Laser Hair Removal

At our San Francisco Bay Area practice, laser hair removal is one of the most popular treatments, sought by both women and men who want to be rid of unwanted hair. Compared to the hassle and inconvenience posed by shaving, tweezing, or waxing, laser hair removal is an efficient and proven solution for hair reduction on all types of skin.

Barbara L. Persons, MD, FACS

Barbara L. Persons, MD, FACS

Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon

As a fellowship-trained plastic surgeon whose personal connection to plastic surgery inspired her to pursue this career as a lifelong calling, Dr. Persons engages with each of her patients on a very personal level. She's known for creating results that look natural and brings a woman's perspective that patients appreciate.

Meet Dr. Persons Dr. Persons credentials

Is Laser Hair Removal Right for You?

At Persons Plastic Surgery, we use the Cutera ProWave laser for hair removal. The ProWave gets excellent results for patients with darker hair and lighter skin, but it is versatile enough to deliver customized treatments for a wide range of skin types. Even though it can be more difficult to reduce the amount of lighter hair, the best way to learn if you can benefit from laser hair removal is by consulting with us. The laser we use includes a handpiece that can also treat larger areas, such as women’s legs and men’s backs in a safe and efficient manner.

How Does Laser Hair Removal Work?

The technology we use for laser hair removal emits infrared light that targets the pigment in a hair follicle.  To work, the hair must be present in the follicles, so we advise patients not to wax, pluck, or shave the treatment area prior to the procedure. Hair grows in cycles and not all follicles are in an active growth phase (anagen) at the same time. Laser treatments only work on hair in the anagen phase because hair in the resting phase (telogen) does not contain the mature pigment that the light targets.

It takes multiple treatment sessions to produce the desired results. The number of sessions typically ranges from 3 to 10.

Laser Hair Removal vs. Electrolysis

The popularity of laser treatments to reduce hair is based both on its effectiveness and efficiency compared to the other primary treatment, electrolysis. An electrolysis procedure targets individual hair follicles one at a time with electrical charges. It’s a tedious, invasive, and uncomfortable process that can take hours compared to minutes with laser hair removal.

Does Laser Hair Removal Hurt?

Each patient’s experience is unique, but most women and men who undergo laser hair removal treatments say they feel a mild pinching or stinging sensation during the procedure. It’s not enough discomfort to require a local anesthetic or pain medication, but some patients ask to have a topical numbing cream applied to sensitive areas before their treatments.

Preparing for Laser Hair Removal

We provide detailed instructions for patients who schedule laser hair removal treatments. These instructions will enhance the procedure’s effectiveness and reduce the chances of unwanted side effects. Some of the recommendations include:

  • Avoid direct sun exposure to the treatment area for at least a few days before your appointment. Laser hair removal isn’t as effective when performed on tanned skin.
  • Don’t wax or pluck hair in the treatment area.
  • Avoid taking aspirin or other anti-inflammatory drugs which can increase bleeding.
  • We may recommend that patients with darker skin apply a skin-bleaching compound to the treatment area.

The specific pre-treatment instructions are discussed during your consultation.

Give the gift of beauty

Give a gift card to that someone special for Persons Plastic Surgery products and services.

Purchase Now

Is Hair Permanently Removed?

Laser hair removal with the Cutera ProWave laser is approved by the FDA for permanent hair reduction. What does that mean? Research shows that a significant percentage of the treated hair does not grow back after a series of laser procedures. Patients who undergo laser hair removal typically schedule occasional touch-up treatments to address the percentage of hair that does grow back.

Laser Hair Removal Recovery

The downtime after a laser hair removal treatment is minimal. Most patients can return to work or other normal activities immediately after the procedure. It’s important to continue wearing a broad-spectrum sunscreen on exposed treatment areas. You can expect to see a reduction in the number of hairs immediately after the treatment. After 2 to 8 weeks, though, you’ll probably notice increased hair growth. That’s what a series of laser hair removal treatments are needed to get the optimal results.

Get Started

Men and women considering laser hair removal in Walnut Creek, Concord, and throughout the East Bay choose Persons Plastic Surgery for their treatments. If you’re interested in learning more about laser hair removal and if you’re a good candidate for the procedure, request an appointment with Dr. Persons using the online form or call our office at (925) 283-4012 to schedule an appointment.

Back to Top