Starting out with SX-T

Hi, I’m trying to get hold of equipment to learn DIY electrolysis on a really tight budget so for the last few months I’ve been watching Ebay for any good machines at a good price. I was looking at getting a Sterex SX-B so I would have the blend option to learn on but auctions for these machines kept going well out of my spend limit.

I’ve been having successful thermolysis treatment with these machines from professional electrologists over the last three years, so I know this is an effective modality for me. A Sterex SX-T just came up on Ebay for a bargain price so I’ve gone ahead and made the purchase.

I know its mostly advised to learn using blend first as there is more room for error when you’re learning but I’m wondering if its going to be impossible for me to learn with straight thermolysis? As I say, I have a lot of experience with receiving this treatment (on body and face) and can often recognise from the sensation whether a hair is going to release properly. I’ve watched the electrologist doing insertions on the body and have a good idea of what settings will work (I’ll obviously start at the lowest settings and work my way up as I’m learning though).

My plan is to spend the next month educating myself with textbooks and youtube and try to get my insertions to a good standard before I start working with current. I’ll probably start on my toes and legs but the intention is to work on the stomach, bikini, nipple and underarm areas once I get good enough.

I may eventually sign up to do a course at a local electrology school as I think this could be a really good career for me if I take to the technique well, but this isn’t an option financially right now.

My questions are have any other DIYers been able to learn starting out with thermolysis and what are the pitfalls I should be looking out for? Is Michael Bono’s Blend book a good educational guide for someone starting out with thermolysis only?

I also need to get hold of some magnification equipment before I begin. For working on the self is it going to be easier to work with loupes or a mag lamp for the areas I mentioned?

Any advice much appreciated for an excited but nervous newbie :slight_smile:

I personally wouldn’t start with a SX-T. To be honest, I don’t think I’d use this kind of machine for treatments period but that’s just me.

You shouldn’t really need much magnification for juicy leg hairs.

Hi, thanks stoppit. Just wondering what’s so bad about the SX-T? I’ve had successful treatment with the SX-B on thermolysis settings which I think would be just the same as the SX-T. I’ve also had treatment with an Apilus and didn’t find the treatment to be any more successful or the pain to be much reduced. The biggest variable I’ve found is electrologist skill so I know its something I’ll really have to work at.

Great about leg hairs not needing much magnification…I’m guessing some of the other areas will though…do you have any ideas on whether mag lamp or loupes would be better for DIY?

You could try some reading glasses. They sell them in Tesco for about 4quid. I think they go up to 3.5X you could stand at the display and see if they make any difference. You might need different magnifications depending on how close you can get your head to the area that you’re working on and also how healthy your eyes are. You’ll probably struggle with a mag lamp, depending on area they can get in the way. Loupes will also limit you in some circumstances because of focal distance.
An extendable neck is useful and be prepared to go boss eyed.
I can’t see how the pain wouldn’t be reduced with an Apilus unless it was broken. Either that or it was being used to blend. Thermolysis with an Apilus should be way more comfortable???

First of all it is more logical to learn slow thermolysis before the blend. Thats also the way i learned my craft.

The rests of my facial growth are treated by “manual flash electrolysis”. Which means that the collegue doing this hits the pedal for some tenths of a second until the hair releases. This an be done with the SX-T as well as with any other manual thermolysis or blend machine.

More painful than the shorter timings i can do on the Platinum. But really fast and efficient anyway, at least in the hands of an experienced operator.

WARNING: the modality i described is nothing for beginners!!! Even short deviations in the timing may lead to heavy overtreatment.

The rests of my facial growth are treated by “manual flash electrolysis”. Which means that the collegue doing this hits the pedal for some tenths of a second until the hair releases. This an be done with the SX-T as well as with any other manual thermolysis or blend machine.

More painful than the shorter timings i can do on the Platinum. But really fast and efficient anyway, at least in the hands of an experienced operator.

WARNING: the modality i described is nothing for beginners!!! Even short deviations in the timing may lead to heavy overtreatment.

Beate, it’s your warning which is exactly the reason I am not comfortable with it.

For blend, is not learning galvanic first just as important as learning a slow thermolysis? And possibly the safer method to start with? A DIY beginner is going to make all kinds of mistakes with insertions, I just feel uneasy adding thermolysis in that mix.

I would read up very thoroughly before beginning and understand what exactly you are hoping to achieve and doing to the follicle with the current.

Thanks follizap and beate_r, I didn’t realise you couldn’t adjust the working distance with loupes, these may not be be worth buying then bearing in mind the range of areas I want to cover. And yes, I can see using a lamp would be really awkward trying to work in areas like the chest and underarm. So for these areas I’ll try your reading glasses suggestion and I could probably get close enough to the legs too…I’m a bit stumped as to how I’ll be able to work on the bikini and stomach though? This is where an extendable neck would come in useful right? Does anyone have any suggestions with what has worked for them?

I had body work done on an Apilus and, although there was a slight reduction in pain, it was still painful and not enough to justify the almost double cost that electrologist was charging compared to the Sterex electrologist. Both electrologists seemed to work at the same speed and both looked to me like they were treating hairs successfully. The machine I think was an Apilus Senior so maybe I would have noticed more of a difference with a top-of-the-range Apilus??

If its so dangerous to start out with thermolysis, I could wait a few more months and buy the SX-B so I can start out with blend/galvanic. The thing is my ultimate aim would be to work with thermolysis only, so I would be buying a more costly machine with settings that are redundant for me after a while. I just want to know if I’m really going to be setting myself back trying to learn this way or if its just harder but not impossible?

Does anyone have any suggestions on where I can self-educate myself on thermolysis so I have the best chance of performing this correctly and safely? I am thinking of buying Bono’s book but I’m not sure if this focuses only on blend? I’m sure it would help me learn the principles of electrolysis in general but are there any thermolysis-specific resources I can get hold of?

Thank you!

Here’s an open-ended answer; experience! I’ve messed up a couple of times using therm, live and learn :slight_smile:

Here’s a method i stick by when using thermolysis; Step 1: Insert needle into follicle. Step 2: Apply a short, gentle amount of heat. Step 3: Remove needle and tweeze hair. Step 4: repeat!

Works every time! :slight_smile:

I’ve got an SXB that I will happily sell… PM me

Haha thanks for the tip iLikeDIY…I suspect the ‘works every time’ result might be a little way off for me yet. I know its not going to be anywhere near perfect starting out, but if I can at least know about the proper techniques so my skin doesn’t end up looking like the surface of the moon that would be good :slight_smile:

Can I ask what resources you used to learn?

I started off with a One Touch unit out of curiosity to see if it’d work. I made observations as i went along as to what a normal skin reaction was which turned out to be difficult because Galvanic gives me problems with eczema. As soon as i felt confident in what i was doing i moved on to something more mature!

Sure, i read a couple of books here and there but i like hands on work. This forum was also a good resource, opening up a couple of discussions that i had questions on.

If you were wondering about the books, it was some electrologist workbook i picked up off of amazon and Electrolysis Thermolysis and the Blend that came with the unit i bought off of ebay. Most of the reading was just busy work, i really didn’t learn much.

I started off with thermolysis as my machine had no blend option basically you insert the needle and crank up the power till the hair releases cleanly try starting on your legs or underamrms

if you have the settings too high it will hurt so go up slowly you are your own best feedback tool

maybe this will help

Thanks for the manual dolphinz that’s a great help. I’ve been making my way through all the posts on the DIY forum and have ordered a cd from sterex called ‘a practical guide to electrolysis’ aswell as a couple of textbooks…I’m hoping these will give me a good start with my technique.

I’ve found a local course in electrolysis starting in May which costs a few hundred pounds so I’m considering doing that if I can get the money together.

In the meantime I need to get hold of some needles for practising my insertions. The machine I’ve got came with short size 2 & 3 stainless steel ones. I’m looking to get either some sterex or ballet regular length 2 piece gold or insulated in a size 4 for working on my legs. Can anyone advise if this is a good choice for working in the leg area with thermolysis?

It depends on the thickness of Your hairs. My legs definitely need #2, others need #5

(This question also demonstrates the importance of indroductory training)

Sorry,important question left open.

Blend at least as i learned it is more or less an extension to slow thermolysis. You keep the RF current low, just large enough to release the hair within some seconds, say 6-10. Of course You start from the low settings side. Of course two handed and “progressive”.
Then thermolysis is simpler as blend (only two parameters to adjust…) and comparatively safe. It is the step toward short timings and hence larger currents which makes fast thermolysis with manual epilators risky for beginners. Same for blend - before You try Michael Bono’s “body techniqe” You should have some routine in the slower techniqes.

those needles are ok to start with they will drive you mad though because they bend easily and you will spend forever trying to straigthen them with tweezers = waste of time and money but they may give you a better feel for your insertions

One piece Ballet or Sterex are better as they dont bend so easily and are more rigid

i wouldnt start off using an insulated needle I still dont use them

Regular length needles (Sterex) are pretty long i found short 3 can do most of the work for most areas

As regards the course I wouldn’t waste my money i have a nice scar on my left shoulder thanks to a uninterested college lecturer teaching electrolysis to uninterested students my final calling card to DIY :wink: acrylic Nails anyone lol

crank your machine up start on low settings increase them slowly like i said you are your best feedback loop what have you got to loose but hair !