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Electrolysis Hair Removal: A Comprehensive Guide

Does sending unwanted hair to kingdom come sound ridiculous? Century-old electrolysis hair removal tells us to think twice.

Electrolysis is a 130-year-old hair removal method that uses electric current to annihilate unwanted hair in different parts of the body. It was initially used to treat hard to remove ingrown eyelashes until the method proved to offer ultimately permanent hair-free results.

Little is written about electrolysis as the true-blooded permanent hair removal in the market but through the years electrolysis hair removal proved to gradually remove unwanted hair and really keeps it from growing back. Unfortunately, the hype on laser hair removal overshadowed the true promise of permanent hair removal electrolysis offers. In fact, electrolysis is often referred as electrolysis laser hair removal thinking that it is a type of laser hair treatment. Ironically, electrolysis can be considered as the superior type of hair removal since it really offers permanent hair removal compared to laser hair removal, which actually only offers permanent hair reduction.

Electrolysis may have suffered a bad fate in the hair removal market but the good news is that people who are less likely candidates for a laser hair removal can resort to electrolysis hair removal to solve their unwanted hair woes.

The Procedure

Electrolysis is done by running an electrical pulse through a sterilized needle that is painstakingly inserted into each hair follicle, which will not grow again after the treatment. Electrolysis can remove hair from almost any part of the body except for hair on the mole and hair inside the nose and ears.

3 Types of Electrolysis Hair Removal

Electrolysis hair removal has three basic methods namely Galvanic, Thermolysis, and Blend. Each differs in the kind of current used in the procedure.

  • Galvanic. Lye is produced by its electro-chemical current. It is the first method of electrolysis best used for thick and coarse hair. The current converts salt and water in the follicles into lye, which effectively prevents hair regrowth.
  • Thermolysis. A radio wave produces the high frequency heat current. The method is best used for removing fine hair.
  • Blend.  A combination of Galvanic and Thermolysis methods leading to a more rapid production of electro-chemical current. The Blend electrolysis is best used for facial hair removal.


Electrolysis hair removal is a painful procedure making it less attractive for most people who want to get rid of unwanted hair. The level or degree of pain would vary on the coarseness of the hair to be removed. Apart from leaving the treated person almost permanently hair-free, electrolysis can result to redness and swelling of the skin. Scabs are possible to appear, which can and should be treated immediately to avoid infection and worst scars. Darker skinned people may also temporarily get light or dark spots around the treated body part.

Electrolysis Hair Removal Cost

Electrolysis hair removal cost would depend on a lot of factors such as professional fee of the electrologist, hair count to be removed, and body part where hair to be removed is located. It is, however, cheaper compared to laser hair removal.

Electrologists currently charge $45 to $125 per hour. A rough estimate can be achieved by multiplying the electrologist’s professional fee by the number of hours it would take to remove hair in a particular part of the body. The coarser and the thicker the hair, the longer it takes in doing the procedure. Take note, however, that it will not be done in one session. The number of hours required to remove hair in particular part of the body will be divided into several sessions.

Electrolysis vs. Laser

Whether electrolysis hair removal is better than laser hair removal, the answer depends on the physical condition, financial capacity, and tolerance to pain of the person.

Laser is less painful. Despite the painless marketing stunt, laser hair removal method still renders an ant bite sting on the person undergoing the procedure. This, however, is less painful compared to the pain a person would experience in electrolysis hair removal.

Electrolysis is more affordable. Obviously, laser is way more expensive than electrolysis and the former won’t guarantee zero-hair forever. In terms of price and permanent results, electrolysis hair removal scores better.

Laser performs faster. Unlike electrolysis, laser can target and break a group of hair follicle in an instant and less hassle. Electrolysis, on the other hand, hits hair follicles one by one that is very time consuming. Time wise, laser renders better.

Electrolysis applies to all types of hair. One can quickly say that people with a big budget should go for laser hair removal and those who don’t should settle with electrolysis hair removal. The case, however, may vary with the physical condition of a person especially when people with light crowning glory such as red, grey, white, and blond hair are less likely candidates for laser hair removal. Thus, even if they have the money to afford a laser hair treatment, there would still be a very big possibility for them to still undergo an electrolysis hair removal, which would actually address their unwanted hair problem.

People with dark hair are the best candidates for laser hair removal, a procedure which uses a fine intense light beam that is best absorbed by dark objects. Thus, dark hair is easily broken down since it absorbs more laser energy. Since light-colored hair will absorbs laser less, there is also less chances of achieving desired results from laser hair removal.

Electrolysis, however, is not limited to such heat or light energy principles. Whether it’s dark or light hair, electrolysis hair removal will do the hair removal job for you.


It is always safe to consult a doctor before undergoing an electrolysis hair removal treatment. Pregnant women and people with IUD are usually prohibited to undergo the procedure. Moreover, make sure that the procedure is performed by a trained or certified electrologist.

Electrolysis hair removal though the closest permanent hair removal anyone can avail, laser hair treatment is sought more for its painless procedure. With the saying that goes “no pain, no glory”, electrolysis is the only way to permanently zero-hair.