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There is a lot of misinformation about laser treatments for dark skin. One of the most common misconceptions is that African-Americans cannot have laser hair removal because of their skin color. While it is true that many of the same lasers and light-based devices used to treat patients with lighter skin types cannot be used on dark skin, if the correct laser technology is used, laser hair removal is just as safe and effective for those with dark skin as it is for those with lighter skin.
Laser hair removal works by interrupting the hair growth function with heat (generated by laser light) energy. The lasers that are used for laser hair removal are designed to target melanin which is the pigment that lines the hair follicle and gives the hair its color. Since people with black skin have a lot of melanin in their skin and hair, special laser technology must be used to properly target the melanin in the follicle while avoiding it in the skin. At Celibre, we use a device called the Sciton Profile.
The Sciton Profile is a long-pulsed Nd:Yag laser that uses a deeper penetrating wavelength of light (1064 nanometers) that targets melanin in the follicle and bypasses the melanin closer to the skin’s surface. This device is extremely safe for dark skin types and works very well for laser hair removal in black skin.
The one caveat for our African American patients is that it may take a greater number of treatments to achieve the same percentage of permanent hair loss than for a lighter skinned patient. The exact number of sessions can vary from person to person, so it is hard for us to give an exact answer to the number but it is usually more than with lighter skin types.
Our extensive experience with this device has proven it to be an extremely safe and effective option for anyone with dark skin that wants to get rid of unwanted hair. No matter what you’ve been told in the past, our team of exert laser practitioners can discuss a laser hair removal treatment plan that will work for you.