Caring for your skin after laser hair removal
Everyone wants laser hair removal because it effectively reduces unwanted hair. Laser hair removal deserves every drop of popularity over the years because it is a quick and painless solution to get rid of face and body hair. You can say goodbye to shaving, waxing, tweezing, and plucking since it offers the best of both worlds! However, knowing how to take care of your skin after the treatment is very important. So, here we explain:
How does laser hair removal work?
The procedure is based on laser beams going into the deep layers of your skin to target the hair follicles. These laser beams heat follicles and disrupts their cycle. Don’t forget that laser beams can only affect the hair in its growth stage. After a few weeks, the targeted hairs fall out on their own. Next time your hair grows back, you will notice that they have become finer, and thinner.
The catch is that not all hairs are at the same stage when you go to get a laser hair removal, so the area needs multiple sessions to ensure that all hairs are targeted in their growth stage.
After each of your sessions, your hair regrows less until it stops growing altogether. In general, most people need two to six sessions that are put several weeks apart. But it is worth it because It can significantly reduce hair growth in your legs, arms, underarms, abdomen, back, and neck.
Redness and irritation at the treatment site are common immediately after treatment; these side effects can last anywhere from to 2 hours to a few days, and the treated area may look sunburnt for a few hours. Here is how you can soothe your skin after laser hair removal:
- Calm your skin
If sensitivity and irritation persist, apply a cool compress, such as a clean washcloth soaked in cold water. Alternatively, try wrapping a cold pack in a towel to reduce discomfort and swelling. Use an antibiotic ointment if there is crusting. Also take into account that darker skin is likely to experience more discomfort than lighter skin.
- Clean the area
Wash the affected area carefully with a light soap. During the first 48 hours, the skin should only be patted dry.
- Use approved medications
Take over-the-counter pain relievers, such as acetaminophen, to reduce discomfort. Alternatively, if recommended by your dermatologist, apply prescription steroid creams to alleviate the pain.
- Refrain from shaving
Wait a few days before shaving. Your skin is irritated right after the treatment and you should give it a few days to calm down.
- Avoid makeup and lotions
Keep the treated area clean and dry; if redness or irritation persist, refrain from applying makeup, fragranced moisturizers, and deodorants until the inflammation subsides.
- Avoid sun exposure
Keep targeted areas out of direct sunlight for a few days or as specified by your dermatologist or physician. More importantly, avoid tanning, as it increases the risk of sunburn and pigmentation.
- Exfoliate to accelerate hair loss
Hair shedding may occur 5 to 30 days after the procedure and may resemble new hair growth. However, this process should not be mistaken for new hair growth. It is your dead hairs coming out of the follicle. You can assist this procedure by gently washing your skin with a washcloth or an exfoliating cloth, and shaving.
- Don’t use certain skin care products
Take another look at your skin care products; for a few days after each laser hair removal session, refrain from using perfumed soaps, scrubs, lotions, and deodorants, as these may irritate your skin.
- Do not scratch, wax or tweeze the area
Avoid scratching the skin after laser hair removal. With the exception of shaving, do not use hair removal products during the course of your treatment, as doing so will prevent you from achieving the best results.
- Check your skin
Consult a physician if you experience persistent pain that does not respond to treatment, or if you notice increased inflammation, burns, blisters, or symptoms of pigmentation change, scarring, or infection.