Frequently Asked Questions
How does electrolysis work?
An electrolysis treatment involves the insertion of a sterile probe, the same size as the hair, into the follicle opening, without piercing the skin. When the probe is in place, a low-level electrical current is applied that will destroy papilla (hair growth source) and surrounding cells and loosen the hair in the follicle. The hair is then removed. Once the growth source is eliminated, there is no way for the hair to be reproduced. However, some situations will require the hair to be treated more than once.
Why should I choose electrolysis over laser hair removal?
First of all, laser hair removal is only approved for permanent reduction-meaning treatments will only remove some of the hair, not all. Secondly, laser hair removal does not work for everyone. Laser works best for people with pale skin and dark hair. However, electrolysis will work for all skin and hair types! Lastly, laser hair removal is not regulated by the state of Oregon, where electrologists have required training and licenses needed to perform in Oregon.
If it appears during the consultation that you may be a good candidate for laser, I may refer you to a clinic supervised by a physician for a consult, with follow up treatments scheduled for electrolysis with my office.
What are the different methods of electrology?
There are three different methods used in electrolysis: galvanic, thermolysis, and the blend.
Galvanic: The current creates a chemical reaction within the follicle and destroys the hair chemically. The chemical is produced only in the follicle and does not affect any other area.
Thermolysis: The current creates a friction causing heat, which destroys the hair growth source. Variations of thermolysis are “flash” and “Manual” techniques.
The Blend: The galvanic and thermolysis currents are combined to enhance the chemical action of galvanic current, in a shorter time.
I primarily use the blend technique in my office, as it is the most effective for most common hair types.
What body areas and skin types can you work on?
Electrolysis can be done on all skin and hair types! No limitations!
The body areas that can be treated include:
Pretty much any area excluding nose and ears!
Is electrolysis painful?
Whether there is any discomfort during electrolysis is variable depending on several factors including: client tolerance, machine settings, mode used, and body area being worked on. The actual insertion of the probe should not be felt, but the action of the current my produce minor discomfort. Many clients describe the feeling as a slight stinging or burning…in other words slightly uncomfortable, but tolerable.
How long does it take to achieve permanent results?
Electrolysis requires a series of treatments given over a period of time. There are several factors that contribute to the number of treatments needed including the area to be treated, skin and hair texture, the amount of hair to be removed, hormonal changes, medicinal needs, and how well you tolerate treatments. Prior use of temporary methods of hair removal (tweezing, waxing, etc) can also play a role. Treatments will be more frequent when you start and will be less frequent later on.
What if I don’t keep to a regular treatment schedule?
Follow up appointments are as important as the initial one. Many hairs will be permanently removed after the first treatment, while others will need additional treatment to achieve permanency. The overall results are usually well worth the time spent. Regular appointments ensure that the hair will be treated and removed at the optimal time-when newly growing.
How long will it take to clear an area of hair?
The best way for us to determine this is if you visit our office for a complimentary consulation. The length of time it will take to clear an area depends on several factors including: size of area to be cleared, size of hair, skin condition/type, and previous temporary ways to remove the hair (tweezing, shaving, waxing, etc). Call today to set up your consultation today!
Electrolysis: Questions and Answers, A Medical Perspective, Dr. James E. Schuster, MD
Electrology. Oregon Association of Registered Electrologists, Inc.