My Exp w/ Lightsheer for Male Beard Removal

Hello forum~

I want to share my battle with facial hair. Here’s some background info on me: 29 y/o male, Type II/III skin, very thick & dark facial hair. Besides not being able to get a clean shave, I also had razor bumps every day. This is what started my search to thin out the hair on my neck.

After some research online, I found a place that offered one free treatment with Epilight. I went in for an appointment and she zapped a 1" X 3" test area and sent me home. The following week I returned with the still red test strip on my neck. I was concerned about hypo/hyper pigment changes. She assured me redness always goes away. It did, 5 weeks later. After only one full neck treatment, I decided I wasn’t comfortable with using Epilight at this place. Nearly all the hair fell out after one treatment. Unfortunately, it also all grew back (maybe not as thick?)

Next, I had some multiple needle Electrolysis work on my neck. After 10 hours and about $450, I decided it was going to take forever and cost me a fortune to completely remove all the neck hair. I’d read somewhere the average male beard takes 200 hours to completely remove. I’m sure mine is not average and would have taken much longer.

My search continued at the local Plastic Surgeon. During the consultation, he stepped in just to say hello, the tech was going to do all the Lightsheer laser work. The cost was $600 per treatment for the entire face. It was more than I was willing to spend.

On June 25th, 2002, I had an appointment with a lady who had many years of experience, at least by looking at all the certificates on the wall. She gave a price of $1,577 using a 2002 Lightsheer on the entire face and neck. The package was buy 5 treatments, get one free and she put in writing a 2 year guarantee no hair would grow back or they’d treat it for free. After handing over my Visa, her assistant began at 13 Joules. It hurt like hell. I was in so much pain. I was sweating uncontrollably. The redness and puffyness lasted for about a day, just like she said it would. The hair fellout in patches. It looked horrible. After 4 weeks of embarrassment, I insisted I have another treatment (I was scheduled to have treatment every 8 weeks). So far I’ve had a total of 5 treatments and the patchiness is just now going away. Each treatment she increases the joules and the pain is less and less each time. The last treatment was at 18 Joules. Do you, the experts, think the setting is too low for permanent hair reduction? I’ve heard comparing settings of different lasers is like comparing Apples to Oranges. Don’t get me wrong, I’d prefer starting out at lower settings and gradually building up if there is less chance of complications.

Overall, I’m happy with having my facial hair zapped. It has been a long journey and I think it will be worth it. Oh, one benefit of having this done, I’m told i look much younger!!!

Thanks for listening,


Hi Pilot, thanks for sharing your story. I don’t have the answers to your questions regarding power and permanency of hair removal (hopefully someone else would answer). I was wondering if I can ask you what kind of Cream (or other methods) did you use for pain reduction (Elamax, Emla ) ?

I am considering to have the same procedure done (with a less aggressive goal than you). I want to know if even with skin medications, one has to go through the pain you described.

Best luck with your procedures,

Hello Forum~

The first treatment I used only Emla Cream. The second treatment I used Emla and Tylenol 3. It was still very painful. The fifth treatment I used only Tylenol Extra Strength and Emla Cream and it wasn’t painful.

 After reading on the message boards, I've decided not to use Emla for the rest of the treatments.  Some Doctors and practitioners claim Emla decreases the efficiency of killing the hair.  I'm not sure if it does or doesn't.  Since the pain is now bearable, I'm finished using 


 I can't recommend thinning the beard with laser.  I think you'll end up patchy and splotchy like me.  You can't beat Electrolysis for even thinning of hair.  Although, as you know, it's a very long and costly endeavor.

I hope this helps,

[ February 11, 2003, 05:18 PM: Message edited by: Pilot ]

Lower fluences are required for the beard. Otherwise your face would be extremely puffed up for a few days and the pain during treatment would be unbearable.


Hello Pilot:

If the operator is at Auto and less than
20j/cm2 you will be there forever.

The beard has 70% Anagen Hair - Telogen
Stage is 10 weeks, follicles density (1/cm2)
is 500 and depth of follicle is between
2-4mm. Deeper than that is the pubic hair.

I would recommend a little different strategy:
30ms with 15 j/cm2. My clients after 3 treatments
have seen remarquable difference.

Hope this help!

Thanks for a fantastic report, Pilot! I’m glad you’re pleased so far.

Because treatment parameters are not set in stone, practitioners have different techniques, especially for the ultimate stress test of male facial hair.

I agree that it’s probably better to ramp up in power, but there’s an argument that the first treatment is your best chance to give them a good blasting. Personally, I think this is too hard on the skin and may lead to worse side effects.

A big welcome to Lucie and a thank you for sharing your own technique! I think it’s very helpful for everyone to share information-- it leads to better results all arounhd!

Please keep us posted on your progress.