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Laser hair removal is one of the most desirable cosmetic procedures today. Many people look forward to the benefits of smooth, hairless skin provided by the service. Through the use of a high powered laser (HPL), growth of unwanted hair on the armpits, legs, face, or other areas is slowed or eliminated completely. The process does not happen overnight but the results are worth the wait.

The procedure involves a range of precautions to minimize burns or skin discoloration. It cannot be performed right away since hair must be at a certain length for the laser to take effect. You can read here for more about the risks and planning involved.

After laser hair removal, effects may be noticeable, but meticulous care is needed in order to decrease annoying hair regrowth. Here are some tips you can follow to prevent the reappearance of unwanted hair and stubble.

Avoid plucking and shaving
Plucking and shaving hair after a laser removal procedure can cause faster regrowth of unwanted hair. To prevent this from happening, it is important to avoid touching the treated area in between procedures. This may be inconvenient for some clients who want to show more skin, but it is an important part of the process that you should not ignore.

Soothe irritated skin
A little redness or chafing is expected after a procedure. You can remedy this problem through cold skin cream or lotion. A cool compress can also help close the pores and calm the irritation for a time. Persistence of the problem should prompt an immediate return to the clinic for consultation.

Stay out of the sun
Skin may be sensitive after your hair removal procedure. This makes it especially prone to hyperpigmentation if exposed to direct sunlight. The resulting discoloration and sunspots are very unsightly. When going out, make sure to wear pants or long trousers. You can also apply sunscreen if you plan on wearing shorts or miniskirts. Select sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 50 for best coverage.

Moisturize your skin
Dry skin is more prone to irritation. Prep your skin after every procedure by applying a moisturizing lotion, unless contraindicated. Regular applications can help slow hair growth and keep your skin smooth and supple.
When it comes to beauty, maintenance is important. Make it a habit to observe these practices in order to maintain the effects of laser hair removal.

Post treatment with laser for hair removal, follow the aftercare advice below. Be sure to contact us in the case of any questions or concerns.

 

What to Expect

  • Because treated follicles have been heated, the area may become red and possibly swell for 1-3 days.  Swelling results from heat, not infection, and is therefore normal and expected.
  • Some hairs will appear ‘shrivelled’ and others may appear unaffected. This does not mean the treatment has not been successful as the Laser generally treats the hair below the skin surface. Damage to hair occurs deeper than some other lasers, which enhances treatment safety and efficacy.
  • You may notice ‘dead’ hair surfacing for 2-3 weeks after treatment.  Although this may appear to be new growth, it is generally not.  This process is called purging or shedding and will take time to complete. You should wipe away these hairs with a damp cloth or loofah once the sensitivity of treated area resolves.  Start this exfoliating process 1 week after treatment, but no earlier.
  • Crusts can occasionally form in some spots. This does not mean infection and does not mean the area will scar. Do NOT pick at the crusting. 

 

Topical Care of the treated Area

  • Apply a cool compress to relieve swelling or warm sensations for 1-2 hours after treatment if needed.
  • Apply Aloe Vera Gel products as recommended by your therapist morning and night for 3-4 days after treatment if required. Aloe Vera straight from the fridge can be helpful.
  • If you experience intense itching for a few days after treatment, applications of ice, Aloe Vera or what your therapist advises will help.
  • Should a burn occur, a scab may form at the area and drop off in 7-10 days. Use an anti-bacterial ointment (eg. Savlon) on the treated area and to cover it with a dressing for a few days. This will protect the skin from being abraded and the site infected (a potential source of scar formation).

 

Precautions

  • Use only mineral makeup on areas that have been treated with laser for the first 48 hours (or until any burns have healed).
  • Avoid deodorants and active products for 3-4 days post treatments (Vitamin A, Chemical Exfoliants). Resume use of usual topical agents and skincare when irritation resolves.
  • Pat dry after showering, but do not pick or rub the treated areas.
  • Do not scratch, pick or rub the area.  Scratching or picking will have the same result as picking any scab or pimple, and the area could scar.
  • Do not go in a spa/pool/sauna or anywhere that involves chlorine/chemicals or excessive heat for 24 to 48 hours after treatment.
  • Avoid the gym or excessive exercise for 24 to 48 hours after treatment.  Avoid friction and anything that raises body temperature for 24-48 hours
  • Wear clothing or sun block (SPF 25+) to protect the treated area from direct sun exposure.  Be sure to reapply sun block throughout the day. Ask your therapist about suitable sunblock products available from Metro Clinic  It is imperative to the success of future treatments and skin health to protect the skin from sun exposure while undergoing Laser hair removal treatments.  No sun exposure on the treated area for at least 4-6 weeks before or 2 weeks after a treatment.
  • It is ok to shave between treatments, but do not wax or tweeze as this will remove the target of the treatment (the hair bulb).

 

Contact us immediately in case of...

Blistering, scabbing, crusting, hyperpigmentation (darkened skin), hypopigmentation (lightened skin), purpura (bruising), swelling of the lympth nodes, herpes simplex activation and severe pain or swelling.