Laser Hair Removal for Dark & Different Skin Types

By autmn blakeman 25th February 2015 Category: Advice


The face of Britain is changing as Britain’s ethnic population increases – people of colour now represent 40% of London’s population. UK dermatologists and cosmetic treatment providers are beginning to recognise this and establish a new field of ‘Ethnic Dermatology’.

Skin and hair problems in different races may present differently and need specialised medical and cosmetic treatment options. There is no, ‘one size fits all’; darker skin may be mistaken for being more resilient but it can be more sensitive and easily damaged than lighter skins. For example, it may age better with fewer lines and wrinkles but it’s more prone to pigmentation problems and scarring.

Dermatologists in the USA are leading the field in Ethnic Dermatology, although through their proactive knowledge sharing we are able to offer the same range of high-quality treatments for black skin here at sk:n clinics, as the best available in the US.

Laser Hair Removal

A few years ago Laser Hair Removal was not a safe option for darker skin. However, the introduction of the Nd Yag laser has reversed this situation. By by-passing the surface of the skin, it targets the melanin in the root hair and damages the root itself by heating up its blood supply. This results in finer, softer, and lower quantities of hair.

Due to its efficient skin cooling system, laser tends to be more comfortable and gentler on the skin than waxing or threading.

  • Laser has permanent effects; only 8- 12 treatments are required for a permanent hair reduction of up to 90%.

The Nd Yag also straightens the hair which is perfect for those people who suffer from ingrowing hairs and is becoming more popular with men who have this problem around the beard area.

Intense Pulse Light (IPL) hair removal should never be classed as laser hair removal as it uses a completely different mechanism, beaming white light over a general area, rather than targeting a monochromatic (single colour) beam uniquely down the hair shaft. Since IPL targets melanin on the surface of the skin as well as down the hair shaft, it is not safe for darker skin and will lead to damage and skin pigmentation.


Since we know that black skin can be more sensitive and reactive, it is vital that any dermatology treatment or consultant be thoroughly researched for expertise and experience in treating ethnic skin. Treatments for darker skin tend to need to be specialised and often a gentler approach is needed in order to protect the skin’s pigment while giving maximum results.

At sk:n, we employ an entirely diverse workforce of nurses, practitioners and doctors. All are trained to understand the difference between all skin tones and to calibrate our highly advanced lasers to the appropriate setting for even small differences in skin shade.

With a growing network of 35 clinics, and nine in and around London, open seven days a week til late, we hope we can make your experience safe and convenient, whilst giving you the best results.

sk:n is the nation’s multi-award-winning, responsible and trusted skin care expert that has held a partnership with the NHS in a dermatology capacity for more than 25 years. With the largest network of clinics in the industry (35 nationwide), sk:n brings the reputation and prestige of ‘Harley Street to your local street’; only the most highly trained medical practitioners and some of the nation’s most respected consultant dermatologists, plastic surgeons and GPs with Special Interests are employed at every single UK clinic to ensure a reliably sound, professional approach and the highest consistency when administering high-grade, expert treatments. A medical director has responsibility for each clinic to guarantee strict regulatory compliance, which exceeds all mandatory and voluntary requirements. Offering over 250 treatments and using the most advanced lasers on the market, sk:n continually aims to raise the industry bar to discover better skin.

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