The existence of body hair is, of course, completely natural. You can either choose to keep it or remove it, however it’s nothing but a matter of preference. Thankfully, there is no shortage of options when it comes to body hair removal. However, if you seek to get rid of unwanted hair with long-lasting results, full body laser hair removal is the way to go.
Choosing a complete laser hair removal procedure can help you achieve the smoothness you want, save you a lot of time and minimize the hassle of going “hair-free”, as well as saving you some money in the long run. When it comes to getting rid of body hair, laser hair removal is definitely one of the better options.
Here is a complete guide to everything you need to know before opting for a laser hair removal procedure. We will also bust some common myths surrounding laser hair removal. Stay tuned and keep on reading!
What Is Full Body Laser Hair Removal?
Shaving, waxing, plucking, and many more aren’t the only methods available to go “body-hair-free”. If you are willing to shell out a little more money, you can achieve long-lasting, and even permanent hair removal results with this laser procedure.
This procedure uses concentrated beam lights to destroy the hair follicles, allowing you to get fuzz-free smooth skin. Laser hair removal is an extremely effective method of hair removal not only for your body, but also for your facial hair. This laser technology also effectively targets ingrown hairs!
When you are undergoing this procedure, your skin is exposed to a laser machine. The machine emits a beam of light absorbed by melanin (a pigment) in your hair during the treatment. After absorption, the light gets trapped in the hair shaft and converts to heat, causing damage to hair follicles.
However, this is not a cause for concern since this damage isn’t harmful to your body at all! The heat stunts the hair growth, and gradually the hair starts getting thinner with further sessions.
Now that you are familiar with how the procedure works let’s see which areas are covered by the full body laser hair removal treatment.
What Areas Does Full Body Hair Removal Cover?
The areas that the procedure covers depend on the company that provides you the laser hair removal service.
In general, areas covered are:
• Lower leg and thighs
• Perianal, toes, and feet
• Shoulders and Back
• Nipples, Navel Pubis Line
• Hands and fingers
• Face including nose, upper lip, chin, hairline and other facial regions
What Should You Do Before The Treatment?
For a successful laser hair removal treatment, it is recommended to follow some preliminary steps, as a form of preparation. If your laser technician has provided you with steps to follow, then it is a good idea to follow their instructions to your best abilities. Otherwise, proceed with the following guidelines:
• It is recommended to fully shave before treatment to avoid irritation and damage to hair follicles. Do not wax, epilate, tweeze or use chemical depilatory treatments before and in between laser treatments. Only shaving is allowed during laser treatments! Depending on the type of laser treatment that you are receiving, you might be instructed to shave a few days prior to the procedure, or a few hours before the procedure.
• Stay out of the sun and do not use UV tanning beds at all for at least two weeks. Use sunscreen daily and right after your procedure as well. This will make sure that you do not get any type of hyper-pigmentation on the treated areas.
• If you are taking any antibiotics, do not take them for at least five days before getting the laser treatment. Consult with your doctor to make sure that your health is not at risk.
• If you are getting a facial laser hair removal, make sure to avoid getting Botox injections, chemical peels, or derma filler injections for at least fourteen days before the treatment. Avoiding any “extreme” facial treatments is also a good idea.
What Should You Do After The Treatment?
Once you have received your laser treatment, usually, your technician will fill you in you regarding any precautions or things to look out for. Here are some tips to follow after the treatment:
• The treatment area would seem similar to a sunburn. Take the same precautionary steps that you would take to avoid sunburn irritation, such as avoid hot baths and more. A natural remedy is to apply aloe vera to the affected area to alleviate the redness and irritation.
• Use a sunscreen daily (at least an SPF 30).
• Avoid sun exposure and UV tanning beds.
• Avoid any facial treatments for at least fourteen days after the treatment.
• Skip applying retinol/retinoids or alpha hydroxy acids while you are recovering from the treatment.
What to Expect During Full Body Laser Hair Removal?
Your hair might be trimmed down a few millimeters, or completely shaved before the treatment. Then, some professionals use topical numbing anesthetics, about 20 to 30 minutes before the laser treatment to help eliminate the tingling sensation of laser pulses.
The laser equipment will be adjusted depending on the color, thickness, and position of the treated hair and skin color. Next, you will be given eyewear – usually a pair of sunglasses for eye protection. Some practitioners use a cold ultrasound gel to protect the layers of skin from the laser and help light penetrate the skin. This depends on the type of laser treatment that you choose.
After completing the procedure, you may be given anti-inflammatory lotions, cold water, or ice packs to ease any discomfort.
What Are the Common Myths about Laser Hair Treatment?
Several myths surround full body laser hair removal treatments. Here are some common myths and the truth behind them:
Laser Hair Treatment Is Painful
While everyone has a different pain tolerance, many people believe that the process is, in fact, not painful. It can be a lot more comfortable than waxing. The measure of pain also depends on the body part getting the laser treatment. For example, your arms or upper legs would not be as sensitive to pain as your private parts. Interestingly enough, even facial hair removal can be less painful than that of your bikini zone.
Also, many people would say that, for example, a bikini wax can be more painful than the laser hair removal procedure in that area.
Laser Hair Removal Is Permanent
No. Laser hair removal prevents the growth of new hair by heating the hair follicles. It keeps the hair follicles dormant for a long time, much longer than shaving and waxing. When the hair grows back, it will be lighter, fewer in number, and thinner.
Besides, factors such as hormones and genetics can affect long-term hair growth. To sum up, laser hair removal can significantly reduce hair, but it isn’t permanent. However, if you keep doing it for long enough – the results are nearly permanent.
Laser Hair Removal Works the Same on All Hair Types
Results may vary with hair thickness, color and skin type. While red hair is more difficult to remove, grey and white hair cannot be removed with laser treatment as they lack pigment that the laser needs to be attracted to. Thick, dark hair usually responds to laser treatments best.
Your clinician will determine whether your hair is suitable for the treatment, so it is a good idea to book a consultation to find a treatment plan that best suits you.
Laser Hair Removal Can Cause Cancer
The fact that this treatment can cause cancer is a myth. In fact, According to the Skin Care Foundation, the laser procedure is sometimes useful in treating certain forms of precancerous lesions.
Laser Hair Treatment Removes Hair in One Sitting
The treatment requires multiple sessions to achieve the best results. It generally requires 4-6 laser sessions to stunt your hair growth. It is generally a lengthy process – a gap of six weeks is required between two sessions. That means the complete treatment cycle may take up to nine months. However, the good news is that with each session, you will notice less and less hair growth.
Is Laser Hair Removal Treatment safe?
For most people, laser hair removal is a safe way to remove unwanted hair and get rid of it for a long period of time.
However, there are a few side effects that might come appear after getting a hair treatment. Some common side-effects include:
Some people may develop skin scabs around the affected area. Usually, this is a small problem, but it can be very inconvenient.
Crusting can sometimes cause scabs or even scars. You can treat the affected area by applying a moisturizer after the laser hair removal session to be on the safe side.This issue is more common along people with light skin or sensitive skin, as well as people who burn easily when they tan, and it is a rare side effect of laser hair removal procedure.
Redness and Irritation
Laser hair removal targets the follicles of hairs. Some people may experience redness on the affected area as and when the body responds. The skin may feel tender or tingling, and there may even be slight swelling, depending on how sensitive your skin is.
Nonetheless, symptoms as such are usually very short-lived. After the initial response, the irritation should subside, usually within a few hours after treatment.
The affected area may look similar to freshly waxed or plucked skin. Some dermatologists use local anesthetics to reduce a person’s skin reaction to this procedure. To alleviate the redness and irritation, you can take cold baths and use ice packs to alleviate the slight swelling.
Skin Color Change
The symptom is very rare; however, your skin might become lighter or darker after getting the treatment done. People with darker skin tones may see lighter pigmentation changes in their skin, while lighter tones might see darkly pigmented skin.
It usually fades away after a while. If it does not, you should consult your dermatologist.
You might also experience some severe side effects such as scars and burns or blisters in some very rare cases. It is highly uncommon, but you should keep an eye out for these symptoms.
To make sure that you do not experience any significant changes to your skin after the treatment, you should keep in mind the following:
• You should ask a dermatologist to test the laser hair removal technique on a small patch of your skin to see how it reacts before getting it done on a larger area.
• The sessions should be spaced out evenly. Consult your technician and discuss the schedule in advance.
• You should wear goggles during the treatment to ensure your eyes remain safe from the laser treatment.
• You should opt for a fully qualified practitioner. In this case, it is better to pay more for a professional, licensed technician. Better safe than sorry!
The Bottom Line
Out of all the possible ways to get rid of unwanted hair, the full body laser hair removal is the most effective. It might seem costly and time-consuming, but the results are great and totally worth it. Besides, it is more of a long-term investment.
It is recommended to consult your clinician in advance to get the gist of the procedure.
Also, you may ask, how much it usually costs? As per the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the average cost of hair removal is $287 per session. Besides, the cost may depend on various other factors such as the size of the area, the number of treatments required, and other related expenses.
In the end, getting a laser hair treatment is a smooth sailing process. If you seek long-lasting results, this is one of the best hair removal methods for you.