Laser Hair Removal

How does laser hair reduction work?

The laser works by a principle called Selective Photothermolysis. The laser is pulsed (turned on) for a millisecond emitting a beam of light on to the skin. The light energy passes harmlessly through the skin, but is absorbed by the pigment in the hair follicles and hair shafts that are in the active growth phase. By absorbing this laser energy, the hair follicles are disabled, impairing their ability to grow. This damage causes delayed re-growth of the hair, and in some cases permanent destruction of many of the hair follicles. Unlike electrolysis, which kills one hair follicle at a time, the laser reaches and treats hundreds of follicles at a time.

How many treatments will I need?

Hairs are not all actively growing at the same time. They actually go through three distinct phases: growth, regression, and resting. After the resting stage, the hair falls out and the hair follicle begins the cycle again.

How does laser hair removal work?

The laser works by disabling the hair that is principally in the active growth phase at the time of treatment. Since other hairs will enter this active growth phase at different times, additional treatments may be necessary to disable all hair follicles in a given area. You may find that around 3 to 10 days after treatment hairs will begin to surface. Most of these hairs were treated and are "falling out" and will not regrow. The hair follicles need to purge the hairs that remained under the skin. Treatments are usually given at intervals of 4 to 6 weeks.

Am I a good candidate?

The ideal candidate for most hair reduction lasers has dark hair and light skin. Darker hairs will absorb more of the laser light, and lighter skin allows more transmission of the laser light into the hair follicle. Age, ethnicity, medication, hormone levels, and body site influence the length, coarseness and color of body hair. How much hair you have depends on how many hairs are in the active growth phase, and how long that phase lasts.

Are there any side effects of laser hair removal?

Short-term side effects may include a slight reddening of the skin or local swelling which typically lasts less than an hour, although it may infrequently last a few days. Long wavelength 1064 lasers and pulsed light treatments are less likely than older lasers to cause prolonged irritation, pigment changes or blistering. Rarely (perhaps 2-4 cases out of a hundred) there can be increased or decreased pigment in the treated area. This is seldom a major cosmetic problem, and generally resolves after several months. Even a single blister is very rare (less than two in a hundred).

The light does not cause skin cancer. Even though adverse reactions are rare, no one can guarantee that they will not occur in some individuals, we do everything in our power to try and reduce any incidence of adverse reactions, but even with the best of care, they can still occur in certain individuals because of various individual sensitivities, genetic variances, and allergies to laser/pulsed light, which is impossible to predict or know in advance of the treatment. Try to reduce fresh suntans or sun exposure before any laser and pulsed light treatments.

How long does laser hair removal last?

Unlike plucking, waxing, tweezing, laser hair removal does not run the risk of making hair grow back thicker, darker, or quicker. After laser/pulsed light treatment, hair growth will frequently be delayed, AND if and when hair does grow back, it is often lighter, finer, and less dense.

What our Houston Laser Hair Removal patients say

"I had my underarms and bikini area treated. I no longer have to deal with the chafing, stubble or ingrown hairs that were so miserable all of my life!" --E.S.
(46 year old hair reduction patient)

"I have always had unsightly facial hair. After five treatments I am whisker free!! Thank you so much!"
(Female physcian, Houston, laser hair removal patient)

How much does laser hair removal cost?


These are average number of treatments on most patients. However, 4-5 treatments are common for most body parts. Additional treatments or intermittant touchups may be required depending on skin tones and hair color. The treatment is more effective on dark colored hair, and less effective on red hair. The laser will not remove blonde or white/gray hair.