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Tria Beauty Laser Hair Removal System

Reviewed by SarahK January 10, 2011 12 Comments
Celebrity endorsements are highly coveted by most companies. Take one look at Claire Danes promoting Latisse and it’s not hard to see why that stuff sells like hotcakes. To be honest, though, celebrity endorsements don’t do much for me. If anything, they turn me off to the product because I assume that it is of such poor quality that the company needs to rely on a pretty face to sell it. So I was pretty surprised when I was forced to reevaluate my complete dismissal of the Kim Kardashian-endorsed Tria Beauty Laser Hair Removal System, as the product seems to have a lot going for it.

I should tell you that I have not personally tested the Tria Laser, though a TIA staff member will be doing so in the coming weeks.

The Tria Laser, which is a handheld laser that people can use on themselves in the privacy of their own homes, promises “permanent, professional results at home” in “6 – 8 months.” The thought of some of my friends using a laser on themselves unsupervised is frightening. But the device is FDA approved. Not that the FDA’s word is absolute by any stretch of the imagination, but it is comforting and a definite plus for the product, as laser hair removal can go horribly wrong (think burns, scars and infections).

In order to be forever hairless, all you have to do is shave and dry the desired area, adjust the laser to the highest setting you can handle, put the laser to your skin and listen for the beep, then repeat until you’ve covered the entire area. You don’t have to do it terribly often (2 times each month for the first 3 months, then 1 time each month for the next 3 – 5 months) and it’s extremely cost effective. For $495, you can potentially rid yourself of all unwanted body hair. At many clinics, $495 will only cover one laser hair removal session on one body part.

While wielding a laser sounds pretty risky, I’m impressed with the safety mechanism that is incorporated into this particular tool; it contains a skin sensor that will not allow the device to turn on if your skin is too dark. This is a precaution that must be taken since the laser, which targets dark hair, may target dark skin instead, which can lead to scarring and burning. As such, the Tria laser is really only meant for people with lighter skin tones and darker hair.

Assuming that you fit this description of a good laser hair removal candidate, there are other issues to contend with. First, the product cannot be used anywhere above and including the neck. While it has garnered many positive reviews, the Tria laser is also the subject of many complaints. Apparently, the head of the laser is very small, meaning that it takes quite awhile to cover large areas. This wouldn’t be a problem if the Tria’s battery life was stellar. Unfortunately, even positive reviews claim that the laser needs to be charged for several hours but only lasts for under a half hour (on the highest setting) before it needs to be charged again, making the process quite tedious.

The thing that I’m most skeptical about regarding Tria is their 30-day money back guarantee. 30 days is not nearly enough time to test a laser; the company itself advertises results occurring by the end of a three-month period. If the product is as fantastic as it sounds, why the dismally small time frame for consumers to get their money back?

Still, there are a lot of people talking about how effective Tria is. I’m going to hold off my judgments until my friend here at TIA undergoes the laser.
  • March 15, 2013

    by Elizabeth Carbonell

    Hi what do you know about the NONO hair rremoval.

  • January 4, 2012

    by Nisha

    As a licensed esthetician and laser technician, I can understand Lori's frustration with the lack of laser technology to address white/gray hairs. Unfortunately, all hair removal lasers seek pigment in order to destroy the hair follicle. This is why the FDA requires that treatments using lasers should be called "Laser Hair Reduction" as opposed to "laser hair removal". Electrolysis is considered to be the only form of permanent hair removal (researchergirl knows her stuff!), and it is extremely time consuming as a needle is inserted into each, individual hair follicle (followed by a not very pleasant electrical current) with the hopes that the offending hair will never return. However, as hair grows in phases and is at various stages of growth at any given time, previously dormant hairs will inevitably rise, post each painful treatment. That's why hair reduction packages are generally sold in packages of 6 treatments which is a rather arbitrary industry based average that I'm not sure the majority of people fall into.

    To further complicate matters, hair follicles can lie dormant for years only to be triggered by hormonal changes, hence the annoying chin hairs tend to pop up around menopause (sorry Justd). Moreover, factors such as genetics, race and even climate (hair grows faster in a warm climate) can affect the type & amount of hair we are blessed with, even rendering some hair to be what the industry calls "resistant". It is a fact that a small population of people will not respond to any type of hair removal treatment. Their bodies just won't allow it. That said, there are options to be considered and I wouldn't necessarily advise going down the Groupon route for this type of treatment.

    Lori, electrolysis is generally not inexpensive as it should only be performed by a licensed "electrologist". This goes beyond the requirements of an esthetician's license. If you are doing a relatively small area such as your chin, I'm sure you can find a place that takes installment payments. But please do research on review sites to ensure it is a reputable establishment and that the electrologist has the proper credentials. I would even suggest checking to make sure there are no filings with the dept of consumer affairs and also look on www.complaintsboard.com.

    Justd - Laser is indeed an option for women of color (as long as the hair being lasered is dark and relatively coarse). I have a medium dark complexion myself and have had successful laser treatments on my underarms and legs (less so on the legs but that's because of the surface area). The most important thing to find out is whether the laser machine being used is appropriate for your skin color. ND:Yag is most commonly used on dark complexions. As darker skin can hyperpigment very easily if lasered incorrectly, I would recommend having a consult with the laser technician before you buy a package. Ask a lot of questions - How long has she performed laser, has she treated many clients with dark complexions, how exactly does the laser machine work - and has she burned anyone within the last year (yes, I'm serious). She'll probably say no but make sure you are watching for her reaction. it's important that only an experienced technician works on you because the risks are higher with your complexion. You should have good, open communication with the tech because you are trusting this person with your precious face - and you only get one! I would also advise you to have a patch test done on another area of your body first. If they won't do that, then leave. 6 sessions really is the minimum in order to see results so don't be surprised if they push a package on you. Electrolysis is definitely an option for dark complexions as well and if you don't have many chin hairs, it's likely to yield quick results. Be aware that you generally need to shave prior to laser treatment (be sure to ask) but not before an electrolysis treatment. So if laser is your option, you will have to continuously shave until you have finished the package.
    Please do not pluck out the hairs. Hair grows in a certain direction and if it is plucked out in the wrong direction, it can often result in ingrowns. That's what happens when you are waxed by someone who doesn't know how to wax properly. But sometimes, people are just prone to ingrowns so it's best to avoid plucking.
    Moreover, electrolysis and laser are generally not successful on peach fuzz or what's known as "vellus' hair. It is too fine for a needle to go into the follicle or for the laser to "see". The hair shaft generally needs to be as thick as the hair on your legs for best results. Threading or dermaplaning are the best options for vellus hair.
    Lastly, handheld devices such as the TRIA will not produce results anywhere close to a medical grade device. It simply does not have the power that the larger devices do (those big machines are not for show - they house some very powerful energy). A device that is plugged in is generally more effective than a battery powered device as it has a constant energy flow.
    I personally feel that these types of treatments are best left to trained professionals - some treatments simply shouldn't be attempted at home because the risk is just too high in my opinion - FDA approved or not.

  • January 3, 2012

    by Joyce

    I would like to see a comparison on facial hair removal creams. Unfortunately with age also comes the peach fuzz. Thus far only 'threading' done in a eyebrow salon has worked for me. It last approx 4 weeks.

  • December 12, 2011

    by Justine Rusk

    Preksha,

    Thank you. If you have any luck this time around let me know.

  • December 9, 2011

    by Preksha

    Justine,
    I've tried this last winter. It was far too painful for me to use, so I went on a hunt for a numbing spray of sorts. Nothing really helped outside of ice, but that became far too tedious. I stopped using it before I could even see any results.
    I actually very recently tried using it again and discovered that it wouldn't stay on or charged, so am now in the process of getting it repaired/replaced.

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