Electrolysis information

Electrolysis Information

Dr Charles E. Michel, a St Louis ophthalmologist, is regarded as the father of electrolysis – he first used electrolysis to remove ingrown eyelashes in 1869. In 1916, the multiple needle galvanic electrolysis technique was pioneered by Professor Paul M. Kree of New York.

Evolution, throughout the twentieth century, has led to the development of modern microprocessor controlled electrolysis machines which precisely regulate the minute current delivered to the hair follicle, to destroy critical cells in the target areas, to prevent hair regrowth. Electrolysis, the permanent hair removal method, has stood the test of time.


The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has allowed some manufacturers of hair reduction lasers to claim ‘permanent reduction’ but not ‘permanent removal’.[4] There has been considerable scientific and medical debate over the conclusions drawn from trials conducted on laser hair reduction equipment.[5]

It is difficult to find research documenting the performance of the various laser hair reduction technologies beyond twelve months from the time of last treatment.  It is hard to imagine that laser will ever be as effective at hair removal as electrolysis – simply because, truly permanent hair removal requires the destruction of cells beyond the pigmented ‘chromophores’ which laser targets.[6]

The Electrolysis Process – the three modalities

With all methods or modalities of electrolysis, a probe of a similar diameter to the hair, is introduced into the follicle and a precisely controlled current applied. There are three methods of electrolysis used for hair removal, these are:

  • Galvanic or multi probe electrolysis uses direct current (DC). The positive electrode is a pad which is placed on a limb or the body. The negative electrodes are the probes, which are inserted into the follicles to produce hydroxyl ions in solution, known as lye, which chemically destroys critical target cells in the follicle. The amount of lye produced is controlled by the current (measured in microamps) and the time that current is applied (measured in minutes and seconds).
  • Thermolysis uses a single probe with high frequency alternating current (AC) and is sometimes known as diathermy or short wave. A short burst of high frequency energy produces heat in the follicle to cauterise follicular tissue. This method is used by most beauty centres that offer electrolysis as just one of a range of services.
  • Blend also uses a single probe and as the name implies, combines the above modalities to produce a small amount of heated lye to destroy follicular tissue.

Jean Raymond Electrolysis will choose the modality best suited to your permanent hair removal requirements. Experience has shown her choice of method gives the best results.