The electrologist should always carry out a visual assessment of the client’s skin and hair to be treated once they are comfortably settled on the treatment couch.
The following observations should be made and recorded on the consultation card:
- Visible contra-indications in the area to be treated. Skin must heal completely before treatment can commence.
- Any scarring or marks: these must be pointed out in the consultation and the nature/position of the mark recorded in detail including taking a photo, so that the electrologist is not blamed at a later point.
- Skin blemishes or irregularities: an electrologist is often the first person to notice any changes in a client’s skin. In the case of any unidentifiable blemishes the client should always be referred to their GP.
- Skin type: This can be identified by observing certain characteristics, e.g. the presence of comedones (greasy) or flakiness (dehydrated). All modalities rely on moisture (in different dependencies) to work efficiently, so a moist skin could indicate that current intensity could be reduced.
- Skin condition: If the client has sensitive skin this will dictate the modality and techniques used, the choice of needle type and the intensity of the current.
- Firmness: This will dictate the ease with which the needle can be inserted, e.g. the chin is a firm area, the front of the neck is soft.
- Age: Elderly patients with softer, looser skin will require a gentle but taut stretching technique to enable accurate inserting, whereas younger, firmer skin will need less stretching to access the follicle.
- Thickness: diameter and coarseness: The thicker the diameter of the hair, the healthier the blood supply that feeds it. Follicle/hair diameter determines the needle size and the current intensity required.
- Density: how close together the hairs are in the treatment area will determine how many hairs can be treated in one session. If the hair pattern is very dense, treatment must be spaced out to avoid over-treatment. This also affects the method chosen as blend has a wider field of action in the follicle but if the hair growth is sparse, all hairs may be treated.
- Type: vellus or terminal. Vellus hair is shallow and un-pigmented. Terminal hairs are thick, long and dark.
Once hair and skin type have been determined, you can make informed decisions about the angle of insertion, lighting and intensity of current.