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Electrolysis Hair Removal: Cost, Benefits and Side Effects

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    Electrolysis hair removal is a permanent method to enjoy hair-free skin. If you too are considering it, read about the electrolysis hair removal cost in India, its benefits and side effects vis-à-vis laser hair removal to make an informed decision for your grooming needs.

    What Is Electrolysis Hair Removal?

    Electrolysis is a permanent hair removal method that works on one hair at a time. It involves using current to destroy the hair roots permanently and prevent regrowth. However, it is not a very popular method due to its slow process and purported side effects.

    How Does Electrolysis Hair Removal Work?

    The electrolysis procedure for hair removal works by inserting a fine wire along the hair follicle under the skin to reach the hair root and stem cells. Then, a current wave passes through the wire to destroy the hair roots. It targets only growing hair, and since all hairs may not be in the growing phase simultaneously, it may involve multiple sessions and prolonged treatment to achieve permanent hair removal results.

    What Are The Different Types Of Electrolysis Hair Removal?

    There are three different types of electrolysis depending on the current the machine uses.

    • Galvanic Electrolysis: This uses direct current (DC) and is the oldest type of electrolysis available. It is slow as it works by inducing a chemical change in the follicle root.
    • Thermolysis Electrolysis: This uses shortwave radiofrequency or alternating current (AC). It causes the water molecules near the root to vibrate rapidly, producing heat which can damage the nearby cells in the root. Thus, it has a much faster mechanism of action. However, the efficacy may be lesser.
    • Blend Electrolysis: This blends the two methods mentioned above for improved efficacy.

    What Body Areas Can You Treat With Electrolysis Hair Removal?

    Electrolysis hair removal is safe for all body areas in which you desire permanent hair reduction, for both men and women. However, smaller areas like eyebrows, beard shaping, or bikini are the most common ones treated as electrolysis is a slow and cumbersome process.

    Women can opt for electrolysis hair removal in the following body areas:

    1. Lower face
    2. Upper face, including eyebrow shaping
    3. Neck
    4. Chest
    5. Abdomen
    6. Back
    7. Underarms
    8. Fingers and toes
    9. Bikini line
    10. Arms and legs

    Please note that usually, lower face and neck areas are hormone-dependent and more challenging to treat.

    Men can safely opt for electrolysis in the following body areas:

    1. Forehead
    2. Cheek, including beard shaping
    3. Ears
    4. Neck
    5. Chest
    6. Abdomen
    7. Full arms and legs
    8. Back
    9. Groin
    10. Hands and feet

    What Are The Benefits Of Electrolysis Hair Removal?

    Here are the top three benefits of electrolysis hair removal:

    • It offers permanent results due to the destruction of the papillary region in growing hair
    • It is suitable for almost all skin and hair types irrespective of colour and thickness
    • It is useful to treat unwanted hair growth in sensitive areas like lips and bikini line or to treat a few stray hairs

    What Are The Side Effects Of Electrolysis?

    Here are some common electrolysis hair removal side effects you should know about.

    • Redness And Inflammation:

    The most common side effect of electrolysis is redness and swelling in the treated area, which is normal and goes away within 1-2 days. Excess heat or current or very sensitive skin may end up with prolonged erythema, which is undesirable.

    • Painful Procedure:

    Some degree of pain or discomfort during the electrolysis procedure makes the application of a topical anaesthetic or numbing cream necessary to make the session comfortable for the client.

    • Risk Of Blisters:

    Occasional blisters or scabbing over the treatment site are normal if they are few, but prolonged or severe cases may indicate incorrect needle insertion or technique.

    • Skin Discolouration:

    Pigmentary changes like hypo or hyperpigmentation due to damage to surrounding tissue are one of the major side effects of the electrolysis procedure. It may take time to resolve.

    • Infections:

    This side effect is inevitable if the procedure occurs in an unhygienic environment using an unsterile needle.

    • Scarring:

    Electrolysis could cause scars, including keloids, if the technique is incorrect or the skin is prone to scarring.

    • Hair Regrowth:

    Occasional recurrence of hairs after removal is possible.

    How Much Does Electrolysis Hair Removal Cost In India?

    The cost of electrolysis hair removal in India ranges from INR 2,500 to INR 4,000 per session. This is an average price range that indicates the current market trends.

    The cost of electrolysis hair removal can vary depending on several factors, including the following:

    • Treated Area:

    The size of the target area is a significant factor in determining the cost of electrolysis treatment. Larger areas, such as the legs or back, typically cost more than smaller areas, like the upper lip or chin.

    • Density And Coarseness Of Hair:

    The thickness and coarseness of the hair in the treatment area can affect the time and effort required for each session, thus impacting the overall cost.

    • Number Of Sessions:

    Electrolysis typically requires multiple sessions to achieve permanent hair removal. The number of sessions needed varies depending on individual factors such as the size of the target area, hair type, skin type, and the desired results. More sessions generally mean higher overall costs.

    • Type Of Electrolysis:

    Different electrolysis methods, such as galvanic, thermolysis, and blend, involve different expenditures. The cost may vary depending on the technique used and its safety and efficacy for your hair and skin type.

    • Practitioner’s Experience:

    The cost of electrolysis depends on the practitioner’s experience and expertise.

    • Geographical Location:

    The cost of electrolysis can vary significantly depending on the region or city you choose to undergo this treatment. Urban areas and prime locations with a higher cost of living may have electrolysis treatment at a premium price.

    The electrolysis hair removal cost in India is different across various cities. Here is a city-based approximate price range to give you a quick insight:

    Laser Hair Removal Vs Electrolysis:

    Now that you know all about electrolysis, it is time to compare it with another permanent hair removal method, laser, to make an informed decision.

    How Does it Work?

    Electrolysis

    A fine wire inserted in the hair follicle uses a wave of current to permanently damage the papilla or the growing part of the hair so that the hair stops growing and falls out.

    Laser Hair Removal

    Laser machines emit single-wavelength laser beams to heat and destroy the melanin pigment present in the root of the hair follicle. This minimises the growth of stem cells and reduces hair density and number.

    Advantages

    Electrolysis

    • It is a permanent procedure for hair removal
    • Works on all skin and hair types
    • Suitable for smaller and sensitive areas or to treat stray hairs if required

    Laser Hair Removal

    • Long-term reduction in hair growth
    • Painless and comfortable procedure
    • It requires less time as it can treat larger body areas in one go instead of one hair at a time
    • A quicker and more efficient method
    • Less chances of pigmentary changes or scarring

    Cost

    Electrolysis

    This is an expensive option because it requires a greater number of sessions, each of longer duration, as the procedure targets each hair one by one.

    Laser Hair Removal

    Less costly due to fewer sessions done within a shorter time

    Expected Results

    Electrolysis

    Permanent removal of targeted hairs at the end of all sessions, with mandatory maintenance required

    Laser Hair Removal

    Significant long-term reduction in density, growth and coarseness of hair in treated areas with minimal maintenance sessions required

    Associated Risks

    Electrolysis

    • More painful
    • Chances of hypo/hyperpigmentation
    • Chances of scarring, including keloid formation, blistering and swelling

    Laser Hair Removal

    It may cause transient redness that subsides within an hour.

    Electrolysis has some significant side effects and offers limited benefits at a high cost. If you are looking for a safer and more effective permanent hair removal method, it is best to consult a qualified dermatologist.

    Frequently Asked Questions

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    About The Author

    Dr. Debatri Datta

    Dr. Debatri Datta

    Dr. Debatri Datta has completed her MBBS from West Bengal University of Health Sciences in 2015 and MD - Dermatology , Venereology & Leprosy from West Bengal University of Health Science in 2019.

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