Need advice on types of lasers! Please Read

I’m looking into laser hair removal, and have found 2 clinics that I feel comfortable with. One place uses GentleLase…an alexandrite laser, the other uses Lyra Laser…a ND:YAG. (forgive me if my spelling’s off or I don’t use the right terms, I’m still new at this whole thing) I’m pretty confused on which one to go with. I would appreciate any personal experiences or other info anyone has about these lasers. Also, if anyone knows how to find any, or knows of any places in Wichita, KS or even Kansas City, where the treatments are done by a Dr. or overseen by one, please let me know.
P.S. If it helps to have a bit more info., I have very light skin and dark brown hair. The hair I will be getting treatment on is on my chin & an area on the front of my neck…all the hair that’s being treated is black. When they figured out my skin type using the system about skin, eye, hair color & how you burn & or tan…I was a III because my skin doesn’t really burn or tan in the sun.
Thanks for any help you all can give me… : )
Update…Now I’m even more confused. I just went for a consult at another place, they use the EpiTouch Alexandrite…Please help me, I’m sooo confused about which one to go with :confused:

[ March 06, 2003, 07:52 PM: Message edited by: Yeayea ]

Where I’m at, epitouch is a popular choise and seems to be effective.

I’ve asked for info on epitouch too, (alexandrite) and Im waiting for it

I have heard that ND Yag’s are not permament but that bit of info may be inaccurate or outdated.

Thanks JamesB for the info., I feel like every little bit I can get helps. Let me know if you find out anything else on the EpiTouch. Thanks again.

If you are looking for a good laser office in the KC area, I would strongly suggest Merrill Permanent Color Dermagraphics in Blue Springs. I have been going there for two years and have had amazing results. The technicians (Cindy and Karen) are both highly trained RNs and do excellent work. They have an Alexandrite (Candela) and a recently purchased Nd:YAG. I literally have spent thousands of hours studying laser and IPL hair removal methods and actually changed my major to learn even more. I chose Merrill for their price and for the fact that they were eager to HELP ME LOSE THE HAIR. They have gone above and beyond what I expected. I started with hair on virtually every part of my body. The areas that were treated are now much sparser and the hair that does come back is a third of the original diameter. If you have nay further questions, I’ll be glad to help. Merrill’s number is 816-220-7773. Ask for Cindy or Karen and tell them Gabe sent ya. Good luck!

Thank you, Thank You, Thank You for letting me know about the place in KC. I will be giving them a call soon to find out more. I’d also be interested to know how many treatments you had before you noticed results? Sounds like a good place w/ qualified people…Thanks again :smile:

I’ve had about 6 treatments thus far. My hair was very, very dense. In some areas, the hair is almost completely gone. In other areas, the hair has come back although it is much more sparse and much finer. Because my hair was so dense, we had to use fairly low energy settings on the laser. This probably accounts for the areas of finer hair. I noticed an improvement after the first treatment. The hair that came back was less dense than what I started with. I like Merrill’s approach on lasering. They schedule appointments about 10 weeks apart. This is imperative and I have heard alot of people suggesting that you come in every few weeks. This would be a severe waste of money because of the growth cycle of hair. I usually shed the hair at about 2 weeks after lasering and then am hair free for at least 8 weeks (depending on the area treated - hair grows at different rates depending on the location). At 10 weeks, whatever is coming back is usually visible. Merrill also offers touch up treatments two weeks after your initial lasering. This is to get anything that may have been missed. I usually don’t go for the touch up because I have a long drive and they do an excellent job of getting everything the first time. I don’t know what skin type you are or what hair color you have, but with the recent addition of the Nd:YAG laser, they should be able to treat nearly everyone. Let me know if you have any more questions. I’ll be glad to help with what I can.

Hey Gabriel,
Thanks for sharing more of your experience with Merrill. As soon as I got your first post about them, I called up there & talked to Karen…Supernice lady. I felt like she really knew what she was talking about…& I told her that Gabe sent me :smile: . Since it would be a long drive for me too…approx. 2 1/2-3 hrs., I’m still considering some places closer to home. However, I’ve pretty much decided that if I don’t hear things I like down here, Merrill’s the place I’ll go with.
I do have a few more questions for you. You said the hair usually falls out in about 2 weeks, since the hair is on my face, could I continue to shave until it falls out? Also was wondering if you can resume shaving once it starts coming back in, before you go for the next treatment.
From what I’ve read here, & heard from other places, I think if I go there the alexandrite would be a good choice for me…I have very light skin, and the hair I want removed is black.
I really do appeciate your help!

[ March 09, 2003, 09:55 PM: Message edited by: Yeayea ]

Dear YeaYea: Regarding the original post when you asked which laser would be appropriate for you, I can say for sure that the Lyra would NOT work for you. It is an NdYag, but designed and powered specifically for use on ethnic (dark and tan) skins. It does not have the appropriate power for lighter skin tones. Either the diode or alexandrite would work well, or if the office you contacted has the Altus CoolGlide NdYag long pulse laser, this one would work beautifully. Yes, NdYag lasers DO work, but folks keep quoting very out-dated research from the early Q-switch NdYags. You have pretty much the ideal skin color and hair color for any laser except Lyra. You should have little to no after-effects from the treatment (at least with CoolGlide that is the case) and you can shave as frequently as you wish. It should take approximately 7-10 days for the treated hairs to fall out, then you will have a period of little to no hair growth, then you will come into a new growth cycle (about 6-8 weeks post tx). This will be the time for your next treatment. Hope this information helps - good luck. With the correct treatment parameters you should have wonderful results!

Hi Hairfetish,
Thanks for your reply…it really helps to have information like that.
The other day I found a different place, that seems better than the other LHR clinics I’d found before. This place uses an Alexandrite EpiTouch. I don’t know much about it, and haven’t heard much from people who have used it. If you know anything about it let me know. I appreciate all the advice and information I get… :smile:
Thanks again


After your treatment, the area surrounding your hair will be reddish. The hair will look like a blackhead until it gets pushed out of your skin (for the face I have found it takes about a week to shed the hair). You can shave the hair as it is pushed out with no consequence. After the hair sheds, it will not grow back if it was treated in the anagen stage (assuming the correct parameters were used on the laser). You will have some regrowth, which will be the hairs that were not in the anagen stage. You will see very little regrowth right away, the bulk of it will come back after 6-8 weeks. At this point you should go back in for the next treatment. This process is repeated until all the hair is treated during the anagen stage. If you use an alexandrite laser, you should not shave for a few days before the treatment. If you use a Nd:YAG, you should shave the day before or the day of the treatment. I understand the issue of being quite a way from Merrill. I drive 3 hours to get there. For me, the price and knowledge of the staff made up for the driving distance. If you have a clinic which is closer that uses similar technology and you feel comfortable with the staff, by all means go with them. I would reccommend going with a laser that has been cleared by the FDA for permanent hair removal. Merrill uses both the Gentlelase alexandrite and the Coolglide Nd:YAG. Both of these lasers have proven themselves on the market. I don’t know much about the Epitouch. It should work similarly to the Gentlelase if the parameters are similar. Lasers all work by the same principle. If you can get enough heat to the dermal papilla in the proper stage of the hair cycle, you will obtain permanent results.

The more I hear about Merill, the more impressed I am by them.
I have a consult at the place here in my town that uses the EpiTouch next Mon. If I don’t like the feeling I get when I talk with them in person, I think I’ll make a consultation appointment with Merrill. I was planning to be in KC the end of next week anyway, so maybe I could see about getting in then.
Thanks for being such a help… :smile: