Why in the world did I take so long?
I guess that title could apply to so many things, but in this case I'm talking about laser hair removal. I have been waxing something or another for 27 years! My upper lip, my eyebrows, my brazilian, my underarms, various areas of my face; I mean you name it and I've probably waxed it at some point in my life. Some people I know are crazy about body hair, to me waxing off all of your arm hair is a bit extreme, but no judgement. Do what makes you happy, it's your body!! I don't want to even think about adding up all of that money and time I spent on these services or doing it myself at home. I always went to a professional for my eyebrows and brazilian waxes, but anything else I just did myself mostly.
Last year, I finally decided to take the plunge and have my underarm hair lasered away for good. My underarms were always annoying. I would have to let the hair grow out for days (like 5) in order to get a super close shave and smooth look for only a few hours. The hair didn't grow super fast or anything, it would just come to the surface and stay there for way too long. Waxing and plucking (yep you read that right, there were times I plucked each one out which is way more painful than doing them all at once with wax) left me with ingrown hairs and even a scar so that just wasn't really an option. I made an appt at my local dermatologist's office where I had done a consult before. I felt that I would be in good hands and they were even recommended to me by the woman that did my Brazilian waxing for the previous five years. So I went in and holy moly it was a little painful (not gonna lie), but it wasn't as painful as the price. I think it was around $200 a treatment for my underarms and then it would be $400 for my brazilian area per session. That's why I never got laser hair removal before, THE COST!! But I was determined to figure it out because I was so tired of having to hide my underarms 6 out of 7 days of the week. Remember I live in California and when I'm not in Cali, I'm in Hawaii. Although I will have to say you don't have to be as put together in Hawaii and no one really cared if your underarms were as smooth as a babies butt. Lol. I'll save my stories about living in Hawaii for another blog. Back to the first laser hair treatment, they used a machine that blew cold air out and the same time as the laser was working. The first time is always the most painful or so I thought. I made my follow up appt and went back for round 2 about 8 weeks later (because my hair doesn't grow super fast). In the weeks just prior to my second session I noticed a weird sensitivity in one of my underarms and I could feel the skin was a bit swollen. I didn't have a hard bump, but there was a part that seemed to be raiseed (like it was swollen). I asked the nurse about it before we began the second treatment. Oh I almost forgot, I shaved too soon after that first session. I was allowed to (it takes a few weeks to push those dead hair follicles out of the skin so occasional shaving is to be expected, waxing however is a big no no), but it was way too soon for my body. I think I shaved within 48 hours hoping to speed the process along, but I learned my lesson. Now I wouldn't shave within at least 4 days after the treatment preferably even a week. The nurse consulted the Dr and came back and told me that she (the Dr. thought it would be fine.) The Dr. never looked at me though. It just didn't sit well with me that the Dr. gave the nurse the green light without even looking at it. The second treatment hurt even worse than the first, which wasn't supposed to be the case. They do increase the intensity of the laser with each visit, so it's possible that it could be more painful, but I just couldn't fathom paying them for another session so I started asking around.
I found another place through a great referral (my eyelash girl, it's a small world ya know) and went for my third underarm treatment at the new place that was recommended to me. I needed to find someone really good if I was ever going to brave the brazillian area!! The second place was a med-spa type place. It was a small office in the middle of midtown and it was about half the cost of the first place. Much more feasible! This place had an even different machine. It was probably the most old school of them all, but it did the trick. The fancy cold air blowing thing really didn't spare me any pain anyways. The third session probably hurt the least thus far (it's supposed to get gradually less painful). There was nothing wrong with the second place, I thought I would continue going there. I decided to see my obgyn to get his sign off on laser hair removal and the safety aspect just to be sure. He was all for laser hair removal and surprise surprise his wife actually works at Jeuvani. He gave me her card and said to just give her a call to check out their pricing because he knows they are generally cheaper than most places. He delivered London, took my organs out and put them back (cesarean), I trust this man! I gave Jill a call and was pleasantly surprised that the Jeuvani had the best prices yet! SOLD and with Dr approval, double sold!! I booked my fourth appointment and I was nervous. Three different places and only on my fourth treatment. This time I booked for both my underarm and brazillian so multiply those nerves by like 50.
Jill was amazing!! She used to be a labor and delivery nurse so she is really understanding and supportive. Again, a different technique was used, but this one is my favorite. She uses a cold roller (I could also call it a life saver) on the area just before and immediately after lasering it. I did experience short sharp pains, but we're talking lightning fast pains and Jill is such a cheerleader full of encouragement to get you through it. By the time it's over, it's like it didn't happen. Yay!!! This lead me to my partnership with Jeuvani, but I fell in love with this place before I ever thought I would be working with them. Honestly I have lost track of how many sessions I've had. I think I'm on my 7th for underarms and 4th for my brazillian, maybe fifth. Generally I think you are supposed to plan on about 8-10 sessions total per area and that is contingent on going every 4-6 weeks to laser each hair follicle as it comes in.
And now for my favorite part, the pro/con list to laser hair removal:
1. Hair disappears forever (with an occasional touch up from what I understand)
2. No more waxing/shaving costs and time (laser is so much faster than either of those)
3. My skin is smoother than waxing/shaving and no ingrown hairs.
4. Even when the hair has grown back in between sessions, it's lighter, softer and not very noticeable.
5. It wasn't nearly as expensive as I thought it was once I found Jeuvani. If I added up the cost of all of the waxing I've done or even shaving products, laser hair removal will save me money in the long run.
6.I am so much more comfortable in my own smooth skin and I never have to worry about planning my outfits around shaving or planning my waxes around my menstrual cycle (because OUCH!!)
1. The Cost, but honestly that's not really a con considering the ultimate costs of the alternatives.
2. Laser isn't for everyone depending on their hair and skin. I seem to do fine with it other than that little swollen area on one of my underarms. With that being said, I am not willing to take any chances with my face. I will still be waxing any part of my face that needs it.
3. Find a good place!!! I can't stress this enough. I got so lucky that the best place that I have been to also happened to be the least expensive. I live in Northern California now, and Jeuvani has women coming all the way from Southern California because their prices are so good!
4. The commitment! I can't believe this is my fourth con. Usually commitment would be closer to the top of my list as a con, but in this case it's just a necessary one and the time and number of sessions can vary depending on your body. If you're going to make the investment then you may as well stick with it to make sure that it's as effective as it can be.
5.The occasional touch up. Since I'm still in the process of my regular sessions, I haven't experienced needing a touch up. I have only heard that and honestly I don't know the circumstances for the touch ups. I've heard hormonal changes (postpartum, menopause, etc) could cause an unplanned touch up, but that seems reasonable and understandable. I don't really think this will bother me in the long run (as long as I can still see Jill, please don't retire anytime soon Jill!)
6. Avoid a lot of sun exposure to the area! This is the only true con for me. I love the sun and I'm out in it as much as possible (another reason I avoid having laser hair treatments on my face. But since we're heading into the winter season, it's a great time to start or get your laser hair treatments without having to worry about excessive sun exposure.
To sum up my pros/cons:
Although in number they're about even, there is only one true con for me, the limited sun exposure. On the other hand all of the pros 100% apply from my perspective. The additional cons are more of what could be considered cons, but in my opinion they're not really cons when everything is weighed.
If you have any questions, I'd love to answer them and if I can't I can always consult Jeuvani to get the answers for you. They have been very upfront and honest and have encouraged me to be as well. If you're local or in the Sacramento/Folsom area and want to try out laser hair removal or any other services from Jeuvani you can use my discount code to receive 20% off of your first service.* My code ASHLEY20 or just mention my blog for 20% off. You can see all of their services and even book online at www.jeuvani.com If you have any experience with laser hair removal that you'd like to share please drop me a message or a comment. I'd love to learn about your experience and others reading might be able to benefit as well. I'm all about community and creating a safe space so please feel free to add your two cents!
To follow along on my journey with this I have a highlight reel up on my Instagram stories called "Med Spa Life" documenting from before my first appointment through my last appt when we filmed while I was having it done in real time and Jill explains the whole process. She really is the best!!
*Some exclusions do apply. As I said before, even though I have partnered with this med spa, all opinions and words are my own. This is solely from my perspective and information that I've acquired from friends. I hope it is helpful to you! XO, Ashley
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