What’s The Deal With Laser Combs?

May 23rd, 2019

Androgenic alopecia, that is to say, male and female pattern hair loss, is a common, chronic dermatologic disorder with limited therapeutic options. 2 out of 4 men experience it by 32, and 1 in 3 women experience it by 45.

In recent years, a number of commercial devices using low-level laser therapy have been promoted, but there have been little peer-reviewed data on their efficacy. Laser combs, despite the name, are not combs consisting of lightsabers for teeth and will not burn or melt your hair or scalp.

In 2014, Jimenez et all published a study on a series of randomized, sham device-controlled, double-blind clinical trials that were conducted at multiple institutional and private practices. A total of 128 male and 141 female subjects were randomized to receive either a laser comb (one of three models) or a sham device in concealed sealed packets, and were treated on the whole scalp three times a week for 26 weeks. 

They observed a statistically significant difference in the increase in hair density between laser comb- and sham-device treated subjects. No serious adverse events were reported. Our results suggest that low-level laser treatment may be an effective option to treat pattern hair loss in both men and women. 

How does it work?

The laser comb is combed through the hair 3 times a week for about 15 minutes. Note the unexpected side-benefit of that much work: your biceps will grow larger after 45 minutes of weekly brushing. Pass the comb over the scalp area that is going through the miniaturization process. In most cases, this reverses the miniaturization process.

Instead of hairs getting thinner and eventually falling out entirely, they will start getting thicker. This will provide you with more scalp coverage and a healthier looking head of hair.

This biological process is known as PhotoBioStimulation. This increases adenosine triphosphate (ATP) and keratin production. Enhancing cellular metabolism and activity, these two coenzymes are responsible for intracellular energy transfer as well as being known for stimulating living cells such as the hair follicle cells.

The other mechanism that these low-level laser treatments are responsible for is increased blood flow. Hair follicles require a number of nutrients to grow strong and healthy. Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) get in the way of this delivery system. The laser comb helps make sure nutrients are delivered more efficiently to hair follicles and also removes said DHT from the scalp.

This is a non-evasive, self-administered treatment. It does not require a prescription and can be performed at your home. Furthermore, once you pay the upfront cost, there are no ongoing costs such as keeping a supply of minoxidil or propecia. The manufacturer states that the product life is 10 years.

If you want to get really sci-fi, there are entire laser helmets you can wear which run up to $600 and will save you the trouble of manually combing. Otherwise, most devices run from between 200-300 dollars on Amazon!

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