Tuesday, October 21st, 2008

The TRIA Laser ($995.00) is an at-home permanent hair removal device created to mimic the laser treatments done in dermatologist offices. The story behind TRIA is to give women a way to get the benefits of light-based hair removal in the privacy of their own home. The gold standard used in dermatologist offices is a diode laser hair removal system. The scientists that invented this professional diode laser also developed the TRIA laser, which utilizes the same technology as the professional lasers you would find at your dermatologists. TRIA’s technology is miniaturized and safe for use at-home by you.

The folks at TRIA asked me if I would be interested in trying out the TRIA and chronicling my experience on the blog. My first reaction was, “REALLY?” And my second reaction was, “PERMANENT HAIR REMOVAL? REALLY?” So here I am, chronicling my adventures with the TRIA Laser for all to read, and you can be sure you’ll hear how it progresses and what results I see as I go through the treatments. The basic technology behind the TRIA is a diode laser which targets the dark pigment found in the hair follicles; this energy heats up and disables the hair follicle, which in turn causes the hair to fall out. Eventually, no more hair growth!

You tell me why I would even consider a device that’s $995.00! TRIA is not designed for the girl on a budget, but it is designed for people seeking permanent hair removal, but those who cannot afford the expense of having laser treatments performed by their dermatologists. According to TRIA, women can expect to spend approximately $3,000 over the next ten years for shaving, nearly $5,000 for depilatories, $11,000 for waxing, and $14,000 for electrolysis. Despite the long-term cost-savings, it is a larger up front cost that I feel is best suited for women in the market for permanent or laser hair removal. Going to the dermatologist’s office will cost you thousands to treat your legs, arms, bikini line, and underarms–TRIA costs you much less in comparison. Waxing is also a pricey option (moreso than shaving), so those who regularly get themselves waxed might find this something to consider.

Treatment One

I’m just about at the end of my first treatment (which I did just under four weeks ago). At that time, I did my legs and underarms. I attempted my bikini line, but I hadn’t shaved immediately before, so I decided to wait until next time. I discovered my legs and underarms could withstand the highest energy level for the most part. There were a few spots on my legs that I needed to reduce the energy level to medium, because the pin-prick sensation was mildly painful. Any pain associated with the treatment was still less than waxing, though. Luckily, with three settings, you can generally find your butter zone where it’s working and you’re comfortable.

It took me about a half hour or so to do both legs, but I think I might have hurried and not been as thorough as I should have been. I’ll let you know how it long it takes for treatment two when I’m deliberately being more thorough! The TRIA does need to be recharged regularly. I wouldn’t count on doing marathon sessions of hours of the TRIA or anything, but you should be able to do your legs or your arms in one sitting. Basically, the larger the area, the longer it will take.

So far… Generally, you won’t have visible results until after your second treatment, but I can say that the hair on the back of my legs is sparser than it was before. I’ve also noticed that some of my underarm hair has grown less (like it looks patchy almost) in some areas. FYI, I shave my underarms everyday; I think the hair under there grows faster than my boyfriend’s scruff, LOL.

Get details on how to use the TRIA and where it can be used, plus a few more photos…

How-to use it: The TRIA is used every four weeks for six to eight treatments. The idea behind the four week gap is that the hair follicle cycle is about four weeks long, so each treatment should get different hairs or the ones it missed in the previous treatment.

  • Prior to using, you should shave and clean your skin–but note that you cannot wax, and if you have waxed recently, you need to wait four to six weeks for hair growth to return.
  • You will need to unlock the TRIA–this is an amazing result of technology. Lasers are only designed to work on some people, not all. It works most effectively on light skin with dark hair, because the laser targets the pigmentation found in the hair. TRIA specifically states it should not be used by those of African-American, East Indian, Native American, or Pacific Islander descent. In order for the laser to turn on, you have to first put the Skin Sensor over the body part you’re attempting to treat, which will unlock if it is safe to use on your skin tone.
  • There are three “energy” levels, which are kind of like three levels of intensity. Generally speaking, the highest is the most effective, but some might find pain associated with it and need to reduce the intensity (more on this later).
  • Apply the laser tip to the area, and you’ll hear a short beep once the pulse is complete. You overlap the area by mere millimeters, so you end up with about 25 beeps per square inch. Each pulse is just a few seconds (maybe even less), so each pulse itself isn’t lengthy, but the entire process may take longer.

So where can it be used? It can be used on legs, bikini ilne, underarms, arms, back, chest, and abdomen. It is not to be used anywhere above the neck (aka face), around the eyes, nipples, anus, or genitals.

Stay tuned for treatment two!

Skin Sensor

Skin Sensor

Discussion and debate are highly encouraged, and we expect community members to participate respectfully. When asking a question, please check the FAQ section (above) for information about purchasing, price, dupes, and the like. If you have general feedback or need technical support, please contact us.

Comments that include advertisements, self-promotion, insults, etc. may be in violation of our comment policy and subject to deletion. Please see our comment policy for more information.

41 thoughts on “TRIA Beauty’s At-Home Permanent Laser Hair Removal System – Treatment One

  1. Julie

    WOW we desperately want to try one of these. Have been considering going to a derm to get this done for sometime. Put this in Coutorture’s must reads today.

  2. lisa

    If it really worked i would not mind paying that at all but the only down side to it is that it doesnt do the face and i have a moustache:-( that i constantly have to shave!! But will probably go to the dermatologist to get facial hair permanently removed but i would get this for my legs etc if it worked well.

    • caramel

      If you’re interested in permanent facial hair removal, I suggest going with electrolysis. I heard that laser can trigger increased hair growth in some areas that are so much affected by hormones such as the upper-lip and chin areas. HTHS :)

      But I too am very excited to learn about this Tria gadget and would love to buy one! I’ll wait to see how it works out for Christine, and if all goes well I’m definitely getting one!!

    • It does suck that you can’t do the face/upper lip! But a reader commented saying electrolysis is actually better suited for it, so maybe there’s that :)

      I use Sally Hansen’s pre-waxed strips. Better than shaving!

  3. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Carrie Carrie

    Huh, folks should form a co-op to purchase and share one as a group, pass it around for the periodic treatments. And if it really is permanent, you’ll never need it again after you are finished. :P

    BTW, $3,000 for 10 years of shaving?! I think my annual razor and shaving cream bill is less than $50 = $500 tops for 10 years.

    • OMG!! That’s exactly what I was thinking! Like if you had your mom and sister both want to do it, too… then it wouldn’t be so bad ;)

      I do agree the shaving estimate is a bit off, BUT I know that I don’t replace my razors as often as I should. I know those things aren’t so cheap these days, LOL. Not to say I think my bill is that high, but if I did it right and tight, maybe $1,000 or so?

    • michelle

      thats exactly what ive been thinking for a few years now! i dont know anyone who would be interested in sharing any at-home laser kits with me though, bummer.

      p.s. i know im like, years late on this but i just discovered this blog today… ive been sitting at my computer for the last FIVE hours browsing through it!

  4. Amanda

    TRIA specifically states it should not be used by those of African-American, East Indian, Native American, or Pacific Islander descent.

    Wow, that’s a huge population of women who can’t use this.

    • Unfortunately the technology targets the pigmentation of the hair, and if you have dark skin with dark hair, the laser doesn’t distinguish very well between your skin and the hair follicle. If you have light skin and light hair, again, it can’t see pigmentation, so it’s not effective at all.

  5. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Farrah Farrah

    I have had professional hair removal/reduction. It works best when hair is dark and skin is pale. On women of color; the laser cannot distingush between the hair and skin color. For those of color, electrolysis is your best option for permenant removal/reduction.

  6. Cat F.

    My face is NC35 in SFF- my arms a bit darker, but my legs, underarms and (obviously :)) bikini line are lighter. My hair is dark-ish brown, it’s not super dark though. Do you think I could use this?

    • Hey Cat! I am NC30, and like you, my arms tend to be a bit darker. It unlocks on my hands and arms, and of course, legs and anything lighter. I think you could use this. They have a pretty good guarantee policy, though. I didn’t think my hair was THAT dark and my skin isn’t super light, I really am quite medium toned, ha! It unlocked and worked for me. :)

  7. Dee J

    Christine, what is the policy on the system. i want to buy the system because i have dark hair on my tummy and my chest, due to early shaving in my early years. N-e Way my chest is pretty light but i’m darker then NC30, but i don’t know my color, but i do have an orange undertone in my skin because of my native american descentdents!, but i’m guessing i will not being able to use this.

    • I imagine you could purchase, and if it didn’t work, return it. But they do say that it doesn’t work for Native Americans period – you’d basically have to go against their instructions :(

  8. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Rayne Rayne

    How can you afford spending almost 1K on at home treatments? I’ve always wondered where this money comes from.

    • Hi Rayne,

      In the second paragraph of this post, I wrote:

      “The folks at TRIA asked me if I would be interested in trying out the TRIA and chronicling my experience on the blog. My first reaction was,

  9. kukuroshu

    I suggest if you are going to get permanent hair removal you pick a reliable place that’s been around forever…. I paid $4500 at Lite Touch and they told me I would be getting 6 treatments with a 3 year warranty. They went out of business 1 year later.. and I’m out 4500 dollars!

  10. Thais

    Any updates on this device? Thanks!

  11. Teressa

    Hi Christine,

    I was wondering, how has your treatments been going with the TRIA device?

    Thanks! :)

  12. desi

    i wont to now for TRIA work good or no?

  13. Samantha

    when do you plan to update?
    I really want to buy one but i would like to see/know how it is working for you first!

  14. Karen

    I just got the new one that holds a charge longer & it only hurt on my bikini line. I will let everyone know if it is worth it. By the way – if you do want to see a professional for laser & live in NY, go see Gina at Vada Spa. They are the most reasonable place I found & she is great. Tell her Karen sent you… maybe she will give me a free treatment for my face since I am scared to use the Tria for that! If anyone has used it on the face, please let us know what the results were like. Thanks!

  15. marty

    Jan.21 st,2010.
    I need an update on TRIA. I started hair removal last year with Hair Today Gone Tomorrow, it was working very well, I had a prepaid plan but the Co. disappeared without any notice and so did my money! I am interested in buying a home device because I don’t trust anyone anymore, and TRIA would cost me less than finishing my treatments, I am also planning to share it with my sister. My skin tone and hair color are ideal, I never had any problems with the laser. Do you recommend the device?

    • Caramel

      If you’re treating small areas (feet, underarms, etc.), the Tria should work very well. If you’re treating large areas (legs, back, etc.), check out Silk’n @ Sephora.

      • Tina

        The UK English version can actually be used on your face too and I have had excellent results on my upper lip and chin. I’ve done 4 treatments so far and I last shaved nearly a week ago now. That would just not have been possible prior to Tria, believe me! I was actually getting to the stage where some of the thicker hairs would need shaving again if I was going out in the evening. The result of daily shaving for years was ingrowing hairs, razor lumps and bumps and the odd nick when I wasn’t careful enough. I was constantly applying foundation because I was so paranoid and didn’t feel comfortable talking to people close up. Tria has been a very liberating experience for me. I really hope it will be permanent and I will continue using for 8-9 months but if hair does eventually grow back, I would definitely go to a salon to get permanent results. Tria has shown me that laser isn’t such a big deal and having read so many posts and blogs on the internet before buying, the fact that plenty of women have hair issues. Another positive for me is improvement in skin condition, probably a combination of reasons for instance not having to apply so much make-up, obviously not having bumps but also as a bi product of using sugar scrubs etc. to encourage shedding. I didn’t really ex-foliate before. I’m also using Tria on my Bikini line but with admittedly slower progress. Yes, hair is definitely reducing but not as dramatically and there seem to be stubborn areas but I will certainly persevere. I also intend to use on underarms. I’m not sure about legs, I would love them to be hair free but the laser window is so small, large areas would surely take ages. That said, once I have completed the smaller areas of my body, I’ve nothing to loose using up the rest of the charges on legs and arms.

        • I’m in the US and have been using mine on my face too. It’s amazing! I’ve done 7 sessions so far on my upper lip and chin, and the results are great. I used to be really self conscious about my facial hair too, and not even makeup could hide it. I seriously had to pluck DAILY! Ugh, it was such a pain! With these results, the Tria is easily the best beauty purchase I’ve ever made. It changed my life! Seriously.

          But yeah, I wish they’d make another model with a bigger laser head to be used on larger areas like legs, arms, etc. I would buy it in a heartbeat!

          • Suzie

            I’m encouraged to hear that you had such great success with facial hair and have a few questions. Does the Tria work on your face (chin) if you pluck rather than shave? Do you use it right after plucking or when the hair starts growing back? Have you found that the hair grows back much slower now and/or that there’s less growing back?

            Thanks for any additional info you can provide!

  16. suzy

    hi
    just wondered it it worked? have was it after treatment two?

    btw LOVE love love you’re blog!!