Before I move on to talking about our other activities in the city, I wanted to talk about Victor’s and my experience with laser hair removal.
He wanted a full face and neck treatment for his facial hair, but sadly we could only get one treatment done during his stay. The price for one full face and neck treatment for men the place we went are $60 and $40, respectively. In his area at Prince Edward Island, one full face treatment costs about $240 CAD. How crazy is that?!
I had a Groupon bundle for six sessions for a large area, in which I chose underarms and Brazilian and I also opted for full face and buttocks … I just wanted to lose that peach fuzz. With my Groupon Select, the Groupon deal went from like $230 to $175. Imagine, the cost of the Groupon bundle I purchased is equivalent to the cost of approximately FOUR sessions of Brazilian waxing. It kind of infuriates me because I’ve spent over a year waxing those areas. I definitely could’ve saved some money had I gone for laser hair removal earlier!
Laser Hair Removal Overview
Laser hair removal (let’s call it LHR for short) is another option you could always consider besides tweezing or waxing, etc. LHR uses pulses highly concentrated energy or light and targets hair follicles, and that’s what kills the hair. Some say that laser hair removal works best on people with dark, coarse hair and a fair complexion, however there are lots of advanced lasers now that can treat anyone with any complexion. It takes an average of six to eight sessions to achieve best results.
Types of Laser Systems
If you look into laser hair removal, you may see different types of lasers appear in the description like:
- Cynosure / Elite
- Candela / GentleMax
You may also see IPL or Intensive Pulse Light. This system is a little different from the other laser systems and doesn’t have nearly as much effectiveness as the others do. Some people actually may experience no changes at all with IPL. Keywords that indicate IPL may be used are “pulses of light” or just straight up “IPL”.
Let’s get this straight. Laser hair removal is NOT totally permanent.
Contrary to what a lot of folks might think, you are not completely hair free. You may be hair free up to 90-95%, or even up to 99%, but some hair will still grow back. This hair, however, will be very fine. Medications and change in lifestyle, such as pregnancy, can affect our hormones and make you grow your hair back again. Because of this, some people elect to go back for maintenance sessions every few years or so.
How It Works
Unlike waxing where you have to grow out your hair long enough for the wax to grab, you must shave 24-48 hours prior to your laser hair removal session.
I’m sure if you opt to get it done, you will be given all the pertinent information of what to do and what not to do, but here’s a few of what I was told:
- No major sun exposure, tanning lotions, tanning beds, tanning sprays, and tanning solutions 2-4 weeks before and after treatment.
- Cover all treated areas and use sunblock, 30 SPF or higher.
- You must not be taking or have taken antibiotics for a minimum of 2 weeks prior to treatment.
- No makeup, deodorant, lotion and ointments should be on the areas to be treated.
- If you are pregnant, nursing, or think you may be pregnant, you will NOT be seen.
First, a few things about looking at Groupon deals for LHR:
- Not all deals are equal. Each place will offer different prices for their Small, Medium, and Large (and maybe even Extra Large) packages.
- Some packages may only offer three sessions, some may offer six. Some may offer a whole year of unlimited sessions. Just make sure you double check this detail before checking out!
- Some places will determine that the size of a part of your body will be different from another place. For example, Site A can determine that a Brazilian LHR is considered Medium (and thus you save money because Medium areas don’t cost as much), but Site B may say it’s actually Large.
- FURTHERMORE, some places will determine that a woman’s Brazilian does NOT include the “inner buttocks”, whereas some will accept it. Read the fine print and ask them questions if unsure!
There are quite a few people who jump from place to place because they want to take advantage of the cheap Groupon deals, however a lot would also agree it’s really the best to stick with one company for all your LHR needs. By sticking with the same place and practitioner / clinician, they would best be able to figure out the best way to work with your skin and hair, rather than going from place to place and seeing someone new.
Out of all my options, I chose to go with SEV Laser, which is located in New York City, close to the Central Park. I chose them because
- I was primarily looking through Groupon and they had a really good bundle where you can get six sessions for a Large area, which included BOTH underarms and Brazilian (uncommon) and
- They offered affordable and competitive pricing for the other regions I know I want to have done in the future.
Related post: Adventures With Victor – Central Park Zoo and More
SEV laser has several locations in the U.S. besides New York; they’re primarily located throughout the California region: West Hollywood, Glendale, Calabasas, Irvine, Hermosa Beach, San Francisco, La Jolla, Rancho, Los Gatos, and most recently, Walnut Creek. Oh, and apparently celebs like Kim K, Jordyn Woods, and Rita Ora, etc. regularly go to SEV.
Victor had his first (and last, boo) appointment on August 5th and I had mine just a few days later on the 8th. We were both required to fill out a LONG list of forms online to save time. Upon entering, we were required to give proof of ID to make sure it was really us, which I found kind of interesting … a lot of places like doctor’s offices don’t even ask me for this? It’s interesting in a good way!
Their waiting room was small but super cute, chic, and sophisticated. I was totally into the white roses that were decorated all around the office.
I initially noticed that they are really punctual with taking you in for your appointment. For both Victor’s appointment and mine, they took us in on the dot.
We both had the same clinician, Sasha, who was really friendly and gave us an overview of what we’d do. She explained the things I need to do to protect my skin after the treatment is over, and also explained to me what I might feel once we started the LHR session.
If you’ve ever gone for a wax, it’s pretty much the same with laser hair removal, only they use this big machine with a long hose and gun attached to it, which is where the laser comes out of. It basically looks like a huge laser pointer – the laser itself is a big green dot. The machine also blows cold air out which helps you not to feel the full intensity of the heat. SEV Laser uses the Candela GentleMax Pro.
Sasha worked from the bottom region on the front, all the way up to my face, and then did the buttocks last. Before starting, she marked the parts of my body that was being done with a white pencil and then did a laser test spot to see if I felt anything or I felt uncomfortable.
Boy, let me tell you that the LHR session was quick! The Brazilian took like five to eight minutes, the underarms were like two minutes, the full face was like three to five minutes, and the buttocks were like three to five minutes. All in all, I was in the treatment room for 20 minutes at most. Everything was relatively painless.
I did feel slightly sensitive when I had my Brazilian area done, especially the pubic bone. It’s not nearly as painful as waxing those ladies though! You can also smell some hair burning.
Did it feel like a rubber band snap? Some will say that it does, but both Victor and I actually thought it felt more like strong static. Either way, it was definitely a lot milder than a waxing appointment.
After the appointment was over, I was told to apply sunscreen on several times a day if I was walking outside, not to take a hot shower or exercise 24-72 hours after my treatment, not to shave the treated areas for a week, and more. Most importantly, it’s essential that I try to make my appointments as consistent as possible, between four to eight weeks.
I haven’t seen any results yet, but I never expected to, since it’s only been my first time. I’ll definitely keep you updated when I start seeing results or when it’s all done!
Thanks for reading! What are your thoughts on laser hair removal?
Until next time! ♡