Results of laser hair removal vary greatly from person to person, and might depend on what area of the body or face is treated.

Multiple treatments can prolong the duration of hair loss — up to years in some cases — but hair regrowth is still possible. For best results, you might need four to six treatments spaced around six weeks apart. Additional periodic maintenance treatments — perhaps once every six to 12 months — might be needed as well.

What about home lasers?

In recent years, lasers that can be used at home for hair removal have become available. These devices might cause modest hair reduction. But there aren't any large studies comparing how effective these devices are compared to laser hair removal done at a doctor's office.

Additionally, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration considers these home laser hair removal devices as cosmetic, not medical, which means they don't get the same level of scrutiny as other medical devices. Currently, there haven't been any large, long-term studies on how safe and effective the home machines are.

If you choose to use a home laser hair removal device, follow the instructions that come with the device to help reduce the risk of injury, especially eye injuries.

April 10, 2015