Thinking about electrolysis?


In 1916 the birth of electrolysis occurred with the multiple needle machines, becoming a practical aid to beauty.  This method was faster than previous methods, and required less time to clear the hair from an area.  The permanent removal of heavy hair growths on large areas, such as legs, bikini lines and underarms become more practical.

What you should know

The electrologist deals with a client’s skin, and unless the technician is well trained, permanent pitting (tiny holes) in the skin may result.  After the treatment on the face or legs tiny scabs may sometimes appear.  These soon drop off, leaving the skin in a healthy condition – as long as the electrolysis is done correctly.  Every electrologist should be fully trained, using live models for practice.

There are two methods of permanent hair removal – galvanic and shortwave.

  • The galvanic method destroys the hair by decomposing the papilla (the source of the hair’s nourishment).
  • The shortwave method destroys the hair by coagulating the papilla by heat.

Electrolysis does hurt, with a needle being poked in and out of the skin, along with electricity to bring about the chemical reaction which causes the death of unwanted hair.

Transdermal electrolysis

There is another form of electrolysis that does not use the needle to kill hair.  This system – transdermal electrolysis – has been around for more than 20 years.

How does it work?

Instead of using a needle or tweezers, transdermal electrolysis involves placing a cotton probe into an electrode gel, transmitting a galvanic current through the skin into the follicles.  The current promotes a chemical reaction, changing water and salt present in the hair follicle into sodium hydroxide.

As in the case of traditional needle electrolysis, the sodium hydroxide destroys the germinative cells, achieving permanent hair removal.

Is it effective?

Any form of hair removal takes time before preventing regrowth.  Hair grows a little more than a centimetre a month.  If appointments are missed, however, permanent hair removal will not occur quite as fas

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