First Laser Hair Removal Session

Nowadays, flaunting hair-free skin is no longer a fashion trend, but a compelling aspect of personal grooming. So, laser treatment is considered an excellent find for permanent hair removal. Say goodbye to the hassles of frequent shaving, painful waxing, tweezing, and dreading skin irritation and rashes [1]. Laser hair removal has become the favourite choice of both men and women to get rid of unwanted body hair with minimal discomfort. Factors like genes, hormones, hair type and texture, and skin tone will influence the results of the laser session. Hormonal areas in your body like the face or bikini line will demand more sessions when compared to their non-hormonal counterparts like legs or hands.

Will Laser Treatment Provide Long-lasting Hair Removal?

Laser hair removal is performed using concentrated light energy. It targets the melanin in each hair follicle and is vaporized instantly while preserving the skin tissues surrounding it[2].So, instances of repeated body hair growth are avoided. With every subsequent laser session, the hair regrowth is very sparse with fine texture to achieve hair-free skin [3]. So, the laser procedure is an effective choice to cut down hair growth by 90%. The FDA has also approved laser as a method for permanent hair reduction, and thousands vouch for its ability to remove hair permanently [4].

With customizable pulse and wavelength, laser hair removal sessions are a wise choice for people having light-coloured or dark-coloured skin [5]. As a newbie, you might have a lot of expectations and doubts about the flow of the hair removal process during the session during your quest to achieve a hair-free body. Read on to understand the step-by-step guide about the first session of laser hair removal and why it is necessary to have realistic expectations about the therapy.

Will the First Laser Hair Removal Session Be Painful?

You must understand that the tolerance level of individuals towards pain tends to vary from one person to the other. However, a laser session is not very painful or causes a high level of discomfort. When compared to other forms of traditional hair removal like waxing or plucking, laser hair removal is a painless non-invasive procedure. The sensation on your skin when it comes to contact with a laser pulse can be described to be similar to a slight pinprick or slight snap of a rubber band.

The Procedure: Step-by-Step Walkthrough

When stepping inside the Skin Clinic, it is natural to have a mixture of feelings including excitement and apprehension, especially during your first laser procedure. To give you enough clarity and dispel those doubts, we have explained the process of your first laser hair removal session step by step [6], to understand what awaits you.

Step 1: Consultation with Dermatologist and Analysis of Skin

  • Brief Consultation: Before the first laser session for hair removal, you will have a brief consultation with your skin specialist. Your dermatologist will review all information related to you to make sure every aspect is considered before the session.
  • Skin Analysis: The expert skin specialists will use the latest tools to identify your hair colour and skin type to determine the perfect laser type for optimum hair removal results. This step is essential, as your dermatologist will customize the laser with the right frequency based on your skin’s unique needs to optimize output.

Step 2: Safety Aspects

  • Protective Gear for the Eye: Both you and the dermatologist will be required to wear protective eyewear to prevent the concentrated laser light from affecting your eyes [7].
  • Anaesthetic Procedure: If you are opting laser for sensitive areas like the underarm or bikini region, you might be given topical anaesthetic to avoid pain or discomfort during the procedure. Anaesthesia will be applied about 30 minutes before your session.
  • Cooling Device Application: For shielding the skin and to keep you comfortable throughout the session, your dermatologist will be using a cooling device or gel [8]. It will help in lowering the discomfort or tingling sensation caused by laser energy while keeping your skin surface protected [9].

Step 3: Laser Hair Removal Procedure

  • Applying Laser: Your dermatologist will be handling the laser device, which will be placed on the treatment site to pass concentrated light pulses with controlled wavelengths and frequency. The laser light will target the hair follicles to eliminate them without damaging the skin and tissues in the area. People who have undergone laser treatment for hair removal describe this sensation as a slight tug of an elastic band or a warm prick-like sensation.
  • Duration of Laser Session: The duration of a session of laser hair removal varies based on the area of treatment. If you are attending a session for upper lip hair removal, then it will just need a couple of minutes, but larger treatment areas like your back or legs might take up to an hour.
  • Regular Feedback: Throughout your laser session, your dermatologist will ask for your feedback regarding your comfort level to make necessary adjustments to laser settings, when needed.

Step 4: Post Treatment

  • Soothing Skin: As soon as your laser therapy is over, your dermatologist will apply a cooling gel or a cooling device to the treatment area to soothe the skin. Such cooling action will help prevent skin irritation, slight pain sensation, and minor discomfort, if any.
  • Instructions Related to Aftercare: Before you leave the facility after a laser session, your dermatologist will give you aftercare instructions for better healing and to optimize the effectiveness of the treatment. He might also prescribe you soothing lotions, gels, and anti-inflammatory creams and suggest the application office pack on the treated skin. Follow your dermatologist’s guidelines religiously to keep side effects at bay.

With this knowledge, you can get rid of all concerns and get ready to embrace your first laser hair removal session with confidence.

What Should You Expect After Your First Laser Hair Removal Session

  • Between 24 and 48 Hours: As the laser beam targets the follicles of hair, your skin might be slightly irritated and sensitive. So, refrain from taking hot showers, saunas and workouts during this period. You can apply a soothing cream formulated with pure aloe vera but avoid using deodorants, or skin products.
  • One Week Later: You will begin to notice hair shedding after a week of your first laser hair removal treatment. This process is completely normal and don’t get confused about it as hair regrowth. Resist the temptation of using razors, wax strips, or tweezers a week after your laser session.
  • Between 4 and 6 Weeks: The skin on the treatment site will remain very soft and smooth between 4 – 6 weeks. After this period, you can see very fine hairs growing on the treated site. Do not try hair removal methods like waxing or tweezing the regrown hairs. They will be a target for your next laser session.
  • 3 Months: By this time, you would have already undergone two sessions of laser hair removal. The hair on your bikini line, back, chest, arms, legs, underarms, and face will be reduced by 50%. However, the results might be more or less based on your specific hair texture and skin tone.
  • 6 Months: Your visit to the skin clinic for laser hair removal sessions might have been completed within 6 months, based on the treatment area. Now, your body will be smooth and hair-free.

Setting Realistic Expectations

It is essential to have realistic expectations about your first laser hair removal session, even though you might be excited to see visible results within a short time. Read on to know what to expect to avoid going overboard with expectations.

1. The Truth Behind Hair Growth

You must understand that human hair has different growth cycles called phases. At any specific point in time, all hairs will not be in the same growth phase. Laser energy is very effective on those hair follicles that are in their anagen phase or active growth cycle [10]. So, your dermatologist would suggest several sessions to target all the hair follicles in the anagen phase.

2. Hair Will Not Fall Off Immediately

Even though the first laser hair removal procedure will target around 30% of your hair, you will not have hair-free skin immediately after the treatment. The hair follicles targeted by the laser will require several days or weeks to get damaged completely. The unwanted hair on the treated site will not fall immediately after the first laser session. The hair-shedding process after the first procedure might sometimes be visible to your eyes as regular hair growth. As the hair density and skin tone of each individual is different, the time taken to show results will also vary.

3. You Must Attend Multiple laser Sessions

As laser hair removal results are more permanent when compared to shaving or waxing, it requires several sessions to prevent hair regrowth[11]. You might be required to attend 4 to 8 sessions that are evenly spaced at regular intervals between 4 or 6 weeks to allow skin healing. Each session will focus on a different treatment part to ensure complete hair follicle coverage.

4. Maintenance Sessions Are A Must

Even though the laser hair removal procedure assures positive hair-less results in the long run; it requires you to take up a couple of maintenance sessions per year to flaunt smooth and hair-free skin in the long run [12].

Immediate Aftercare for Laser Hair Removal Treatment

Within the first 24 to 48 hours of your laser session, it is important to follow proper aftercare during the initial phase, as it can cut down any side effects and optimize the results. Following the aftercare steps mentioned below is essential for ensuring better healing and enhanced comfort.

  • Avoid Sun Exposure & Use Sunscreen: The treatment area is prone to pigmentation and sunburn soon after your laser session[13]. So, it is important to avoid exposing skin to direct sun to prevent it from getting damaged. If you must go to work or attend an event, apply sunscreen with SPF 30 or more generously to protect the skin on the treated area.
  • Say No To Heat: Exposing your treated skin to any form of heat can cause extreme irritation. So, activities like exercises, hitting the gym, hot showers, tanning beds, and saunas must be avoided for a minimum of 48 hours after the laser session. You can take showers with lukewarm water.
  • Hydrating and Soothing: Your skin on the treated site will look similar to sunburn, which is why you must keep it fully moisturized around the clock [14]. You can dab on a light moisturizer that is free from fragrance and has a mild formulation. You can soothe the irritation or reddishness of the skin by applying aloe vera gel.
  • Opt For Loose-Fitting Clothes: If you are wearing tight-fitting clothes, it might cause friction by rubbing against the treated skin. Wear cotton clothes that loosely fit to keep the skin free from irritation.

Following these immediate aftercare instructions from your dermatologist will make a substantial difference in improving the efficiency and recovery after a laser session.

Side Effects of Laser Hair Removal Treatment

It is natural for your treated skin to show a few reactions after it comes in contact with a laser[15].

Let’s look at the breakdown of the effects of laser hair removal treatment.

  • Mild reddishness of the skin
  • Slight inflammation on the treatment site
  • Burns or blisters, which are rare
  • Darkened or lightened pigmentation changes in dark-skinned people
  • Mild skin crusting due to lack of moisturiser

Summing Up

Laser hair removal treatment is a safe non-invasive treatment when performed by expert professionals. Schedule an appointment to meet the expert skin specialists at Kolors Hair and Skin today and get ready to look beautiful with smooth and hair-free skin.


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  6. Samuel Lin, MD & Eric Shiah, BA | Boston, MA –
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  9. Nahm WK, Tsoukas MM, Falanga V, Carson PA, Sami N, Touma DJ. Preliminary study of fine changes in the duration of dynamic cooling during 755-nm laser hair removal on pain and epidermal damage in patients with skin types III-V. Lasers Surg Med. 2002;31(4):247-51. doi: 10.1002/lsm.10104. PMID: 12355569.
  10. Sandy S Tsao MD, George J Hruza MD, in Surgery of the Skin, 2005 –
  11. Wael Hosam Abdelrazek, Noha Hasan Moftah, Aya Ahmed Hamdy Amin: Department of Dermatology, STDs, and Andrology, Faculty of Medicine, Minia University, Minia, Egypt
  12. JOUR, Haedersdal, Merete, Wulf, Hans, 10.1111/j.1468-3083.2005.01327.x: Journal of the European Academy of Dermatology and Venereology : JEADV –
  13. Thaysen-Petersen D, Erlendsson AM, Nash JF, Beerwerth F, Philipsen PA, Wulf HC, Haedersdal M. Ultraviolet radiation after exposure to a low-fluence IPL home-use device: a randomized clinical trial. Lasers Med Sci. 2015 Nov;30(8):2171-7. doi: 10.1007/s10103-015-1796-4. Epub 2015 Aug 22. PMID: 26296296. –
  14. Piyu Parth Naik Department of Dermatology, Saudi German Hospitals and Clinics, United Arab Emirates –
  15. Naik, Piyu – T1 – Laser hair removal -Mechanisms and complications, Clinical Practice –

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