Just imagine you haven’t waxed in weeks, and yet your legs are as smooth as they were a couple of months ago. There is not a single razor cut or ingrown hair growth in sight. When you touch your face there is no prickly feeling on your upper lip.
Sounds pretty great, right?
This fantasy can become a reality with the laser hair removal technique. This could be your life where painful waxing, hurtful tweezing, and shaving could be things of past leaving you with silky soft skin.
Although laser hair removal is a more permanent approach to get rid of unwanted body hair, it can be intimidating sometimes as it involves the usage of lasers and may have some side effects. So let’s discuss some important things you need to know about laser hair removal treatment.
#1 Procedure sounds painful, but it’s not that bad
The question that pops everybody’s mind is how it feels to undergo laser treatment. It is not exactly pain-free but quite tolerable. A laser generates energy in the form of heat. The pigment of hair absorbs this energy, damaging the follicle and preventing future growth. It feels pretty hot and like a sharp zap for milliseconds. Most of the patients say they feel tiny elastic bands hitting the skin. However, it only feels in such a way where the hair is dense and thick like underarms, bikini area, and lower legs. Moreover, the upper lip area is also hypersensitive and you may feel here more if you have sensitive teeth.
Thankfully, lasers now come with a cooling mechanism that blows a constant blast of air wherever the laser points on the body. You may also ask your aesthetician to apply numbing gel or cream to make it more comfortable for you.
#2 Avoid exposure to the sun, and yes fake tan as well
The laser is premised on identifying the hair follicle pigment and target that particularly to eliminate unwanted hair. So if you are sunburned or just tanned, the laser won’t show effective results and potential skin discoloration. The laser works best when you stay as close as possible to your baseline color.
It also goes the same for other kinds of tanning as well such as tanning booths, beds, a spray, or creams. You have to avoid sun exposure and indoor tanning at least two weeks before any laser hair removal treatment session.
#3 Shave, don’t wax before you go for a sitting
The root of the hair follicle must be present for the laser to recognize and destroy it. So, you need to shave twenty-four hours before the appointment. Avoid the use of tweezers, epilators, waxing, and other depilatory creams that might disturb the hair follicle. A clean shave with the razor is a must, as long hair resting above your skin may increase the chances of causing burns.
#4 Skip all kind of make-up, even the moisturizer on session day
On the day of your treatment, make sure to go au naturel on your body. Ensure your skin is completely product free and clean. You must not apply any make-up, not even foundation, moisturizer or deodorant. This also has to be followed 24 hours after your treatment, except for the recommended products by dermatologists.
You must be wondering what happens if you do not comply. You may develop pigment changes or laser could react with the product causing damage to your skin which may be irreversible. So, do listen to your cosmetic dermatologists as they have the best interest in mind for you.
#5 You should get red, swollen
If you come out of treatment a little swollen with redness and irritation, congrats, the procedure was a success and you are in good shape. It’s just that your hair follicles get swollen, a condition known as perifollicular edema which is a sign that everything went well.
Although, most of the dermatologists tell their clients to wait for 48 hours for redness, itching, and stinging to go away, but these only for a couple of hours. If it gets any longer than that then topical cream or gel is recommended to alleviate any kind of discomfort.
#6 No workout, gym after the treatment
The heat from the laser stays for 24 hours in your skin after the laser hair removal treatment. Your body may require at least two days to recover, so no workout, gym, saunas, or hot showers for you. The friction of your clothes rubbing against your skin during work out could further irritate the treated areas. Moreover, you may run the risk of creating a warm environment for microorganisms to multiply leaving you with spots on your skin.
#7 Tweaks your skincare regimen a bit
Laser hair removal accompanies with itself some changes in your skincare routine. You must avoid fragranced products, including deodorants if you have your underarms treated. You need to avoid some acne medications in treated facial areas. Nurture your skin with calming creams and soothing moisturizers post sessions.
Avoid sun exposure as possible as you can and use sunscreens with at least SPF 30 or high to prevent any kind of sun damage. Scrubs, retinol creams, and glycolic acid should be avoided 48 hours prior and after treatment. It is also recommended to avoid chemical peels at least 2 weeks before and after the laser hair removal treatment session.
#8 your hair might grow back
More than one laser treatment is required to see results. There are three stages in which your hair grows:
- Anagen (Growth Phase)
- Catagen (Transitional Phase)
- Telogen (Resting Phase)
Laser treatment is most effective on hair follicles that are going through the Anagen phase. This is the reason you may require multiple treatments, at regular intervals of 4 to 6 weeks apart for permanent hair reduction.
You must stick to your schedule if you want great results. Everybody has a different body and needs so treatment plans will be customized according to the skin tone, color, and coarseness of your hair.
#9 Always, remember always go to a board-certified dermatologist
People interest in laser hair removal treatment should realize that it’s not a simple procedure and prone to potential risks though it is performed in many salons. If performed by inexperienced providers, there is a chance you may experience burns, spots, and changes in pigmentation.
Your best and the safe bet is to approach a board-certified dermatologist for your laser hair removal treatment. A professional and reputable dermatologist may also help you with your hair-reduction results as well. Laser settings are customized based on your skin and hair type which can be done better by a qualified dermatologist.
If you want to know more about Laser Hair Removal treatment, let us help you explore your options. Schedule an appointment for a visit at our Lansing or Mount Pleasant dermatology office, whichever is convenient for you.
The information contained on safehealthcenter.com is for informational and educational purposes only and should not be relied upon for any medical or diagnostic purpose, or for the treatment of any condition or symptom. This information is subject to change without notice and should not be considered current, complete, or exhaustive. You should refrain from relying on such information to recommend a course of treatment for you or any other individual without consulting our experts.