Laser Hair Removal: Is It Safe for Dark Skin?
Laser hair removal offers a quick, simple, long-lasting way to achieve smoother skin. It’s ideal if you want to shave time off your grooming routine, and means you’ll finally get to ditch those expensive razors, creams, and waxing strips you’ve relied on for years.
But traditionally, laser hair removal has been problematic for people with darker skin tones. They may have struggled to find a clinic that catered to their skin type, and any that did likely felt unsatisfied with the results.
Fortunately, technological improvements mean the latest generation of laser hair removal treatments are suitable for all skin types. But you’re bound to have questions if you’ve had a negative experience with laser-based solutions in the past or you’re nervous about trying one for the first time.
We’ll answer the biggest, most important questions about laser hair removal for dark skin below. Read on for all the details you need on how this treatment works, what results it can achieve, and how to get started.
What Problems Have People with Dark Skin Experienced with Traditional Laser Hair Removal Procedures?
Older laser hair removal devices failed to remove hair from dark skin effectively because they’re designed to target the melanin (pigment) in hair shafts. The targeted hairs absorb the laser’s energy and convert it into heat. This passes into the follicle at the base of the shafts and disrupts the growth process.
Typically, these lasers needed a clear contrast between the color of the skin and the hair to work effectively. So, while patients with dark hair on white skin could expect good results, those with dark hair on dark skin would likely be disappointed. In some cases, the laser might have even caused complications — such as mild burns or pigmentation issues.
But the most innovative brands specializing in laser hair removal technology spent years working on this problem, including Candela, which created the GentleMax Pro Laser.
What is the GentleMax Pro Laser?
Candela’s GentleMax Pro Laser is a cutting-edge device designed to effectively remove hair and treat various skin conditions (such as spider veins, beard bumps, rosacea, and more). It uses 755 and 1064 nanometer (nm) wavelength lasers to treat different skin types, and penetrates deep into hair roots to damage follicles without harming the surrounding tissue.
The 755 nm laser is optimal for skin types I, II, and III on the Fitzpatrick scale (which measures skin pigment). And the 1064 nm laser is best for types IV, V, and VI. Melanin doesn’t absorb this laser wavelength as easily as it does others, which makes it safer and more effective for people with dark skin. Essentially, the laser will target the hair while the tissue remains unaffected.
How is GentleMax Pro Laser Hair Removal Treatment Performed?
A trained technician will handle the GentleMax Pro Laser throughout your treatment. They will move the high-precision handheld device to carefully guide the laser over the target areas of skin. Melanin in the hairs will absorb the light energy, and follicles will become damaged enough to prevent future hair growth.
The energy emitted from the handheld device penetrates the skin only: it will NEVER reach deep enough to harm crucial tissue or organs.
And the GentleMax Pro Laser offers a more comfortable experience than previous solutions. Your practitioner will apply a cooling spray to skin in the treatment areas milliseconds before they trigger the laser pulse. Just lie back, relax, and look forward to having smoother skin without the usual hassle of shaving or waxing.
Can Laser Hair Removal Safely Treat Ingrown Hairs on Dark Skin?
Yes, the GentleMax Pro Laser can reduce development of ingrown hairs. That should come as a welcome relief if you often struggle with ingrown hairs after shaving or waxing your legs, armpits, or other areas prone to hair growth.
According to the Canadian Dermatology Association, people with afro-textured hair are more likely to develop ingrown hairs than people with straighter hair, as tight curls become ingrown more easily. However, switching to laser hair removal with the GentleMax Pro should decrease your risk of developing painful ingrown hairs over time.
If you often suffer from ingrown hairs, tell your practitioner before they begin your treatment. They’ll offer further advice on how to look after affected skin and reduce the likelihood of experiencing them again.
What Do You Need to Know About Preparing for Your Laser Hair Removal Treatment?
You should take the following steps to prepare for your procedure:
We may offer further recommendations on preparing for your laser hair removal when you schedule your appointment. If you have any questions or concerns about them, feel free to ask our friendly team. We’ll be happy to help.
What Should You Do After Your Laser Hair Removal Procedure?
Take the following precautions within the first 24 hours of your treatment:
Your practitioner will offer further information on how to care for treated areas after your treatment.
How Can You Book a Consultation for Your Laser Hair Removal Treatment?
Astra Medicare’s team offers effective laser hair removal with the innovative GentleMax Pro Laser technology, suitable for all skin types. We also provide various laser facial treatments, including the popular Clear + Brilliant.
If you have dark skin and want to try a more cost-effective, convenient hair-removal method than shaving, plucking, or waxing, book your session at Astra Medicare today!
Dedicated and passionate Astra Medicare staff.