Welcome to this month’s special 2-part blog. We’re going to be exploring hair removal as an option for every skin type and the unique challenges each skin type poses. We hope our more in-depth blog helps to shed some light on why laser hair removal works really well for some skin types and is more challenging for others.
Where it was once seen as viable exclusively for those with fair skin, and dark, coarse hair, improved wavelengths, adaptable fluences and sustained pulse modes with heat reducing technology has limited negative side effects and made laser hair removal a possibility for a broader variety of skin types.
Depilation has been focused on in countless cultures across the world. The ancient Egyptians are recorded as using the first noted hair removal rituals where all hair from head to toe was removed with pumice stone and sugar or beeswax-based solution and process not terribly dissimilar from the hot wax treatments available in a pharmacy today. It’s safe to say we have moved on- with treatments that minimise the risks of infection, inflammation and scarring that give lasting results.
Laser hair removal changed the game for those seeking permanent hair reduction. For so many, it completely absolved them of the drudgery of daily shaving and ongoing wax treatments, and every side effect associated with those treatments. But laser hair removal is still, in comparison to many hair removal methods, a baby in the making. While we can confidently treat almost every individual for hair removal with shaving, waxing or tweezing- we are challenged by treating every individual using laser hair removal technology. To understand this, it’s important to know the profile of each skin type from a laser hair removalists perspective.
There are six skin types:
Type 1 – Always burns, does not tan, sun-sensitive at all times. Caucasian
Type 2 – Burn very easily, rarely tans, very sun-sensitive Caucasian
Type 3 – Sometimes burns, tans gradually, is sun sensitive Light Olive/ Asian
Type 4 – Rarely burns, tans easily to medium brown, rarely sun sensitive Dark Olive /Asian
Type 5- Very rarely burns, tans evenly and quickly, not sensitive to the sun Light African/Indian
Type 6 – Never burns, shows pigmentation, is not sensitive to the sun. Dark to Indian/African
The contrasting pigment between fair skin and dark hair is an ideal balance when it comes to laser hair removal. If hair is very dark, a fair backdrop allows light to be specifically absorbed into the hair. If hair is dark and thick, all the better: it will absorb more light and enable very thorough treatment.
In the process of laser hair removal, laser light bypasses the epidermis and targets hair. It identifies hair by colour (pigment), and when dark colours are identified, light is converted to heat.
Stay tuned for part two of our special double post release on hair removal and laser technology, where we’ll further explore the challenges posed by laser hair removal, especially for dark skin and dark hair types.
The team at Australian Aesthetic Devices are proud to offer world class quality technology to salon directors across the country. If you would like to speak with a member of our friendly team, feel free to call us on 1300 858 711 today. We look forward to finding out more about how we can help you achieve your goals as a leading clinician in today’s fast evolving technological climate.