Excessive / Unwanted Hair
Hair Grows Differently
Hair grows in stages or phases. To elaborate, even hairs sitting next to each other will experience a growth pattern that differ from each other. This is the main reason why hair removal procedures often require repeated sessions. And while there are over 2,500 hair follicles in any square inch of skin, roughly only 100 of them are visible at any given point in time. This is why it is difficult to say how many treatments are required to treat an area.
Understanding the Hair Growth Cycle and How it Affects Hair Removal Treatments
Phase 1 – the Anagen phase: the start of hair growth. This is when hair is visible above the skin, and is attached to the papilla. The papilla is a knoblike vascular indentation of the bottom of the hair follicle on which the hair bulb sits.
The Anagen phase is the ideal time for light-based hair removal treatments as the follicle is still attached to the papilla. This connection allows light energy to reach the papilla and prevent any new hair growth.
The Anagen phase varies for hairs on different areas of the human body: scalp hair stays in this phase for two to six years, but hair on the arms, legs, lashes and brows have a short Anagen phase that last about 30 to 45 days.
Phase 2 – the Catagen phase: about 3% of hair on the body is always in this phase, and at any given point in time. This lasts about two to three weeks. During this time, hair starts to shed. Additionally, hair follicles in this phase tend to shrink to a fraction of its original length. Any hair removal treatment done will not have any permanent effect on a follicle in this phase.
Phase 3 – the Telogen phase: also known as the resting phase. About six to eight per cent of hair is in this phase. There is no growth and the follicle is detached from the papilla. Any hair removal treatment done will have no permanent effect. The length of time hair stays in this phase is also very unpredictable.
- I2PL (second-generation Intense Pulsed Light)