How does laser hair removal work?

At Off the Hook we use a Cutera Coolglide laser and a Janssen Pro Intense Pulse Light(IPL). The Coolglide is an infrared laser (1064nm) that is safe to use on all skin types. We can laser tanned skin and dark skin safely.IPL can release light over a wide wavelength range, unlike lasers, which can only deliver one specific, yet very powerful, wavelength. The importance of wave lengths is that different wave lengths are absorbed by different colors (chromophores). The color of the hair follicle is the target.

Laser is simply concentrated light energy. When the light finds an attraction, the energy is absorbed and turns to heat energy. The attraction for laser hair removal is the pigment melanin. Laser energy passes through the skin to the hair follicle where the energy is absorbed by the melanin in the hair. Heat is generated and diffuses to the surrounding hair follicle, damaging and destroying the hair root. The laser is turned on for only a fraction of a second so that the energy is absorbed by the hair without damaging the surrounding skin.


  • Skin disease (acute or chronic)
  • Diabetes
  • History of skin cancer or pre-cancerous lesions
  • History of keloid formation
  • Use of photosensitive medications, or medications which warn against the use of 1064 wave length, (laser), light. This includes treatment with accutane within one year
  • Active infections of herpes simplex in the area to be treated
  • Pregnancy
  • Epilepsy