How many times have you gotten to work in the morning and realized that you were in such a rush that you completely forgot to shave before you left?
As you rush across the street to the convenience store to buy a cheap single-use razor, you think to yourself, “I should really try one of those laser hair removal treatments one day.”
Well, thanks to modern technology, laser hair removal is more accessible and affordable today than it’s ever been! In this article, we’re going to be taking a look at one of the most common questions asked by laser hair removal patients- “How long do I have to wait for my hair to fall out after laser hair removal?”
Before we get into all of the details about the process, let’s take a quick look at how laser hair removal works so you have a better understanding of the process that’s involved and can make a better decision about what method of hair removal you end up going with.
So, after laser hair removal, when does hair fall out? Let’s find out!
How Laser Hair Removal Works
Laser hair removal is always done in a licensed facility under a doctor’s supervision. The lasers used for hair removal are very effective, and if they’re not used correctly, they can harm your skin and eyes. Under doctor supervision, though, laser hair removal is safe, effective, and produces long-lasting results that will allow you to go longer periods of time between shaving.
Before coming in, you’ll need to prepare the skin area that you want to treat by shaving a day or two before and washing right before your treatment. Shaving 24 to 48 hours before treatment ensures that just the tip of the hair is showing, which is the perfect amount for the laser to be able to target the hair follicle. Washing prior to laser treatment ensures that all follicles are open, clean, and easily targeted.
The doctor or technician will then shine a bright light on the surface of your skin so they don’t miss any hairs. Then, they’ll slowly start to run a large handheld laser along the surface of your skin, targeted each individual hair follicle as they go.
The laser is powerful enough to kill the hair and damages the follicle. Once the follicle has been damaged, one of two things happen:
- The follicle goes into a “sleep” mode and won’t produce new hair until it has healed.
- The follicle dies and doesn’t produce hair ever again.
While it may sound a bit violent, it’s perfectly safe. With each monthly treatment, you’ll notice that fewer hairs grow back, and the ones that do grow back will be a lot thinner and easier to manage.
Most laser therapies require around 4 or 5 treatments that are performed every 6 to 8 weeks, making the full process about a year long. After you have finished all of your treatments, you shouldn’t have to worry about hair growing back for a long time.
Over time, your follicles will heal, and hair will start growing back, but it will be a lot slower than it was prior to treatment. When this happens, you usually will just need to schedule a couple more laser hair removal appointments. For most people going to a few laser hair removal sessions a year is preferable to shaving every other day!
After Laser Hair Removal, When Does Hair Fall Out?
Now, to answer the million-dollar question- how long does it take for hair to fall out after laser hair removal treatment?
In general, hairs begin to fall out about 5 days after your first treatment. Some hairs may take up to two weeks to fall out, but you shouldn’t worry about them. Just let the treatment run its course, and soon you’ll have nothing to worry about.
During the treatment process, you may feel a light zap or pinch; this is the laser burning the thinner hairs and causing them to fall out almost immediately. However, the stronger, thicker hairs may hold on for a bit longer. This is why multiple treatments are required.
With each passing treatment, the lasers will gradually break down and destroy even the strongest hair and follicles so that you’ll basically never have to worry about them growing back again.
The Best Laser Hair Removal Alternative
There are a few big drawbacks to laser hair removal. It is expensive, and you have to go out of your way to schedule appointments. If you’re shy, you may feel embarrassed at getting Brazilian laser hair removal from a salon. If you miss an appointment, it may be weeks before the facility is able to put you on the schedule again. This can backtrack your progress and require you to schedule more sessions.
Once you add in the world-changing impact of Covid on all appointment-based business, laser hair removal at a salon isn’t quite as popular as it once was.
Instead, more women have been switching their expensive laser hair treatments for an affordable, at-home solution- IPL hair removal devices.
IPL Hair Removal Devices
IPL stands for Intense Pulse Light. The concept works the same as traditional laser hair removal, but the technology is slightly different. Laser hair removal works by focusing a single light wave on each hair follicle, whereas IPL releases a bright flash containing multiple wavelengths across the surface of your skin.
Despite this difference between IPL and Laser Hair Removal, the effect is the same. The main reason manufacturers use IPL technology instead of laser technology is that IPL devices are 100% legal for at-home use and don’t require a doctor’s supervision since they’re safer.
You’ll follow the same steps for IPL treatment that you would for laser hair removal. Shave 24 to 48 hours before, and use the device on a clean, dry surface. Since the IPL device emits a bright light, you should also wear a pair of sunglasses while using it! This is especially true for facial hair removal treatments.
Just like laser hair treatments, you can expect hairs to start falling out during the first week. It’s important to schedule a routine so that the process works. During your first couple of months, you should use the device once every 2 weeks.
After completing your first 4 treatments, you can cut back to using the device once a month. After 6 to 8 months, you should have significantly less hair growth that’s far easier to manage and requires a lot less shaving! How Long Does IPL Hair Removal Last? It’s permanent, essentially!
If you’ve been considering laser hair removal, then we strongly suggest you give IPL hair removal a try beforehand. IPL devices are just as safe and effective as laser treatment and are a fraction of the cost.
An IPL device typically costs around the same price as one treatment at a laser facility (around $150, give or take), and most patients spend anywhere between $1,000 and $2,000 for a full round of laser hair removal.
Aside from the fact that IPL is more affordable, these effective devices allow you to create your own schedule and perform treatments at your own convenience!