Electrolysis hair removal is the only method of hair removal, approved by the FDA, that can claim to have permanent results. Having a long history, electrolysis got very popular in the last 5 years. This is the period of time when hair removal clinics started to offer multiple options for pain management to help patients tolerate the pain for longer periods of time. In this way a patient can get an 8 hour electrolysis treatment in one day. Electrolysis hair removal is the only permanent hair removal method available today. As more and more people become more interested in this hair removal method, today we decided to write about several electrolysis techniques and modalities available, and we’ll identify the best type of electrolysis for people looking to get electrolysis hair removal.
1. Galvanic Electrolysis
Galvanic electrolysis is one of the earliest methods developed for hair removal. It involves the use of a direct electrical current to create a chemical reaction that destroys the hair follicle. Here’s how it works:
- A tiny probe is inserted into the hair follicle.
- A low-level electrical current is applied, which produces a chemical reaction that transforms salt and water in the follicle into a chemical called lye.
- The lye then effectively destroys the hair follicle, preventing further hair growth.
Galvanic electrolysis is known for its precision and effectiveness. It’s especially useful for individuals with light hair or fine hair, where other methods like laser hair removal may not be as effective.
2. Thermolysis (Shortwave) Electrolysis
Thermolysis, also known as shortwave electrolysis, uses high-frequency alternating current to generate heat within the hair follicle. This heat damages the follicle and inhibits hair growth. Thermolysis is characterized by the following:
- A fine probe is inserted into the hair follicle.
- High-frequency alternating current is applied, which generates heat within the follicle.
- The heat destroys the follicle’s ability to grow new hair.
Thermolysis is known for being relatively quicker than galvanic electrolysis and is often preferred for larger treatment areas. It’s also effective for individuals with coarser hair types.
3. Blend Electrolysis
Blend electrolysis is a combination of galvanic and thermolysis techniques. It is considered one of the most versatile and widely used methods in electrolysis. Here’s how it works:
- A probe is inserted into the hair follicle.
- A combination of direct current (galvanic) and high-frequency alternating current (thermolysis) is applied simultaneously.
- The galvanic current creates a chemical reaction, while the thermolysis generates heat.
Blend electrolysis offers the benefits of both galvanic and thermolysis, making it suitable for a wide range of hair types and treatment areas. It is often considered the “gold standard” in electrolysis due to its effectiveness and adaptability.
Choosing the Best Type of Electrolysis
The choice of the best type of electrolysis depends on several factors, including:
- Hair type and color– Consider the thickness and color of your hair. Galvanic electrolysis may be preferable for fine, light-colored hair, while thermolysis or blend electrolysis may be more effective for coarser or darker hair.
- Skin type and sensitivity– Assess your skin type and sensitivity. Some individuals may find one method more comfortable or suitable for their skin than others.
- Treatment area and time– Consider the size of the treatment area and how much time you can dedicate to the sessions. Some methods may be faster than others.
- Consultation with a professional– Always consult with a licensed and experienced electrolysis specialist who can assess your unique needs and recommend the most appropriate method for you.
None of the types of electrolysis treatments is perfect. They all have comparative benefits and disadvantages and should be used in accordance with individual clients’ needs and situations. Galvanic electrolysis is old-school. It is guaranteed to destroy the hair follicle but takes longer and can cause adjacent damage. SWD or short-wave diathermy is less uncomfortable but takes longer and may be less effective. Finally, blend electrolysis combines the two prior methods. It is, therefore, in the “goldilocks” zone – neither as effective as galvanic methods nor as comfortable as SWD.
Which treatment you choose will depend on the area of hair removal. Speak to your electrologist to discuss your options. However, you may find it harder to find electrologists proficient with some of the other methods as newer methods become available.