What To Consider Before Getting Laser Hair Removal

Both men and women alike can vouch that having to constantly turn to various hair removal methods to stay hairless can be time-consuming and tiring.

From waxing, sugaring, tweezing, shaving and more, the choices are endless and yield the same results, but the hair grows back quickly over a short period of time. 

As some people tend to have sensitive skin or develop rashes and ingrown hair from various hair removal methods, laser hair removal, despite being a more costly procedure, is a great alternative to consider for a painless and stress-free experience. 

Connector spoke to various experts in the UAE, to get a better insight into the process of laser hair removal and how one can benefit from it. 

Laser hair removal is a painless process that uses Intense Pulse Light (IPL) technology to get rid of the hair. When compared to alternative hair removal methods, the hair is not removed from the surface but through a beam of light that targets the hair follicles, and destroys the hair. The process is quick and hassle-free, and can target multiple hair follicles at the same time. The hair is also destroyed when it is in the active stages, to prevent it from growing back.

Dr Dany Kayle, Founder of Dr Kayle Aesthetic Clinic Dubai said, "Laser hair removal directs a beam of a specific wavelength of light into hair follicles or the blood capillaries feeding them. The pigment in these follicles or red blood cells absorbs the light, thus destroying the hair. Each pulse of the laser takes just a fraction of a second to penetrate the target and so laser hair removal can treat many hairs at the same time. But the hairs will only be destroyed if they are in the active stages of the hair growth cycle."

The procedure is a popular one as it is a permanent solution, requiring minimum to no upkeep, after all the sessions to tackle the hair growth are completed. The number of sessions needed varies from person to person. The standard sessions are usually set at six, however, depending on the coarseness and if the hair grows back rapidly, additional sessions may be required. People will also have to come back for maintenance sessions every three months, to reduce the chances of hair regrowth.

Sarah Battikha, Founder of FRAME in Dubai said, "Follow-up sessions are very dependent on the person and can not be planned ahead. However, we do ask for a minimum of six sessions but in reality, some people will need just the six sessions and then just maintenance sessions every three months and some people will need 12 sessions before being able to do maintenance sessions."

Some of the benefits of laser hair removal are that the procedure does not damage the skin and only targets dark-coloured, coarse hair. It also reduces the chances of ingrown hair, which is a common occurrence in other hair removal methods like shaving, waxing or sugaring. 

Shirna Eclarino, Nurse and Laser Hair Removal Technician at BodySmart Dubai said, "Laser hair removal targets specific areas without damaging the surrounding skin. It can selectively target dark, coarse hairs while leaving the surrounding skin unharmed. Also unlike traditional hair removal methods, laser hair removal reduces the occurrence of ingrown hairs. It targets the hair follicles rather than removing the hair from the surface, minimising the chances of ingrown hairs."

Laser hair removal can be carried out on most people that want to target unwanted hair on body parts like the face, legs, underarms and more, however, there are various factors including genetics as well as the colour of the hair that need to be considered, to ensure that laser hair removal is the right choice for them.

Shirna Eclarino of BodySmart Dubai said, "Laser hair removal may not be suitable for everyone. Factors such as hair colour, skin type, and hormonal influences, can affect its effectiveness. Therefore, it is advisable to consult with a qualified professional to determine if laser hair removal is a suitable option for your specific needs."

There are certain groups of people for whom laser hair removal is not suitable. This includes those that have light-coloured hair, ranging from red to blonde, where laser is not a viable option, as the light targets the brown pigment in the hair to effectively reduce its growth. Also pregnant women should consider getting the process done at a later stage, as the effect it could possibly have on the foetus is not known. 

Sarah Battikha of FRAME said, "The only exception would be any hair that does not contain any brown colour because the laser is attracted to the melanin within the hair bulb so if there is not enough melanin such as white or blonde hair then the laser will not work. Pregnant women are not eligible as well."

How to prepare before and after laser hair removal sessions?

Laser hair removal is a seamless process and does not require much care before the session. Although before getting the procedure, it is important to follow a few key aspects that can help ensure the session goes smoothly.

Dr Dany Kayle of Dr Kayle Aesthetic Clinic Dubai said, "There are several preparations you should take:

  • Avoid medications such as blood thinners, immunosuppressants, and painkillers for several days before each session
  • Shave the treatment area the day before your session so the laser can reach the follicle more easily
  • Shower before arriving at your appointment
  • Do not tan for at least two weeks before your appointment
  • Limit plucking, waxing, and electrolysis for six weeks before treatment
  • Avoid sun exposure for two weeks before and after treatment"

After each session, aftercare is a critical step that should be followed, to avoid any side effects or any issues arising from the treatment. Some ways to take care are by avoiding the sun and hot showers, not wearing makeup after getting laser treatments on the face, and keeping the treated area clean. As each person is different, if unsure of the steps for aftercare, it is advisable to consult the doctor at the centre where the treatment is being carried out.

Shirna Eclarino of BodySmart Dubai said, "After a laser hair removal session, proper aftercare is crucial. Avoid sun exposure, hot water, and heat for the first couple of days. Keep the treated area clean with mild cleansers and avoid using irritating products."

Laser hair removal is a great procedure to consider when looking for an alternative to getting rid of rapid hair growth. Although it is a more costly procedure, the results are as desired, leaving soft and hair-free skin.

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