Laser Hair Removal is a very popular method of permanent hair reduction with women and increasingly with men. Shaving and waxing takes up so much of our time and end up costing a lot more than Laser Hair Removal in long run - read our blog comparing costs.
Here is our guide to 10 Things You Need To Know About Laser Hair Removal before you embark on your treatment journey:
1. Ask lots of questions, including ones about the machine and lasers used
Not every clinic uses the same machine and laser to treat your skin. There are different machines available with varying capabilities. One of the best machines on the market is the Cynosure Elite+ There are also a number of different lasers available, including Alexandrite and Nd:YAG, which have different wavelengths suitable for different types of skin and hair. Make sure you ask your clinic all about your options.
Some clinics, med-spas and beauty salons don’t even use lasers for hair removal treatments, they use intense pulse light (IPL) which is far less effective at getting rid of unwanted hair. Read our blog on the difference between IPL and Laser for more information.
2. Go to an experienced and qualified practitioner
Here at Beyond Skin we have a team of trained laser therapists and medical staff on hand to carry out and assist with our treatments and procedures. While at beauty salons and other non-medical places there may not be the wider expertise required if something were to go wrong, potentially leaving you vulnerable. We have extremely high standards of patient care, meaning we work with you to deliver the right results safely. Beyond Skin is regulated by the RQIA and has a 100% safety record published on their website.
3. If you have darker skin, ask lots of questions
Make sure your practitioner is experienced in offering laser hair removal to darker skin types. Dark skin requires considerably more knowledge and care. It’s important to make sure you’re comfortable with your practitioner. A good practitioner will tell you what is suitable and what isn’t. At Beyond Skin we use an Nd:YAG Laser to treat darker skinned clients - the safest and most effective treatment available.
4. Make sure you get a patch test
It comes as standard for a reason in most clinics, including Beyond Skin. Beware of anywhere willing to forego a patch test. It is an important way to determine your suitability for treatment.
5. Avoid tanning before a treatment and soon after
It is not safe to attempt laser hair removal on tanned skin. Additionally, you should avoid sun exposure as much as possible for 48 hours after a treatment – making sure you wear sunblock if going outside. It’s important to wear sunscreen everyday and even more important to wear it after laser hair removal.
6. Laser Hair Removal is permanent hair reduction
Laser hair removal is an effective way to permanently reduce hair growth. It works by disrupting the function of the hair follicle. The hair follicle still exists post-treatment but is not able to grow hair if targeted during its growth phase. A top up laser hair removal treatment every few years is typically recommended to maintain the desired result.
7. Hair grows in stages
Laser Hair Removal works by targeting hair follicles in their active growing phase. Hairs that are in the other stages will not be affected by the laser. This is partly why a course of treatments is necessary and why top-up treatments are sometimes advisable every few years.
8. You can shave before a treatment
It is not advisable to pluck hairs before a treatment and between treatments, you can shave. Our treatments use a grid system, which is a highly-targeted way of treating the hairs. Lasers that target individual hairs are not as effective when covering areas of skin.
9. It doesn’t hurt that much
Lots of our staff have laser hair removal as it really is a great way to manage unwanted hair. We all liken it to a ping of a rubber band against the skin or a sharp flick of a finger. While it’s noticeable, it’s not too uncomfortable.
10. Laser Hair Removal doesn’t work on light, grey or red hairs
Unfortunately laser hair removal only works on dark hair because the laser targets pigment in the hair.