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The Anagen Flush, often humorously referred to as “The Horrendous Feeling That You Have Sprouted Twice As Much Hair As You Previously Had,” is a unique and somewhat surprising phenomenon encountered in the world of laser hair removal. Imagine Anagen Hair like those rapidly growing weeds in the lush months of April, May, or June.

Consider the soil, lying dormant and cold through the harsh winter months. As spring arrives, you prepare to tackle the overgrowth. You spray ‘Roundup’ on the fields at the onset of spring, and almost everything withers away. This is akin to the initial stages of using the laser for hair removal.

The Anagen Flush, often humorously referred to as “The Horrendous Feeling That You Have Sprouted Twice As Much Hair As You Previously,” is a unique and somewhat surprising phenomenon encountered in laser hair removal circles. Imagine Anagen Hair like those rapidly growing weeds in the lush months of April, May, or June.

Consider the soil lying dormant and cold through the harsh winter months. As spring arrives, you prepare to tackle the overgrowth. You spray ‘Roundup’ on the fields at the onset of spring, and almost everything withers away. This is akin to the initial stages of using the laser for hair removal.

However, it’s useful to understand that most hair isn’t actively growing at any given time. Probably less than half of what is potentially there is in the anagen phase, the active growth phase of hair. 

 The same principle applies to the soil in this analogy. There’s an old saying: One year’s seeding is seven year’s weeding. This adage holds true as there are numerous hibernating seeds beneath the surface. What happens in spring is quite fascinating – you dig the garden over, aerate the soil, and these seeds receive the much-needed oxygen. The combination of moisture and the warmth of the spring sunshine encourages all these seeds to germinate simultaneously. If you then apply an adequate amount of weedkiller, you achieve a significant kill-off. 

 This, again, is similar to the process during laser hair removal treatments. When you use the laser, the heat and massage effectively awaken the dormant hair follicles. This sudden awakening leads to a burst of growth, where they all sprout at once – a phenomenon often observed around the 3rd, 4th, or 5th treatment session. This is the critical moment, the Anagen Flush in action.

This stage is an important time for the effectiveness of the laser treatment. It’s the time to apply the EMLA cream, turn up the HR power, and target those young anagen hairs. These hairs, with their substantial roots, are particularly sensitive to the laser. It’s a golden opportunity to maximise the impact of the treatment.

After this phase, the focus shifts to maintenance and fine-tuning. Having been dealt with, the Anagen Flush leaves behind fewer hairs, and those that remain are typically weaker and less resilient. The subsequent sessions are more about tidying up and ensuring that the results of the previous treatments are sustained.

Understanding the Anagen Flush is part of demystifying the laser hair removal process. It’s a natural response of the body, akin to the way nature bursts into life in spring. Just as a gardener needs to understand the cycles of growth and dormancy in their garden, a person undergoing laser hair removal should be aware of the Anagen Flush. It’s a phase that, when managed correctly, leads to the most effective and satisfying results for you, the patient.

The Anagen Flush is an integral and fascinating part of achieving smooth, hair-free skin. It’s one of those marvels of the body’s natural cycles and an important factor to consider for anyone looking to understand or undergo laser hair removal. With the right approach and timing, the Anagen Flush can be effectively managed, leading to a successful and satisfying outcome in your hair removal journey.

If you have any questions about your hair, its removal or anything else related to the hair removal process, please get in touch. We love questions from patients.

See you at the clinic soon 🙂

 

Author: Dr Malcolm Willis

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