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What are my options for permanent hair removal? Which treatment is best?

There are many ways to remove unwanted hairs from your body. Most women either wax, shave or cream those pesky hairs away. Such methods are quick, inexpensive, and can be performed in the comfort of your own home.

However, the big problem is that these techniques won't leave you hair-free for very long. They are far from permanent, indeed they often need to be carried out on a daily basis. Waxing is probably the longest lasting of these techniques as it removes the entire hair, including the part below the skin, but results with still only last for a number of weeks.

For more permanent hair removal you have two main options - electrolysis or laser hair removal. Each has it's advantages and disadvantages, although laser hair procedures are rapidly replacing electrolysis as the method of choice.

The main issue with electrolysis is that it can be very painful, and there is far greater chance of scarring than with laser treatment. It involves using very fine needles to release a small electrical charge to the hair root. This electrical pulse prevents blood supply to the hair follicle, causes weakness over time, and helps prevent regrowth. Electrolysis treats one hair at a time so the treatment can be a long, uncomfortable process particularly if you are treating anything but the smallest area of skin.

The main advantage electrolysis has over laser treatment, is that results are guaranteed to be permanent. The procedure actually kills each hair follicle, whereas laser treatment doesn't quite do so. Both procedures are said to be permanent but there are levels of permanency. Laser treatment will often require many follow-up appointments to maintain a hair free result.

The other benefit electrolysis has over laser removal procedures, is that is works just as well on light hair as it does on dark hair. Many forms of laser treatment work far better of dark hairs than lighter colours because the laser targets melanin which is found in dark hair. Recent advances in laser technology have helped develop more suitable techniques for women with light hair, but you may still be disappointed with the results.

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