Electrology is the practice of electrical epilation to permanently remove human hair. The actual process of removing the hair is referred to as electrolysis. Electrolysis is the ONLY method of PERMANENT hair removal. (FDA - Hair Removal Info and FDA - Removing Hair Safely)
The procedure involves the insertion of hair-thin metal probes into individualized hair follicles. Electricity (current) is delivered to the follicle, causing localized damage to the areas responsible for the hair's growth. This is done through the formation of caustic lye (galvanic method using DC, direct current) or by destructive heat (thermolysis method using AC, alternating current).
Three methods or "modalities" are used in electrology. The Galvanic method was introduced in 1875 when Dr. Charles Michel reported that he had been able to remove ingrown eyelashes by inserting a needle charged with negative galvanic current into the hair follicle. Consequently, using electricity to remove hair became known as "electrolysis". When the current comes in contact with the salt and moisture within the follicle, it causes a chemical decomposition and rearrangement of the atoms . The salt (NaCl) and water (H20) are changed into sodium hydroxide (NaOH), chlorine gas (CL2) and hydrogen gas (H2). The key byproduct is sodium hydroxide or lye . The small amount of lye that is produced is caustic and destroys the hair producing cells by dissolving and liquifying the components of the follicle that produces the hair.
A second method, Thermolysis, was developed in the 1920s. Dr. Bordier of Paris France wrote the first article on the use of high-frequency current for hair removal. High Frequency equipment has gone under many names---Alternating current, radio wave, short wave, and high frequency, to name a few. Thermolysis is the application of AC current to living tissue. It quickly excites the water molecules which results in the production of heat. This results in electro-desiccating (drying) or electro-coagulation(cooking) the tissue.
The third method was invented in 1938 by Henri Saint- Pierre and Authur Hinkel. Mr Pierre was a practicing electrologist and Mr Hinkel was an electrical engineer. Hinkel designed and constructed the first blend epilator and is credited with developing the blend method. The first blend machine was patented in 1948. In addition Hinkel wrote the first authoritative electrology textbook . Today that book 'Electrolysis, Thermolysis and the blend" remains a cornerstone textbook in the field of electrology.
WHY CHOOSE THE BLEND METHOD?
The blend is far more than the use of a "special machine". It is a" technique" combined with properly balanced currents that produces better results than either current individually. When this modality is competently and skillfully utilized, the regenerative ability of the hair follicle is permanently eliminated. The galvanic method is extremely effective but can be very slow and time consuming. Thermolysis is faster in that you can clear more hair in a session, but with a rate of higher re-growth there will be more sessions. I speak from personal experience both as a client and as an electrologist.
In blended current the thermolysis (HF) complements or enhances the galvanic action in three ways.
First: Increased causticity. The heat produced by the HR accelerates the lyes chemical action making it more efficient.
Second: The HF's ability to coagulate the tissue, making it porous, allows the lye to penetrate the target areas.
Third: Turbulence. The heating pattern causes turbulence (a disturbance or agitation) within the follicle. As the tissue undergoes electro-coagulation (cooking) , the lye becomes agitated and is able to flow into all the crevices of the follicle. This can be VERY beneficial when dealing with curved follicles i.e. curly hair.
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