Permanent Hair Removal
What is Permanent Hair Removal?
At Cire we use the latest second generation, medically tried and tested, Ellipse Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) technology (as used by The NHS) for fast, safe and practically painless permanent hair reduction. The treatment is safe to use on any area of the body. Other than white and grey hair, all hair colours can be permanently reduced through treatments. Dark hairs are most easily treated due to the high concentration of melanin that gives maximum absorption. A completed course of treatments can, at worst, guarantee 75% permanent hair removal and, at best, 99%. We generally expect 90%.
How does it work?
Our IPL hair removal system produces a high intensity flash of filtered light, the energy from that light is absorbed by the pigment melanin (this is what gives hair its colour). The hair acts as a conductor of the light and effectively turns it into heat raising the temperature of the surrounding cells to 70 degree centigrade or more. The heating kills the cells making them incapable of producing further hair growth.
Only hair in the growth phase at the time of treatment will be affected by the treatment. The number of hairs in this phase at any one time varies from 20% to 70% depending on the body site. The lengths of the growth cycles also vary from 6 to 12 weeks depending on the body site. For most patients 4 to 8 treatments are sufficient to permanently reduce an area of hair by up to 90%. After the first treatment, most patients get a significant reduction in hair density as new hairs tend to become finer. It is important to know that the first treatment is believed to synchronize the anagen (growth) phase of the non-anagen hairs. This may cause what seems to be regrowth, but is actually just sleeping hairs starting to grow at the same time (new growth). This in turn makes the following treatment(s) more effective.
Unlike other light epilation treatments, hair is not vaporized by the IPL treatment. The heat kills the hair root, but the hair remains in the skin and sometimes becomes attached to the epidermis. Over the 1-3 weeks following the treatment, the hairs will fall out as the epidermis renews itself. During this period it might seem that the hairs are ‘growing.‛ However, a few minutes after the treatment, there are various indications of its effectiveness. These include: the colour of hair becoming charcoal, the hair expanding in size or a red ring around each follicle. These are good indications that sufficient heating of the follicles has taken place.
What preparation is required in advance?
Tanning and the use of fake tan applications should be avoided for 1 month prior to the treatment. Immediately after each treatment session, the skin is particularly sensitive to UV light and strong sunlight should be avoided. It is recommended to shave prior to your treatment as long hairs use up the energy and prevent all of it reaching the hair root. However do leave a small patch of hair to the area to be treated so as to determine the strength of the hair. By avoiding any other form of epilation, plucking or waxing, it ensures as many follicles as possible contain hair, which can be destroyed by the light. Additionally, bleaching should also be ceased in the weeks leading up to the treatment.
Is it painful and are there any side effects?
As the light energy is absorbed, the discomfort depends upon the concentration of melanin in the skin and the hairs combined. Consequently there will be more sensation in darker skin types and those with dense hair. No Anaesthesia is required and most patients describe the sensation as relatively painless ('as if a hairbrush has been tapped against the skin.‛)
The visible light is completely safe, and thus, no special precautions are needed apart from glasses for the brightness generated from the flash lamp. The skin of some patients becomes quite red immediately after treatment and very rarely small blisters like excessive sun exposure can occur. However, most patients experience no side effects at all, and any of the described skin reactions should disappear within hours to a few days. Unlike electrolysis the IPL treatment is non invasive.
Before and After Photos