Laser Hair Removal vs Traditional Hair Removal

We all maintain a love-and-hate relationship with hair. While your luscious mane is considered the epitome of elegance and beauty, unwanted body hair can majorly factor in embarrassment and frustration. Excess body hair can make you feel self-conscious, influencing your choice of clothing when heading out. The quest to achieve hair-free and buttery smooth skin has made people explore different hair removal methods. Every method is unique, from traditional hair removal techniques like shaving, waxing and depilatory creams to advanced laser hair removal.

While traditional hair removal methods help you stay hair-free for a couple of days, as your body hair will regrow, laser technology assures permanent hair removal in the long run. It is essential to understand the differences between the traditional and modern hair removal approaches to make a well-informed choice to get a silky smooth body without unwanted hair. Read on to learn how laser hair removal differs from traditional methods like waxing, depilatory creams, and shaving[1].

Pros and Cons of Laser Hair Removal vs. Shaving, Waxing, and Hair Removal Creams

Traditional hair removal methods like hair removal creams, waxing and shaving have been widely used for several decades to remove unwanted body hair[2]. However, such methods require frequent maintenance cycles to maintain hair-free skin, as stubbles develop quickly. Laser hair removal procedure, on the other hand, has an edge over these traditional methods, as it directly targets your hair follicles to burn them to prevent hair regrowth[3]. Keep reading to understand the positive and negative aspects of laser hair removal and other traditional hair removal methods.

1. Laser Hair Removal vs. Shaving

Shaving is a simple process of eliminating hair from your body that has prevailed since ancient times. Shaving is performed using a handheld razor, but risks include razor burns, nicks or cuts, and ingrown hairs. Laser hair removal procedure is a pain-free and irritation-free option when compared to shaving[4]. It also assures hair removal, which is permanent and effective in the long run. Though more expensive than shaving, laser treatment helps you flaunt beach-ready skin without facing the hassles of frequent shaving.

Shaving Pros

  • Quick and Convenient: Shaving is a very convenient option, as it can be done within a couple of hours at home. It is a quick way to remove unwanted hair from any body part.
  • Affordable: Shaving is a highly economical method of hair removal, as you just need to buy a razor along with shaving cream.

Shaving Cons

  • No Long-lasting Results: Shaving offers relief from unwanted body hair only for the short term. Your hair begins to grow back soon after a day or two, requiring you to shave again.
  • Skin Irritation: When a razor with sharp blades comes in direct contact with your skin, there are risks of developing skin irritation, rashes, ingrown hairs, and razor burns.
  • Frequent Maintenance: To avoid stubs from growing into thick hair, it is important to shave thrice or more every week, which can take up your precious time.

2. Laser Hair Removal vs. Waxing

Waxing is one of the widely used traditional methods for hair removal, which involves the application of hot wax over your skin, sticking it with a thick cloth, and tugging it forcefully in against the direction of hair growth. Though waxing can get rid of your body hair effectively, it is very painful and leads to severe skin irritation[5]. When comparing laser hair removal with it, laser energy does not cause any major side effects on your skin and doesn’t cause any irritation. It provides permanent results to help you avoid the hassle of fixing frequent waxing appointments.

Waxing Pros

  • Effective: When compared to shaving, waxing uproots the hair by forceful pulling action. So, you will remain hair-free for a few weeks.
  • Ideal for Large Areas: Waxing is useful to remove unwanted hair from large areas of your body, like the back and legs.

Waxing Cons

  • Very Painful: Waxing causes a lot of pain, and if you have sensitive skin, you will have to face intolerable pain.
  • Ingrown Hairs: Waxing will cause skin irritation and increase the risk of ingrown hairs, which might cause more pain.
  • Risk of Infections: If not done by a professional in hygienic conditions, waxing might cause skin infections.

3. Laser Hair Removal vs. Hair Removal Creams

Also called depilatory creams[6], these products have potent chemicals like sodium hydroxide or calcium thioglycolate as active ingredients for breaking down your hair’s keratin and protein structure. These creams provide instant results but can cause skin burns, irritation, and rashes. So, depilatories are not suitable for all skin types. The hair regrows after a week, which makes it a temporary hair removal procedure[7]. Laser hair removal is a non-invasive procedure that is safe for all skin types and ideal for dark and light-skinned people.

Hair Removal Cream Pros

  • Readymade: As depilatory creams are available in ready-to-apply tubes with an applicator, using them is simple and convenient.
  • Quick Results: You just have to spread the hair removal cream on the skin and wipe it off after the waiting time to see instant results.
  • Pocket-friendly: These depilatory creams are available in travel-friendly sizes and are easy on your pocket.

Hair Removal Cream Cons

  • Toxic Chemicals: Depilatory creams are loaded with powerful chemicals like sodium hydroxide, potassium hydroxide, calcium hydroxide, and calcium thioglycolate for dissolving your body hair[8].
  • Can Irritate Skin: Hair removal creams are not a suitable choice for all types of skin, as they can make skin dry, and cause burns, rashes, and discomfort.
  • Short-term Results: You might have to invest in depilatory creams repeatedly, as your hair tends to grow back soon after a week.

4. Laser Hair Removal

This non-invasive procedure is performed by employing concentrated laser energy having a specific wavelength and pulse based on the photothermolysis principle[9]. The laser light targets the follicles of your body hair and gets converted into thermal energy to vaporize it[10]. So, the incidences of hair regrowth are not possible. According to the FDA, laser hair removal is effective and can lower hair reduction by 95%. So, right from the first laser hair removal session, you can stay assured of getting around 20% of body hair removed with high precision[11].

Pros of Laser Hair Removal

  • Long-lasting Hair Removal: With laser hair removal, you can stay assured of getting permanent results, as it focuses on damaging the melanin in the hair follicles[12].
  • Fast and Efficient: Laser hair removal treatment is very quick, as it targets thousands of hair follicles during every session. So, it is an efficient choice for hair removal in larger areas like your back and legs.
  • Very Precise: As the laser energy targets the dark pigment called melanin in your hair follicle, the results are very precise. Plus, the tissues and skin in the treatment area remain untouched.
  • No Pain and Discomfort: The laser procedure doesn’t cause too much pain or discomfort when compared with the traditional methods of hair removal.
  • Versatile: Laser procedure for hair removal is suitable to get rid of excess body hair in all parts of your body, like the face, chest, back, arms, underarms, bikini line, and legs.
  • Enhances Skin Health: People will begin to notice a drastic improvement in their skin as the laser treatment ensures that issues like ingrown hairs are also taken care of.

Cons of Laser Hair Removal

  • High Cost: Even though the upfront payment for laser hair removal procedure is a bit more expensive than the traditional methods of hair removal, it offers permanent results. Such long-term benefits are worth the investment you will be making to optimize skin health.
  • Requires Multiple Sessions: You need to attend 4 to 6 sessions of laser hair removal to flaunt hair-less skin. However, with every session, you will be able to find visible hair reduction and diminishing hair growth levels.

Long-Term Cost Implications of Laser Hair Removal

Laser hair removal treatment is a bit pricier, as unlike the traditional methods, it uses advanced machines and equipment for high-precision results. Compared to other hair removal methods, laser therapy must be performed by trained and expert dermatologists at reputed skin centres. As the laser energy focuses on removing the hairs in an active growth phase, about 30% of follicles are destroyed permanently. So, you must take up to 4 to 6 sessions to get complete hair removal results. Plus, laser treatments can be customized with varying wavelengths and pulse rates based on your specific hair type and skin tone.

So, the amount you spend for a laser hair removal procedure is a one-time investment to get permanent hair-free results. The regular upkeep expenses involved when choosing traditional hair removal methods to buy depilatory creams, waxing strips or razors per year is much more than the amount you spend for laser treatment. You need not spend extra for frequent sessions in future, as laser delivers long-lasting results in terms of hair removal.

Skin Health Considerations for Laser Hair Removal

  • Avoid exposing the skin to the sun for prolonged hours for a month before your first laser hair removal appointment. Remember, the laser can be effective on skin, which is not tanned or exposed to the sun.
  • Avoid waxing or tweezing your body hair before laser treatment, as it might damage your skin accidentally, leading to the development of skin issues when exposed to laser[13].
  • Exfoliate your skin using a gentle exfoliating scrub to keep the skin from all pore-clogging elements like dirt, oil, makeup, and impurities.
  • Do not use skin care products laced with harsh chemicals, as they can irritate your skin regarding laser energy.
  • Avoid sauna sessions, workouts, hot showers, and other activities that can make your body hot and break a sweat before your laser session.
  • Dab on sunscreen with SPF 30 on the treatment site to protect it from photodamage even when not stepping out.
  • Avoid using tanning beds or kits, as it can disturb your skin’s sensitivity.
  • Make sure that the treatment area is shaved completely, taking care there are no cuts 24 hours before your laser hair removal to make the laser light hit the follicles directly.

Summing Up

Never allow your body hair to keep you from wearing your favourite attire. Unleash the power of the laser hair removal procedure offered by Kolors Hair and Skin. We offer personalized laser hair removal services to help you achieve long-lasting hair-free skin. Bid goodbye to the never-ending struggle with depilatories, waxes, and razors and step out with confidence with our laser hair removal treatment.


  1. Lanzalaco, A., Vanoosthuyze, K., Stark, C., Swaile, D., Rocchetta, H., & Spruell, R. (2016). A comparative clinical study of different hair removal procedures and their impact on axillary odor reduction in men. Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, 15(1), 58-65. –
  2. Fernandez, A. A., França, K., Chacon, A. H., & Nouri, K. (2013). From flint razors to lasers: A timeline of hair removal methods. Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, 12(2), 153-162. –
  3. Cindy Na-Young Kang, Monica Shah: Temerty Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada –
  4. Department of Dermatology, College of Medicine, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia –
  5. Shinhwa Kang: Vision College of Jeonju, Jeonju, Republic of Korea, Jiyoung Lee: Vision College of Jeonju, Jeonju, Republic of Korea –
  6. Institute of Medicine, Chung Shan Medical University, Taichung 40221, Taiwan. –
  7. Tsai, F., Chou, P., Yu, S., Lee, J., & Chiu, T. (2021). Depilatory creams increase the number of hair follicles, and dermal fibroblasts expressing interleukin-6, tumor necrosis factor-α, and tumor necrosis factor-β in mouse skin. The Korean Journal of Physiology & Pharmacology : Official Journal of the Korean Physiological Society and the Korean Society of Pharmacology, 25(6), 497-506. –
  8. Sandy S Tsao MD, George J Hruza MD, in Surgery of the Skin, 2005 –
  9. Father Muller MC, Rajiv Gandhi Un of HS. –
  10. Wellman Laboratories of Photomedicine, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, USA –
  11. Gupta, G. (2014). Diode Laser: Permanent hair “Reduction” Not “Removal”. International Journal of Trichology, 6(1), 34. –
  12. Bhat, Y. J., Bashir, S., Nabi, N., & Hassan, I. (2020). Laser Treatment in Hirsutism: An Update. Dermatology Practical & Conceptual, 10(2). –
  13. Lehrer Michael, Crawford Glen, Gelfand Joel, Leyden James, Vittorio Carmela: Effect of Wax Epilation Before Hair Removal With a Long-Pulsed Alexandrite Laser: A Pilot Study –

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