O.k. so everyone agrees there must be hair in the follicle to damage it, but I read a study in a peer-reviewed journal in which the researchers used the (apparently proven) fact that waxing/epilation synchronizes the hairs to go into anagen. Theoretically if you wax 2 weeks before you have the laser, there is enough of the new hair to get zapped, but also the bulb and bulge are close together and near the surface of the skin, and you get greater reduction. I believe 11 out of 12 of the people in this (admittedly limited) study had greater reduction with the waxing. Anyone have thoughts or experiences with epilation prior to the laser?
Waxing before laser is not recommended. What if the hair does not grow back in two weeks?
Well, I decided to epilate and wait to see how long it took before the hair grew back (we’re talking lower legs and bikini here–likely to be different for other areas). It’s been 10 days and I see some dark spots looming beneath the surface, which I think is good. There seems to be some evidence that even though the hair is shaved before lasering, hair growing up to the skin’s surface may absorb the energy too shallow so the bulge and bulb are not destroyed–leading to low % of follicular destruction. So if you could time it so you laser while the hair is growing but is not yet at the surface you might be able to optimize the results.
However–I got hit by a car while riding my bike a week ago and I have bruises and scrapes on my knees, so after all this research I think I have to wait anyway! I’m going to use the time to observe the growth patterns of my own hair and in the meantime may be more research will come out on the idea of synchronizing hairs to go into anagen. After all, I want the most effective treatment for my money!
If anyone did in fact have bad results from LHR and they blame it on not waiting long enough after waxing I’d love to hear about it…