I was definitely smooth. There were a few hairs poking out and that’s it. Now it’s about 48 hours since my last shave and it feels like it would after 24 hours normally. But this is to be expected so I’ll shave it tonight and await the wonderful “shedding” that’s supposed to happen within the week. <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

Happy so far. <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

I was really looking to do this fo rmy back. I have been reading some on this. Does anyone know where i could find someone reliable and effective in the California Bay Area? What about combining laser with prescription meds? Does anyone have any advice for me?

There is a large list of prescription meds that are incompatible with laser treatment. All of these meds will list “photosensitivity” as a possible side effect, meaning that taking the meds can make your skin sensitive to light. Among this meds is RetinA (or however it’s spelled)… I would recommend a Google search on your meds to make sure they are OK, unless someone here has a list.

One week has passed. I haven’t had any noticable shedding yet, but my skin has been amazingly better this last week. I don’t know if it’s an effect of the laser or not, but normally I suffer itching and scaling where I shave and I’m a major eczema sufferer. This week has been my best skin week in years! I also feel a lot less hairy after shaving my cheeks in the shower today. I don’t feel very many “pricklies” coming through and they are only in small patches. I have my next appointment in 2 weeks.

Wow – finally started shedding this morning in the shower. It was only a few hairs, maybe 30 that came out total. Maybe tomorrow it will be more prominent. I thought it was supposed to take 7-10 days but it’s been about 15 or 16 days since my treatment. I have my second treatment on Saturday and there are plenty of folicles to treat.

However, I only need to shave every other day now instead of daily, the growth is very soft instead of bristled, the “shadow” is noticably reduced (but still there), and my face feels SO smooth after shaving where before it still felt prickly.

VERY happy with the results so far. Maybe next time she can turn up the juice a bit.

If I may add to this thread with my experience…

I went for my first treatment today. I had my stomach and buttocks done with a LightSheer. It was the most excruciating pain I have ever had to endure, and apparently I have high pain tolerance! Anyway, some twelve hours have gone by, and I have black scabbs all over my stomach, whilst there are none on my butt, in fact it hardly feels like I had anything done on my buttocks.

I’m a little concerned about my stomach. When we finished that part, the technician put ice pads on it and we left them there for some 20 minutes, she then generously applied an Aloe lotion. It felt much better after that, but I still feel its extremely sensitive, though not hurting as much. After 12 hours, the swelling has, on the most part, subsided. There are little parts of the skin, where I can see the upper surface of the skin has literally been ‘removed’ like a mild scratch; there are very few of these, but they are worrisome nontheless. There are pitch-black scabbs, that don’t look so good if I migh add, and I want them out as soon as possible. The redness is also mostly gone, yet still quite obvious.

Given my rough description, is my reaction normal? How long until the scabbing subsides? Are there any special cares I should take? Exfoliate, scrub, and so on…when can I do those (the skin seems too sensitive still)?


Vandrew, I didn’t have any of that experience. Mine has been quite pleasant. Maybe you need to try a different laser?

Anyway, it’s about 9 days since my 2nd treatment. The second treatment was a lot less painful than the first. That could be that less hairs were being zapped, or I was ready for it. She turned it up 1 notch stronger than last time.

Hair growth has completely stopped up at the top where my sideburns started and most of the hairs are gone on my cheeks. There is still a stubborn patch about an inch down the side of my face on each side and I plan to let her know next time so maybe she can zap it more than the rest. There are also two dime-sized dots on my chin where no hair grows anymore (which feels weird).

I can tell you that the gray tone of the hair under the skin is GONE. The hair that’s left is very soft and fine compared to the thick coarse hair that I used to have. My face feels absolutely smooth where before it was only smooth for a couple hours. I only have to shave every other day instead of daily and even then it’s a LOT less to remove.

I just believe how well this is working for me. And I can’t beat the price at $100 a pop. Once we’re done with my face I’m going to start getting treatments on my arms. I am one of the few people who has the right color combination where bleaching shows a great improvement instead of looking fake so I usually do that if I have a job interview or special event. I was in a crowd on CNN last week while I was in the crowd at the Presidential debates and even though my appearance was from a distance, you could see the darkness of my arms… it made me more sure that I wanted to get them done. She said her price is $97 per treatment on my arms and that goes up a bit into my upper arms where I have dark, fine hair as well.

Maybe I will notice shedding a bit more on my arms since I don’t shave them. (Of course I will before the treatments)

Wow! My hair growth has almost completely stopped! My chin is still a bit stubborn, but the hair is a lot thinner and there’s less of it. My former sideburns are almost completely gone… I actually can go 2-3 days without shaving now. I’m so amazed and happy with how effective this has been. My face has been so smoooth and I don’t have to cringe anymore when it’s touched. I feel more confident and unafraid to turn my head instead of looking at someone headon. I wish I had started this sooner!

It sounds like your laser hair treatment is going very well. I am trying to find the best place to have this done, do you know what particulars I should be looking for? Is your removal specialist using a certain type of laser or does she have a certain certification that I should be looking out for?
Thanks in advance for your help!

She is using the Candela GentleLase Plus. I just finished my third treatment this weekend. The timing was perfect because more hairs were starting to come in so it was the right time to zap them to oblivion.

I had my treatment on Saturday afternoon and this morning in the shower I shaved (there’s not much to shave) and used my normal moisturizers (Cetaphil and a light layer of Shea butter) and my face was baby-butt smooth. Even the quality of my skin is much improved because I’m not irritating it so much with hair removal, which means less eczema, which means less skin-thinning topical steroids.

I’m honestly not sure what her certifications are, though I know she’s not a nurse or a dermatologist. She said that Arizona is the only state (or one of the only states) that allows technicians to perform the treatment. And since she owns the franchise, she has a much-vested interest in good results.

Next time I go in we’re going to start zapping the dark hairs from my arms. I can’t wait.

I just got mine done with gentle yag plus and visibly the hairs growing out are fewer, not signifigantly but it appears there are hairs still under the skin that arent growing. Im assuming like you it will take 2 weeks for me to start shedding but it is exciting watching the hairs becoming less and less.

I am about 16 days since treatment #3. Both of my sideburns are basically gone at the moment. This is the best time of the treatment cycle because this is the time when those hairs that were lasered would have been growing. By the time it’s time for treatment #4 I should have some more hairs starting to grow.

The right side of my face is the most successful so far. I still shave it but it’s more out of habit than necessity. I can only feel a couple hairs. The left side still has a stubborn patch but the hairs are a lot thinner than before and they grow very slowly. I still shave every other day but I’m not at the point where I need to do it at that time like before when I needed to shave every 24 hours.

I know a lot of people post when they start treatments then slack off, but I’m doing pretty well holding up my end and letting you know the progress. My best friend said she could tell a huge difference since I hadn’t seen her in several weeks. She’s had a really good look at the hairs too since I was a test dummy while she was in school to be an aesthetician. She said that it looks “normal” now unlike before where it looked darker than the rest of my face.

Once I find my digital camera I will try to post a close-up picture. I don’t have a “before” shot but I’m sure most of you will be able to tell that the hairs under the skin are GONE.

On December 11th I go in for #4 on my face and #1 on my arms. We’re doing my arms from halfway down my upper arm, all the way to the wrists and fingers (I have a few darker hairs on the backs of my fingers). I’m also getting my underarms done.

yah my beard is awesome right now. Even all around. But im having them thin my beard rather than eliminate it. The back of my neck is just completely bare.

I just had the third laser treatment on my beard, this time with the Lyra-i Nd:YAG. It hurt like hell! I did have some post treatment redness this time, but not very much. There are many singed hairs. I’m going to lose a lot of hair this time!


I just want to say that I thoroughly appreciate the contributors to this thread. Crimson your thoughts and experiences are invaluable to people considering laser. I’ve pretty much done the rotary epilator thing as much as I want to, and now looking around for a good laser clinic. You people that have experienced this let us know what is to be expected, big thanks to everyone!


Well, I’m back in the awful part where a couple hairs have entered their growth cycle. Of course now I have to look really close to see the hairs and they are most definitely a lot thinner than before. It’s SO great not to have to grab my boyfriend’s electric shaver and do a touch-up before leaving the house.

My next treatment is a week from tomorrow (Saturday the 11th) and I can’t wait! We’re starting on my arms. Last time I went in I shaved a small part of my arm hair and she zapped the spot so I could feel what it would be like. Yeah, it hurt, but worth it. I can definitely see the two spots where she zapped… the rest of the hair has grown back but I have these two little circles where the hair is really short.

One of these days I will post pictures.

I had my appointment yesterday. First treatment for arms, fourth for my face. Since it was over 5 weeks this time, I had a lot more growth on my face which was killed.

The arms were pretty painful but mostly in certain sections where I had more dense hair growth. But as usual, totally worth it. I had a lot of red dots on my skin yesterday and some are still there today. Skin feels dry, but nothing I can’t live with.

We also did my underarms… they are different… the pain was really bad and I had just shaved before I went in, she used rubbing alcohol and it stung. I didn’t think about that or I would have told her. My underarms were sticky all night because of the aloe vera she applied afterwards not being able to evaporate as easily. My arms are so smooth today. I think I have my aunt convinced to undergo this same procedure. She has very dark, very thick hair on her arms.

I now patiently await the shedding. <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

I have been shedding for the past couple of weeks now… for some reason I don’t lose a lot in the shower even with a washcloth or poofy thing but I can grab the hairs with just the tips of my fingers and they come out with no pain at all… seems like mere fractions of a millimeter under the skin holding it in place. My next appointment is a week from Saturday. It will be treatment #4 (maybe 5) on my face and #2 on my arms. The results are still amazingly good and my chin is finally starting to have a lot less hair.

I am definitely at the point where I can leave the house without shaving, and most of the time I don’t even think about whether or not it’s safe to leave the house. I’m also so happy not having dark hair on my arms. Little things like rubbing lotion and having to rub it on in the direction of the hair growth isn’t necessary anymore. <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />