How does electrolysis for hair removal work?

Electrolysis is the technique and science of permanent hair removal. A small amount of electricity or a solution of sodium hydroxide is introduced to the base of the hair follicle (hair papilla) in order to destroy the root of the hair.

Three methods of electrolysis for permanent hair removal:

1. Thermolysis applies alternating current to the probe at the base of the hair in order to create heat and destroy the hair follicle. This is the most commonly used method because it is very fast and effective.

2. Blend uses a combination of heat and current to speed up the galvanic chemical reaction to destroy the hair follicle. This method is slightly slower than thermolysis but is very effective and often used to treat difficult areas.

3. Galvanic was the first form of electrolysis and is not often performed currently. It uses direct current to cause a chemical reaction within the body in order to destroy the hair follicle. Galvanic has fallen out of favor because it takes a significantly longer time to work.

How is electrolysis performed?

A very fine probe is inserted into the natural opening in the skin (hair follicle) without piercing the skin. Once the probe is inserted, sodium hydroxide or electricity are delivered to the hair papilla in order to cut off blood supply to the hair follicle and permanently stop hair growth.

This 3D animation shows how a very fine electrolysis filament is inserted into the natural opening of the hair follicle alongside the hair shaft. A quick computer-controlled current is then applied to destroy the hair growth cells allowing the electrologist to slide out the hair without any resistance.