My Plan

About six years ago I did Laser treatment with Thermalase using their Softlight Laser. I always had consistant regrowth. I had about 15 treatments performed on my back and shoulders. Today I am just as hairy as ever. I shave my back in the moring but by evening there is stubble. I am thinking about going back to the painful Professional Waxing. So my question is this: 1) To make waxing less painful, can and is it practical to apply something like EMLA or ELA-MAX to a large area like my back. (I would not mind doing my Chest and Abs for that matter either)
2. Or has the laser technology changed so much (from my Softlight experience six year ago )that it may be worth another shot. (Granted I know not all results are the same on each and every person)
3. If I do wax, I am thinking I can just go every month or so to catch each cycle, provided I can manage the pain some how.
Thanks in advance for any responses and suggestions!!

Although you can utilize Emla and Ela-Max for pain, if you can’t get them through your health plan, or co-pay arrangement, you may find the cost prohibitive for what you plan to use it for.

May I ask why you have not taken the plung and gotten your back cleared via electrolysis? A thermolysis operator could have cleared your back as the laser regrowth came back so that you would not have had visable hair during any time. Although you would be now starting from scratch, I know that a thermolysis practitioner could give you what you want, Permanent Hairlessness!

Keep in mind that as you continue to wax, the hairs you wax will get deeper rooted, and thicker. This will make them more difficult and more painful to remove using this method.
Getting back to your original question, at $120 or more a bottle for the amount you would need to do a back, it could get really pricey.

James, Thanks for the quick reply. I actually did electrolysis for about a year at Lucy Peters in Beverly Hills. I did about 12 sessions 1 hr long, sometimes with double operators but I quit because of the pain. Also the Lasers were just being introduced so I jumped in. I would consider doing electrolysis again if I can manage the pain. Although after having electrolysis done before I can’t say that I showed significant results. I mostly had my upper back done during that year of electrolysis. I would say today I have just as much hair on my upper back as I do on my middle and lower back. It just seems if I went the electrolysis route it would takes years to clear the hair away. Or is that just the reality of it and maybe I should just suck it up because eventually it will get done? Thanks again for your response.

It is a little bit of both.
The problem with a large area job is that the person wants results yesterday (That is why you were willing to jump so high for laser after all, right?). The other problem is that most people are short on either the money or the time needed to bare something large in the early part of the treatment, so that they can get to the maintenance and diminishing part of the treatment.

Here you have to make your priorities. Anyone can have pain free electrolysis if, in the extreme, one is willing to do long hours for small results. The faster the results, the greater the possibility of pain. Four operators working in Flash on one person has a heavy possibility of pain. However, I am sure that if you had a picture of what your back looked like before, and a picture of what it looks like now, you would see a big difference. I should also point out that most electrologists practice a methode of “thinning out the area” instead of “clear cutting” an area just so that a client who stops treatment doesn’t have a strange hair shape on his back for the rest of his life. Since they thinned, it looks like you have hair over the entire area, instead of having a bare top, and a hairy lower back.

That said, however, electrolysis doesn’t have a chance to get to bare anytime this decade unless you get to the point where the electrologist(s) clear the entire treatment area each and every time you have a visit. Permanence will come even quicker if you get yourself to the point where electrolysis is the only hair removal you use. That is, you clear the area each treatment, and come back as soon as there is anything the electrologist can see well enough to treat. I should point out, that since we can see hairs you can’t even make out yet, you would always look hair free on this plan.

As far as pain, you either have to put on a topical and suck it up for a while, or you can find someone who has an up to date machine, and understands settings and modalities well enough to find a comfortable setting that works. This is one of the greatest reasons to go to someone who practices more than one modality. Since each has its strengths and weaknesses, a good electrologist can find the compromise that works best for you. Then you have to put in the time to get the results.

[ January 23, 2003, 11:58 AM: Message edited by: James W. Walker VII, CPE ]