Medical question about having professional electrolysis

For a long time I have suffered with unwanted hair on my bikini line. My problem is that I get a horrible number of ingrown hairs. With waxing or any time a hair is pulled out from the root, it almost inevitably becomes ingrown. With shaving about half of my hairs become ingrown. I’ve got horrible red marks and embarrassing scars year round.

So naturally I am looking into getting electrolysis done. My medical question is that I have HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) it is a STD commonly called genital warts. Now, while I do NOT have any visible warts (and I never have) the virus IS in my blood stream and there is no cure for it.

My question is can I still have electrolysis done without transmitting the virus to my electrolysis and the rest of her clients? Do I have an obligation to tell her? Will she refuse to work on me? Do I need to find someone who uses disposable probes? I would feel horrible hiding something like this and finding out I had transmitted it unknowingly.

If anyone knows the answer to any of these questions I would greatly appreciate you passing the knowledge along. And if there are any electrolysis reading this who have clients with HPV if you could share your feelings as well that would be great.


p.s. do you have to tip an electrolysis? Like you do when you get your hair or nails done? I’ve always wondered. Thanks again.
p.p.s. and I’ve tried both PBF vanish and Tend skin for the ingrown hairs. Neither one seemed to make either difference.

On the Tipping Question, look and contribute here: Gratuity and here: Tipping

As for the health issue, I can’t speak for all practitioners, but I would welcome you with open arms. With proper standard electrolysis care, there would be no issue of passing anything along to other clients, and the practitioner’s only problem would be the risk of a stick injury while working on you. With your disclosure, the practitioner would know to handle it with a little more than the usual four letter exclamation and getting back to work.

Your practitioner should be using single use disposable probes, and disposable single use gloves, and forceps should not be reused without full resterilization.

I agree with James. An electrologist should always follow a certain protocol with every client to protect herself/himself and to likewise protect the client. Washing hands, fresh gloves, sterile tweezers, sterile disposable probes, disinfect everything one touches before treatment, etc., etc. I would not hesitate to work on your bikini area and telling your electrologist about any conditions you have is always common courtesy. People in service and helping professions are not grosssed out by many things that would otherwise send others to floor or out the door,and electrologists are no exception. I’m more bothered by bad breath or body odor than HPV.

On a sidebar here: A new vaccine called Gardasil offers protection for females ages 9-26. It doesn’t protect against all types of HPV, however, there are 4 types of viruses (out of 70-80 types) that cause 70% of cervical cancer and 90% of genital warts. Pap tests are still needed since there is not 100% protection. Gardisil offers protection against these four types of viruses that do the most damage. Three shots are needed over a six month period and it appears to be a safe and effective as they have tested this vaccine on 11,000 girls and women worldwide. I understand that work is being done to offer a vaccine for men, too.

A tipping expert I listened to on NPR believes that anyone who touches you, should be tipped. I really don’t agree with that at all. I personally do not encourage or expect tipping. If someone has missed their appointment or has shown up late insists on tipping, then I don’t argue with them too much.


While it is true that the State of California prohibits me from working on clients with “communicable diseases” they also specifically allow us, and in fact state that I can not refuse treatment on this basis, for clients with HIV infection. I have done this in the past and am willing to again as the need arises. You condition presents less risk than working on someone with HIV, from my perspective, and does not really present me with any increase in difficulty as far as performing electrolysis.

As others have stated, the use of disposible probes and full sanitation and sterilization of reusable items is essential to preventing cross infections. I use these techniques to the fullest extent and would not hesitate to work on a client in your condition, no other medical conditions contra-indicating treatment being present.


How is that for a collective Hug MaraJay?

Thanks for all the support… that makes me feel a lot better. What would I have done without this forum? =-)

Thanks for all the support… that makes me feel a lot better. What would I have done without this forum? =-)

You are welcome… I guess that is why some people actually volunteer to donate money to keep this forum online. They actually see it as being that valuable. Imagine That. <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/cool.gif" alt="" />

Regarding the ingrown hairs, I’ve found that moisturising straight after bathing to be the culprit for many of my clients (not all). One woman came to me with every single hair on her legs and bikini line curled up and ingrown. She had tried everything to stop them, including steriod cream from her doctor, but they wouldn’t go. During the consultation she told me that she puts baby oil onto her wet legs when she steps out of the shower to ‘lock in’ moisture. I told her to throw the baby oil in the trash and see me next week. Not a single ingrown in sight…and unfortunately no need for me either!

That’s the thanks we get!

After all, good electrolysis practitioners lose all their best clients <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/grin.gif" alt="" />

We live off their willingness to give us referrals in a business where the average customer doesn’t want anyone to know they ever needed our services. <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/blush.gif" alt="" />

Ain’t that the truth! Sometimes when I ask departing clients to pass my business card onto their friends they get that look of absolute horror, and I know they’ll never breathe a word about me. sigh