Is Laser Hair Removal Right For You?

laser hair removal in Salem, OR

If you don’t like having to wax, shave, or tweeze to remove unwanted hair, laser hair removal in Salem, OR may be worth considering.

One of the most commonly performed cosmetic dental treatments in the U.S., laser hair removal focuses beams of highly concentrated light into hair follicles. The natural pigment found in the hair follicles absorb the light which destroys the hair.

Sounds simple, right? Laser hair removal offers a number of benefits when compared to traditional hair removal techniques such as shaving or waxing. The procedure is relatively painless (unlike waxing) and it doesn’t cause razor burn or breakouts (like shaving). Here’s what you need to know to determine whether laser hair removal is right for you.

Benefits of Laser Hair Removal

The use of lasers to remove unwanted hair from the arm, leg, underarm, bikini line, face, and other areas offers our Salem Dermatology Clinic technicians unparalleled precision. Lasers can selectively target dark, coarse hairs while leaving the surrounding skin completely undamaged.

Each pulse of the laser takes less than a second and can remove many hairs at the same time. The hair removal laser can treat an area about the size of a quarter every second. Treatment of small areas of the body, such as the upper lip, can be completed in just one minute, while larger areas, such as the legs and back, may take about an hour to complete.

The best part of laser hair removal is that the majority of patients enjoy permanent hair loss after undergoing between three to seven sessions.

Preparing for Laser Hair Removal in Salem, OR

Laser hair removal entails more than just “zapping” away unwanted or problematic hair. The treatment is considered a medical procedure that must be performed by trained specialists. When performed incorrectly, the procedure does carry some potential health risks.

If you’re planning on undergoing laser hair removal, try to avoid waxing, plucking, and electrolysis for at least six weeks prior to your scheduled treatment. You should avoid these types of activities because the laser targets the roots of your hair, which are temporarily removed by plucking or waxing.

You should also limit your sun exposure for six weeks prior to and after receiving treatment. Sun exposure makes laser hair removal less effective and increases the likelihood that you’ll experience complications following your treatment.

What to Expect During Laser Hair Removal Treatments

Just prior to treatment, the hair targeted for removal will be trimmed down to just a few millimeters above the surface of your skin. The laser will then be adjusted based on the thickness, color, and location of the hair being treated, as well as your skin color.

Depending on the laser and location of the treatment, it may be necessary to wear protective eye wear. To protect the outer layers of your skin, a cold gel or special cooling device will be applied. This not only helps protect your skin, it also enables the light of the laser to better penetrate the hair follicles.

Next, our Salem Dermatology Clinic technician will treat the area with a pulse of light and then examine the area for several minutes to determine if the best settings were used and to check for any adverse reactions.

When the procedure is completed, you may be given an anti-inflammatory lotion or cream, ice pack, or cold water to ease any discomfort you may experience. Following the completion of a successful treatment session, you can schedule your next treatment four to six weeks later. You’ll need to continue receiving treatments until the hair no longer continues to grow.

Recovering from Laser Hair Removal

For the next couple of days, your treated skin may look and feel like it’s sunburned. To relieve any discomfort, try using moisturizers or a cool compress. If your face was treated, you can wear makeup the following day unless your skin has blistered.

Over the next 30 days, your treated hair will begin to fall out. Make sure to wear sunscreen for the following month to help prevent temporary changes to the color of the treated skin.

Blisters are very uncommon but are more likely to develop in patients that have a darker complexion. Other potential side effects include redness, swelling, and scarring. However, changes to skin color and scarring are very rare.