Below find a Q&A with Dr. Diana Nguyen of Siena Medical Aesthetics based in Newport Beach, California.
Who should *not* do laser hair removal?
Anyone who is actively tanning, via sun or sunless, shouldn’t do laser hair removal. Also, Fitzpatrick skin types V and VI are difficult, especially with the more effective Alexandrite lasers. There are Yag lasers that can be effective for these darker skin types, but they are much more painful and not as efficient. And very blond or gray hairs cannot be affected by the lasers.
I know that certain lasers work only for certain hair types/colors, and that many do not work for blond/light-haired people (like me!). What are our options?
Some options for blond and light-haired people include waxing, threading and tweezing.
Are there any dangers to laser hair removal?
Potential side effects can include temporary redness, swelling and sometimes, but very rarely, blistering. These side effects can be minimized or avoided if the correct settings are used during the procedure (a reason why it’s very important to have a properly trained medical physician perform these procedures), and if the patient refrains from any tanning procedures, including artificial tans. Also, side effects are minimized with the use of adequate sun protection. Sometimes patients may need to be pre-treated with a bleaching cream, such as hydroquinone.
Who are the best candidates?
The best candidates for laser hair removal are people with dark hair and light skin; Fitzpatrick skin types 1-3, and 4 with appropriate settings.
Any recommendations on how to find/choose the right place to go?
And what questions to ask?When visiting the location, make sure to ask what kind of machine will be used, as well as who is doing the procedure and if a doctor is onsite, or if a doctor is the one actually doing the procedure - which is unfortunately not always the case. I always stress the importance of having all medical aesthetic procedures, including laser hair removal, performed by a credible medical doctor, who understands the process of hair growth and how skin health evolves. Being treated by a doctor ensures the best possible recommendations and outcomes. Also, an Alexandrite laser works best to remove hair efficiently. Avoid IPL machines.
Dr. Diana Nguye is the owner and operator of Siena Medical Aesthetics in Newport Beach, California. For more information or to schedule a consultation with Dr. Diana, please call (949) 631-7020 or visit www.DrDianaForBeauty.com