hair growth has been a problem since the beginning of
time. In 1875, Dr. Charles Michel, a St. Louis opthalmologist, began using an electric needle for the
purpose of hair follicle destruction as a treatment for
ingrown eyelashes. His technique proved to be effective
and, greatly refined, is still in use today.
following information has been published by the American
Electrology Association in order to provide a better
understanding of electrology and to offer encouragement
to those who are contemplating treatment. It is important
to realize that time, commitment, and patience are needed
in order to overcome a problem that did not develop
are the answers to your most frequently asked questions:
1. What is
is the science of permanent hair removal utilizing
only solid needle/probe devices. A fine sterile
needle/probe is inserted into the hair follicle and a
small amount of electrical energy is discharged which
destroys the hair growth tissue. When this is
competently and skillfully accomplished, the
regenerative ability of the hair follicle is
2. What are the
three basic methods used in the practice of electrology?
--- Direct current (DC), is used to achieve chemical
destruction of the hair follicle. One or more sterile
needles/probes are used.
--- Alternating current (AC), sometimes referred to
as high frequency or shortwave, is used to create
heat which destroys the hair follicle. One sterile
needle/probe is used.
Blend (also referred to as Dual Modality) ---
Both of the above currents are used simultaneously or
sequentially to achieve dual action destruction of
the hair follicle. Most often, a single sterile
needle/probe is used for this procedure.
electrologists follow appropriate Infection Control
The American Electrology Association (AEA) with the
assistance of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)
developed national Infection Control Standards which
include sterilization of all electrology instruments.
Some electrologists may use pre-sterilized disposable
needles/probes. However, non-disposable
needles/probes can be effectively cleaned,
sterilized, and safely reused. The standards are
consistent with Universal Precautions which include
hand-washing and use of a fresh pair of disposable
gloves for each patient. Your electrologist will
discuss the sterilization process and other infection
control practices with you.
4. How many
treatments are required?
number of treatments necessary varies with each
patient/client. Factors such as hair growth cycles,
the quantity and structure of hair presented,
previous use of temporary hair removal methods,
heredity, hormone function, normal physiologic
changes, certain medications and stress influence the
treatment program for each individual. It is very
important to adhere to the recommended treatment
schedule to achieve optimum results in the shortest
time frame. Some improvement should be observed
within several months after initiating treatment,
provided the patient adheres to the recommended
5. Are all hairs
eliminated in one treatment or is regrowth to be
coarse hairs cannot always be eliminated with one
treatment; thus, breaking down the hair germ cells
may require additional treatments. During the course
of treatment and due to the cyclic nature of hair
growth, new hairs as well as hairs emerging from a
dormant phase will also be treated and may be visible
the same time as finer regrowth hairs.
6. What is the
normal growth cycle of a hair?
hairs have differing cycles of growth and are not
visible on the surface of the skin at the same time.
Hair normally grows for its usual cycle and then
naturally sheds and replaces itself. Following active
growing periods, most hair follicles go into a
dormant stage. The period of dormancy may last for an
indefinite period of time, however, replacement hairs
usually appear within 3 to 12 months. The appearance
of these coarse replacement hairs from dormant hair
follicles should not be mistaken as regrowth from
previously treated follicles.
7. Is electrology
is no such thing as painless electrology. It is
impossible to destroy hair growth tissue without
sensation because each hair follicle is surrounded by
its own network of nerve endings. The sensation,
which may be felt, is assurance that destructive
activity is taking place. Even though some parts of
the body are more sensitive than others, adjustments
can be made which may help to make the treatment more
8. Does electrology
damage the skin?
following treatment, there may be a slight redness
and/or swelling which usually disappears within a few
hours. Occasionally, small whiteheads or tiny scabs
may occur. It is important to remember that scabs are
a part of the normal healing process and will not
cause any permanent damage if they are not picked
off. When electrology is administered by a competent
electrologist using modern equipment and current
techniques, there should be no visible skin damage.
Your electrologist will discuss specific post
treatment care to promote proper healing.
9. Can unwanted
hair be removed from anywhere on the body?
hair can be safely removed from most body areas. The
most common areas include the hairline, bridge of
nose, eyebrows, upper and lower lip, cheeks,
sideburns, chin, neck, shoulders, arms and underarms,
breasts, abdomen, bikini line, legs back and chest.
The inside of the ears and nose should not be
10. Can women begin
or continue electrology treatments during pregnancy?
electrology has never been proven harmful to pregnant
women, we suggest that you seek the advice of your
physician before beginning treatment.
11. Can hairs be
removed from moles?
licensing laws and/or some general liability
insurance policies may prohibit removal of hair from
moles. In cases where neither of the above
restrictions exists, your electrologist may require
written approval from your physician.