Gone are the days where you have to keep up with regular waxing appointments or shave your legs at the last minute before you head off for a night out, there is now a much longer-term, straightforward way to keep your skin silky, smooth – laser hair removal! Thanks to the constant advancement of technology, along with the evergrowing number of specialist beauty clinics, it is now easier than ever to keep your unwanted hair at bay. However, if you’re in the early stages of considering laser hair removal, we can be almost sure that you have a number of questions in mind. Does it hurt? Will my hair ever grow back? Is it expensive? To ensure that you are fully equipped with all of the information you need before going ahead with your booking, we have put together a guide on what to expect with laser hair removal.
What To Expect With Laser Hair Removal: A Guide To The Popular Treatment
As specialists in laser hair removal in Northampton, we recognise that the thought of sessions may be a little daunting, but this needn’t be the case. The advanced lasers now used during treatments couldn’t be safer and are designed with cooling properties, allowing your sessions to be as comfortable as possible.
Nevertheless, much like any other treatment, it is vital to spend time researching before you commit. Laser hair removal does take time but is most definitely the most effective way to reduce hair growth on a long-term basis. So, let’s take a closer look at what to expect during the following stages of your laser hair removal journey:
Before going ahead with your laser hair removal sessions, it is vital to familiarise yourself with what the treatment involves, the benefits and how you should prepare for your treatment. There are many misconceptions when it comes to laser hair removal, so spending time reading through the following questions and answers will help you to confirm whether this route is definitely the best option for you.
What Is Laser Hair Removal?
Laser hair removal utilises advanced laser technology to target the individual hairs and damage their follicles, meaning that the growth process is impeded at the early stages. During sessions, the lasers will produce high-intensity light energy, which is absorbed by the melanin in your hair, causing them to overheat and preventing future growth.
As the lasers target the melanin in your hair, this inevitably means that the treatment is most effective on those with dark hair but paler skin. This is because the lasers can easily detect the follicles as they contrast against the skin, allowing them to absorb all of the light energy. If you do not fit these characteristics, however, this should not put you off going ahead with your treatment. One of the biggest myths regarding laser hair removal is that it will not work if you have fine, light hair or darker skin, but this most definitely isn’t the case. Although it may take slightly longer to achieve maximum results, modern laser devices mean that the treatment can successfully reduce hair growth on everyone.
What Are The Benefits?
There are a wealth of laser hair removal benefits with the main, of course, being the treatments ability to prevent hair growth for up to two years before a top-up is due. It is also the only hair removal method that does not come alongside the risk of ingrown hairs. Ingrown hairs can be incredibly painful, particularly if they become infected, yet are super common amongst those who opt for shaving, for example. With laser hair removal, on the other hand, the hair follicle is damaged from its source, meaning that the hair doesn’t grow enough to become ingrown. It can also help to target any existing ingrown hairs that you may have from the past, keeping your skin imperfection free! For more information on the causes and how to treat ingrown hairs, take a look at Healthline.
Another benefit of laser hair removal that many do not consider is that it can actually prove more cost-effective than its alternatives. Although the initial cost is an investment, it will mean that you will no longer have to pick up a fresh set of razors every few weeks or book your monthly waxing appointment. Instead, once you have finished your sessions, all you will need is an annual top-up appointment, saving you both time and money in the long run.
How Do You Prepare For Sessions?
Once you are happy that laser hair removal is right for you, it’s time to finally get yourself booked in. Here at New You, your journey will always start with an initial consultation, which will allow you to meet with our laser consultants and discuss your requirements. This will help you to gauge the number of sessions that you will need, as well as determine whether there are any contraindications that may prevent you from going ahead. You will also be asked to do a patch test, which is a vital step in ensuring that your skin reacts well to the lasers, and there will be no issues during sessions. If your patch test is successful, then you can move onto the exciting step and get started on your sessions.
Before each laser hair removal session, you will always be recommended to limit your sun exposure, including sunbeds. Unfortunately, if your skin is sunburnt, then you will need to reschedule your session as the lasers will be too harsh on your already damaged skin. You must also avoid any hair removal methods which remove the hair from the root, such as waxing and epilating as this will mean that there will be no follicles to target. Instead, you will be asked to shave the treatment area 24 hours before your session. On the day of your session, ensure that the skin is clean but do not use any products, whether this may be lotions or oils.
When you arrive at your laser hair removal sessions, you can expect to be asked a few simple questions about your recent medical history. This is just to see whether anything has changed from your initial consultation to now. For example, laser hair removal is not suitable during pregnancy, so if you have recently found out that you are pregnant, you will need to reschedule your appointments for after the birth. If all is well and nothing has changed, then you can continue with your session.
For your treatment, an advanced handheld laser will be used, which is pressed gently against the skin. More modern equipment is designed with a cooling tip, which helps to make sessions more comfortable; however, you can consider also using a cooling gel if your laser consultant has given you the go-ahead. It is important to keep in mind that laser hair removal is not a completely painless procedure, which means that it will feel like a slight warm pinprick against the skin. It is likely that you will feel discomfort for the first session or so, but you will get used to the sensation, just like you would have done so with waxing appointments, for example.
Due to the intensity of the lasers, you will also be asked to wear protective eyewear throughout sessions. These will look similar to the glasses that you would wear during your dentist appointments, meaning that while you will still be able to see clearly, the laser light will not be as bright. More information on why it is vital to protect your eyes during any laser treatment can be found on the Laser Safety Goggles website.
How long your sessions will last for is based on your chosen treatment area. Inevitably, the larger the treatment area, the longer your sessions will need to be. For instance, laser hair removal on the upper lip can take as little as 20 minutes, whereas the legs can take up to an hour.
At the end of each session, your laser consultant will provide you with a host of recommendations to not only maximise your results but also to protect your skin against damage. For the first few hours, it is likely that the skin on your treatment area will be slightly red and swollen with a similar feeling to sunburn. However, you are free to place an ice pack over the area to reduce discomfort. Aloe vera gel is also fantastic for easing any side effects, so be sure to pop some in the fridge before you head off for your sessions.
Along with reducing redness and swelling, it is imperative to ensure that you avoid excessive heat after your sessions. This includes not only direct sun exposure and sunbeds for at least two weeks but also saunas and hot tubs for the first 24 hours. Failing to do this does increase the risk of long-term side effects such as pigmentation, changes in skin texture and scarring. For the weeks between each session, it will be vital to apply SPF 30 or above every day to the treatment area, even when the weather is a little dreary. You will also be advised to use only gentle cleansers and lotions on your skin, especially if you are having laser hair removal on the face.
The treatment area that you have chosen will determine how many weeks you must wait between each session. If you are treating hair on the face, then you can schedule appointments every four weeks, but for the legs, this may have to be extended to up to every ten weeks. This is something that will always be discussed during your consultation, and you will be aware of how often you can book sessions before you begin your course.
Over the first few weeks after your sessions, you will notice that your hair on the treatment area will slowly start shedding – this is all part of the process. Once you reach the end of your course of sessions, this should be minimal as all follicles would have now been targeted. How long your results last for can differ based on several factors, such as your growth cycle and whether you have any changes in hormones. Typically, clients book in for a top-up appointment every 18 months as this allows any few follicles to be targeted during the early stages of their growth.
Permanent Hair Reduction Made Easy!
Maintaining silky smooth skin has never been easier, and with laser hair removal, you can enjoy a significant reduction in hair growth for years to come. As with any course of treatments, it is vital to spend time researching what to expect before, during and after sessions before booking in. This will help you to decide whether your chosen treatment will achieve the results that you are hoping for.
If you are interested in beginning your laser hair removal sessions, then please do not hesitate to get in touch with New You. The winter months are the perfect time to get started and will allow you to enjoy maximum results by the time that the British sunshine comes back out of hibernation.