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#95978 - 02/18/12 08:38 PM HELP! : Patchy Regrowth After Laser Treatment
patchadams Offline
Member

Registered: 02/17/12
Posts: 4
Without going into my entire life story here:

I'm a male with fair skin and dark coarse hair. I just purchased a pack of six sessions for laser hair removal on my shoulders and lower back. But because the hair in those areas is so minor, the physician's asst. offered to do a "freebie" on my chest and stomach. I have no interest in a hairless torso; but she assured me that with one session, the process would only serve to THIN OUT the hair a bit. (Clearly, I have an issue saying "no" to people-- but I'll save that for another post)

ANYWAY, based on my results so far (and after scouring the Internet and finding many similar stories) I think that "THINNING OUT" hair through laser treatment is NOT A THING. It has now been three weeks since my "freebie treatment" and I have been left with awkward railroad tracks of hair criss-crossing across my body. Apparently, large sections "took" and are completely hair free, other's clearly did not and are now fully regrown. I look ridiculous.

I realize three weeks may be too early to start freaking out; BUT I have a vacation booked in a month and I hadn't planned on looking like "The 40-Year Old Virgin" on the beaches there. Has anyone else experienced these type of results? Does the hair eventually grow back? And how long is "eventually"? Is there any chance I can be "evened out" in a few weeks? Or at this point, is my best bet to just get the whole thing lasered off? Help!!

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#95979 - 02/18/12 09:05 PM Re: HELP! : Patchy Regrowth After Laser Treatment [Re: patchadams]
stoppit&tidyup Offline
Top 10 Contributor

Registered: 05/04/08
Posts: 1800
Loc: London, UK
Hi patch,

Please see this post:
http://www.hairtell.com/forum/ubbthreads.php/topics/95232/stoppit_tidyup.html#Post95232

Right now, you are not seeing the 'results' of LHR, you are just experiencing the post treatment shedding. The sections of hair you still have are hairs that were missed and therefore have not shed. The fact that these go in lines indicates that the sections weren't overlapped thoroughly. At this point, you can go back and ask for a touch up treatment to treat these missed patches. This is something most clinics offer, however, since you had a free session in the first place, I'm not sure what they will say. This hair should then shed in 2-3 weeks - before your holiday.

About 6 weeks post treatment, the next cycle of hair will start to come through. A few months after that you can judge if you experienced any overall thinning.
_________________________
31/F/UK
Laser for reduction on Underarms, Bikini, Full Legs & 3/4 Arms. Skin type IV
Electrolysis - Further details in: My sister's electrolysis diary
[27hrs of Blend, April 2008-Dec 2010 in UK, for coarse hair on lower sideburns, coarse chin hair, completed upper lip, shaped eyebrows]
[Sept 2011 to date, once yearly sessions with Josefa. Completed reduction of facial/neck fuzz in approx 27 hrs TTT]

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#95981 - 02/18/12 09:55 PM Re: HELP! : Patchy Regrowth After Laser Treatment [Re: stoppit&tidyup]
patchadams Offline
Member

Registered: 02/17/12
Posts: 4
Thank you for your reply! I found that very helpful and informative!!

Here's the thing: the physician's asst says she can't retreat the missed areas until six weeks have passed (something about not wanting to subject the skin to lasers too frequently-- which doesn't seem to make sense, considering these are areas that weren't even hit the first time).

But nonetheless, you say that after six weeks the hair that shed will begin to grow back? If so, could I then expect to see my hair evened out by, say, 7 weeks post-treatment? (That's when I leave for my trip). I worry that if I do a spot-treatment on the missed areas 2 weeks before I leave, I'll have the exact reverse look that I have now (the shed hair will be growing back, and the newly treated spots will be bare).

Also, how much do I owe you for this expert advice?

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#95982 - 02/18/12 10:11 PM Re: HELP! : Patchy Regrowth After Laser Treatment [Re: patchadams]
stoppit&tidyup Offline
Top 10 Contributor

Registered: 05/04/08
Posts: 1800
Loc: London, UK
Yeh, that does not make sense and normal practice for most clinics is to offer free touch ups 3 weeks post treatment. In fact, some won't even do the free touch up if more than 3 weeks have passed because they don't want to be treating the next cycle.

Everyone responds differently but in my experience the hair begins to come in slowly. The missed areas will always look more dense now until the rest has 'caught up' which may be more like at least 12 weeks post treatment.

Really, your best option to keep everything even would be to have those missed patches treated now. Do you think you can convince her? Don't shave, show her the pattern that clearly shows those areas weren't treated in the first place and try to argue that point. Explain that you are going on holiday (maybe tell her a slightly earlier date) and that you want the treatment before you go.

Glad I could help smile
_________________________
31/F/UK
Laser for reduction on Underarms, Bikini, Full Legs & 3/4 Arms. Skin type IV
Electrolysis - Further details in: My sister's electrolysis diary
[27hrs of Blend, April 2008-Dec 2010 in UK, for coarse hair on lower sideburns, coarse chin hair, completed upper lip, shaped eyebrows]
[Sept 2011 to date, once yearly sessions with Josefa. Completed reduction of facial/neck fuzz in approx 27 hrs TTT]

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#95995 - 02/19/12 08:13 AM Re: HELP! : Patchy Regrowth After Laser Treatment [Re: stoppit&tidyup]
mumbaigirl Offline
Top 20 Contributor

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 281
You should go for a touch-up as soon as possible if you want to even out things. You don't want them to treat the next hair cycle.

There are clinics who treat people once in every 2 weeks so what your technician told you is pure BS.

You will experience some reduction if the settings were effective but the reduction should not be more than 30%. And it wouldn't be patchy if you get a touch up.

Plus, I see you're male and men develop new hair into their late 30/40s. So a lot of hair might come back. When? Don't know.

If things don't look fine after 6-8 months, you can always visit an electrologist. S/he should be able to even out the hair.

All the best! And don't worry too much smile

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#96052 - 02/21/12 06:29 PM Re: HELP! : Patchy Regrowth After Laser Treatment [Re: mumbaigirl]
patchadams Offline
Member

Registered: 02/17/12
Posts: 4
Unfortunately, my clinic is refusing to do touch ups until six weeks have passed. At that point, do you think I should just have the entire area retreated? Or just the patches?

OR do you think I need to find another clinic now that will treat the missed patches?

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#96058 - 02/21/12 10:29 PM Re: HELP! : Patchy Regrowth After Laser Treatment [Re: patchadams]
anotherdude Offline
Major Contributor

Registered: 08/01/09
Posts: 104
Can you post clear photos of your situation, it's much easier to judge what's going on. My opinion as a consumer (not a laser removal expert) is that 1 treatment even with missed spots should not produce any dramatic visual irregularities in growth; you will probably not even notice much "thinning" too. If you can get to another clinic, have them treat your missed spots now within 3 week period. I would say after 2 month period 10-12 weeks, you will be able to tell how the hair completely grows in.

Do you know what machine they're using? If this clinic is not willing to treat you again now with some unfounded reason, I'd question their overall experience and knowledge of lasers. What do you mean by "minor" hair on your shoulder and back? Is your shoulder and lower back hair coarse and dense, because if not, you risk not getting decent results.

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#96060 - 02/21/12 11:45 PM Re: HELP! : Patchy Regrowth After Laser Treatment [Re: anotherdude]
patchadams Offline
Member

Registered: 02/17/12
Posts: 4
I'll throw a photo up later-- but when you say "there shouldn't be dramatic visual irregularities in growth" do you mean AFTER the 2 moth period? Or even now (after 2.5 weeks)? There's no predicting what I'll look like in 2 months, but right now it's VERY irregular.

For what it's worth, I just made an appointment (for tomorrow) at another clinic to get the remaining hairy spots treated. I hope that's a good idea. Part of me feels like I should just leave it alone and see what happens. I wouldn't be stressed if not for this vacation I have in a month. I wish I waited until after to start this process, because I don't think there's any hope of me looking normal in 4 weeks.

Also: both clinics are using a diode laser. And as far as my shoulder and back hair: it's the same "coarseness" as the rest of my body, but it's just sparse-- more spread out than my chest and stomach. Hopefully, I'll still get results...??

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#96063 - 02/22/12 02:43 AM Re: HELP! : Patchy Regrowth After Laser Treatment [Re: patchadams]
anotherdude Offline
Major Contributor

Registered: 08/01/09
Posts: 104
Get the missed part lasered and by 4 weeks it will shed and everything will look even, so it will not look weird like it does now by then. I don't know anything about the diode laser, others here have experiences with it, but I think it's considered a good machine too.

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#96067 - 02/22/12 11:37 AM Re: HELP! : Patchy Regrowth After Laser Treatment [Re: anotherdude]
mumbaigirl Offline
Top 20 Contributor

Registered: 12/14/11
Posts: 281
Hair from the next cycle might start coming in by 6th week. So if you go for a touch up then, you might land up treating the new hair cycle- something you don't want to do.

I think you should go to the same clinic and get a touch up(pay if need be) at the same settings using the same laser. There is a possibility that you were treated at ineffective settings in the first place so all the hair might actually come back. Now if you go to a different clinic, they might use effective settings and kill all the remaining hair and the growth will again be uneven. Vice versa is also possible.

If I were you, I'd go to the same clinic and get a touch up at the same settings or else, I'd at least ask them for the settings and get treated at some other place using the same settings on the same laser.

You can also JUST leave the hair as it is. In 6-8 months, most of the growth will even out. If it doesn't, you can visit an electrologist.

As far as your vacation is concerned, just shave. No one will notice the patchy growth. Trunk hair is usually not coarse enough to leave a shadow.

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