My IPL Laser Hair Removal Experience- Part 1

17 Jul

One of the things that a girl just couldn’t neglect is underarm hair removal.  I mean, you can miss out on a manicure session or two when you are ready on a time crunch, and no one will say anything as long as you keep your nails reasonably clean.  Wearing a sleeveless top without shaving for a week is something else entirely.

As a busy mom trying to work eight hours a day while taking care of Inigo without a nanny, I could use all the beauty shortcuts that I could get.  Thus, I ventured to try IPL (intense pulsed light) laser hair removal for my underarms just to be able to shave off (no pun intended) a few minutes off my daily toilette.  And because I know that other ladies out there are also considering getting this procedure, especially now that the cost of permanent hair removal has gone down drastically, what with the numerous discount deals offered online, I thought it might be useful to share my experience.

First off, there were several reasons why I opted to go with laser hair removal.  For one thing, my pregnancy had caused my hair to grow in more thickly, and as most of you would know, it also darkened my underarm skin somewhat.  Shaving and waxing were too time-consuming, not to mention that it just made my underarms irritated.

Another reason is that the cost IPL laser hair removal has gotten so much cheaper, especially if you go through discount sites like Ensogo and Metrodeal, like I frequently do.  The regular price of a laser hair removal session is between P3000 to P6000, depending on where you get it done.  You need about 6 sessions in order for it to truly work, so that is about P18, 000 to P36, 000.  Through Ensogo, I only paid P550 per IPL session at the California Beau, at 6 sessions, that is only P3300.  Considering that I will no longer have to spend money for hair removal methods such as waxing, shaving or using depilatory creams, the price is not that bad.  Plus, I get the convenience of having tank-top-ready underarms all the time.

Preliminary Research

Still, I did do my research before buying the vouchers.  After all, I recall that a few years ago, there was a big controversy about a woman who suffered burns all over her legs because she went for laser hair removal treatments at a very famous derma clinic.  I went online to check out some ipl hair removal reviews and there were a lot of both positive and negative stuff.  In the end though, I decided that the benefits outweighed the risks.  One review in particular, by fellow blogger Rina Alcantara, did a lot towards convincing me to do it too.

As Rina (or Rins, as she is well-known recommended) I did not put on any deodorant on the day that I was scheduled for my IPL session.  I also made sure that I did not shave for at least seven days prior to my appointment and I took the precaution of wearing a sleeveless top because I did not want to bother with changing at the clinic.  I admit that I was a little curious and worried that the procedure might hurt.  In my mind, I keep seeing the pictures of laser-induced burns caused by sessions gone awry that I had browsed through during my research.

My First Treatment Session

When I got to the clinic, I was taken to the treatment room and given a pair of goggles, just like the ones that are worn when in a tanning bed.  The technician also warned me that I should keep my eyes closed when she activates the laser, because it could damage my eyes even with the goggles on.  And because I was wearing a sleeveless top, she no longer asked me to change into a dressing gown, but just told me to position myself on the reclining chair.

She then wiped off my skin with an alcohol swab and dabbed some gel on the armpits.  I was told that the gel (which was the same kind that is used for ultrasound sessions) would protect my skin from the heat.  We were ready to begin so I out on my goggles and close my eyes.

I could feel the technician press the laser wand on my skin.  She counted to three, and even with goggles on and eyes closed, I could still see a flash of red light as the laser went off.  She gave each armpit about 6 to 8 shots each, wiped off the gel and told me that I was good to go.  She also offered to remove the hair on my armpits by threading, but since I didn’t want to risk my skin being irritated I just said no.

Post- Session

There was no discernable change in my armpits after the treatment.  From my research though, I knew that the hair would start falling off in four to five days.  Sure enough, on the fourth day post-treatment, I could easily pull off the hair using gentle pressure with my fingertips.  With such good results, I was excited to schedule the next session.

In some websites that I researched, the minimum interval for each IPL session was three weeks.  However, the technician said that I should schedule session 2 after two weeks.  I asked her if it would make any difference and she said that some women prefer to schedule sessions after every two weeks because the hair growth during that time already needs to be treated.  Since I could just avoid wearing sleeveless tops should that happen to me, I opted to play it safe and scheduled my next session three weeks after.

I was told not to pluck or wax my underarms during that time.  If I really had to, I could shave.  The idea is to avoid inducing any new hair follicles to grow, since the laser had already destroyed (or at least weakened) the ones that I had.  Plucking and waxing destroys the hair root, causing another to grow in its place.  Shaving, on the other hand, keeps it intact.

This article is getting too long, so I am going to cut it short and continue on to My IPL Laser Hair Removal Experience- Part 2.

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