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Banishing Body Hair for Good

Unlike laser hair treatments, electrolysis is for all skin types

Now that summer is here, many feel the need to constantly shave, wax, or tweeze away their hair to remain smooth during these hotter months. Some might think it's too late for laser hair removal, and that is correct. Laser hair removal is often considered a winter treatment because of how sensitive the skin becomes during the process.

Instead, Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow Electrolysis owner Sara Wolfe and her team provide a unique procedure known as electrolysis that works with all skin tones and types. 

Electrolysis has been around for nearly 150 years. It dates back to 1876 when ophthalmologist Dr. Charles E. Michael developed a way to cure patients struggling with inverted eyelashes. These days, electrolysis utilizes a device with a small probe that is inserted directly into the hair follicle. A combination of heat and electricity is used to completely remove the follicle. It’s far more comfortable than laser hair removal and, according to Wolfe, is capable of doing what the laser can’t. 

“Lasers use light to heat and kill the follicle at the source,” Wolfe explained. “But those lights are attracted to melanin. So, the darker your hair, the more effective the treatment is. That also means, the darker your skin, the more intense the heat and the pain will be. With electrolysis, that is not the case.” 

Unlike lasers, electrolysis does not require a certain amount of pigmentation to be effective. It is the only FDA-approved solution for permanent hair removal. Electrolysis can be used to treat unwanted hair virtually anywhere on the body. The common treatment areas include the legs, arms, underarms, upper lip, back and bikini line. Unlike laser hair removal, electrolysis is not considered a seasonal treatment and can be done year-round. 

“Despite their popularity, waxing, threading, sugaring and laser are treatments you will be doing for the rest of your life,” Wolfe said.

Lasers also can encourage hair growth, ultimately reversing the work done to remove it. 

Wolfe and her team treat clients who struggle with male-pattern hair growth often associated with some kind of hormonal issue. This is typically seen in women suffering from polycystic ovarian syndrome, or PCOS, which can create a hormonal imbalance that spurs additional hair growth. Unlike other treatments, electrolysis can transform someone’s skin permanently. 

“I like to say that laser hair removal is like microwaving a meal and electrolysis is like the crockpot,” Wolfe said, laughing as she explained why it often takes longer to see the permanent results of electrolysis. 

She also reminds her clients that hair grows in cycles. While the first treatment appears to eliminate all the hair during the first cycle, new hair can grow back that needs to be addressed. 

When it’s time for an appointment, Wolfe recommends patients come in early for a facial to exfoliate and saturate the skin with moisture. This not only improves the efficacy of the treatment but improves the recovery time as well. 

With a brand-new location in Roanoke, Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow Electrolysis is open Monday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Consultations are free for new clients.

“I like to say that laser hair removal is like microwaving a meal and electrolysis is like using the crockpot.”

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