Different Types of Electrolysis Hair Removal

Electrolysis is a hair removal procedure that was created in the United States and has been around for over a century.  The treatment is performed by inserting a needle (probe) with an electrical current into each hair follicle.  The procedure is performed when hair is in the process of growth to ensure permanent removal.
When people consider electrolysis treatment it is important to be aware that there are several options you can review before you commit to the procedure.  It is also a good idea to discuss the different types of hair removal treatments with your electrologist.  There are basically three different methods that are used for permanent hair removal.

Galvanic Electrolysis

Galvanic electrolysis provides permanent hair removal through the production of sodium hydroxide in your body.  This type of electrolysis treatment works by inserting a needle that contains an electrical current into the hair follicle.  When the electrical current is applied to the base of the hair follicle it integrates with the water and natural salt in your body which in turn produces sodium hydroxide also known as lye.

The natural chemical provides an effective means of removing hair permanently by destroying the cells at the base of the follicle to prevent hair from growing.  Many people choose this method of hair removal due to the fact that the chemical continues to work on the hair follicle for a period of time after the needle is removed.  Galvanic electrolysis is the original method for permanent hair removal and was invented in 1875.


Thermolysis is a newer method that works very similar to galvanic electrolysis.  The procedure is performed by inserting a needle that contains radio energy into the follicle where the heat is released at the base of the hair follicle.  When the heat is applied to the cells it obliterates them which prevent hair from growing.  The heat is generally not as effective as an electrical current and often the treatment must be repeated before the hair is removed permanently.

Thermolysis was established in 1923 and works via a designated radio frequency.  Because the needle is actually a radio device it is required to meet the standards set by the Federal Communications Commission.  The frequency is generated through the tip of the needle where it irritates the cells causing the cells to heat up which results in the destruction of the cell tissue.  This type of hair removal treatment is typically used for fine hair and tends to lose effectiveness when applied to coarse hair.


The Blend method combines the two previously described methods of thermolysis and galvanic and involves the application of these two methods simultaneously during the procedure.  This method is also known as dual action since it uses two methods of providing permanent hair removal.  The galvanic process is highly effective in removing hair permanently while the thermolysis method speeds the procedure from the standard two minute duration to approximately ten seconds.

The Blend method is used to heat the natural sodium hydroxide chemical which makes the solution more acidic.  The high acidity of the lye makes the hair follicle tissues porous and when it is heated via thermolysis it is disseminated through agitation which allows the lye solution to penetrate every area of the hair follicle.

This method of permanent hair removal requires a professionally trained electrologist due to the fact that it is a more complex process.  In addition to the necessity of expert training, the equipment that is used to perform the procedure is computerized to effectively distribute the two different methods.  The Blend method is not recommended for people who are sensitive to the galvanic method unless a proper pain management technique is used during the procedure.

It is important to note that all forms of electrolysis treatment are effective only for the follicles that have been treated.  You may still grow surplus hair as the result of changes in your hormones or any medication that you may currently be taking.  Electrolysis will prevent the growth of existing hair that has been treated and any hair that grows back in the treated area is actually considered excess hair instead of the hair that underwent permanent removal.

This information will provide you with an overview of the options you have for electrolysis hair removal.  It is important that you discuss the options with your electrologist in advance of treatment.  If you have high sensitivity or skin problems it is wise to consult with your general practitioner before committing to electrolysis treatment