People grow increasingly tired of the tediousness involved with facial and body hair upkeep, turning to cosmetic technologies like laser hair removal to free up their grooming routines. While effective, it can still be difficult to eradicate hair from an area forever; hair that continues to grow back will do so much slower and finer than before. Aside from the occasional side effects of swelling and increased sensitivity to the treated areas, preventing further irritation is the key to a successful recovery. The following is a list of things to do, and not to do, to make your skin’s healing process as painless as possible.
- Hands Off – Don’t touch, rub, scratch or pick at the skin of treated areas. If a scab forms it must be left to heal and fall off of its own accord. When getting out of the shower, always pat the skin dry with soft terrycloth or microfiber towels.
- Be Sun Shy – Avoid exposure to the sun’s UV rays for about four weeks both before and after laser hair removal treatments. Having a tan during or after treatment will increase the risk of hyper pigmentation and future sunburn. If heading outside, use a broad spectrum SPF of at least 30 or higher and also avoid using tanning beds at all costs.
- No Sweat – Steer clear of vigorous or strenuous exercise for two to three days after treatment, as sweating can cause irritation of the hair follicles.
- Well Gel – Applying a cool Aloe Vera gel on treated area will help to soothe irritation, ease any burning sensations and keep skin redness to a minimum. Tip: Keep Aloe Vera gel in the refrigerator to make it extra cooling against burned or laser-treated skin.
- Hide From Harshness – Don’t use any harsh chemicals like bleach or perfumed products like aromatherapy oils on skin for at least 24 to 48 hours. Also, stay out chlorinated swimming pools for 48 to 72 hours post treatment.
- Don’t Be Irritating – Avoid waxing, plucking or threading hair removal methods on treated areas for at least 48 hours afterward. Shaving, however, is still allowed between treatments.
- Can’t Take the Heat – Stay out of hot bath, shower, saunas and steam rooms for 24 to 48 hours to give pores a chance to rest and recuperate. Stay away from heat sources for over 72 hours is you have sensitive skin.
- Not So Rough – Don’t exfoliate treated skin, use chemical peels or get a microdermabrasion for a minimum of 10 days. Ideally, it’s best to wait until all hair removal treatments are finished before resuming these activities.
- Dare to Bare – Makeup shouldn’t be used on treated skin for up to 24 hours, switching to gentle mineral makeup or brands designed for sensitive skin afterwards.
About the author: This article was written by Monica Dwyer on behalf of Urbana. Monica is an experienced beauty therapist with over 5 years experience in hair removal and waxing.