You might know the main benefit of laser hair removal is that it eliminates the need to shave once the treatments are completed, but did you know it has other benefits, too?
Removing hair with a laser treatment can also lead to fewer ingrown hairs and less pigmentation.
If you're considering a laser hair removal treatment for yourself, you may be asking, "How does the procedure work? And when can I shave after laser hair removal?"
Here's a laser hair removal overview that will give you all the answers.
How Does Laser Hair Removal Work?
The process of laser hair removal involves targeting beams of light onto your hair follicles, essentially killing the hair. By using such small yet strong light beams directed only towards the hair, your skin isn't damaged.
Since your hair grows in cycles, it will likely take several sessions for the hair to stop growing back. But you should notice a difference after the first treatment, with your hair growing back thinner and more sparse.
How long each session takes (as well as how many sessions you'll need) largely depends on the area you're treating. For example, getting laser hair removal on your upper lip will only take a minute, while larger areas like your legs will take a bit longer.
If you still have questions about how the laser hair removal process will work on your body, contact a professional.
Is It Alright to Shave in Between Procedures?
Yes! While you might be wary of shaving in between procedures, it's actually recommended to get the best (and smoothest!) results. Your hair will continue growing in between treatments, so shaving will help ensure your hair is the right length for the next procedure.
Exfoliate Before Shaving
Following a laser hair removal treatment, it's normal to experience "shedding," which is an excess of dead hairs. Shedding is a good thing and just means the session worked!
If you're shaving after a laser hair removal treatment, exfoliate your skin to get rid of all of those dead hairs. This will give you the smoothest shave.
Just make sure you aren't shaving or exfoliating too soon after treatment or you'll irritate your skin.
When Can I Shave after Laser Hair Removal?
It's best to wait 3-5 days before shaving after laser hair removal. This goes for exfoliating, too!
After the session, it's normal for your skin to be irritated. If you shave too soon after the treatment, you'll likely irritate your skin even more and make the healing process take longer.
Instead, wait several days and note when irritation goes away. When you can touch the area that received the treatment and it isn't sensitive, it's safe to shave.
When it's time for your next laser hair removal treatment, timing your shaving will be important. You don't want to shave too far in advance and have your hairs be too long, but you also don't want to shave the day of your appointment and have hairs that are too short for the laser to target.
Aim to shave roughly 24 hours before a session so your hairs have a chance to grow a bit. If you're feeling unsure about the timing, ask a professional for advice.
What about Waxing?
We recommend avoiding any waxing treatments while in the process of laser hair removal. While it's understandable to want smooth skin while your hairs are still being treated, waxing can lessen the effects of the laser.
Since waxing involves pulling the entire hair right from its root, the laser won't have the necessary hair follicle to target during the laser removal session. For this reason, it's best not to wax the area you're treating with lasers.
How Can I Protect My Skin before and after Treatment?
Laser hair removal is an easy process, but it can involve some skin irritation. By protecting your skin before and after treatment as best as possible, you'll be setting it up for a smoother and faster recovery.
As we talked about before, avoid waxing before treatment to ensure the laser works most effectively on your hair. This includes plucking and bleaching as well.
It's also best to avoid intense sun exposure so your skin isn't super sensitive or burned going into the treatment, so take a break from any tanning (including tanning beds!) beforehand, too.
Keep lotions, makeup, and tanning products off the area you're treating. However, exfoliating your skin beforehand is helpful to get rid of dead skin or leftover products.
Remember that it's normal for your skin to feel irritated after a session. If you're noticing redness or swelling, this should calm down in a day or two.
If you'd like to ease some of the irritation, you can apply aloe vera or ice wrapped in a clean cloth to your skin.
The first couple of days after your laser hair removal treatment, avoid things that will likely irritate your skin. This includes steaming hot baths or showers and sweating a lot, as well as wearing very tight clothing around the area that was treated.
Enjoy the Benefits of Laser Hair Removal
Now that you've learned how laser hair removal works and answered the question, "When can I shave after laser hair removal?" you're ready to experience the benefits of the procedure for yourself.
At Laser Spot, we aim to meet all of your beauty needs. Our experienced staff is here to walk you through all the treatments you might need, from laser hair removal to botox and skin rejuvenation, among others.
Reach out to us today to schedule a free consultation.