Laser Hair Removal: Is It Worth It?

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Is It Worth It?

Compared to shaving, laser hair removal is clearly the more painful option, but some may find it more attractive in the long run because it's permanent. "After three sessions, the hair is visibly finer and growing in slower," says Si, 28, a licensed aesthetician who got her underarms treated and no longer needs to shave them.

However, laser hair removal is a costly procedure with fees easily tallying in the thousands. Treatments on the legs can run an estimated $800 for a single session. One Cambridge, Massachusetts, laser clinic has prices starting at $75 per session for the upper lip -- a $600 minimum for eight sessions of upper lip treatment. Compare that to a salon lip waxing, which runs about $12 each time, totaling almost $100 per year if you wax every six weeks.

But some women swear by the procedure, saying convenience and longevity trump the cost and discomfort. "It gets expensive, but laser hair removal takes far less time than electrolysis," says Si, who's tried both and cites laser hair removal as the less painful option by far. "I'd say it's definitely worth it." Joanna, 31, agrees. "I have sensitive skin, and waxing my bikini area makes my eyes tear up," she says. "Laser hair removal is less painful and much quicker -- about 10 minutes a session. I much prefer it to waxing."

Originally published on, May 2006.


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