Laser hair removal is an effective procedure to get rid of unwanted body hair. It is non-invasive and can be used on any body part, including the face, underarms, bikini area, and back. The procedure results last longer than other methods, such as waxing, shaving, or using creams.
It is a safe hair removal technique, but some people experience side effects such as skin discoloration, scars, or burns. Find out how laser hair removal works.
Laser hair removal uses photothermolysis to remove unwanted hair. The heat from a laser targets cells with a lot of color or pigment. Dark hair contains plenty of pigment, which means it absorbs most of the heat. The heat is transferred to the hair follicles, destroying them and preventing re-growth.
The hair follicle must be in the growth stage for the procedure to be effective. The follicles are in different growth stages, requiring multiple laser treatments to stop hair growth completely.
Laser hair removal is usually done for cosmetic reasons and helps improve appearance and self-image. Anyone with excess body hair can get the procedure. Those who prefer not to shave regularly can benefit from the procedure.
Individuals with hirsutism or hypertrichosis from hormone imbalance, certain medications, and inherited disorders can get the treatment. Laser removal is most effective in people with dark, thick hair and light skin. The color contrast between the hair and skin makes heat absorption more effective.
Some people should not get laser hair removal. Avoid the procedure if:
You are on certain medications, such as treatment for acne.
You are pregnant.
You have raised scars (keloids).
You are prone to cold sores or genital herpes.
You have had or currently have skin cancer.
Stay away from the sun as much as possible in the days or weeks before the procedure. It would help if you also avoid tanning beds. Dark or tanned skin can make the process less effective and lead to side effects.
The doctor may recommend a bleaching cream if you have recently tanned skin. Shave the area to be treated a few days before the procedure. For the procedure to be effective and avoid skin burns, the hair should be shorter than a grain of rice. After starting treatment, avoid tweezing, plucking, or waxing the hair in the treated area.
During the hair removal, the specialist will begin by cleaning the area. Goggles or protective glasses help protect the client’s and technician’s eyes during the procedure. The laser is directed over the target area in what may feel like stings. Most people report experiencing the sensation of a rubber band snapping on the skin. The process can take a few minutes to one hour, depending on the size of the treatment area.
The laser treatment is safe and effective for most people. After the hair removal, your skin may appear swollen, red, and a bit painful. Placing a cold compress over the area can provide relief. Avoid exposing the area to sunlight or artificial light. You should be able to resume your normal duties immediately after the procedure.
For more about how laser hair removal works, visit Skin Deep Laser MD at our office in Fort Worth, Texas. Call 817-263-SKIN to book an appointment today.