Permanent hair removal with electrolysis, utilizing solid needle-type devices, is the only proven method of permanent hair removal.

The following was composed for your information by the AMERICAN ELECTROLOGY ASSOCIATION(AEA), The world's largest organization of professional electrology practitioners. We hope this publication will contribute to your over all understanding of electrolysis.

For more information, you may contact the electrologist in your area or contact the AEA



The Proven Method of Permanent Hair Removal.

With many methods of hair removal on the market today, one fact is clear - electrolysis is the only proven method for removing unwanted hair permanently.

Electrolysis is the permanent removal of hair from the human body using a fine needle to apply a measured amount of electricity to the base of the hair follicle, causing destruction of the follicle.

Unwanted hair is a problem that can cause embarrassment or totally alter the way in which your life is conducted. Whether a cosmetic problem or a symptom of disease, unwanted hair can be effectively removed.

Developed by a physician over one hundred years ago, electrolysis in the 21st Century remains the only proven method of permanent hair removal. It's the permanent solution - the solution you are looking for!


Effective, Comfortable, Permanent.

In 1875, Dr. Charles Michel, an ophthalmologist, invented a procedure to remove an ingrown eyelash utilizing galvanic current. . . hence the name electrolysis.

In modern times, taking advantage of new technologies, today's electrolysis is performed by well-qualified practitioners using state-of-the-art computerized equipment and practicing up-to-date sterilization procedures. Electrolysis has continued to evolve and advance as the most effective method of hair removal.

Today, electrolysis encompasses three methods:

  • Electrolysis - Direct current (DC);
  • Thermolysis - Alternating current (AC);
  • The blend - Both of the above currents.

You will find the experience of electrolysis treatments effective and comfortable - and you will love the look of your skin when your course of treatment is completed!

The Dependable Choice for Permanent Hair Removal

Electrolysis is the only dependable method of permanent hair removal.

Temporary methods such as shaving, tweezing, depilatories, waxing, stringing, and laser require life- time maintenance. Skin irritations, ingrown hairs, discoloration and scarring may result. These methods can actually contribute to an increase in hair growth activity. And despite all the claims from many "advanced" methods on the market today, not one has proven to be as effective as electrolysis.

The American Electrology Association (AEA), with the assistance of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), developed national Infection Control Standards that include sterilization of all electrology instruments which may have parenteral contact. Pre-sterilized, single-use disposable needles are recommended. The Standards are consistent with Standard Precautions safety which includes hand washing and use of a fresh pair of disposable gloves for each treatment. Your electrologist will thoroughly discuss this important issue with you.

The number of treatments necessary varies with each person. Factors such as hair growth cycles, the quantity and structure of hair presented, previous use of temporary hair removal methods, heredity, hormone function, normal physiologic changes, certain medications and stress influence the treatment program for each individual. It is very important to adhere to the recommended treatment schedule to achieve optimum results in the shortest period of time.

Are all Hairs Eliminated in One Treatment or is Regrowth to be expected?

Deep, coarse hairs cannot always be eliminated with one treatment; thus, breaking down the hair germ cells may require additional treatments. During the course of treatment and due to the cyclic nature of hair growth, new hairs as well as hairs emerging from a dormant phase, will be treated and may be visible at the same time as finer regrowth hairs.

What is The Normal Growth Cycle of a Hair?

All hairs have differing cycles of growth activity and are not visible on the surface of the skin at the same time. Hair normally grows for its usual cycle and then naturally sheds and replaces itself. Following active growing periods, hair follicles go into a dormant phase. This period of dormancy may last for an indefinite period of time, however, replacement hairs usually appear within 3 to 12 months. The appearance of these coarse replacement hairs from dormant hair follicles should not be mistaken as regrowth from previously treated follicles.

Is Electrolysis Uncomfortable?

While electrolysis is a very comfortable procedure, it is impossible to destroy hair growth tissue without any sensation, because each hair follicle is surrounded by its own network of nerve endings. The sensation which may be felt is assurance that destructive activity is taking place. Even though some parts of the body are more sensitive than others, adjustments can be made which will help to make the treatment remain comfortable.

Does Electrolysis Damage the Skin?

When electrolysis is performed by a competent electrologist using up-to-date equipment and current techniques, there should be no visible skin damage.

Immediately following treatment, there may be slight redness and/or swelling which usually disappears within a few hours. Occasionally, small whiteheads or minuscule scabs may occur. It is important to remember that scabs are a part of the normal healing process and will not cause any permanent damage if they are not picked off. Your electrologist will discuss specific post-treatment care to promote proper healing.

Can Unwanted Hair Be Removed From Anywhere on the Body?

Unwanted hair can be safely removed from most body areas. The most common areas include the hairline, bridge of nose, eyebrows, upper and lower lip, cheeks, sideburns, chin, neck, shoulders, arms, underarms, breasts, abdomen, bikini line, legs, back, and chest. The inside of the ears and nose should not be treated.

Can Women Begin or Continue ELectrolysis Treatments During Pregnancy?

Although Electrolysis has never been proven harmful to pregnant women, it is suggested that the advice of your physician be sought before treatment.

Can Hairs Be Removed From Moles?

State licensing laws and/or some general liability insurance policies may prohibit removal of hair from moles. In cases where niether of the above restrictions exist, your electrologist may require written permission from your physician.

How Should I Choose an Electrologist?

Always look for a practitioner who adheres to the high standards of the American ELectrology Associations.

Regulation of electrologists differes on a state-by-state basis. States regulating the practice of electrology require a practitioner to hold a valid license. The American Electrology Association has established specific standards for the profession including a national board certification credential, Certified Professional Electrologist (CPE). This voluntary credential requires ongoing continuing education to maintain board certification.

Certified Professional Electrologist Seal

Many people find an electrologist through the Yellow Pages of local directories, which contains valuble information regarding professional credentials; or by recommendations from friends, family members and referrals from physicians familiar with electrolysis.

For further information please visit the AEA website at

Electrolysis Credentialing
OALE recognizes 3 credentials:

Licensed Electrologist (LE).

In the state of Oregon, Electrolysis is a licensed profession. The practitioner must adhere to certain state laws in order to maintain their license to practice. A Licensed Electrologist (LE) must complete a minimum 600 hours in a state approved school of electrolysis, and must pass both written and practical examinations administered by the Oregon Health Licensing Agency. An LE must also complete at least 15 continuing education hours or 2.0 Continuing Education Units (CEU’s) every two years. A current license must be on display in the practitioner's office. Be advised that all states do not license their electrologists.

Licensed Electrolysis Instructor (LEI).

In order to qualify as an LEI, the electrologist is required to pass additional written, practical, and oral examinations sponsored by the Health Division.

Certified Professional Electrologist (CPE).

A CPE is internationally board certified and has passed a written test administered by the ETS, an independent testing group. A CPE also completes at least 75 continuing education hours or 7.5 CEU's every 5 years.

If you would like to verify your electrologist's license, you may call the Oregon Health Division in Salem, Oregon, USA at 503-378-8667.


Lasers for hair removal have recently attracted a lot of media attention. There is currently no scientific evidence that laser hair removal has permanent results. It is still a highly experimental procedure and may carry potential risks. Before making your decision about how you want to deal with your unwanted hair, we urge you to consult a position statement by the American Electrology Association or the FDA Laser Facts and clearance of lasers for hair removal.

Sanitation Guidelines

The following is information pertaining to safety and sanitation. The Oregon Health Division enforces many safety and sanitation standards developed by American Electrology Association in conjunction with the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Sterilization of needles and forceps must be in either an autoclave or dry heat sterilizer. Biological indicator tests for sterilization are required to maintain licensure. Specific disinfecting standards also apply to other equipment and surfaces.

Here are some things to look for in your electrologist's office: A working sterilizer and an FCC approved electrolysis machine. All cleaned and sterile instruments and linens are properly handled and stored.

  • There should be sufficient lighting.
  • Access to hot and cold running water.
  • Soap, paper towels, gloves, a covered trash container, and a regulation sharps container.

Make sure that you are comfortable with the appearance and cleanliness of the surroundings.

Questions To Ask Your Electrologist

You probably have a lot of questions about permanent hair removal and it is important for you to satisfy these concerns before you begin your electrolysis treatment.

Here is a list of questions you should consider asking your electrologist:

  • Are you licensed?
    Licensure for practicing Electrologists mandated by the Oregon state law.
  • Are you a member of the Oregon Association of Licensed Electrologists?
    Membership in a professional organization shows the practitioner's commitment to the profession, and by extension, to the client. It also ensures that they are more up to date in their education since continuing education is a requirement for certification.
  • Do you use clean, sterile equipment?
    Oregon state law requires the use of strict sanitation standards for all equipment used in electrolysis treatment. Probes must be single use disposable, or single use and sterilized in accordance with state rule. Forceps must also be sterilized. If your practitioner does not routinely use disposable needles she or he may have them available to you for an additional fee.


Questions To Ask Your Electrologist (cont.)

Feel free to ask about the methods used to sterilize and sanitize the equipment including:

  • needles/probes,
  • needle holder caps,
  • tweezers/forceps, and
  • cataphoresis rollers where applicable.

Your electrologist should provide you with a consultation in order to address questions you may have about things such as length of treatment, treatment fees, and home care guidelines. Ask for a brochure. Answers to these questions vary from one practitioner to the next. Make sure that you feel comfortable with the answers, and if not, pick up the phone and get a second opinion.


The Only Permanent Solution

If you have unwanted hair, you have probably encountered some or all the temporary methods of hair removal like shaving, laser hair removal, tweezing, and waxing. With Electrolysis, unless you have a medical condition which might be stimulating additional hair growth, once you complete the regular series of treatments the unwanted hair will be gone forever.

Want to know more about electrology? Click on the links below: