Laser hair removal sounds like a dream come true. No more shaving, no more stubble – just beautiful soft, smooth skin. If you’re considering getting laser hair removal, you’re not alone. There are millions of people all over the world getting laser hair removal – and it’s not just for people who have hirsutism (which is a condition where you have excessive hair growth all over the body).
How does it work?
Ironically, the day before your procedure you’ll have to shave the area – this allows the laser to reach the follicles. You’ll be given a cooling spray or gel on the area of skin being targeted and then a qualified professional will press a handheld device against your skin – this is the laser.
You’ll likely feel a stinging sensation – sort of like someone is snapping an elastic band against your skin. Each session lasts anywhere between 15 minutes and an hour, depending on the size of the area being treated. You may also need follow up sessions – again depending on the size of the area you want targeted.
After the treatment
After the procedure the area of skin will likely be red with a raised rash for a few hours or a few days. Experts recommend applying cold packs to the area to help with the swelling and redness. You should avoid sunlight on the area treated as your skin will be super sensitive to the UV rays. Even after the skin has healed, you should continue to use a high SPF (minimum of 30) for at least a month.
The cost of laser hair removal depends on a couple of things, namely the size of the area being treated, and the number of sessions needed. But as a base line, one upper lip treatment could set you back around £85.
What else to know
As with any procedure, laser hair removal should be considered carefully before undergoing it. There are some side effects, and laser hair removal does have its limitations.
Generally, hair removal with a laser is considered very safe, but the pain and discomfort have affected some people far more than others, so be aware of your own pain threshold before deciding. There is also the recovery time, which can leave your skin looking red for quite some time after the treatment.
Laser hair removal, unfortunately, isn’t permanent. You’ll need regular sessions to keep the hair from regrowing because hair is tricky like that. How often sessions are needed will vary from person to person so there is no ball-park figure. The best way to figure this out is to talk to a qualified professional, as they will be able to offer advice tailored to you.
It also doesn’t work as well on darker skin tones. The best results from laser hair removal are on people with pale skin and dark hair. This is because the laser targets the pigment in the hair. If you have darker skin, you could risk the laser targeting the pigment in the skin instead and this can damage the skin – even burning it. This is why it’s so important to discuss with a professional before committing to anything.