Whether you’ve undergone laser hair removal or are considering it, you’re already one step closer to fuzz-free skin. However, the results of the procedure depend significantly on your post-treatment habits and aftercare. Below, we provide specific guidelines to optimize your recovery and ensure the best results.
Results & Expectations
Before discussing your post-treatment guidelines, let’s discuss the results and expectations. Approximately 10% to 15% of your hair should fall out within the next two weeks. You can continue shaving the treated areas, but you must avoid plucking, bleaching, waxing, and other hair removal methods that pull the hair follicles.
Your hair will start growing again after four to six weeks, depending on the treatment area. However, the density and volume of hair will continue decreasing with every successive treatment. After a few sessions, the hair on the treatment areas will be extremely soft and fine. You can expect up to 80% hair reduction if you’re consistent with your treatments.
Things to Do
You must moisturize the treatment areas with Vaseline® or Aquaphor® at least thrice a day to minimize irritation and discomfort.
Please avoid direct sunlight, self-tanners, tanning beds, and spray tans for at least three days after your treatment. If you must step outside, please apply SPF 50+ sunscreen to all the treatment areas, and wear barrier protection, such as protective clothing, large sunglasses, and wide-brimmed hats.
Remain Cool & Dry
You must remain cool and dry for at least 3 days after the treatment. As such, you should avoid beaches, spas, steam rooms, saunas, hot showers, hot tubs, exercise, and pedicures for at least 24 hours. You should also avoid swimming for at least 3 days after your session.
Take Cool Showers
As mentioned above, you must remain cool and dry, which means avoiding hot showers and baths. Instead, you should take short, cool showers with lukewarm or cold water. After showing, please pat dry your skin. You should also avoid scrubbing and shaving.
You must avoid all skin irritations for at least three days, including harsh soaps, scrubs, medicated washes, topical skin products, prescription products, and retinoids. Instead of these, you can apply a thin layer of Vaseline® or Aquaphor®, hydrocortisone 1%, sunscreen, and same-day makeup.
Managing Side Effects
Redness, Swelling, Discomfort
Apply cool ice packs to the affected areas intermittently for 3 to 5 minutes at a stretch for a total of 2 hours. You must not apply ice packs to the treatment areas for over 5 minutes at a stretch. Vaseline®, Aquaphor®, and hydrocortisone 1% can also minimize redness and swelling.
Take oral, over-the-counter liquid Benadryl®, Allegra®, or Clartin®, and apply Vaseline®, Aquaphor®, or hydrocortisone 1% to the affected areas. You must avoid scratching the areas — that will only make things worse.
The presence of laser bumps indicates the treatment has been successful. The laser bumps, known as folliculitis, will gradually dissipate after a few days, and their intensity will decrease with each session. You can minimize their intensity by avoiding direct sunlight and activities that make you sweat. You should also apply Vaseline®, Aquaphor®, or hydrocortisone 1% to the affected areas thrice a day.
Your Next Appointment
If you experience harsh side effects not covered in the section above, please contact our medical center immediately. And please remember to book your next last hair removal session in four to six weeks for optimal results.