My fourth laser facial hair removal session was the other week and I’m starting to feel like I’m making progress on the beard removal again.
After the first session, I had what I considered to be some dramatic fallout, much more than I was expecting. This left me pleasantly surprised and almost giddy when I contemplated how fast getting rid of much of my facial hair would be. Alas, after the second session I had what seemed to be very little fallout, and I began to wonder if I would be getting my money’s worth out of this process. Going in, I knew that it wouldn’t work on white, gray or blonde hairs, of which I had maybe 20-25%.
Then I had my third session. When clearly dark hairs on my upper lip, jawline and neck resisted the heat of a million suns again, I really started to wonder if there was operator error or if the remaining dark hairs just didn’t have enough pigment in them to absorb the amount of energy needed to cook the follicles.
For the first three sessions, the operator did a single pass across my whole face, except for a few odd areas here and there that she went over twice, usually to make sure she got full coverage. The second and third sessions, while they hurt, didn’t seem to hurt as badly as the first time. After the third session, I found that my gums hurt, and I’m still not sure if that was from me gritting my teeth or my gums absorbing the energy and becoming irritated.
So going into the forth session, I had steeled myself for a higher pain experience since I was planning to tell her to up the energy. Before the second and third sessions I had pointed out areas that seemed to have little to no impact from the session before, and this most recent one was the same. She did tell me that she had been increasing the energy of each sucessive session but that it could take a few session for there to be more progress in some areas. What was different about this last time was that the pain was a little bit more, which I asssumed was because she turned the energy up and that she did a second full pass at a different frequency.
Now I’m not sure if it was just having a second pass or if it was the frequency change or both, but I’ve been having much greater fallout of darker hairs compared to the second and third sessions. In fact, I have to hunt for darker hairs that are stuck in pores and I’m noticing a large change in my general face coloring due to having much less darker hair about. There are still a few areas that are resistant – my upper lip especially and a few random patches on both sides of my jawline and neckline.
Otherwise, I now have a much clearer view of exactly how much lighter hair I have, and I can see a light at the end of the tunnel for this phase of my hair removal. It does look like I’ll probably come in at about 70-85% of dark hair being knocked out, so this will have been a very cost-effective process, even if I didn’t go back for my next two sessions.
I’m now again cautiously optimistic that the remaining two sessions in the package I bought will bring even more fallout and make the amount of clean-up electrolysis that I’ll need be much smaller. When I paid for the package, I was also told that it may take eight to nine sessions for some people. I’m hoping that won’t be me!
As to my post-laser ritual, they have me put on sunscreen and I avoid any activities that would put heat onto my face like exercise or a hot water cleaning. I learned my lession after my first session and now try and wait at least two days before shaving. Shaving has become much easier and faster and that’s another quantitative measure that marks my progress. I use a daily sunscreen and non-oily moisturizer to help protect my skin.
And then there’s the plucking. To be honest, I know I’m not supposed to pluck for a whole bunch of reasons including potential for ingrowns and scarring, pulling out hairs that would otherwise be zapped and mild irritation and acne. But when I see those dark, black, burnt, dead hairs, I just cant help myself! If a hair doesn’t come with the gentlest of tugs, I leave it be. But wow, pulling out dead hair after dead hair is this weird mixture of excitement and fascination, and affirmation and releif.
It’s like a part of me is being revealed that I’ve only been able to imagine, and it makes me so happy and it feels so right. I hated my beard for so long I gave up on ever getting rid of it. Now that most of it is going away, I want it all off, now please! Why in the world did I put up with it for so long? Cést la vie. I also see now why so many that have gone before are so adamant about getting your beard removed as soon as possible. It makes a tremendous difference in self-image and self-esteem and is something that can be done mostly under the radar with little to no comment from others. I’ve not had one person ask or mention my beard in the past four months even though there’s been a dramatic change.
If you’ve landed here looking for advice, my advice is that you should start beard removal now, starting with laser, and that instead of spending money on clothes or makeup, spend it on hair removal. An acquaintance who doesn’t know anything about this part of my life made the observation that only women and children don’t have beards. The more I’ve thought about this, he’s mostly right. The beard is a prominent, potent social and sexually dimorphic signal, and removing it removes that signal. Getting rid of it will make you feel more womanly than any sparkly top or shoes and put you in a much better position to transition or experiment with transition.