DIY Laser Hair Removal – Does it work?

Fair skinned and hairy? Welcome to the [not-so-fun] club.

I’m going to try to avoid making this post too TMI, while being totally honest – so it will likely be a little TMI, apologies! Let me start by saying that I would be completely happy if the only hair on my body was on my head (and of course my lashes and brows). The rest, I am very happy to permanently part with. There would be no separation anxiety whatsoever.

I am the ideal candidate for laser hair removal being that I have a fair skin tone and dark, thick hair. Don’t be jealous. It’s really not fun.

In total I’ve done about 12 professional laser hair removal sessions for my underarms and lady bits over the past couple years. I got amazing results in the lady area (like ah-mazing! If you get razer burn and it drives you bonkers (me), or you bruise after waxing (also moi) consider laser, seriously) but saw virtually no results in my underarms. Also, you probably already know that laser is NOT cheap and results are not guaranteed.

To be completely honest, I stopped going mainly because of the pain. It.was.excruciating. And I’m not a wuss when it comes to pain. I have multiple tattoos, AND have passed kidney stones (fun fact – I would rather tattoo my entire body twice than pass another stone). So I can deal with pain … for the most part. However, I told my laser specialist after about nine treatments that I wasn’t seeing results I wanted. So she eventually started using the maximum laser setting. You could actually hear the hairs being zapped, and smell burnt hair. Guh. So I knew it was working, and while I did see a bit of a difference, for me, the pain was so intense that I started dreading each treatment, often cancelling the morning of, and if I did end up going, suffering from terrible anxiety leading up to the appointment. You can argue beauty is pain, but this was more than just a pain.

A few months ago I saw the Silk’n Flash & Go All Over Hair Removal Handheld Device was on sale, and I’ve been eyeing it for a while, so I decided to pick it up and give her a try. I’ve been using it for about three months now, at first doing treatments every four weeks, and now I do them every two weeks.

Silk'n Flash & Go

Silk'n Flash & Go

Here are some things to note about the Silk’n Flash & Go, as well as my initial impression:

Holy #!*& that’s bright! – The light flashes are insanely bright. When you go for professional laser they make you wear dark safety-type glasses. I would recommend wearing those (get a pair here), or sunglasses (what I do), because there is no way being exposed to that level of brightness can be the best for your eyes.

DSC02272

Areas I’ve tried – I use this primarily on my underarms and lady bits.I have never tried this on my face. I’ve only used it on my legs a couple times (I have no patience, and I really don’t mind shaving my legs), but even with just those few times I have seen a difference in growth time, meaning I can go a few extra days without shaving my legs, instead of every other day like I used to. Win!

Cartridge – My Silk’n Flash&Go came with a 5000 pulse cartridge; which will last a long time considering I don’t use it on my legs. However, they do sell an unlimited pulse cartridge (with 120,000 pulses), which I think would be worth getting if you were planning to do larger parts of your body (legs, back, arms, etc.).

Silk'n Flash & Go
Super cheesy photos seem to be the norm on every hair removal product.

Pull ’em out! – If you’re familiar with laser hair removal, then you know that a week or two after a treatment you can usually pull hairs out (so addictive) and you don’t even feel it. I’m assuming this is because the hair follicle itself it virtually dead, seeing as the laser light pulses destroy it. I’ve just recently started to notice that this now happens to me a week or two after I use this device! Is it weird I can sit there for long periods of time just pulling out hairs? LOL.

Fan – I saw a lot of complaints online about how loud the fan is. I guess it could be annoying if you were trying to watch TV and laser your legs. You may have to turn up the volume. But for me, I do the two areas mentioned in the privacy of my bathroom; it takes less than 15 minutes.

Silk'n Flash&Go

Pain – It’s not painful. I’ll admit that when I do my lady area I still jump a little bit after every zap, so I’m not saying it’s painless, but it is 100 times more bearable than what I experienced at the spa I went to. Underarms don’t hurt at all, just a quick hot pinch.

Settings – I was really nervous because of my experience at the spa re: pain, so I started off on the lightest setting, which is what the manual does say to do. But I didn’t feel a thing; and I knew based on my previous experiences that I would see zero results. So after the first treatment, I went up to the maximum setting, and that’s all I use now. Not exactly what the manual says, but as I said, I’ve had numerous treatments in the past AND I had no negative reaction with the max setting. If you read other reviews online you’ll also see most women use the maximum setting. You’ll ultimately get the best results. Just test your skin first.

Silk'n Flash & Go

Advice – I apply a lot of pressure when zapping, meaning I press the machine really hard to my skin as I press the laser button. I noticed they do this at the spa too; and I believe it’s more effective and coincidentally actually helps alleviate some pain. Don’t be afraid to apply pressure.

Bottom line – This retails for $199.99 at Shoppers Drug Mart (I see it’s cheaper on Amazon!), but they had a two day sale where it was 25% off, and I had $60 worth of Optimum Points, which I redeemed, so in total I paid just under $100. Would I pay full price for this? Absolutely. I have without a doubt seen a huge difference, and have noticed basically the same results I got with professional laser treatments, but with a cinch of the pain, and at a fraction of the price.

I’ll do another update in a few months, but I hope this was helpful! Note that certain skin types work best for laser hair removal, so do your research if you plan on purchasing first!

Do you guys have experience with laser hair removal? Comment below, I’d love to hear your feedback.

-L

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