Are you also fed up of trimming, tweezing or waxing unwanted body hair every week and planning to undergo laser hair removal? Wait! Effectiveness of laser hair removal depends a lot on how properly you prepare yourself for the treatment. Experience of your doctor, no doubt, plays a key role in determining the efficacy of the treatment, but pre- and post-procedure care is equally important.
Here is a list of pre-procedure instructions that will help you to prepare well for laser hair removal and get the maximum out of every session.
1. Stop tanning at least a month prior to the treatment:
Lasers work best on light skin. An ideal candidate for laser hair removal is the one with light skin tone and dark hair. So, if you tan in the sun or use sunless tanners to get that attractive brown skin tone, stop doing so at least 4 to 6 weeks before laser hair removal. When going out during day time, apply sunscreen with SPF 30 or above on the hair you wish to treat.
2. Refrain from waxing, threading, and tweezing at least 4 to 6 weeks before treatment:
Laser works by targeting the root of the hair that you want to be removed. But plucking, waxing and threading all remove the hairs from their roots and it takes them 2 to 4 weeks at least to regrow from the hair follicle. This will reduce efficacy of laser hair removal. Shave the hair to maintain your personal hygiene but stop removing hair from root at least 4 to 6 weeks prior to the treatment. Also, do not bleach the hair, as laser does not work well on bleached or grey hair.
3. Shave the area 24 hours before the appointment:
Shave the areas that need to be treated 24 to 48 hours before the appointment, or as instructed by your doctor during the pre-procedure consultation. Trimmed hairs are also okay for treatment but longer hair make the treatment more painful as they burn on the surface of the skin by absorbing heat energy from the laser beams and some of the heat energy is also passed on to the skin.
4. Keep your skin free of cosmetics, lotions or creams:
Your skin must be free of any cosmetics, or moisturizing creams and lotions at the time of treatment. You can always clean the area at the treatment site. If you have applied any antiperspirant, remove that prior to the treatment.
5. Wear loose fitting clothes on the day of treatment:
On the day of treatment, come to the clinic in loose fitting clothes that leave treatment area exposed or can be easily removed to expose the area of treatment. Remember, the same rule applies for the pre-treatment consultation; otherwise your physician will not be able to assess your hair and treatment area properly.
6. Share your pain threshold with the doctor before the procedure:
Laser hair removing is generally performed without anesthesia. A generous amount of cooling gel is applied to the area of treatment and hand piece is moved over the skin to pass laser beams. But if you are overly pain sensitive, discuss with your physician and he may prefer applying a numbing cream to the treatment area. A numbing cream needs at least 30 to 40 minute to work, so your doctor should know your pain threshold to plan things accordingly.