Laser Hair Removal in India: Safety Tips & Risks

Laser Hair Removal in India: Safety Tips & Risks

Melanin matters, but how?

Laser hair removal has been growing in popularity over the last few years, not just around the world but also in India. As laser technology has evolved, the cost of laser hair removal has also come down drastically. Importantly, laser hair removal has become more effective than it ever was.

It is no surprise that many women in India are opting for laser hair removal over more traditional forms of hair removal such as waxing, shaving, and threading among others, despite the higher cost involved.

However, as with all new technology, there are several questions about the laser hair removal process, including its cost. The primary question is if laser hair removal is safe for Indian skin, as the demand for such treatments is rapidly increasing across India.

Before we answer that question, it is important to understand how laser hair removal works.

How does laser hair removal work?

Laser hair removal is perhaps one of the more revolutionary cosmetic procedures. For perhaps the first time in human history, we have a solution to unwanted hair that is effective, long-lasting, and not terribly painful.

The laser hair removal process itself, aimed at reducing unwanted body hair, involves the use of concentrated beams of light or laser. These are absorbed by a pigment known as melanin (which gives our skin its color), present in the hair follicles, get converted to heat, and then zap the follicles reducing future hair growth.

Does laser hair removal work better on light skin?

Since the laser targets the darker hair shafts, the skin around it remains largely untouched. This is why, laser hair removal treatment works best on light skin with dark hair. Due to the stark contrast, the laser is able to distinguish better between the two and accurately targets the hair follicle without causing any major damage to the surrounding skin tissue.

Is laser hair removal safe for Indian skin?

Yes, laser hair removal is safe for Indian skin.

From what you’ve read so far, you would imagine that laser could have difficulty in differentiating between the pigment of the hair and that of the dark skin rendering it less effective.

This used to be the case with the older laser machines that would find it difficult to distinguish between the two, thanks to the high melanin content in Indian skin types. But evolving technology in laser hair removal has resolved this too. Today, all the aesthetician needs to do is match the right wavelength to your skin type.

What is the best laser treatment for Indian skin?

To be sure, when we speak of skin colour in India, it covers a wide range on the Fitzpatrick scale, the international classification schema for human skin colour. For the most part, though we fall on the darker side of the scale. And so, some lasers tend to work better on Indian skin than others.

These laser types are able to bypass the melanin in the skin’s surface and selectively target the hair follicles in the deeper layers. As a result, you are less prone to burns and other adverse reactions that you’d typically associate with laser hair removal on darker skin tones. Among these are

1. Nd:YAG Laser

These lasers used in laser hair removal emit longer wavelengths, which penetrate deeper into the skin without causing significant damage to the epidermis. This makes Nd:YAG Lasers one of the safest bets for darker skin types.

2. Diode Laser

Just like Nd:YAG, Diode lasers also penetrate deeper into the skin making them safer for darker Indian skin types.

3. Alexandrite Laser

Alexandrite lasers tend to be more effective on lighter (think wheatish) skin types. However, settings on these lasers can be moved to accommodate darker skin tones too.

4. IPL (Intense Pulsed Light)

Intense Pulsed Light or IPL laser hair removal is a convenient at-home treatment for full-body hair removal. These rays of light target melanin help it reach the hair root and disable key areas within the follicle. IPL hair removal is quite similar to laser hair removal treatment but with a significant difference in the light source and expenses. IPL uses a broadband pulsed light source, whereas laser uses a monochromatic coherent light source.

What are the negative effects of laser hair removal on Indian skin?

It is important to first identify your skin type before you put yourself under a laser because, under an untrained hand, the negative effects of laser hair removal on Indian skin can outweigh the benefits.

1. Burns and blistering

Incorrect laser settings can cause the skin to absorb more heat, leading to burns and blistering. These burns, a potential side effect of laser hair removal, can take weeks to be treated and might necessitate a visit to a clinic for a dermatologist’s intervention.

2. Hyperpigmentation or Hypopigmentation

Incorrect laser usage or settings could also stimulate the production of melanin in the treated area. So, you may see dark spots appear around it.

The converse could also be possible, resulting in a reduction in skin pigmentation in the treated area, resulting in lighter patches.

It is therefore advisable to consult a certified professional in India to understand more about laser hair removal and guide you to a treatment that is best for you.

To see results for yourself and to learn more, you can get in touch with our expert here.

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