Have you ever heard of electrolysis, or have you walked into a beauty salon and seen an advertisement for the treatment? Yet you weren’t quite sure what it was? Well question no more.. In today’s blog we will be talking about what electrolysis is, how the treatment works, who is suitable for it and everything in between.
So what exactly is electrolysis? Electrolysis is a permanent hair removal treatment and is still recognised as the one and only permanent hair removal treatment. Electrolysis was first developed in 1875, and have been used world wide by doctors and electrologists. This treatment is safe and effective, and has been proved to be very successful in the past 141 years.
So you’re probably wondering, what way is this treatment carried out? Electrolysis begins with the sanitisation of the area being treated, the electrologist will asses which area you want treated. The probe will then be loaded wth a sterile, disposable needle (which is very fine, the same width if not slightly thinner than your hair.) The setting on the electrolysis machine will be set – and the intensity will be determined on the area and density of the hair. Now the electrologist is ready to start the treatment. The fine needle will be inserted into the hair follicle, following the growth of your hair. The current will the be applied for a short amount of seconds, and the hair will then be tweezed out of the follicle.
How does the treatment actually work?. Firstly your hair has 3 stages of a growth cycle – Anagen, Catagen and Telogen. Anagen is the key stage at which we want to catch the hair at as this is the active growth stage. Catagen is the “collapsing” stage as the hair now is separating from the dermal papilla. And lastly telogen, which is the “resting” stage as the hair is now fully separated from the dermal papilla, and is now waiting to shed from the follicle. As already mentioned, anagen is the key stage to which we want to be carrying out the electrolysis treatment, the reason for this is because when the needle is inserted to the hair follicle, the current is then applied to cut off the blood supply to the hair. Repeatedly, over time this will then prevent the hair from growing back completely.
Electrolysis is suitable for ALL hairs, and ALL skin types – but ideally for those smaller areas, for women it’s typical areas of the face (lip, chin, sides of cheeks), breasts and abdomen. For men, it’s typically the tops of the back, shoulders, and top of nose. Larger areas are not recommended as it would be very time consuming, as electrolysis is done hair by hair.
The amount of treatments needed varies between each client, area treated and density of hair. As well as those factors, each hair may be at a different growth cycle, so it may take a few treatments before the hair is at the anagen stage again. That is why it is important to be persistent with electrolysis, you want to keep treating those hairs, catch them in that active growth period, and banish them for good!
Now is electrolysis sore? truly – it depends on the area being treated, and the clients pain tolerance – but typically not really. The insertion of the needle into the hair follicle should be unfelt, when the current it applied you may feel slight heat for a few seconds, then the hair is ready to be slide out of the follicle with no tugging or “plucking” sensation. Areas like the bridge of the nose, or the center of the lip are slightly more tender than your chin or sides of face – yet it shouldn’t feel ‘painful’.
After your treatment of electrolysis it is recommended to keep the area clean. Ideally, no make-up application for 12 hours, no swimming/sunbathing for 12 hours, and try to keep away from perfumed scents or lotions. Your skin may have slight erythema, and raised bumps may be noticeable, but do not be alarmed as this is normal. Any other concerns about the area after treatment, contact your electrolygist as they can advise you as needed.