Laser Hair Removal: Before, During, & After

A permanent solution sounds almost too good to be a true, but it’s a reality for the millions of men and women who have tried laser hair removal. The advanced technology we use here at SkinSpirit is able to zero in on the pigment in the targeted hairs. We then calibrate the laser to only affect that pigment, which means we’re able to isolate the follicle and deactivate it.

Are you thinking about laser hair removal? Visit us in Mill Valley, Palo Alto, Walnut Creek, or Los Gatos, California — or in the Seattle metro area, find us in University Village, Bellevue Square, or Redmond for a complimentary consultation. For now, here’s how to prepare for each point in the laser hair removal procedure.

Before

  • Stay out of the sun. Laser hair removal works best when there’s a big contrast between the color of the treated hair and the color of skin — that why darker hair is so receptive to a variety of lasers. In order to maximize this contrast, avoid sun exposure and tanning beds in the weeks leading up to your procedure.
  • Shave the treatment area. It may seem counterintuitive, but it actually helps us get more precise results. On the other hand, please refrain from hair removal methods that affect the root of the hair, such as waxing, plucking, or depilatories.
  • Plan to stay for up to an hour. Appointments that focus on smaller areas of hair, such as the upper lip, will be shorter. It’s best to set aside an hour, though. You’ll be able to go about your day as normal once your visit is over.

During

(Here’s a recent example of our laser hair removal treatment sessions.)

  • You will feel a sensation similar to a rubber band hitting your skin. Today’s laser hair removal isn’t typically described as “painful,” but the sensation can be annoying and irritating (but it’s short-lived). That said, treatment doesn’t require any sort of anesthesia.
  • You will have protective eyewear. You’ll wear a pair of special goggles to protect your eyes from the laser light. While they won’t win you any beauty contests, they do serve an important purpose!
  • You will need more than one treatment for optimal results. Hair grows in cycles, and at any given time, different hairs on your body may be in different points of this cycle. Because laser hair removal works best on hairs at a particular point in the growth cycle, you’ll need a series of several treatments for the best results.  

After

  • No plucking, no waxing. Between visits, the same rules apply. You can shave, but don’t remove unwanted hair with any method that disturbs the root.
  • Keep it protected. Your skin, that is. No tanning beds, and minimal direct sun exposure. Use a high-quality, broad-spectrum sunblock, and stay out of the sun altogether when you can.

One last thing: Be patient! Laser hair removal isn’t an instant fix. It takes some time for the treated follicles to completely die and for hair to stop growing. Over time, you’ll notice the growth of your unwanted hair slow down and eventually stop completely.

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