Laser hair removal is one of the most popular procedures in beauty salons all around the globe. It helps you keep your skin smooth and hair-free, and moreover, such an effect lasts for quite a long time, especially if you undergo this procedure regularly!
However, those who are just going to try laser hair removal for the first time often wonder why the laser hair removal procedure requires shaving before it is done.
And of course, there is usually a bunch of additional questions that come along, for example, “when should you shave before laser hair removal?”.
In this article, we will tell you why you should shave before laser hair removal, and what could happen if you skip this step in your preparation routine.
Also, you are going to find out about a few handy tips regarding shaving before laser hair removal. These tips and life hacks will provide you with all the necessary information on shaving before laser hair removal. As a result, you will be able to do everything correctly and safely for your skin.
Why to Shave Before My Laser Hair Removal Appointment?
If you are going to visit a beauty salon to undergo a laser hair removal procedure, you may be told to shave before you visit them.
Of course, you will be wondering why shaving is needed since you are going to remove the unwanted hair anyway!
See, the explanation is pretty simple. If you shave the area that is going to be treated, this will prevent thermal injury to the surface of the skin as there won’t be hair on the surface to absorb the energy of the laser.
Like this, it will allow the laser to go directly to the hair follicle and do its job. This is why shaving is considered the best way to prepare for the upcoming hair removal treatment. So be ready that you will be most likely advised to shave the night before but not pluck or wax
As for the exact time when to shave before laser hair removal, usually, this should be done the day or the night before your appointment. Like this, the skin will not be too sensitive.
Plus, when you shave, the razor still irritates the surface of your skin even if you are gliding it very delicately! And even the smallest scratch or cut on the surface of your skin can lead to more serious damage if the damaged area is affected by the laser!
How Laser Hair Removal Is Performed?
If you have never been to a salon for laser hair removal, you might be wondering how this procedure is held. Indeed, it is good to know what is waiting for you since some people are a bit scared before undergoing such procedures.
In addition, quite many of us still believe that laser hair removal is done in one session only (which is not true in fact)!
So how the hair removal procedure is performed?
On the day of your procedure at the salon, your laser technician will clean the skin in the treatment areas. Next, your doctor will use a laser beam that will be focused on and destroy the hair follicle, which prevents hair from growing back.
You will usually need from three to five laser treatment sessions, which may take you over 3 – 4 weeks to get optimal results. Of course, your treatments will be spaced out in order to give the treated areas enough time to heal.
The duration of your laser treatment will also vary depending on the size of the treatment area(s) and the thickness of your hair. Even though the laser is relatively gentle, your treatment areas may look similar to a slight sunburn. This is absolutely normal and there is nothing to worry about!
For better results, we would advise you to follow a few simple recommendations that can help your skin heal faster.
- Try not to engage in strenuous activities
- Avoid sun exposure for about 24 hours after the laser hair removal procedure
- Avoid rubbing or scrubbing your skin, especially the area that has been treated with the laser!
If you follow all the suggestions precisely, the results will become apparent a week or two after the treatment session when the hair in the treated area falls out.
How Long Does Laser Hair Removal Last?
Speaking of laser hair removal, everyone wants to know how much time one session takes and how many sessions might be needed to say goodbye to unwanted hair. Well, laser hair removal can potentially remove your body hair in the long term.
However, it doesn’t mean that you will cope with it in just one session! Even for the smallest area of your skin, you will need several sessions until all the hair is removed completely.
This is why it is also suggested that you come in for maintenance treatments for about a year after your initial laser skin treatment. In almost all cases, a significant reduction of hair remains for months or even years after treatment.
Now you know why it is recommended to shave before your laser hair removal session, and what to consider in order to get ready for the procedure correctly.
So make sure you shave the night before or the morning of your treatment and try to get as much of the hair follicle as possible. But don’t worry if you didn’t manage to shave your hair or couldn’t remove enough!
On the day of your laser session, your laser hair removal technician can remove the rest of it before your treatment.
Dos And Don’ts When Getting Ready For Your Laser Hair Removal Session?
Like with any other procedure be it beauty or medical treatment, it is important to get ready for the upcoming process correctly, considering all the nuances. This is why your laser hair removal technician will most likely provide you with a list of recommendations to help you prepare yourself.
But if you haven’t chosen the salon yet, you might find it useful to learn what things should be taken into consideration in advance. Like this, you will already know what should be done and what should be avoided before you visit a salon.
Dos And Don’ts Before Laser Hair Removal?
First of all, before you undergo laser hair removal treatment, you must not expose the area that is going to be treated to the sun or a sun bed. In case exposure to the sun can’t be avoided, consider using a sunscreen of SPF 30, or preferably a total sun block of SPF 50 to protect your skin.
This is needed because, when the skin gets tanned, it becomes more vulnerable and thus prone to damage. And since the laser uses very high heat to remove hair follicles, the heat may hurt your skin that has become too sensitive because of the sun exposure.
Also, before your laser hair removal appointment, plucking, waxing, or bleaching the hair must be avoided for six weeks prior to treatment. Preserving the root and the pigment of the hair is mandatory for the success of the laser treatment session.
And of course, as you already know, it is important to shave the area that is going to be treated the day or night before your appointment.
Once again, this will prevent thermal injury to the surface of the skin since there will be no hair on the surface that could absorb the laser’s energy. Thanks to this, the laser will be able to go directly to the hair follicle.
Dos And Don’ts During Laser Hair Removal?
During the laser hair removal procedure, certain safety considerations should be taken into account. For example, the patient and any other person in the laser room need protective eyewear in order to prevent the risk of damage to the retina.
Also, a jet of chilled air is going to be used with the laser. It will help minimize epidermal damage and increase your comfort during the treatment session. The use of a local anesthetic is optional, but if you need it, tell your laser hair technician in advance so that they could pick the one that suits you best.
Now that you know what to do (and what is best to be avoided) when getting ready for your laser hair removal session, let’s figure out how you should act after the treatment session is finished.
As you have guessed by now, your skin also needs delicate care and attention after the laser session, as well as it needs care before it.
What to Do And What Not to Do After Laser Hair Removal?
Before you visit a salon to get your hair removed with the laser, we suggest you read the following information carefully. Like this, you will know exactly how your freshly treated skin may react after the session, which will reduce the level of stress (since many patients get freaked out when they see redness or swelling!).
So, right after the laser treatment, you need to be ready that the area of the treated skin may develop erythema (redness and some swelling) around the follicles. This usually looks similar to large goose bumps.
If you see anything like that, don’t be scared, it’s absolutely normal! This is just the reaction of your skin to the impact of the laser and high heat!
Next, around two or three weeks after a laser hair removal treatment, from 10 to 20% of the treated hairs will fall out. During the healing phase, make sure that the treated area is taken care of properly and treated delicately:
- Do not rub or scratch!
- Don’t use any peeling products or scrubs!
- Avoid using a massage brush for a while
- If a crust develops, let it fall off on its own
- Apply a thin layer of aloe vera ointment to the treated area several times a day to keep it moist
- Pat the area dry instead of rubbing it with the towel
- Do not shave the area if is swollen or crusting!
Should any swelling occur, apply ice to the swelled area. Just wrap the ice in a clean soft cloth and place this DIY ice pack over the affected area. Any physical discomfort, pain, or stinging may be relieved with Paracetamol.
It is not recommended to take Ibuprofen or Aspirin as these medicines may react to the laser light and thus lead to unpredictable aftermath! And of course, if you notice any signs of infection like pus or fever, contact the clinic immediately!
If you remove hair on your face and you need to apply make-up on the treated area, you must apply and remove it very delicately.
Excess rubbing (even with the soft cotton sponge) can open the treated area and increase the chance of scarring. Also, using any bleaching creams or perfume products is prohibited for 24 to 48 hours. Avoid exfoliating or peeling for one week as well.
Sports and active exercise are other categories that should be taken into consideration. Such activities should be avoided for two days after the laser hair removal treatment.
However, it doesn’t mean that you will be locked up at home for two days! Walking is encouraged if you keep your skin protected from the sun and dust.
Very hot baths, showers, steam baths, or saunas, as well as swimming in strongly chlorinated water should also be avoided for two or three days after the laser hair removal session.
It will let your skin heal much faster plus, avoiding high temperatures will help you keep your treated area safe and damage-free.
Well, now you know much more about laser hair removal and a few interesting and useful nuances regarding this procedure. You have learned why it is recommended to shave before this procedure, and what should be taken into consideration when doing it.
Also, we told you what you should avoid doing when getting ready for your laser hair removal appointment. Finally, with the pool of tips regarding post-treatment care, you will be able to keep your skin safe and healthy, ensuring better results after the laser session.
No, waxing, as well as plucking, is prohibited since it is very traumatizing for your skin and may lead to damage from the laser. No, you can’t. In this case, you should visit a doctor and treat the damaged area first. Of course! Only make sure that the foam you use is of high quality and it would be better if it has moisturizing abilities.
Frequently Asked Questions
⭐Can I wax before laser hair removal?
⭐Can I remove hair with the laser if there is rash on the area?
⭐Is it ok to use shaving foam to shave before laser hair removal session?
No, waxing, as well as plucking, is prohibited since it is very traumatizing for your skin and may lead to damage from the laser.
No, you can’t. In this case, you should visit a doctor and treat the damaged area first.
Of course! Only make sure that the foam you use is of high quality and it would be better if it has moisturizing abilities.