When your teenager starts going through puberty, you may begin to hear a bunch of begging and pleading for laser hair removal. There is a benefit for this sort of procedure, but is it appropriate for someone of your son or daughter's age? Before you make an appointment for your teen, there are few things you should keep in mind.
If you're wondering what the exact age your teenager needs to be to get laser hair removal, it essentially depends on the child. A good gauge is when she is through with puberty. Since no two people are alike, your child will go through this change for a different length of time than any of her friends, so the age will vary from child to child. If after puberty she still wants laser hair removal, you can discuss it again. Until then it isn't a good idea.
When your teenager is going through puberty, her body will be producing new hair and new follicles at a heightened rate. This is a basic problem for laser hair removal. While the procedure will work on those hairs already in existence, it cannot target something that has not yet grown. It isn't until after puberty that the amount of hair on your legs, underarms and face is essentially set. This would mean that a teen who decides to have laser hair removal wouldn't have produced all the hair on her body yet to make the procedure beneficial.
The way laser hair removal works is that the laser targets only those hairs that are currently in the growing process. Teenagers who are going through puberty haven't grown all the hair they will have on their bodies. To achieve any benefit, your teen would need to have a number of sessions, and the results would still be fairly minimal. It isn't that the procedure won't work; it's just the number of sessions a teen will need to go through will be greater than if she waited until after puberty.
Typically the benefits of laser hair removal will last anywhere from several months to a year. With a teen not yet through puberty, it won't last nearly as long. Actually it will only last a fraction of that time. Plus, the number of sessions she will need to go through will outweigh the nominal results. Adults will usually need around three sessions for a full procedure. The average cost of each session will be $1,000, placing a full laser hair removal at $3,000. A teen will need more sessions on a regular basis to have any real benefit, racking up a bill of $6,000 to $9,000.
It should also be mentioned that your teen's actual skin care will need to be taken into account for this type of procedure. Teens generally spend more time tanning than adults, and tanned skin is harder to treat with laser hair removal, making it not the best solution for this age group. Darker skin has a tendency to absorb the energy from the laser before it can reach the follicle. If the laser is unable to reach the follicle, the hair will still grow, making the removal unsuccessful.