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Cosmetic Surgery

Gender Affirming: Laser Hair Removal

Palesa N.

What is a Laser Hair Removal Treatment?

This cosmetic procedure is one that is common the world over. Laser hair removal is performed by a professional rid of skin on the body. This treatment offers a long-term solution to hair growth by temporarily disabling hair follicles in the skin from producing hair strands.

When you undergo laser hair removal, you can expect to be hairless for approximately seven weeks. The method of hair removal is, however, one that is highly regarded as the best to treat growing body hair. This laser hair removal treatment is especially good for getting rid of hair that is in hard to wax or shave areas on the body.

Nonetheless, this popular treatment comes with some discomfort that is relative to a number of factors that must be taken into account.

Hair Removal

The Pain of Laser Hair Removal

Whether treating the bikini line or upper lip area, many laser hair removal patients report some level of irritation or discomfort. Interestingly however, experiencing pain can be as a result of anxiety as opposed to the direct effects of the treatment. For many, the goal of going permanently hairless can be daunting.  Nonetheless, laser hair removal does come with some side effects that cannot be ignored.

How Safe is Laser Hair Removal?

Most people tolerate  laser hair removal well. There have been no concerning There long-term health risks linked to the procedure.

Nonetheless if you wish to have a laser hair removal treatment, you should always have the procedure performed by a qualified practitioner and consult with a dermatologist.

Hair Removal

Side Effects of Hair Removal Process

The process of laser hair removal is not one to be alarmed by, it is typically safe and the appearance of side effects are often no cause for larger concern.

Many side effects of laser treatments temporary, rare and minor. Should you experience long-term side effects from sensitive areas or the treated area, you should consult with a dermatologist.

Skin Irritation and Redness

The laser hair removal  treatment can damage the hair follicles in the area being treated, causing the body’s pain sensors to react to this sensation. The resultant reaction for most people is redness and irritation. This temporary reaction may also cause the skin to feel slightly tender and potentially cause swelling as well. This may respond well to an ice pack.

Following the first reaction, skin irritation is likely to settle, typically within a few hours in fact.

Skin Color Change

Perhaps one may experience a slight change in skin color in the skin at the treated area, this is a minor side effect and is normal post-treatment. The skin there may become darker or lighter as a result of laser treatment. Lighter-skinned people may experience darkness while people with darker skin are likely to experience lightening in their skin.

Eye Damage

Because a hair removal technique like this is so technical, involving the use of a powerful high-grade laser, one does risk experiencing potentially serious eye injury, the closer to the face the laser treatment goes, the more imminent this threat becomes.

This is a side effect that can be present for both the patient and hair removal practitioner. This is why practitioners wear eye protection during the treatments to make a difference on the effects from the constant exposure to laser light.

The Risk of Infection the Skin

Much like any other hair removal method, be it shaving, waxing, or using a hair removal cream, the damage that comes from tampering with hair follicles opens your skin up to a risk of infection.

The treatment of the infection would follow the same process as that of a wound, with the healing process being gradual and constantly improving. If this does not happen, consulting with a doctor or dermatologist is important.

How to Mitigate Laser Hair Removal Pain

Thankfully, there are a number of ways one can reduce pain during or after a laser hair removal treatment:

Drink water before the session:

This is especially helpful if you have consumed caffeine prior to a hair removal session, drinking plenty of water prior to a laser treatment can therefore help flush out caffeine and mitigate any effects that may have arisen from it. The best is to avoid caffeine well before you hair removal treatment.


The causation of skin redness from laser means that the same technology used to reduce redness from the sunlight can be used to reduce redness from laser. Using high SPF sunscreen weeks before the laser treatment can be beneficial.

Acetaminophen (Tylenol):

This an over the counter pain medicine that can go a long way in reducing laser treatment pain when taken about an hour prior. Doctors recommend avoiding Ibuprofen however, these can cause the blood to thin and in turn increase the risk of bruising on the patient.

Topical Anesthetics:

Much like drug store pain killers, there is an array of over the counter numbing creams that can be applied to the skin to reduce pain from laser treatment. The application of a thick layer of topical numbing cream about an hour prior to treatment on the treatment area of the skin can be helpful.

Stay Calm:

Doing breathing exercises, bringing a friend for comfort, listening to some music and communicating with the practitioner about your pain tolerance levels can go a long way in reducing anxiety both before, during, and after a laser treatment.

Number Laser Hair Removal Treatments for Permanent Solution

According to professionals, between six and eight treatments can make sure that all hair is removed from the treatment area on your skin. Having the procedure performed at six to eight week intervals is advised.

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