Chris,lagirl or sslhr:
Can any, or all of you explain exactly what permanent hair reduction means?
Does it mean that a certain percentage of hairs are gone -can't be seen, won't come back ever again?
Does it mean that a light-based system can partially "kill a coarse hair", but when the same hair returns it will not be dark or thick like before, but rather thinner and a lighter in color?
If the hair that is seen after laser treatments is light and fine or even clear in appearence, does that mean the laser light caused this transformation or does it truly mean that those hairs were there before treatments, but we never noticed?
I've come to understand over the years that all of the above are true, but I'm now doubting myself after seeing some recent comments here.
From what I understand, laser hair removal is permanent hair reduction. A properly performed and effective laser treatment will destroy all (targeted) hair follicles which are in the active growth stage. On subsequent visits there will be a different subset of follicles in active growth which will be targeted until a significant proportion (usually 80-95%) of the hair has been removed. These hair follicles are destroyed completely, and if the treatment is efective will never grow again.
This does not mean you will never grow hair in the area, it is natural for new hair follicles to form, especially if you are taking any medication or suffering from any condition which affects your hormone balance.
Many people will notice find blond/unpigmented hairs remaining in areas where they have had LHR. This is because many people (especially fair skinned individuals) have somethign like peachfuzz all over their body. In the absence of thicker, darker hair, these short fine hairs become more noticable but they do not grow more, or grow thicker than previously.
I hope that helps