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Laser Hair Removal

When you’re looking for a dermatologist to help you with laser hair removal, it can be challenging to know where to start. Solv helps simplify your search process with a convenient, hassle-free tool that connects you with top-rated local providers so you can book online appointments instantly.

Here’s everything you need to know about laser hair removal, including how to find treatments near you.

All about laser hair removal

According to the NIH, laser hair removal uses the power of lasers to damage hair follicles. This can cause hair to stop growing in a specific area, and the effects can last for months to years. Laser hair removal is most likely effective for people with light skin and dark hair, as this combination makes it easiest for lasers to selectively target hair follicles.

Preparing for laser hair removal is essential. The NIH recommends, inn the 4 to 6 weeks leading up to the procedure, it’s vital to wear sunscreen. This can reduce the possibility of sunburns or suntans, limiting the contrast between the color of your skin and hair. It’s also important to avoid plucking or waxing for weeks before the procedure because these can temporarily remove the parts of the hair that the laser targets. The day before, you’ll need to shave or trim the area to be treated. This can reduce discomfort during the procedure and make it easier for the laser to reach the hair follicle.

During a laser hair removal procedure, your dermatologist will first clean the treatment area and may apply a numbing medicine. You will also be given protective eyewear before a handheld light beam is used to treat your skin. You may feel momentary discomfort as the light is absorbed. The procedure may take a few minutes to an hour, depending on the size of the treatment area, notes the NIH.

After the procedure, your skin may appear sunburnt, with redness or swelling. Cold compresses and anti-inflammatory medications can help with these symptoms. It’s important to avoid sunlight while your skin is healing and wear sunscreen. According to the Cleveland Clinic, it’s also possible to have side effects such as blisters, color changes of the skin, scars, or herpes outbreaks, though these are uncommon. You may require a handful of treatments at first, spaced over several weeks, to capture all of the hair in a given area.

Laser hair removal has many benefits. It is very safe, precise, fast, and predictable, notes the Cleveland Clinic. Compared to waxing, plucking, or shaving, it offers longer-term hair removal. Compared to other longer-term hair removal procedures, it requires fewer treatments and is less painful.

The cost of laser hair removal varies, but the American Society of Plastic Surgeons notes that the average out-of-pocket cost in a recent year was $389.

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