Laser Hair Removal
in Bellevue and Seattle
Imagine not having to shave, tweeze, or wax. That would be nice, wouldn’t it?
At the Stern Center for Aesthetic and Cosmetic Surgery, our laser hair removal procedures can turn your imagination into reality. At the Stern Center, we offer a comprehensive menu of laser hair removal services for our Seattle and Bellevue patients, using the latest laser hair removal technologies.
As with our skincare program, our hair removal treatments are tailored to your specific skin type and hair color. With the Sciton® Profile™ BroadBand Light™ or our newest Profile™ClearScan™ laser, we can reduce or eliminate undesired hair from all areas of the body.
The ClearScan™ laser selectively targets your hair follicles and heats them with infrared energy. The ClearScan™ employs a unique computer-guided scanning system that automates the treatment, ensuring that your skin is rapidly and evenly treated.
The computer sets the parameters and places the beam in an optimum pattern for your skin to ensure a safe, fast effective, and gentle treatment. Profile ClearScan™ works with most hair colors and textures, and is safe with any skin type!
Laser hair removal can reduce stubborn and unsightly hair from the chin, upper lip, cheeks, arms, underarms, legs, and back, as well as sensitive areas like the ears, nose, chest, and bikini line. Typically, 3-5 treatments are needed to achieve the desired results, at intervals of 3-8 weeks
How does laser hair removal work?
Some of our patients from Bellevue and the surrounding areas think that laser hair removal will zap the hair like a sci-fi movie, but that’s not how it works. The key is to destroy the hair follicles and to do so heat is required. Melanin is what gives your hair and skin its color. At the start of your session, we set the laser wavelength to match the color of the melanin in the unwanted hair shafts. Then, when we direct the laser light down onto those hair shafts, the melanin absorbs the light energy and it converts to heat. That heat travels down the hair shaft into the follicle at the base. The heat then damages or destroys the hair follicle, preventing it from producing hair.
Is laser hair removal painful?
At the Stern Center, we make it our mission to keep our patients as comfortable as possible during laser hair removal. That’s why we’ve invested in two of the latest tools for laser hair removal, the Sciton® Profile BroadBand Light™ and the Profile ClearScan™ Laser. Both platforms employ the latest technology to automate much of the process, ensuring patient comfort. Both are very effective at differentiating between the melanin the hair and the melanin in the patient’s skin. Plus, prior to your session, we apply a topical numbing cream to your treatment areas.
Our patients say it feels as if they have been lightly snapped with a small rubber band on their skin when each laser pulse is delivered. After your session, we also provide a cold compress if you desire.
How many laser hair removal treatments will I need?
This depends upon your goals. The key to successful hair removal is for the laser energy to catch the unwanted hair when it is in the growth phase of the hair lifecycle. The problem is that every one of the roughly five million hairs on the average human operate independently, each moving through different phases of the growth cycle.
Most patients are happy with their hair removal after 3-5 treatments. But if you want to keep getting more and more of those hairs, you may want extra treatments. Each treatment needs to be separated by 4-6 weeks.
Are there risks involved with laser hair removal?
Lasers have been used for commercial hair removal since 1997, the year the FDA approved their use. They were tested for approximately two decades before that. Laser hair removal is a very popular procedure around the world and has proven to be safe, comfortable, and effective. There are very few risks, really only skin burns, and those are the result of inexperienced or poorly trained providers. That’s why you should only trust your laser hair removal to the highly trained, vastly experienced team at the Stern Center.
Is laser hair removal really permanent?
When the FDA cleared the use of lasers for hair removal, it approved them for what it deemed “permanent hair reduction.” The reason for that moniker is the hair growth cycle. As mentioned above, hair responds to laser energy only when it is in the anagen phase (growth). But hairs can also be in the catagen (transitional phase between growth and rest) or the telogen phase (resting). The catagen and telogen phases involve stopping nourishment to the hair, shedding it, and restarting a new hair shaft. That’s why lasers don’t affect hair in these phases; they’re already on their way out. And the laser energy can’t get into the follicle to damage it.
Second, damaged follicles can rebuild with hormonal changes. Plus, if a follicle is only partially damaged, it may heal and begin to regrow hair. Bottom line? Numerous studies show the degree of permanent hair reduction to be from 85 to 90 percent.
How long does a laser hair removal session last?
The length of each session depends on the area being treated. For instance, if we’re treating your underarms or above the lip, your session may take only a few minutes. Your legs or back, on the other hand, could take up to one hour. If you’d like an idea of how long your session will take, just give us a call at our Bellevue offices and tell us the areas you’d like to treat. We can then give you a pretty good idea of the time needed.
Where can I have laser hair removal done?
Our advanced lasers at the Stern Center can remove hair on all skin tones and hair colors. We have patients remove hair from all over their bodies. But there are two exceptions: we cannot remove hair inside the ears or on the male genitalia. Everywhere else is fair game.
Who is an ideal candidate for laser hair removal?
Who doesn’t enjoy the drudgery of shaving, plucking, waxing, or using harsh depilatory creams to remove your unwanted hair, only to see it return a couple of weeks later? This stuff is so Groundhog Day! Plus, it’s expensive — over a lifetime, it’s estimated that a woman spends over $10,000 on shaving products. If you’re a regular waxer, you can more than double that number.
But it’s not just the money you spend; it’s also your time. Imagine how many hours you spend shaving, plucking, and waxing over a lifetime!
At the Stern Center, our laser hair removal patients enjoy around 85 to 90 percent hair reduction. They love their smooth, clean, hairless skin. No more razor burn. No more ingrown hairs. If you’re tired of the routine, you’re a great candidate to come see us get rid of the hair for good.
The only people who cannot have laser hair removal are women who are pregnant or breastfeeding, and those taking certain medications such as Accutane. We’ll discuss any possible exceptions beforehand, but just about everyone is a great candidate.
With Dr. Fredric Stern, you’re in good hands
Whatever the procedure, in most cases, those aging, puffy, tired eyes disappear and you emerge refreshed with natural-looking youthful vitality! As a board-certified ophthalmologist, Dr. Fredric Stern has specialized in cosmetic and reconstructive eyelid surgery since 1987 and is one of the Puget Sound areas most experienced eyelid surgeons.