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					                 Beauty | Electrolysis

                 Ultimate hair removal
                   Cheryl Cole defends the tried and tested approach of electrical
                                epilation over some newer methods
                                                                      ■ treatments are short in duration;

                           s an experienced holistic beauty                                                                 accounts for up to 80 per cent of a
                           therapist and training provider,           ■ regular treatments ensure an income;                successful treatment. Electrology is a
                           I have often been asked by other           ■ trusting relationships are forged with clients,     highly skilled procedure that centres
                           therapists why I remain loyal to             leading to other sales opportunities.               around accurate probe insertion, coupled
                 electrical epilation, despite the variety of other                                                         with the correct dosage of current over
                 advanced hair removal methods available on           The key to success                                    an appropriate period of time. This skill
                 the market. This is an interesting question          As with all techniques, electrical epilation is       develops with time and confidence, but
                 and one every beauty therapist should ask            not infallible. There are some therapists who         the therapist’s true potential will evolve
                 themselves before paying out thousands of            do not perform the techniques effectively –           after training has ceased and results are
                 pounds on the latest ‘innovation’, promising         keeping the current too low, or not inserting         witnessed in the salon. Only when you
                 permanent hair reduction and endless profit.          the probe correctly and therefore plucking            have seen a hair growth problem recede
                 I believe the following are self-explicit and        rather than epilating hair. This can give both        do you become assured of your skill and
                 compelling reasons why electrical epilation          the client and the therapist the impression           start to truly believe in the technique.
                 remains incredibly popular with therapists:          that electrical epilation is not effective.

                                                                      However, this can easily be rectified by the         ■ Frequency and regularity of treatment
                 ■ it is effective on all hair types and colours;     therapist revisiting her technique or attending       This may sound obvious, but the client
                 ■ it produces medically proven results;              a refresher course. On the whole, successful          needs to make a commitment to attend
                 ■ excellent training programmes have been            and effective treatment is conditional upon           frequently to achieve the initial clearance.
                   developed over the years;                          the following:                                        Densely packed hairs cannot be removed
                 ■ the equipment costs hundreds rather than                                                                 within the same session without risking
                   thousands of pounds;                               ■ The skill of the therapist                          damage to the condition of the skin.
                 ■ the equipment is inexpensive to operate;             In my opinion, this is a key factor and             However, it takes an epilated hair a number

                 24 | International Therapist                                                                                            Issue 81 | March/April 2008
                                                                                                                                                              Electrolysis | Beauty
                                                                   Case study: Gender reassignment
                                           Background: Mrs L contacted me via email,                to the nature of the terminal hair – and allowed me
                                           having searched for therapists on the FHT website,       to assess the impact on the skin. I have galvanic
                                           to introduce herself, as she wanted to establish if      electrolysis, blend and diathermy at my disposal,
                                           I would be happy to treat her. When we met               however we selected diathermy as our method of
                                           I discovered that my client was physically male and      choice. This decision was brought about by Mrs
                                           undergoing gender reassignment to become                 L’s preference and the need to clear the area as
                                           female. As you can imagine, Mrs L presented with         quickly as possible. Blend would be employed as
                                           a heavy beard and moustache that required                the volume decreased, but our primary aim was
                                           shaving twice a day and a heavy application of pan       clearance and control of the area.
                                           stick in order to maintain her desired feminine              It took several months of weekly appointments           Demonstrating the correct
                                           identity. Hormonal therapy had been started and          to gain control of the chin and upper lip (the first         insertion technique – the hair and
                                           she was having regular appointments with a               target area), after which we started work on the            needle become ‘one’
                                           consultant, regarding a permanent transition to the      sides of the face. This process continued until
                                           opposite sex. The hormones had changed Mrs L’s           we reached the final area – the neck. This was
                                           musculature and had started to refine her shape,          certainly the most sensitive area, for which Mrs L
                                           but it had little impact on her male pattern of hair     obtained a prescription of a pain relief cream.
                                           growth. This was a great opportunity to prove the            I have been treating Mrs L for nearly three
                                           benefits of electrical epilation in an extreme case.      years. The facial hair growth is under control and
                                                                                                    treatment has progressed to her arms. Mrs L only
                                           Treatment: The initial sessions made very little         requires occasional top ups on the facial areas
                                           impact and we quickly decided to increase the            and uses a tinted moisturiser for added colour.
                                           treatment time from 15 minutes, through to 30            She no longer requires shaving or pan stick
                                           minutes, then eventually to an appointment of one        between sessions.
                                           hour. These increases enabled Mrs L to adjust to             This stands out to me as the greatest test for
                                           the current intensity – which was quite high due         the effectiveness of electrical epilation.                  Hair effectively epilated without
                                                                                                                                                                any traction to the skin

                                                                         Case study: Epilation v facial waxing
                                                             Background: Mrs S had a dense growth of coarse, resistant black and white (glass)
                                                             hair on the upper lip and chin. She had booked an appointment for waxing after
                                                             I was recommended to her by a local hairdresser. It transpired she had been waxing and
                                                             sugaring her lip and chin, which had only increased the number of hairs and accelerated
                                                             the growth rate. I do not advocate facial waxing for these reasons and the fact that it
                                                             can damage sensitive skin, so I explained the procedure of electrical epilation and its
                                                             potential benefits. As of yet, I have not lost a client by refusing to carry out facial waxing;
                                                             in fact as the results of electrical epilation become evident, I have gained the trust of
                                                             such clients for life, as well as numerous referrals.
                                                             Treatment: We embarked upon weekly treatments of 15 minutes duration, initially
                                          Properly           concentrating on the upper lip area. Within a short amount of time, we were then able              Epilated hair in the anagen
                                          carried out,       to extend the treatment area to encompass the chin without increasing the treatment                stage of growth, with root
                                          electrical         duration. Mrs S was under very strict instructions not to depilate any hairs in between            structure intact
                                          epilation          treatments, though shaving and cutting back were acceptable as the hairs had already
                                          remains            been coarsened. However, in the early stages, it was imperative for Mrs S to remove any
                                          one of             remaining or regrown hairs for her own confidence.                                                         Epilation extra
                                          the most               It took several months of weekly appointments until every hair was removed within a             Electrical epilation is not restricted to
                                          effective          single session, such was the amount and rate of growth. She now comes for treatments                unwanted hair on the face and neck.
                                          hair               once a month as her hairs are sporadic and greatly reduced. A couple of weeks ago                   Other areas that can be successfully
                                          removal            she suddenly said out of the blue: ‘Of all the things I have spent money on in my life,             treated include the chest, underarm,
                                          treatments         electrolysis is by far the most effective and worthwhile’.                                          tummy and bikini line.
                                                                                                                                                                     Some ethnic groups are naturally
                                                                                                                                                                 more hirsute than others, and
                                            of weeks to return. Once the hairs are cleared               a way that will not affect the overall programme        therefore longer and/or more regular
                                            each session, it is imperative to maintain a                 (e.g. cutting back or shaving problem hairs).           treatments may be necessary to
                                            regular time between sessions, dictated by               The case studies highlight why epilation is the             achieve results.
                                            the hair growth cycles. An indicator that the            ultimate answer for both the therapist and client.
                                            treatment is working is that appointments

                                            will naturally space apart and when treated
                                                                                                                             Cheryl Cole has more than 26 years’ experience as a
                 PICTURES: VTCT; STEREX

                                            correctly, will eventually cease.
                                                                                                                             holistic beauty therapist and is proprietor of the Cheryl Cole
                                          ■ Management of hair between treatments                                            Academy. Her experience of epilation encompasses practical
                                            If you fail to address this your client will not see                             expertise, teaching, and examining. Cheryl runs a number of
                                            positive results and may even stop booking                                       courses accredited by FHT. For more information, phone her
                                            appointments. Advise your client how to                                          on 01487 830971, or visit
                                            manage hair growth in between treatments in

                                          Issue 81 | March/April 2008                                                                                                   International Therapist | 25

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