Benefits and Drawbacks of Sugaring vs. Laser Hair Removal
May 27, 2016
Sugaring is an ancient hair removal method very similar to waxing. It is thought to have been one of the first hair removal treatments ever used, as it had its origins in ancient Persia where it had been used since 1900 BC. It is still used worldwide today. Professional sugaring paste is made with 100 % natural ingredients, and there is no heat needed in the process, so it is thought to be gentler than regular waxing. Laser hair removal, on the other hand, is only slightly older than a teenager. This technology consists of a laser beam causing localized damage by targeting and heating dark matter (melanin) located in the hair follicles. These methods both have their pros and cons – here are a few that you need to take into consideration when deciding which one suits you best:
There are a number of factors that need to be taken into account, such as skin sensitivity, personal pain threshold, and, in the particular case of laser treatments, skin/hair color. Sugaring paste generally doesn't require heat, and it only adheres to hair, not to skin, so it is said to be a lot less painful than regular waxing. Laser hair removal has been generally described as having a rubber band constantly snapped against the skin. For darker skin tones, it tends to be more painful, as the laser targets melanin. The darker your skin tone is, the more melanin you have, so your skin might get hurt in the process.
Sugaring costs can vary anywhere from $10 to $110, depending on the area you wish to treat and whether you prefer to have it done by a professional or if you are brave enough to do it yourself at home. Laser treatments are not as affordable. Depending on your location and which area of the body you want treated, a professional laser hair removal treatment can cost between $200 and $900 per session, and you need more than one session to see results. There are also home laser hair removal devices – even these can cost between $200 and $500, and most of these devices have ongoing costs.
This can be approached from two different perspectives. First, the immediate effectiveness, and secondly, the long-term effects. Sugaring is effective immediately, leaving your skin smooth and silky in one session. Laser treatments take 5-6 monthly sessions to achieve results, so if you need to have the hair on your legs or any other part of your body removed because you are going on vacation in a week, you probably want to go for sugaring. Laser has been advertised as the last hair removal treatment you will ever need, unfortunately this is not true for everybody. People with fair hair – blonde to white – will not see the best results with this method, because the lighter your hair is, the less effective this method becomes. On the other hand, it can be damaging and even cause depigmentation on people with dark skin. As explained before, the laser targets dark pigmentation, and that is why it is not recommended in the cases mentioned above. Even if you don't fit in the features described above, it may still not work on you. Some people see great results, while others spend thousands of dollars just to watch all their hair grow back. How frustrating would that be?! Sugaring, on the other hand, can be used practically on any skin type as it is 100 % natural, and it works with any hair color since it doesn't target pigment. Some estheticians say sugaring can also have a permanent effect in the long run, but this varies greatly among individuals.
Both treatments require careful post-treatment routines. You should avoid the sun and any heat treatments, such as going to a sauna or having hot showers. However, if you undergo laser treatment, you should always wear sunscreen for the duration of the treatment, as skin becomes very sensitive to sunlight and prone to darkening. If you want to know more about post-treatment care, you can read our blog post on the do's and don'ts of post-waxing care. .
So, after taking all this into consideration, we think it's a personal choice and not all methods are a good fit for everyone. Some people prefer a safe, well-known, effective method such as sugaring, while others like to experiment with relatively new – albeit not 100% guaranteed – methods, such as laser hair removal.
Let us know how you feel about these and other hair removal methods out there! If you want more beauty tips, advice, and to get the latest information about our products, don't forget to follow us on social media as @BeautyImageUSA. If you are a licensed esthetician , remember we have now opened our online store. What are you waiting for? Register so you can start shopping online!