How do I get an appointment? Can I just walk in or should I call?

We work by appointment at River Rock. This means if we are in the office our time has already been reserved so we are not available to assist individuals we have not planned for and are not expecting.

We respect your time and keep our day moving on time; we are almost always on time or ready a little bit early for our appointments. We never interrupt your appointment time to take calls or assist other clients.

To preserve our signature high level of service we don't take walk-ins. You'll need to call us to set up an appointment ahead of time.

We rarely have same day appointments available. As soon as you know you want to learn more about permanent hair removal with electrolysis please call the office at 715-831-0200 to set up your consultation. Once you have an established treatment plan you your electrologist will set up a series of appointments with you to ensure you get the regular treatments that lead to perfect results that last forever.

If you do need to change an appointment or set up a new one, you will need your personal schedule handy when you call so we can set a time that works for you.

We generally book 2-4 weeks out routinely and 4-6 weeks out for exact times in our busy seasons so you need to plan ahead on this one. Our busiest times are from 4-9PM.

If you know you need a specific time then you need to call now so you can begin to enjoy all the benefits of electrolysis.

Where can I have treatment--who will you treat?

Just about anywhere! Unwanted hair can be safely removed from most body areas. Common areas include the hairline, nose, eyebrows, upper and lower lip, cheeks, sideburns, ears, chin, neck, shoulders, arms and underarms, fingers, hands, breasts, abdomen, bikini line, legs, back, and chest.

We are happy to offer services to men, women, and teens. G/L/B/T/TS/TG clients are welcome.

Does it Hurt? Really?

The short answer is it depends. It is impossible to destroy hair growth tissue without sensation because each hair follicle is surrounded by its own network of nerve endings. The sensation, which may or may not be felt, is assurance that destructive activity is taking place.

Some clients sleep through hours of treatments and others honestly find 15 minutes to be very uncomfortable. We utilize advanced Apilus technology ensuring our clients a gentler and more comfortable way to permanent hair removal. If you have tried electrolysis before, try it again and feel the Apilus difference.

The sensation you might experience depends on many reasons including where one is having treatment and what method is used. Some parts of the body are more sensitive than others. If you have ever waxed or plucked, you'll find electrolysis to be surprisingly comfortable. Some clients have described the sensation as a pinch, a mosquito bite, a quick snap, or building warmth.

Many adjustments can be made which help to make the treatment more comfortable. Some clients choose to take an OTC analgesic such as Aleve, Aspirin, or Advil 30 - 45 minutes before treatment and report treatment is very comfortable. We will work within your personal comfort level and do have topical anesthetics available. We include topical anesthetic with all of our upper and lower lip area electrolysis treatments for your comfort.

Do you folks ever go home/are you ever in?

We work by appointment at River Rock. That means we are here when clients need us. It also means that you may call the office 715-831-0200 any time, we check our private voice mail regularly every day. When we return your call please know you are speaking with a licensed electrologist who can answer all of your questions.

As one of our cost savings measures to keep our treatment fees as low as possible, we do not have a receptionist on staff. If you reach our private voicemail during these hours we are assisting/in treatment with other clients and will promptly return your call. We promise we return calls!

If you leave a voice mail and do not hear from us within 24 hours then something has gone awry, please call again the technology imps are not always cooperative.

Please leave a private voice mail message as detailed as you need to but at least with your basic contact information, service you are seeking, when you are available for an appointment, mention if you have been in to see us before, and the best times to contact you and we will get right back to you.

As we work by appointment, the office may or may not be open even if you see cars in the parking lot. Thus, if you are from out of town, do call ahead so we reserve time for you and are sure to be in the office with time to visit with you.

Because we work by appointment, we need 24 hours in advance notice should you need to cancel or change an appointment. We do understand that emergencies occur, but remember we all come from a distance and we reserve our time especially for you. We would like to be able to offer the time slot to other clients if you will not be using it or be home with our families.

Should you not give 24 hour notice for an appointment change or cancellation, we reserve the right to charge for your missed appointment.

What exactly do you do to the hair?

Electrology is the art and science of permanent hair removal utilizing your body’s natural reaction to exposure to electrical current. A fine sterile probe is inserted into the hair follicle and a small amount of electrical energy is discharged which destroys the hair growth tissue. When this is skillfully accomplished the regenerative ability of the hair follicle is permanently eliminated. The hair is lifted out after treatment and you leave with bare skin.

Why should I choose electrolysis over other hair removal methods?

Electrolysis isn't right for every person or situation. If you want to look hairless for your vacation next week electrolysis is not the option for you. Electrolysis produces permanent hair removal but it is no overnight sensation. While you will look better right away, it takes a series of treatments to get to permanent.

If you are looking for the only FDA approved method of permanent hair removal then electrolysis is for you. Electrolysis can permanently remove unwanted hair of any color from any skin type or color, and from any part of the body. It has been proven to be a safe and effective method of permanent hair removal since 1875. Investing in electrolysis is a decision that needs to be make carefully considering your goals, timeline, and budget.

Call our office at 715-831-0200 to set up a free no-obligation consultation if you would like to learn more about what electrolysis can do for you. We encourage you to read all of these frequently asked questions so you can learn a little more about what we do before you set up that first appointment.

Is it really permanent? How long does it take?

Absolutely! However, electrolysis is not an overnight sensation.

Electrolysis requires a series of treatments to achieve permanency. The number of treatments necessary varies with each client and with the area being treated. 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 all influence the treatment program for each individual.

In most cases it takes an average of 18 to 24 months to have absolute permanence. This time clock begins at the time we clear the area and are able to keep it clear of hair as your pattern fills in so we have treated your entire natural hair pattern.

It is very important to adhere to the recommended treatment schedule to achieve optimum results in the shortest time frame. You are going to look better right away but we want to eliminate your hair problem, not manage it.

Though it sounds long, your amount of treatment time or frequency with which you visit generally tapers off. Without looking at your individual hair pattern, and knowing what removal methods you have tried, as well as the potential cause of the hair growth, it is impossible to accurately estimate the exact number of treatments it will take.

If you would like to know more precisely what your treatment schedule would look like, we encourage you to call for a free consultation and find out exactly what you will need to do to get great results from us.

What are the basic methods you use in treatments?

We utilize all three modalities or types of electrolysis at River Rock. Your electrologist will select the appropriate method for you after examining your skin and hair pattern and evaluating your personal history and medical profile at your consultation.

  • Electrolysis --- Direct current (DC), is the original form of electro-epilation (and also the name of our field) DC is used to achieve chemical destruction of the hair follicle. One or more pre-sterilized disposable probes can be used. In the multiple needle form It is by far the slowest form of electro-epilation. In the single probe form it is comparable in time to the blend.
  • Thermolysis --- Alternating current (AC), sometimes referred to as high frequency, diathermy, or short-wave, is used to create heat which destroys the hair follicle. Most often one sterile probe is used. It is generally the fastest form of electro-epilation.
  • The Blend (also referred to as Dual Modality) --- Both of the above currents are used simultaneously or sequentially to achieve dual action destruction of the hair follicle. Most often, a single sterile probe is used for this procedure. This is comparable in time to electrolysis both being slower than Thermolysis.

You can get great results with any modality if you have a skilled electrologist. Your electrologist will select the best method for your individual situation.

Why do I have to come so often? Does it make a difference if I let them all

Yes it makes a HUGE difference! It is important to follow your individual treatment schedule to get the fastest results.

Hairs are most effectively treated, regardless of method, in their earliest growth stage as we need moisture of an early growth stage hair to make our treatments effective. The older a hair gets, the drier it gets and thus the less effective treatment would be. We must catch your unwanted hairs as they just emerge from the skin as this is when the hairs are finer and straighter allowing for us to be more accurate in our insertions.

When hairs are smaller the target zone is also smaller helping us to eliminate all of the germinative cells that grow hairs in one treatment rather than breaking down a larger hair's zone with multiple sessions. A smaller hair also means we can utilize less current making it a more comfortable treatment for you.

Regular treatment ensures we are catching hairs at this early growth stage and makes for a more effective and more comfortable treatment with far less potential for regrowth. If you can make the time commitment at the beginning of treatment, you can think of it as taking time off the end so you get the best results in the shortest time frame.

How does electrolysis compare to common temporary or long lasting hair removal methods?

There is no one right method of hair removal for every person. Which method you chose to use will depend on many factors. Learning more about all of your hair removal options will help you make an informed choice and have realistic expectations regardless of which method you choose.

Laser Assisted Hair Removal vs. Electrolysis

While laser promoters compare laser to electrolysis, it is actually not legally allowed to term itself a permanent form of hair removal just a reduction of the quality or quantity of hair. Only three laser devices have been cleared to claim a permanent reduction in hair by the FDA.

Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) though often called laser, is NOT a true laser and not approved by the FDA to claim any efficacy. However, some people report they have found it an effective management tool.

Electrolysis is cleared for claiming permanent removal of hair. If you follow a solid treatment plan and religiously attend regular treatments then you can expect that once you are done with all of your treatments you will not have less hair, you will have no hair in that area. We consider you done with electrolysis when you do not have any hair filling in and it stays bare.

All laser assisted hair removal is considered a long lasting method of hair removal. It will require regular treatments to maintain any reduction in hair often called touch up treatments 4 to 6 times per year. Many people find they must continue to shave to be sure they appear totally smooth.

Laser hair removal has not been evaluated for long-term safety of the patient's skin and health--new research is showing prolonged exposure to laser is capable of changing skin cells at the genetic level. People who are concerned about their exposure to radiation may want to avoid laser treatments.

It takes a series of treatments before you stop seeing a shadow (generally 6+ spaced out every 6 weeks or so) which some operators may call the time it takes to "clear". The reason for is all of your hair is not present at one time in the optimal growth stage.

On most body parts it takes up to two years to see a complete growth cycle--think about the hair on your head and how long it can get, that can be an eight year growth cycle on average. If all your head hair fell out and re-grew as fast as most people think, you'd have really, really, short hair all the time.

Clients shave prior to laser treatment, then the laser is applied to the skin. Essentially, laser energy is drawn to pigmented cells. It heats the moisture in the pigmented cells. If the moisture gets hot enough then the theory is that the follicular cells are also heated at this time potentially enough to destroy or disable them. The moisture in the dark colored hair is heated out of the hair.

The treated hairs are reabsorbed by the body or fall out on their own like coffee grounds over the next few days or weeks. Skin exposed to effective medical grade laser looks sunburned after treatment and must be protected from the sun.

The best results require high levels of contrast which means it is most effective for those clients with very dark hair and very, very light skin. Darker skin tones or tanned skin must be treated with extreme caution as laser is attracted to pigment any pigment. Darker skin tones may require bleaching and sun avoidance for at least 6 weeks prior to and following treatment if it can be treated at all. White, grey, blonde, and most red hairs are unaffected by laser.

Laser does have potential to work with electrolysis. One could argue laser would a good choice to initially clear large areas like legs or backs and then clients would follow up with electrolysis as the hair grows back in following the series of laser treatments. This might maximize the speed of a laser treatment and the effectiveness of electrolysis.

To get the best possible treatments from laser, you need to make sure your laser provider is using medical grade laser. Generally these are very large devices which require careful calibration so they aren’t portable and would never be moved location to location (but they could carefully roll around a flat room on occasion). If the machine is taken location to location it is probably not medical grade laser.

Do make sure your laser provider, the person doing your consult and selecting the device settings is a medical doctor (MD) and has appropriate training. There is no clear regulation for laser training. Yes, you read that right. A laser vendor of any kind can take anyone of you and "train you" in without any real program requirements.

You too could take a weekend course and be a certified laser technician (CLT) and use an offsite medical director work-around and not have a doctor on site at all and yet call yourself a medispa giving the impression the shop is medically directed. Look for an onsite full time medical director.

In Wisconsin, as of December 2006, the medical director must simply be located within 120 miles of the shop; regulations now require the medical director to actually be currently licensed in medicine and surgery in Wisconsin which is an excellent step toward ensuring client safety. Each state varies in its regulations, some don't even require a medical director--not even one in name only.

Any kind of hair removal treatments are only as good as your technician/operator regardless of hair removal method. For safety reasons it is especially important for laser services to be given under real medical supervision. There is serious potential for instant significant tissue damage with a poorly used laser device.

Electrology has proven itself safe, effective, and permanent since 1875 and does not use radiation it is a naturally occurring process. Electrolysis offers pin-point precision treatment. Unlike laser, were things to go wrong with electrolysis the hair-by-hair nature of the treatment also means you would have significantly less damage than with a wholesale approach to hair removal like laser. Electrolysis is equally effective on all colors of hair and skin; it is also safe to do near sensitive areas like the eyes making it ideal for eyebrow work and for darker skin tones or in or near tattoos.

Waxing, Sugaring, Nads, Epilady or Threading vs. Electrolysis:

Waxing, Sugaring, NuFree, Nads, and threading will remove all of the visible hair by removing it by the root (if well done). The outer layer of skin is often removed when the hair is removed with many of these methods. While this can be great when you want exfoliation, improperly done or improperly cared for after treatment, it can result in skin problems including ingrown hair, scarring, pigment changes, and bruising.

To keep your skin clear, (and contrary to advertising claims) all of these methods must be done frequently forever. You must also wait until hair is at least 1/4" to 1/3" (about 3 weeks of growth) long for the wax/sugar/Nads "glue" to adhere to the removal strip.

Research has shown that any method that rips hair out by the root such as waxing, sugaring, and Nads type products can actually increase hair growth in hormonally dependent areas such as the upper lip, chin, breasts, and abdomen of a female.

This is not an issue on areas like eyebrows and legs as it does not increase growth in these areas. Feel free to wax away in these areas. Waxing is fast and long lasting. Since waxing removes all the visible hair it also removes hair in all the various stages of growth.

This is why many people think waxing reduces hair growth. The re-growth is finer and softer because the fill is new baby hair. There seems to be less hair because all the stages of hair growth are removed and only active growth stage hair fills in. On body areas, up to 80% of the visible hair you have is old, dry, place saver hair not active growth stage hair.

While it may look like waxing reduced your hair growth by 80%, it really just removed all the various stages of growth and if you keep up on waxing you’ll never see that old fill again.

You only need a couple of days of growth to be treated with electrolysis so no fluff out required. There is no risk of skin removal with electrolysis either. It is safe to do if you are using many of the newer skin care products and even prescription level skin care. There is no risk of ingrown hairs with electrolysis treatment either.

Tweezing vs. Electrolysis:

Tweezing is easy to do, and inexpensive. However hair can become coarser from the repeated tweezing and skin problems including ingrown hair, pigment changes, and scaring can result. Obviously it is not a permanent solution to unwanted hair unless you are talking about the eyebrows. You can pluck to near permanent results up there because it is delicate like scalp hair.

NEVER tweeze the upper/lower lip, chin, breasts, or abdomen if you are a female. You are stimulating growth in these areas. The hair will become thicker and darker with repeated tweezing. You will find that over time you have to tweeze more and more often and more and more hair. NEVER tweeze or dig out ingrown hairs. You will make the situation worse. The hair will distort further and you will have a bigger lesion the next time it grows in. Really it does. Trust us. Stop performing self-surgery, we mean it!

Shaving vs. Electrology:

Shaving is inexpensive and easy. However, the hair does grow back quickly for some people and feels coarse as it is cut off leaving a blunt tip. Contrary to popular belief, shaving DOES NOT increase hair growth in any way. It may feel thicker as you have cut off the hair at the thickest point but it did not make it darker or thicker.

Seriously, this is the biggest myth in hair removal. We promise it does not increase your hair growth. Hair is dead above the skin surface. Anything you do at this level does not affect hair growth.

Shaving is a safe and very effective temporary method of removal for basically anywhere you can reach. While it can be a great temporary method of removal many people report problems after shaving like razor rash--a red itchy raised almost acne like outbreak. Electrolysis provides releif for those folks affected by razor burn, razor rash, and folliculitis issues as it eliminates the follicle so it can no longer become inflamed. Investing in electrolysis means never having to shave again and zero irritation or break outs!

Depilatories vs. Electrology:

Depilatories like Nair are essentially a chemical shave. It will remove the hair by dissolving it with a chemical cream or gel. This can result in a chemical burning of the skin if you are not careful about patch testing and respecting timing. This can be a nice choice for people who do not wish to use a blade to shave. It also can work really well for those with light colored hair and fine hair. For those with especially sensative skin, electrolysis is a great choice as there is no risk of chemical burn or allergy with our modern methods; just perfectly smooth skin every day.

Is Electrolysis safe?

Absolutely. Our office follows the national CDC Standards for Infection Control which ensures electrolysis is performed under the highest standards of cleanliness and safety and supersedes the Wisconsin State standards.

Unlike other practices, we utilize only sealed pre-sterilized single use disposable probes for all treatments; we NEVER re-process and re-use probes. We always utilize fresh, latex-free medical grade disposable gloves for each treatment. We do not charge any extra fees for sterilization or using a new pre-sterilized probe for each client.

What do you mean my hair is "resting" under the skin?

Not all the follicles that produce hair are active and have visible hair in them at any one time. If they did, then we would also shed our hair all at one time and so basically we would be molting and completely bald at times like birds. Not all of your hair instantly appeared either, it gradually filled in over a period of years when you first started getting your hair. There was one hair, then two, then five, then twenty and so on. Each follicle has its own time clock and schedule.

All hairs start as an empty hair follicle and then grow in to a fully mature hair. At some point, it separates from its blood supply, ascends toward the surface of the skin and falls out. Following active growing periods, most hair follicles go into a dormant or resting stage. The period of dormancy may last for an indefinite period of time, however, replacement hairs usually appear within 8 to 16 months.

If you have ever brushed your hair and looked at the hairs in the brush you may have noticed the dry white tuft on the end of them. These are hairs that were ready to naturally shed, they are dead hairs. As opposed to when you pluck, say an eyebrow hair, it might have a moist shinny ball at the end. This is a growing hair.

Not all hairs are visible on the surface of the skin at any one time. Depending on the area of the body, you may wait for up to 24 months to see all of the dormant follicles create a hair and for that hair to come to the surface as your hair pattern fills in. The appearance of coarse replacement hairs from previously dormant hair follicles should not be mistaken as regrowth from previously treated follicles. We won’t even see any potential regrowth for 18-24 months.

This is why electrolysis is no overnight sensation. We clear the area of concern of all the unwanted hair and then we have to keep it clear for the entire growth cycle so we have treated all the active follicles. Most body areas have a total growth cycle of 18-24 months so we need regular treatment for 18-24 months to treat all the active follicles. While you will look better right away, you won’t be totally done until we have had a chance to treat all of your active follicles. We also need to factor in effective treatment which means we must see you regularly enough to capture the hairs in the earliest growth stage possible. This is why sporadic treatment isn’t an effective elimination plan.

So folks that one hair on your chin that you pluck every day...we have some bad news. You might want to sit down.

Ready? From the day you pluck a single chin hair, it takes an average of 18 to 24 months for that hair to be back in action again and have produced a visible hair. Really. You have about 600 follicles per square centimeter on the face that could be producing hairs; so though it seems to be in the same exact place every day, it is just a friendly neighbor hair. Which you probably stimulated into growth by plucking this hormonally controlled area.

If we do the math that's one hair a day times seven days a week = 7 hairs. 7 hairs times 4 weeks in a month = 28 hairs a month. Now let's multiply that times the 18 month total growth cycle and we find you really have about 504 hairs there or more...but rest assured we can tackle them all!

Still think that might be just one hair you tweeze daily? It is possible you are one of the lucky ones but to be sure that is the case how about you stop tweezing for a couple weeks and let's see if it is just one lone hair.

What do you mean I should stop tweezing my chin because I'm making it worse?!?!

On women, the facial hair (except the eyebrows which is more like scalp hair and you can pluck to patchy baldness) is basically under hormonal control or you could say is prone to hormonal stimulation. The centerline of the chest and abdomen as well as breasts are also under hormonal control.

At certain times of one's life our body's natural changes (puberty, pregnancy, menopause) can cause a sudden appearance of hair. Many popular prescription (your electrologist must review your medication use history for this reason) and OTC medications (have you looked at the side effects of many popular weight loss drugs? Notice hirsutism listed as a potential side effect that is unwanted hair growth in these areas!) also can contribute to hair growth in these hormonally influenced areas as they alter the endocrine system of the body.

Now when most people see unwanted hair of course they want to do something about it! Waxing and tweezing are often recommended by salons and spas for these areas. Unfortunately, unlike the rest of your body hair, facial hair when waxed or tweezed (or really any method that violently removes it by the root) repeatedly will come back thicker, stronger and it bring friends.

Obviously we are in the business of helping you eliminate your hair problem, not making it worse. Though we offer waxing here, we do NOT routinely wax on the face for this reason, we will do it if you want us to but we aren't real excited about it. We will happily wax or tweeze your eyebrows for you and professionally sculpt them but no other areas on women without your informed consent that the service may increase your hair growth.

Gentlemen, however, are free to wax or tweeze their beards and necks because it doesn't appear to make the pattern any denser or thicker.

What will my skin look like--will everyone know I've been in?

Immediately following treatment, there may be a slight redness and/or swelling which usually disappears within a few minutes to a few hours. Though not desirable on face work, small white dots or tiny red dots may occur. Ideally, by the next day no one should be able to tell you have had treatment. On body work a pinpoint film or crust may develop that resolves into a tiny red dot or simply disappears. It is important to remember that scabs are a part of the normal healing process in some people. If this does occur, the client is advised to not pick them off.

Following the aftercare guidelines will ensure your skin heals quickly and you don’t cause any unwanted side effects of treatment.

Be sure and tell your Electrologist about any skin reactions so they can work with you to minimize their occurrence. While we ride that line between aggressive treatment and keeping your skin looking perfect it may take us a little bit of adjustment to find what works best for you. When electrolysis is administered by a qualified electrologist using state-of-the-art technology and techniques, the results are exciting!

Can women begin or continue electrology treatments during pregnancy?

Yes. Electrology has never been proven harmful in any way to pregnant women since 1875. We will require your healthcare provider's permission to offer you treatment during your pregnancy. You may find your skin reacts very differently during pregnancy and that your sensitivity and tolerance of treatment may also change. Communicate with your electrologist so we can determine a treatment plan modification that works for you.

Can hairs be removed from moles?

Yes they can. Your electrologist may require a note (on a prescription pad is fine) from your healthcare provider stating it is a typical hairy nevus (mole with a hair) and safe to treat. The potential side effect of treating a benign nevus with electrolysis is a flattening of the mole to the skin surface and a lightening of the color. If you love your beauty mark to be prominent and dark this may not be the method of hair removal for you.

Can you zap (work on) my tattoo?

Yes. Electrolysis treatments have never been a problem for tattoos. In fact, it is one of the few hair removal methods that doesn't affect the design or color. We can keep your investment in body art looking perfect. Consider having electrolysis before you get your tattoo to prepare the canvas so to speak.

How much does it cost?

Treatment is very affordable. Your electrologist will work within your budget to design the most effective treatment plan for you. Please see the Price Menu tab for our current prices for all services.

Our fee schedule is based on appointment length. We charge only for actual treatment time. What that means is if you have a 15 minute appointment with us you will not be in and out in your car leaving in 15 minutes. You will be in the treatment chair for 15 minutes.

We book additional time between each client to ensure you receive your full time. If you are squeezing us between your other appointments allow us about a 25-30 minute window for your 15 minute appointment. We almost always start on time, if we do not, then you will receive a courtesy discount. We value your time and want to keep your day on track.

By on time we mean we are directing you to the treatment chair at 5PM if you have a 5PM, not that you are pulling into the parking lot and then heading to the bathroom at 5PM getting started at 5:10PM.

We don't expect, nor do we accept tips. We never get you in the door with a low price then surprise clients with an "and up charge" once they are here; nor do we have add-on charges for sterilization, or disposable probes, or anything else.

We just include good service and all the amenities a quality treatment deserves. We do not charge different fees for different clients; we don't charge different prices for different genders. We don't calculate fees based on the time of day of your appointments or determine fees based on day of the week.

We charge a clear flat rate based on treatment time that is the same for everyone.

Should I be tipping?

At our practice, we feel that every client deserves outstanding service for every treatment and as such it is included in the fees you pay. While we appreciate the thought, tipping isn't expected and we do not accept tips at our office. Yes, you read that right, we do not take tips. We do however love homemade cookies if you are feeling generous around the holidays.

Other electrology practices feel very differently so when comparing prices, you'll want to build in a 30% - 40% gratuity to their pricing.

What forms of payment do you accept--do you send a bill?

We accept cash, Visa, Discover, or MasterCard at the time of service. We are happy to provide a receipt or statement if you need it for your using your FLEX spending plan, income tax returns for deduction as an un-reimbursed medical expense, or your personal records.

Can I record or take a picture of my treatment to show my friends?

As cool (and potentially innocent) as it may seem to snap a couple quick pictures or record a treatment, it also opens a Pandora's Box we strictly forbid access to. To ensure compliance with our privacy policy, we ask you to respect our privacy and that of our other clients. For this reason, cameras, cell phones or glasses that record or have cameras, and any other recording devices are not permitted to be used.

Stealth actions are not funny or a joke to us either as we take privacy seriously and we'd hate to have to involve the authorities. If you have a special need or reason, ask to speak with the boss lady and she may grant you conditional permission for recording. Without prior written approval however, no recording or pictures at River Rock.

How should I choose an electrologist?

You will want to look for these four things in an Electrologist: Basic credentials, personality, sanitation, and provider availability.

Basic Credentials and Training

This may sound crazy but there are still 17 states that do not regulate permanent hair removal at all. Currently Minnesota does not regulate Electrologists in any way. Really, you could buy a machine on eBay and open your own practice tomorrow with zero training in Minnesota and it would be perfectly legal. That's not to say there are not really great electrologists in an unlicensed state, it just means you have to really do your homework to find one.

Some electrologists in unlicensed states choose to attend training in a licensed state in a licensed school and some even sit for licensure in their training state to bolster their professional competence even though it isn't required in their home state. If you see the "CE" designation it often stands for Certified Electrologist which can mean everything from I bought a machine to I attended a licensed school and was taught by licensed instructors and graduated successfully.

Be sure to ask what training earned them the CE designation. While their are several professional clubs out there that offer their own types of in-house certification; these pay-to-play certifications are not ones the consumer can take very seriously. For a credential to carry actual weight it must be offered, regulated, and enforced by a governmental regulatory body such as a state or inter-state compact.

While licensure doesn't mean you will have an amazingly effective or hygienic electrologist, it does mean that they should at least know the basics of hygiene and technique so it provides a layer of peace of mind to the consumer. Like any other profession, electrology licensure is no guarantee of quality but it does mean that (at least at one time) they met the most basic standards of safety and competence.

For the last 20+ years in Wisconsin, Electrologists must be state licensed to practice legally. Our state is one of the more rigorously regulated states because our practitioners are licensed, our electrology establishments must be licensed, our electrology schools must be licensed, and even our instructors must carry a special electrology instructor license. Electrologists in a licensed state use a "RE" designation or "LE," designation after their name. RE or LE means Registered or Licensed Electrologist.

In Wisconsin means that they have passed the state approved license examination which consists of passing a written and a practical examination. Not all licensed states require testing, and of those that do, the majority require only a written exam. In order to be eligible for the Wisconsin exam candidates must have completed an approved program of education consisting of not less than 450 hours in a Wisconsin licensed electrology school such as our school at River Rock which employs licensed electrology instructors.

When licensure comes to an unlicensed state, like when it came to Wisconsin, people who may have been working as an electrologist can be basically grandfathered in meaning they get a license without having met the newly established education or examination requirements sometimes with zero additional skills testing or formal training required. If you live on a border area you will want to find out if the neighbor state recently got licensure or is still unlicensed when looking for an electrologist. Services, and safe delivery of those services, can vary widely if 'established' providers were not held to the same standards as new providers would be especially if the state just got licensure.

Practice Personality

Every practice is like people, they have personalities of their own. You need to choose a provider that you feel comfortable with. Look for a practice that is open about their pricing and policies as it often indicates honesty and openness in general.

No electrologist should ever refuse to disclose their treatment fees to you. It is your legal right to obtain a rate quote before your service is rendered. In Wisconsin the fees must be posted in the office and available to clients or a statement indicating fees are obtainable by request prior to service must be posted.

A wise consumer askes for full fee information up front, before they commit to a treatment or services so there are no unfortunate surprises. While no electrologist can look at you and predict the exact number of treatments your total hair removal course of treatment will require with absolute precision because of all of the individual factors involved in hair growth and removal; ANY electrologist should be able to determine how much treatment time they would need weekly to reach your hair removal goals and what the cost for that weekly treatment would be once they have examined you. They should be able to explain this to you in the form of a treatment plan in a clear and precise way. There is no logical reason an electrologist or receptionist could not be able to tell you what their various rates for appointment times are over the phone before you have to make the trip into the office. Hopefully they have posted their prices right online so you can examine them before you even call.

It is very important to note that some shops charge each client differently for the exact same service for unknown reasons. In other cases some shops charge differently for each client apparently based on when you started having services with them or which provider you see there may each charge different rates. Some shops charge differently for premium appointment times such as evenings. Some shops charge differently for various treatment areas such as more for genital or body work than face work. Make sure if you are getting a phone quote for their appointment time rates that you ask if they charge different rates or what their highest rates are for the various time slots so you aren’t surprised when you check out.

While there may be valid business or personal preference reasons for charging different rates for different people we prefer flat rate pricing. It is our preference to be totally up front and honest with our clients about our policies and have a simple pricing structure that is the same for every client, for every body area we treat, and for every method we use. We do not have any add on fees or charges. You have the right to ask any provider what the fee is and if there will be any add on fees before you engage in treatment and you should.

How a shop chooses to price things can tell you a lot about that office's personality and perspective. We never wanted to be the cheapest provider of electrolysis, just one of the best.

Many electrologists offer a free consultation as we do. Meet with them and look for a clean, professional, office space in a safe and well-lit location with easy access and parking. Be sure to look at the rooms where treatments are performed and check for modern looking equipment.

Once you have established it is a hygienic establishment with prices you can understand then find someone you trust and would enjoy spending some quality hair-removal time with. Depending on body area you will likely be spending significant time with this person, you’ll both want it to be a positive and comfortable relationship.

They should be open to answering questions and friendly. They should also be realistic about expectations, beware of anyone who says you will be done in a few treatments, that just isn’t possible. You’ll look better right away but you certainly won’t be "done" until you have worked through an entire growth cycle.

A really good electrologist should take a comprehensive written health history not give you a card to fill out or skip this step entirely. You want to be sure that electrolysis is right for you and will meet your hair removal goals. That is impossible to do without really digging into a perspective clients personal information and medical history. They should give you a written treatment plan so you know exactly what you have to do to get the fastest and most effective results possible.


The next thing to look for is sanitation. Look very carefully. Ask if they reuse probes or if they only use single-use, pre-sterilized disposable probes for treatment. If you see a tiny green, yellow, or blue collar on their probe then you know they care enough to not cut corners as that little plastic collar cannot be re-sterilized at all. You should see them take a fresh new probe out of the package in front of you every treatment and discard it at the end even if they only did a quick 5 hair treatment. Watch to see if they put the used probe in a bright yellow or red sharps container it should be on or near their equipment for easy access.

During your sample treatment (and every treatment thereafter) watch to see if the technician uses a fresh pair of gloves for you discarding them after use or if they have to leave the room for some reason. They should glove before they touch your skin for any reason. Your operator should not be eating or drinking in the treatment room. There should be no animals or pets on the premises in Wisconsin. They should also have a tidy, clean, professional personal appearance without hair or jewelry that may dangle and touch the client. Their equipment should be clean, made of non-porous materials such as solid surface plastics or metals. The equipment should look well maintained without for example, electrical tape all over it and not look like it was designed or built in the middle ages.

Take a close look at the shop, you are looking for a place that appears to be clean, modern, and a place you want to spend time. Do they take pride in the appearance of their office and keep it up to date? Ask to go to the restroom, that is often a good indicator of backroom hygiene practices--sometimes only the waiting area (if they have one) is kept clean. Ask for a tour of the office if there is more than one room.


Then you’ll want to find out if they have time available for you to get the regular treatments you really need. At River Rock we do not accept new clients until we are certain we have that regular treatment time available for you every single week. We give priority booking to our existing clients because they have already committed to us.

We believe it would be less than honest of us to take a new client knowing we may not have the optimal amount of treatment time or the optimal availability of treatments for that person. We know that the single most important factor in getting you results is careful regular treatment. That is where larger practice can have an advantage for clients over solo prover shops or shops where you are assigned to only one operator. Multiple providers with shared clients are more likely to be able to get you the fastest results if you can attend regular treatments.

Unfortunately this means at times we can’t accept new clients. But we are more than happy to refer you to some of our local graduates for treatment if we cannot offer you treatment right away.

We want you to have a great electrolysis experience be that here at River Rock or elsewhere. While electrolysis is no overnight sensation, it is the only FDA approved method of permanent hair removal and can help you uncover your confidence and look great every single day—and with the right provider can be something you actually look forward to and enjoy.

Friends and family can often refer you to someone in your area or look online to find providers and then call or visit several and make your choice after that.

What do you mean you “aren’t enrolling new clients”?!

The key to getting results with electrolysis is to treat hair as frequently as necessary to capture it in that optimal stage of growth. Regular treatments over the course of the natural hair pattern’s total growth cycle (generally 18-24 months on most body areas) allows us to treat all of the active follicles in the area of concern. If, for whatever reason, clients cannot attend sessions as frequently or for the treatment time recommended, then they will not be done with electrolysis in the shortest time frame possible.

At your consultation your electrologist will determine what the most effective treatment plan for you is which includes how long of an appointment you need and how frequently you need to come for your appointments. When you start with electrolysis treatments in 95% of cases clients will need a weekly appointment.

A standing weekly appointment ensures the most effective treatments and that means the fastest and most economical path to permanence for clients. If clients cannot attend sessions at the recommended frequency due to commitments on their end (time, money, distance from our center and so forth) that is a factor we can work with if clients understand they will not be getting the optimal time frame for results. We get that there is the perfect treatment plan and then there is the reality of life for clients.

However, we do not want to be the factor that creates a less than optimal treatment situation.

At River Rock we do not accept new clients until we are certain we have that regular treatment time available for you every single week. We give priority booking to our existing clients because they have already committed to and invest in us.

We believe it would be less than honest of us to take a new client knowing we may not have the optimal amount of treatment time or the optimal availability of treatments for that person. We know that the single most important factor in getting you results is careful regular treatment. That is where larger practice can have an advantage for clients over solo prover shops or shops where you are assigned to only one operator. Multiple providers with shared clients are more likely to be able to get you the fastest results if you can attend regular treatments.

Unfortunately this means at times we can’t accept new clients. But we are more than happy to refer you to some of our local graduates for treatment if we cannot offer you treatment right away. Our enrollment cycle is about every two years as we finish clients; our next anticipated openings for treatment will occur mid July 2016. If you would like to be put on the waiting list for these anticipated openings please call the office and we will be happy to speak with you about this.

We want you to have a great electrolysis experience be that here at River Rock or elsewhere. While electrolysis is no overnight sensation, it is the only FDA approved method of permanent hair removal and can help you uncover your confidence and look great every single day—and with the right provider can be something you actually look forward to and enjoy.