As far as grooming is concerned, I have always pride myself for being fastidious and critical, especially when it comes to keeping body hair to a bare minimum. As a young professional woman who lives a very busy albeit fulfilling life, I make it a point to ensure that laser hair removal is part of my regular beauty regimen. For those who have yet to try laser, it is necessary to take a closer look at the benefits as well as possible drawbacks of this procedure. Listed below are some of the most common laser hair removal side effects that can be expected, although personally my experience has not been even remotely unpleasant. Women should know exactly what side effects they might encounter in order to address them appropriately.
Since laser emits high heat in order to target hair follicles effectively, it is quite possible to experience heightened sensitivity in the skin area surrounding the treated surface. This effect may last anywhere from a few hours to a couple of days depending on your skin type.
While this is not a serious side effect, it can cause major discomfort that can interfere with your daily tasks. Putting on some aloe extract on the affected area can soothe the skin and reduce the discomfort. Be sure not to expose your skin to direct sunlight for a few days after a laser treatment.
Slight Redness and/or Minor Swelling
First time recipients of laser hair removal treatment may experience slight swelling or redness around the area where the light is administered. When I had my first treatment, I noticed that the skin was slightly elevated and was sensitive to touch. The discomfort lasted for no more than a few hours, even without the aid of any natural or pharmacological remedy.
Should the pain increase to a disconcerting level, you can always put some cold compress or cold damp cloth on the area to soothe it. Be sure not to put ice directly on the skin as it can cause severe nerve damage, especially when placed on for too long.
Darkening of the Skin
While extremely rare, there is a possibility of skin discoloration on the treated area. People with fair skin (Asians and Caucasians) are more susceptible to this side effect, although the skin usually reverts to its natural color after a few days or a couple of weeks.
I did notice a bit of darkening around the edges of the area which I got treated, on which I promptly applied hydrating lotion to prevent severe dryness.
Other Potential Side Effects
Apart from the ones listed above, there are extremely rare adverse effects such as blotching, extreme swelling, scarring, and acne. There are no clear causes as to why these things occur but they can be traced to improper usage of laser, extremely high heat from the light, or underlying skin condition.
Should You Even Consider Laser Treatments?
While possible side effects are legitimate concerns, I would personally still recommend laser treatments for hair removal. For starters, it is an extremely convenient method for women (and men) who simply do not want to waste time waxing or shaving off excess hair on their own. In addition, these side effects rarely occur, as I have proven myself after countless laser treatments over the past few years.
How to Prevent Adverse Effects from Laser Treatments
Get the Procedure Done at a Reputable Clinic
In an attempt to save money, some people make the mistake of getting laser treatments from unlicensed clinics that do not observe safety procedures and precautions. I have all my treatments administered by the same dermatologist, who I can trust implicitly. Since you decide to spend money anyway, you might as well go to a place where they follow all safety protocols for any and all dermatological procedures.
Follow Post-Treatment Guidelines
There are certain dos and don'ts right after a hair removal session, all of which need to be followed to the letter in order to avoid adverse effects. Some of the most important things to remember is to avoid direct sunlight and contact with harmful substances, i.e. self tanners, etc.
Despite the potential laser hair removal side effects, I still recommend this treatment to anyone who wish to keep their body smooth and free of unwanted hair. Laser treatments certainly make my life a lot easier in so far as keeping up with my grooming requirements.