Laser trial or not

Dear Andrea,

 Thanks for having such an informative site.  I am ts, past one year on hrt and have had considerable weakening of a black beard.  I have a friend one year ahead of me who used a year of laser to force her facial hair to a very weakened state that required nominal electro.  Since I cannot spare the time for a trip to our friends in Dallas, I was wondering if I should spend this winter getting a few laser clearings, or go electro all the way.  It would be wonderful to get a smooth complexion even if it requires added laser treatments down the road.

For those with light skin and dark hair, a course of several laser treatments can help reduce shadow and coarseness of androgen-induced facial hair. A very tiny number of transsexual women who started in their teens were able to get complete clearance with laser alone. Most TS women will reach a point of diminishing returns with laser where it’s better to switch over to electrolysis to get the rest. The less pigment in your hair, the less effective laser becomes.

As with electrolysis, the major factor in getting effective treatment is operator experience with facial hair like yours. It is absolutely essential to go to someone who knows what they are doing, or you will have ineffective treatments that waste money and put you behind schedule. Conversely, they may overtreat you and leave you with discoloration or skin damage, due to the difficulty of removing such coarse hair while sparing the surrounding skin.

You’ll kind of get a feel for when laser is no longer giving you bang for the buck. That’s when it’s time to switch to electrolysis by someone with a lot of experience. With any luck, the combination will save you time and money, although there are no guarantees.

Choose wisely, and best of luck! :smile:

Dear Andrea,

 Thanks for the advice.  Pretty much as I expected.  I guess if I keep my expectations within reason, and assume that I am putting electro off as long as possible, I will be fine.  The outfit here is staffed with MDs, and they have been at it for 15+ years, so will go for a test next week, and skeptically hope for the best.  I see you live in my beloved Chicago.  Spent 1976-1994 there before being sentenced to life in Kansas, with its summers.  Feel free to contact me offline, and we can chat Chi-town and other issues of mutual interest.

Yeah, it’s hard for me to imagine leaving this city. I’m afraid my various sites and stuff keep me a bit too busy for much personal correspondence, though!

Definitely check back here with progress reports!


 Understand about the time needed for response and to socialize.  Went to a local MD running a laser and plastic surgery biz.  Told him my "condition" upfront and he wanted very much to help, and seemed genuinely interested in what my future entailed surgery-wise.  He kindly offered to help locally post-op and consult with Dr. O.  At any rate, he uses an Apogee 9600, and was very upfront about expectations hair and pain alike.  I think his assistant was in a bit of shock, but better now than when I get my chest done.

 I scheduled a clearing for a week from today, and will spend the time prepping and reading up on the subject.  Thanks again,