The topic of laser hair removal is still going strong since I started posting from my monthly appointments, so it only makes sense to answer all your questions in one place right here. My decision to begin laser hair removal came from an extreme dislike to bikini waxing. I swear, I would be like a fish out of water on the table during waxing appointments. Flipping and flopping each time the wax was ripped off my skin. Dreading every session and leaving a puddle of sweat behind on the table whenever the poor lady was finished. After I had Maxwell, I knew I had to try something else. Shaving with a straight razor wasn’t going to be it because it left me with razor bumps, nasty ingrown hairs and scarring. I am at the age now where I just don’t want to be bothered with hair removal. Well, at least down there. It needs to GO!
Even though I hate most forms of hair removal, the decision to start laser hair removal treatments wasn’t exactly easy. For one, it’s not cheap. Two, I was worried about my skin and whether I would be able to find someone in the city who really understood how to do this safely working with coarse hair and skin with melanin. Appears like y’all have the same concerns too after reviewing the questions y’all left for my on IG stories. So here’s the list of FAQ’S:
HOW DO I CHOOSE WHERE TO GO FOR YOUR LASER HAIR REMOVAL?
Without a doubt, the most important decision, especially if you have dark skin. You need to go somewhere that has amazing aestheticians and have equipment with technology that is safe for a variety of skin tones and hair. I go to The Ten Spot on Queen St West and I have my Instagram community to thank for that. I used my IG stories to ask women of colour in the city for laser recommendations and the responses for the Ten Spot was quite overwhelming. There were of course, a few high end medical clinics that charge an arm and a leg and some cost effective recco’s made, but the Ten Spot locations seemed to have great staff and had the most technology advanced equipment. Plus, there are locations in every corner of the city (and across the country). If you are not in Canada or choose to go somewhere other than a Ten Spot location, make sure wherever you go, has the Vectus Laser Cynosure machine. My suggestion to you would be to do searches in your city for places that carry this machine and then do some price point comparisons.
WHAT MAKES THE VECTUS CYNOSURE BETTER THAN OTHER LASER MACHINES?
Technology has come a long way since laser hair removal was first introduced to the beauty industry. The secret to the Vectus Cynosure is it’s technology. It actually targets and destroys hair cells responsible for hair growth without damaging the surrounding skin.
It has different sized applicators, making it easy to remove hair from faces (with the exception of the eye area), backs, chests, arms, underarms, bikini lines and chests and the important thing to point out, it’s suitable and safe for all skin types; including very light and dark skin tones and hair colours thanks to the diode technology. For those with darker skin complexions that are worried about potential skin damage, the machine has a Skintel melanin digital reader device used prior to every treatment which determines the laser’s power level avoiding in any guess work for the aesthetician and can guarantee no burning. It even has an advanced cooling system to help eliminate any discomfort that may occur the further you get in your treatment.
DOES IT HURT AND HOW MANY SESSIONS DOES IT TAKE?
As you can imagine, almost all of you wanted to know if the process hurts and providing that there may be some discomfort, thought to go ahead and ask how many sessions it takes. And I don’t blame you. If you are considering this form of hair removal, it’s probably because you don’t want to deal with the pain of waxing. The deal is this, my first two appointments (I just finished my sixth treatment) were completely pain free. Like, I literally felt nothing at all and was even became skeptical that this shit was going to work. However, as I’ve progressed through the treatments, the laser strength has increased to help minimize hair regrowth and I am starting to feel some discomfort. And I say discomfort because it is not pain, well at least not yet. Apparently, once you get to the end of your treatment cycle where there is little to no hair left in the follicle, it can become painful but that means you’re closer to semi-permanent hair removal and you won’t have to endure it much longer. As things are starting to intensify, I decided to get myself a numbing cream to help with any discomfort so the aesthetician can use the appropriate laser level. It made a significant difference during my last appointment and I will continue to use the cream moving forward.
We all have different pain thresholds and after going through a natural labour for 43 hours, I would like to think my pain tolerance is pretty high but the cream just helps as I know Glaze wants to go a bit higher with the frequency. If you’re wondering what it actually feels like? It’s no where near the pain level of strip waxing, thank God! You may not feel anything at all in some places, especially in the first few sessions. While over other passes across the treatment area, you will feel a sensation similar to a zap or an elastic snapping, that happens so quickly and disappears just as fast. I almost wish the zaps were consistent throughout the treatment though. Not knowing when the zaps coming, which is probably determined by how much hair is left in the follicle in a certain area, makes me feel a bit tense throughout the entire appointment….even though I am only zapped a handful of times during my treatment. Glaze always has episodes of Friends playing on TV in the treatment room so watch and chat with her to keep me distracted.
HOW MANY SESSIONS DO YOU NEED AND HOW MANY HAVE YOU DONE?
The number of sessions is depends on several factors. Your skin tone and hair type for sure but also the area you are getting done. The upper lip or sideburns may only take 6-7 sessions while doing a Brazilian may take double the amount of sessions. I have just finished my sixth session and we anticipate that I will probably have to do 10-12 in total. But, we shall see!
IS LASER HAIR REMOVAL PERMANENT?
I think this is the most common misconception. I am sad to report that it is not permanent but for what it’s worth, it’s as close to permanent as you’re going to get. I’ve spoken to several women who have gotten laser treatment done and they have all said that they are for the most part hairless but they do get the odd stray hairs popping up and they either pluck or quickly shave but it happens only a couple times a year.
IS IT SAFE TO GET LASER ON DELICATE AREAS LIKE YOUR BIKINI LINE AND VAGINA?
Yup, that is exactly the treatment I go in for. I opted for full Brazilian and I will be honest, it takes some getting used to having a stranger getting so up close and personal with you. She gets in places that not even Réjean sees to be honest. Even handles inside the bum crack.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
This shit is not cheap boo’s. You can go to a medical clinic, in Yorkville for example, and literally thousands and thousands and then there are a few cost effective spots but at the same time, do you want the cheapest option when you’re dealing with your skin? Probably not. The prices at The Ten Spot can be found on their website. I get the “Brazily” laser treatment and it costs $210 + taxes per session. This is their signature style with everything off – including treasure trail, full vajay, and between the bum cheeks.
WHEN DID YOU FIRST START NOTICING A DIFFERENCE
I started to notice a difference with the speed of growth after the third session. I am still getting hair growth now though after six appointments. I find that the hair on my bikini line is coming back slower and the hair is much finer. The rest of my vagina still has a ways to go yet, which is why we increased the frequency during my last appointment. I am hoping to be finished after 10-12 sessions.
IS IT TRUE YOU CAN’T GET LASER IF YOU’RE ON ANTIBIOTICS?
I don’t believe that is true but you can consult your physician if you have any concerns about this.
DOES BLACK SCAR FROM LASER HAIR REMOVAL?
Lots has changed in laser technology since it was first introduced 25+ years ago. The old laser machines were only able to treat and remove hair on one type of skin tone. It worked best on white skin and moderately dark hair. Those with skin too fair or too dark often got burned and suffered from hyper pigmentation. The machines back then were not sophisticated enough to detect hair colour and melanin, requiring an aesthetician to use guess work to determine the laser frequency level to use during treatments. Now, with machines like the Vectus, there is no more guess work. A digital reading tells the aesthetician the exact range they should use throughout the treatment. It stores all the client’s information as well from previous appointments to closely track progress.
WHAT DO YOU DO WITH HAIR GROWTH IN BETWEEN SESSIONS AND WHAT IS POST CARE LIKE?
Between sessions I usually just leave the hair to grow in for the most part. However, with being on set for shoots and in bathing suits during our travels, I more likely to keep the area more trimmed than most. I use my Philips Bikini Genie Trimmer to maintain the area.
As for post care, absolutely nothing is required. The only thing you will be advised about is that within the first few days of having your session done, you should avoid direct sunlight to the area treated. That is not always avoidable so you need to make sure that you are applying sunscreen as well. I went to Miami the day after a treatment back in November and I just made sure none of the bathing suits I wore were high cut and while I was on the beach, I made sure to stay under an umbrella. I usually am not on the beach baking in the sun a day after going in so normally I don’t have anything to worry about.
DID YOU FIND ANY PIGMENTATION ISSUES BECAUSE I HAVE SO MUCH DISCOLOURATION?
Nope. Absolutely none since starting my treatments. I used to get awful in grown hairs when I waxed and shaved with a straight razor which left marks behind on my bikini line. I have not had one single ingrown since I started my treatments and I am even noticing the marks I once had are actually even fading now.
CAN LASER HAIR REMOVAL CAUSE KELOIDS?
There is almost zero risk of getting keloids, if you’re prone to them, from laser treatments unless your skin gets severely burned during a treatment which would only happen if you have a poorly skilled technician and/or a machine that is not meant to be used on dark skin. To be honest, the chances of burning today with the right laser machine is slim to none.
IS IT TRUE IT’S POINTLESS TO DO LASER BEFORE YOU HAVE KIDS BECAUSE THE HAIR WILL GROW BACK?
I wouldn’t necessarily say it’s pointless to do it before kids. I mean, there are plenty of women who have not gotten pregnant yet and they are lasering their lives away. I waited until after having Maxwell to do it but that’s just because I procrastinated for years. I did ask Glaze to confirm or deny during my last visit and she did say that she advises if you’re planning on getting pregnant soon, wait until post baby. When you’re pregnant, your hormones and prenatal vitamins promote crazy hair growth, so you won’t want to be wasting time and money removing hair that is just going to grow back thicker and faster during those nine months. As for fertility, some of you have asked whether treatments may affect fertility and you will be happy to know that it doesn’t.
Well the question y’all all want to really know is, “Does it work?” Well, I can’t quite answer that just yet. Am I seeing some results so far? Yes, but truthfully, I would have thought I would be seeing far less hair re-growth by now. But, perhaps I just have stubborn hair that is going to need a full round of treatments. We shall see, but if all goes well, I will be getting my armpits done next. If you’re in the Toronto area and want to try out The Ten Spot, ask for Glaze. She’s amazing and has won all kinds of awards for her laser work in 2018. I will circle back with you all in a few months with another update once I have finished my 12th session.
THIS REVIEW IS SOLELY MY PERSONAL OPINION AND IS NOT SPONSORED OR IN PARTNERSHIP WITH ANY OF THE BRANDS MENTIONED IN THE POST.