Laser hair removal (LHR) is a more permanent alternative to shaving and waxing. A treatment series significantly reduces the density of hair in the treated area so that ongoing hair removal is not needed. LHR works to selectively target melanin pigment in the hair, which causes heating and destruction of the root of the hair shaft. The discomfort is rated as minimal with the Sciton device used at Live Young Medical.
Because hair grows in multiple cycles, a treatment series is required for permanent results. Patients often observe hair thinning and smoother skin after three to four sessions and permanent results after six sessions in areas such as the bikini or underarm if the hair is dark and the skin is Fitzpatrick Type 3 or lighter. More sessions may be needed for those with darker skin. Almost any areas with unwanted hair can be treated and multiple areas can be done at once.
Read on to see how to prep for this life-altering treatment!
Stay Out of the Sun
Having fair skin works best for laser hair removal. The laser targets pigment, so having a greater contrast between your hair and skin tone will increase the laser's effectiveness. Tanning and even tanning products can interfere with the procedure.
Don't Pluck or Wax
Avoid plucking or waxing the area to be treated at least four weeks before your appointment, as you want the root of the hair to still be embedded in your skin.
Shave 24 Hours Beforehand
Unlike waxing procedures, you can still shave before your appointment. This is because the laser targets the roots of the hair, not the excess hair above the skin. However, this can also lead to slight itching or burning, so be mindful of that if you're particularly sensitive.
Review Your Medical History
The side effects of laser hair removal are very mild. Itching and skin irritation might occur, but your practitioner will apply a soothing cream to keep your skin calm and cool. It is important to review your medical history (allergies or medication) with the practitioner to ensure there are no surprises along the way.
At Live Young, you'll have pre-treatment photos done. If you want to document the progress of your experience, don't be afraid to take pictures! Take them before you go in for the first time and then a couple weeks after each session. You'll notice a big difference, and fast!
Photos: Taylor McKnight