What to expect with laser hair removal

Patient receiving IV infusion therapy.

Unwanted hair is one of life’s biggest inconveniences. Nicks, razor bumps, in-grown hairs, and painful waxing are all side effects of us trying to achieve that smooth bikini-ready skin– not to mention, those dreadful times we’ve all forgotten to shave. Just imagine ending the inconvenience and simplifying your beauty routine. The great news is, with laser treatments, all of that can be history!

Before you start your laser hair removal journey, there are few things you need to know to make this process as smooth and easy as possible.

How does laser hair removal work?

The laser hair removal device uses multiple wavelengths of laser energy to target unwanted hair at the root. The heat from the laser also damages the hair follicle to prevent future hair growth, eliminating the need for shaving, waxing, and other hair removal techniques!

Hair grows in cycles and your follicles aren’t all on the same schedule. We come in and target your hair follicles during the earliest part of their growth cycles over the course of months, making it important to properly follow appointments to effectively treat all your follicles. It is generally recommended to have a series of six treatments a month apart to get the best results possible. We use the Aerolase Neo Elite Laser system in our treatments.

The number of treatments needed depends on the area treated, coarseness of the hair, and your skin color.

Does laser hair removal hurt?

Hair removal lasers have built-in cooling systems to keep you comfortable during your treatment. We can also provide an ice pack to cool and slightly numb your skin before your treatment begins. A topical anesthetic is optional and can be useful for sensitive areas, like above the lip.

While you wear protective eyeglasses, we pass the laser over your treatment areas. You might notice a warming sensation, like a rubber band snap. This is felt for a split second, and if there’s any discomfort, let your treatment provider know you need a break!

Most women and men tolerate the treatment well, but if you need a break, just let us know.

 

Do’s and don’ts of laser hair removal

There are a few guidelines you need to follow to avoid any potential side effects and get the most out of your treatments.

DON’T: Exercise within 24 hours of treatment

After your laser hair removal session, you can get right back to most of your regular activities. You should avoid strenuous activity that could raise your temperature for at least 24 hours after your session.

Your follicles will be sensitive and prone to skin irritation, which could lead to rashes, ingrown hairs, and even worse, infection.

DON’T: Go tanning two weeks before or after treatment

It’s important to stay out of the sun, and always use sunscreen when you’re outdoors, and ideally, indoors as well to avoid any changes in skin color. This rule also applies to spray tans as well!

Although the laser hair removal treatment is suitable for all skin tones, if you have a tan, the extra melanin in your skin may interfere with the effectiveness of the treatment and could potentially cause skin discoloration.

DO: Shave before your treatment

Although you won’t be able to see the hair with the naked eye, the laser will still be able to reach the hair. Shaving is essential to avoiding any possible burns and discomfort as the laser targets the pigmented hair only.

You will need to refrain from shaving, waxing, and any other hair removal treatment that completely pulls the hair out from the root.

DO: Remove makeup and creams

Topical products can sometimes interfere with your results. Wash and clean the area with mild soaps and cleansers only and do not arrive with any creams, lotions or perfumes on the area that’s being treated.

Remove any topical products applied to the skin prior to your treatment to avoid any unwanted side effects.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does laser hair removal last?

Hair regrowth varies from person-to-person. Some people go years without regrowth and achieving permanent hair loss is possible. When hair does regrow, it’s significantly finer and less dense. The hair color is often lighter, too.

Most procedures last several months to two years before regrowth, but this can be amended by scheduling the occasional maintenance session to keep the area hair-free.

Touch-up sessions are scheduled as little as 1 to 4 times per year.

How many sessions are required for hair removal?

Ideally, you’ll come into our office when your hair follicles are in the growth phase because it’s the most effective time for hair removal. Multiple factors will determine the effectiveness of removal:

  • Skin type
  • Treated area(s)
  • Hair density

Typically, it will take 3 to 8 visits before your skin is smooth and hair-free. Scheduling sessions two weeks apart is most common and allows you to remove hair as quickly as possible.

How old do you have to be to get laser hair removal?

Hair removal minimum age requirements can vary from one provider to the next. Experts recommend that the person should be through puberty for the best results, as hormonal changes can cause rapid hair growth in teens and may produce unwanted results.

By the time a person is 17 to 19 and their hormones have settled, treatments are more effective. If the procedure is allowed for someone under the age of 18, a parent or guardian may need to be present during the procedure.

In Summary

These are the most important things that you’ll want to do in preparation for laser hair removal:

  • Wash and clean the area. Do not use creams, lotions, or perfumes on the area that’s being treated.
  • Remove any topical products prior to your treatment to avoid potential irritation.
  • Shave the treatment area prior to arrival. Irritation can occur in the legs if you shave within the 24-hour period prior to your appointment.
  • Avoid tanning beds or sun exposure to the area for two weeks before treatment.
  • Refrain from exercise for at least 24 hours post-treatment.

If you follow these steps to prepare for your hair removal, you’ll achieve better results and will lower the risk of side effects.

Here are the expectations you should have after your treatment:

  • Permanent hair removal can be achieved; however, occasional maintenance treatments may be necessary.
  • 3 – 8 sessions are typically needed for optimal results.
  • Laser hair removal is best reserved for patients after puberty.

Start the laser hair removal process today, and you’ll complete your initial series of treatments before you know it. Experience how waking up every day to silky smooth skin feels!

You May Also Like…
5 habits for healthy hair
5 habits for healthy hair

Haircare products are all the craze when it comes to keeping your hair healthy, however, making these simple healthy...