How a Laser Hair Removal Treatment Is Performed

October 25, 2010 in Hair Removal 101,Laser hair removal

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While every clinic that offers laser hair removal treatments has their own specific procedures, there is a general idea of how a laser hair removal treatment is performed. And even though the exact methodology of how a laser hair removal treatment should be performed will vary greatly among practitioners, there are several steps of the process that are very similar.

A laser hair removal treatment is performed as an in office procedure at a physician’s clinic or at a laser hair removal facility. No anesthesia is used and the client is expected to return to his or her normal activities after the procedure. The practitioner will have a set of pre treatment instructions for the client to follow, and these guidelines may include no plucking or waxing before the treatment, as well as no tanning. Extra attention should be given to whether the practitioner wants the client to shave the area to be treated or not. Some practitioners allow the client to shave the area as desired, while others will want to see exactly where the hair grows before they shave it off themselves. The practitioner will also have a set of after treatment instructions to follow, which are similar to the pre treatment instructions.

Even though anesthesia is not used to perform a laser hair removal treatment, those clients that are concerned about potential pain do have a few options. It is possible to desensitize the skin with the help of a topical numbing cream, which would need to be applied approximately 30 minutes prior to treatment. Clients can also take a painkiller prior to a treatment, in order to minimize discomfort.

Depending on the area to be treated, the client might be asked to remove some of his or her clothing and lie down on a treatment table. Both the client and the practitioner will wear safety goggles to protect the eyes from the laser beams. Even though newer laser hair removal machines come with a built-in cooling system, many practitioners will apply a cooling gel to the area right before the treatment starts, in order to minimize discomfort.

The practitioner will grab the laser hair removal device and hold it against the skin for about one second to allow the laser beams to be released over the area. At this point the client might feel a small, but tolerable amount of pain. The sensation can be described as something snapping against the skin. The practitioner will quickly move the device over the skin until the whole area has been treated.

The exact length of the treatment depends on the size of the area being treated, but given that laser hair removal is a fast and efficient treatment the entire procedure will be over sooner than one would think. Any side effects other than slight skin irritation and redness are rare and the client can immediately resume his or her daily activities following the procedure.

Photo via Vancouver Laser & Skincare Centre

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