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Sunbathing before and after laser hair removal

20th April 2015

One of the main reasons people opt for laser hair removal is to look great in the summer months. However, if you're thinking about sunbathing before or after your treatment, it's important to understand how the effects of sun exposure can interact with laser hair removal.

The first thing to know is that everyone's skin is different, and will react in different ways to sun exposure. That's why it's essential to discuss your treatment with a dermatologist at length beforehand, who will let you know what's appropriate for your particular skin and hair type.

In most cases, the best advice is for those about to undergo laser hair treatment to avoid sunbathing, and to limit their sun exposure as much as possible. This is because laser removal works best on un-tanned skin, and on hair that has not been bleached by the sun.

Don't worry – you can still go out, even in summer clothes. Just make sure you wear sun cream with a high SPF for the week prior to your treatment, and avoid prolonged exposure to the sun. If you already have a tan, don't have your treatment until it's had time to fade. This will help make sure that you get the best results from the sessions. 

After your treatment your skin will be sensitive, and will need time to heal. Excessive sun exposure at this time risks damage to your skin, so it's highly advisable to avoid sunbathing and tanning beds. Again, apply sun protection of at least SPF 30 when you go out. A wide-brimmed hat and long sleeves are also advisable for about a week.

Once you're fully healed, it's still important to take care in the sun. Don't try to regain your tan too quickly. By looking after your skin, you'll make sure you stay looking your best. Any questions should be directed to your dermatologist who will be able to guide you through the aftercare process.

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