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How To Prepare For Laser Hair Removal

Image of a woman having laser hair removal on her leg

Are you getting laser hair removal for the first time and don’t know how to prepare?  That’s totally fine!

If you are tired of shaving, waxing and epilating and fed up with the time-consuming, major hassle factor, inconvenience, and cost and you want to wear skirts or go to the beach without having to think about leg hair or your chest hair.

Whatever your reason for choosing laser hair removal, like millions of others you’ve definitely made the right choice. Our expert team of practitioners at Premier Laser have put together their list of clinically proven tips for laser hair removal prep. Following these tips will help you get the best results from your treatment. So, let’s jump straight in!

Table of contents

Our Top Tips for Laser Hair Removal Preparation

Getting ready for your laser hair removal session? These tips will ensure that your skin is left as smooth and as silky as possible after your treatment!

1. Ensure you have had a laser hair removal consultation

Before rushing into any laser hair removal treatment, make sure you’ve had that all-important consultation. It’s not just a formality – it’s the personalised roadmap for your journey to hair-free skin, offering insights, addressing concerns, and preparing you for the experience ahead.

2. Avoid any form of tanning, including sunbeds

On the run-up to your treatment, it’s crucial to avoid any kind of tanning. This includes those tempting sunbed sessions and fake tan! Exposure to sunlight and UV rays increases the pigment level of the skin, which might impact how effectively the laser can target the hair follicles in the treatment area. This might lead to burns and skin discolouration. For the best results, speak to your practitioner and agree on a time period where you should avoid the sun before your first session. This is usually 4 weeks. If you are already tanned, you will be advised to wait for this period before treatment.

3. Avoid waxing or plucking the areas

Hold off on the waxing and plucking before your laser treatment. For laser hair removal to work, the follicles must contain hair. Waxing and plucking removes any hair from the area, meaning your treatment would be completely ineffective. They also change the hair growth cycle, meaning the laser will not be able to catch the hair follicles on the right stage and it will not be able to reduce the hair. Let the laser take centre stage and target hair follicles without any interference!

4. Clean the treatment area

Before your session, give the treatment area a thorough cleanse. This isn’t just about aesthetics; it’s about creating the optimal canvas for the laser to do its work, ensuring every follicle gets the attention it deserves. You can ask for sanitary towels from your practitioner at the beginning of your session to clean the area as well.

5. Exfoliate the treatment area

Time for some self-care! Incorporate exfoliation into your prep routine. Beyond the luxurious feel, exfoliating buffs away dead skin cells, leaving your skin silky smooth and primed for the laser.

6. Avoid caffeine

In the hours leading up to your treatment, avoid consuming caffeine. This stimulant makes the skin more sensitive, and this might result in discomfort or pain during the procedure. Not to mention that it won’t help with nerves if you are worried about the treatment!

7. Avoid skincare irritants

Treat your skin with kindness! In the time leading up to your laser session, steer clear of any potential skincare irritants. This includes perfumes, fragranced creams, lotions etc. Your skin deserves the VIP treatment, and avoiding irritants ensures a smooth and comfortable session.

8. Don’t bleach the target area

Similarly to why you shouldn’t wax or pluck your treatment area before your laser session, you should also avoid bleaching. Darker follicles are easier to target!

9. Shave 24 hours before the session

Make sure that you have between 4-6 weeks of full hair growth before your first session, and then shave 24 hours before – NOT on treatment day. This helps the laser to reach the skin surface above the hair follicles effectively, leading to the best results! Choose a non-perfumed shaving product, otherwise you might experience irritation. Use a pH-balanced cleanser wash afterward to make sure all the shaving foam has been removed. For more tips on how to shave correctly, check out our blog post on the topic.

10. Wear loose or comfortable clothing

Comfort is key on laser hair removal day! Opt for loose and comfortable clothing for your session. This isn’t a fashion statement – it will reduce any rubbing or friction on the treatment area once you are done, helping you to avoid any unnecessary discomfort or pain.

Your First Time Getting Laser Hair Removal

However, if this is your first time having laser hair removal treatment, you might have some questions.

  • What happens during your laser consultation and patch test?
  • How do you get ready for your laser treatment?
  • What happens during your laser session?
  • What to expect from your laser hair removal session?
  • How to do laser hair removal aftercare.

We’ve answered all these questions for you.

Laser Hair Removal Consultation

Before getting your first-ever laser hair removal treatment on any area of your body, you need to have a full complimentary consultation and a patch test.

During your consultation, our laser experts listen to your needs and goals. The consultant will ask you questions about your background, medical condition and lifestyle.

Hair growth lifecycle, including early anagen, anagen, catagen, telogen and return to anagen phases

Hair Growth Explained

The growth and strength of the hair follicles are mainly determined by genetics. Your clinician will explain to you the whole process and will give you an estimated number of sessions you would need to attend. They will explain the hair growth cycles, how laser works, the technology, overall process, pricing and payment options, the most suitable time for you to start your treatment and why you are in the most capable hands at London Premier Laser & Skin.

What Is A Laser Hair Removal Patch Test?

If your consultation determines that you are a suitable candidate for laser hair removal, and if you’re not currently tanned, your clinician will perform a patch test. Patch tests must take place at least 24hrs before your first session. We apply the laser to a small part of the target area and monitor.

Do I Still Need A Patch Test If I’ve Had One Before?

Please note that even if you had laser hair removal on some other areas of your body, for each and every new area, we need to perform a new patch test.

This is because your skin may be more sensitive in some areas, and to prevent any possible side effects. Also, even if you had laser treatment somewhere else before, we still need to make a patch test, as the technology, circumstances, and your condition might be changed since then. If your skin is suitable for laser treatment, we will create your personal treatment plan and book you in for your first laser appointment.

Bonus Tips For Laser Hair Removal Preparation

For the best results and most comfortable treatment, it is important to follow your practitioner’s advice. This way you can get ready for your laser treatment in the best way possible.

Your practitioner will advise you to:

  • Avoid any tanning. Suntan, fake tan and sunbeds are equally dangerous. If your skin is tanned, the laser can burn the surface. If all traces of your fake tan are not removed this also can put you at risk.
  • Leave at least 4 weeks before getting your laser treatment if your skin is tanned.
  • Make sure you’re not on antibiotics.
  • Avoid waxing or plucking before laser hair removal. As these options change the hair growth cycle, the laser will not be able to catch the hair follicles on the right stage and it will not be able to reduce the hair.
  • Do not bleach your hair. The darker the hair follicles, it is easier for the laser to see them
  • Clean the treatment area before your session. Don’t use any cosmetic creams before your session. You can ask for sanitary towels from your practitioner at the beginning of your session to clean the area as well.
  •  Make sure that you have between 4-6 weeks full hair growth before your first session.
  • Shave 24 hours before your laser appointment. NOT on the treatment day. To read more about how to shave correctly, you can visit our blog
  • Choose a non-perfumed shaving/ cleansing product for your bikini area. Otherwise, it might cause irritation. Read more about how to shave correctly.
  • Use a pH-balanced feminine cleanser wash afterward to make sure all the shaving foam has been removed. For more tips on how to shave click here
  • Gently exfoliate your bikini area 3-4 days before your session. Don’t leave it to the last day or after you shaved. Otherwise, it might irritate your skin.
  • Make sure all the excess hair from the labia and perianal area has been removed.
  • Wear loose clothes for your treatment. Make sure your underwear is not too tight.
  • Avoid caffeine. It can increase your sensitivity.
  • If you have a low pain threshold, you can take a mild pain reliever before your session (not Ibuprofen).
  • Some of our clients find chewing gum during treatment helpful.
  • Try to schedule the treatment the week before or the week after your period
  • Most importantly, relax, you’re in safe hands.

On The Treatment Day

On the day of your treatment, it is important that you are at the clinic on time so your session can be completed on time.

Your clinician will welcome you to the treatment room. Here you will have full privacy whilst getting ready for your session.

Undressing

You will need to undress the parts that you are having the laser treatment. Your clinician will provide you with towels to cover yourself where and when necessary.

If you are having laser treatment on more than one area or the full body, you might prefer to get undressed partially for each area for more comfort.

Your clinician will check if the growth of hair is suitable for the treatment. And then clean the treatment area.

Markings With A White Pen

They will mark the area with a white pen to make sure no parts are missed. Cover up the spots and beauty marks to prevent any negative effects. And if you have any tattoos, they will cover the sides so the laser doesn’t get over it.

Numbing Cream (If Required)

Some areas of the body are more sensitive than others. Before your treatment, you will also be offered numbing cream but this is not mandatory to have. As our laser experts have many years of experience, they know how to make you feel most comfortable.

Goggles

Before starting the treatment, you will be asked to wear special goggles to protect your eyes. You can also lie back and close your eyes if you prefer. It is important that you never look at the laser with the naked eye as it is highly dangerous.

Making sure you are comfortable

Your clinician may stop or pause during your treatment to make sure you are comfortable. They can use the cold air function of the laser to give your skin extra soothing help before and after treating the area. If you have sensitive skin, they make sure to treat the area in small patches to make the treatment go easier.

They regularly clean the area with a sanitised napkin every couple of minutes.

Correct Settings

Your clinician may change the settings of the machine during your treatment. This is to adapt the best power and consistency to the area treated. Your expert will make sure to treat the area with the most appropriate and necessary settings. Which can differ from area to area due to the number of sessions completed, the number of hair follicles, or the sensitivity of the skin.

Your Feedback Is Important

Your clinician may also need your help in some areas. They might ask you to stay in a specific position or help them out whilst treating some areas for example during the perianal.

You can always ask all your questions to your clinicians during the treatment. They will make sure you are as comfortable and ready as possible.

Respecting Your Privacy

While having your laser treatment, your clinician will always respect your privacy. Even when you are having laser treatment on your bikini area, you will always be covered with towels. And your practitioner will only uncover the areas that are being treated at the time.

What To Do Immediately After Laser Hair Removal

After your treatment, your clinician will apply Aloe Vera gel to the treated areas. Or if you prefer to apply yourself they will provide you with the gel.

They will ask how you are feeling and how was your session. We will always make sure you were pleased with your session and you don’t have any discomfort afterward. You will be given your privacy to dressed.

before and after leg laser hair removal, post 3 treatments after

Monitoring The Progress

Your clinician will also take photos of the treatment areas to follow and record the process. Don’t worry these images are for treatment purposes only and they won’t be published or shared anywhere without your consent.

After recording your treatment details, they will assist you in the reception area to book your next appointment. And advice on the aftercare.

Preparing for laser hair removal and how it feels

What Does Laser Feel Like?

The sensations of the laser vary from person to person and the treatment area. While some experience a slight sting, some people don’t even feel the laser unless they hear its beeping sound.

Different factors affect how the laser would feel on sensitive skin. Such as hair colour, density, skin type and pain threshold. But you can make sure that the feeling of laser decreases after each treatment as the hair follicles get finer and lighter, and your body is getting used to the feeling over time.

Laser Cooling Technology

To minimise the sensation, our lasers work with a built-in cooling system. This is to reduce the possible pain from the laser. Some clients may feel cold during the treatment. In that case, please let your practitioner know and they will take small breaks to make you feel more comfortable.

Laser Hair Removal Aftercare

The laser only targets the hair follicle and leaves the surrounding skin unharmed. But there are still some rules you would need to follow to not harm your skin and to keep your comfort levels to the maximum.

Right after your session, your clinician will apply to the treatment area some Aloe Vera gel. Find out more about laser hair removal aftercare.

after laser

First 24 hours

It is recommended you keep using the gel for the following 2-3 days. Make sure to use it as much as necessary.

After your session, you might experience some redness. It should go away within 24 hours to a few days.

For comfort purposes, you can put an icepack covered with a clean cloth on your skin.

  • Avoid sunlight – even if you are not likely to do it anyway. 
  • Prevent the use of any lubricants or chemical products for 24 hours. 
  • Avoid hot showers, baths and saunas. 

It usually takes 4-6 weeks for the hair follicles to get back to the appropriate stage for your next laser treatment. Tell your clinician about any holidays you are planning to attend, any sun exposure you had or may have, and your period where it is relevant. At Premier Laser & Skin clinics we use the latest medical degree lasers for the best results and the highest comfort. All our clinicians are highly experienced in the field. So, you can be sure that you are in safe hands.

Book Laser Hair Removal in London & Surrey

At London Premier Laser & Skin clinics, we use the latest medical degree lasers for the best results and the highest comfort. All our clinicians are highly experienced in the field so, you can be sure that you are in safe hands. Contact us or book your free laser hair removal consultation online.  

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