Skin Resus

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Skin and Beauty Blog

PCOS and IPL Hair Removal by Donna Mountford, RN

Trish Hepburn - Monday, April 02, 2012

Excessive facial and body hair can be distressing to many women.  Although anybody can suffer from excessive hair growth, hirsutism is more prevalent in women suffering from polycystic ovary syndrome. Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal problem that causes women to have a variety of symptoms, including:

  • weight gain or inability to lose weight
  • Absent or irregular periods
  • Infertility
  • Excessive hair growth, particularly on the face
  • Acne
  • Ovarian cysts

PCOS occurs in 5% to 10% of women and is the most common cause of infertility in women.

Hair removal in the case of woman suffering from PCOS is about the management of it rather than the complete removal of it... they will need ongoing treatments throughout their life. There are certainly several options to this difficult problem and using depilatory creams, waxing and epilating are some of them.  Although they all work in their own right, with PCOS hair will return at a rapid rate, so will need to be frequently repeated – sometimes as often as weekly. 

For a recent client who came to me as a young 20-something nearly married lady, this was the case. She waxed every 3 weeks, and in-between the waxing she had to let the unsightly hair grow back.  It was embarrassing for her, and she was upset and really didn’t feel she could go on any more. Her Grandma told her to research what else she could do and if she came up with an option she would pay for a course of treatments. SKIN RESUS came up on the search engine as that option in providing IPL – Intense Pulse light.

I remember speaking with the client on the telephone before she came in and she asked me “does it really work?” I reassured her it did.  She said she hoped it did as she was making a 3-hour trip for this every 4 weeks! (No pressure then!)

For most unwanted hair, a course of intense pulsed light (IPL) can replace the need for continuous and ongoing waxing, tweezing and bleaching. With PCOS, however, it is more likely that ongoing treatments will be required, which might be one treatment every 3 to 6 months.

At Skin Resus we understand that many people with PCOS need more than the recommended 6-8 treatments initially, so I was pleased to be able to tell my client that after 6 treatments we would do her treatments at half price (until we get to the maintenance stage that we aim for).  This gave my client hope and confidence that she was going to be OK.

My client has had 8 treatments so far. The hairs are definitely finer and she rarely needs to do anything to them, we are now trying to leave more time between treatments and see how she goes.  She is also happily married now!

PCOS Before IPL Hair Removal    PCOS After IPL Hair Removal


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