While this technique is no longer reserved for doctors alone, hair removal with flash lamps worries health authorities. The National Health Security Agency (ANSES) believes, Thursday, September 9, that this method must be better supervised, at the level of the sale of devices as their use by professionals. “It is necessary to better supervise the market for devices and the use of this technology in order to limit its undesirable effects”, estimated, quoted in a press release, Rémi Poirier, an ANSES official. Pulsed light hair removal, or flash lamps, consists of sending a concentrated beam of light whose heat destroys the hair bulb in order to make it fall and prevent regrowth as much as possible.
Better train professionals
The technique, which offers a solution other than laser hair removal, has been in vogue since the 2000s. It has spread to beauty institutes, while the law initially reserved this technique only for doctors, in particular dermatologists. But, to the chagrin of the latter, this ban has gradually lost its validity after several court decisions, the most recent having been taken in 2021 by the Court of Cassation.
In the absence of being able to reserve flash lamps for doctors, the ANSES therefore calls for more supervision of their sale and better training of professionals, first and foremost in beauty. Indeed, “These devices are not harmless to health”, warns the agency. Misused, for example if the professional does not take into account the specific features of the client’s skin, it can cause burns or, more seriously, eye damage. “Manufacturers should be required to carry out tolerance studies prior to their marketing (…) in order to control health risks ”, Judge M. Poirier.
This recommendation is also intended to avoid as much as possible undesirable effects in individuals who themselves use a flash lamp at home. As for beauty institutes, their employees should also all receive training to, for example, know “Identify the situations for which a prior dermatological diagnosis is required”, judges ANSES.