Sunbathing Before & After Laser Hair Removal
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.
Sun tan and laser hair removal
The first thing to know is that everyone’s skin is different, and will react in different ways when exposed to sunlight. 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 hair and skin type.
Laser hair removal and sun exposure – Before
In most cases, the best advice for those about to undergo laser hair treatment is to avoid sunbathing, and to limit their sun exposure as much as possible. This is because laser treatments provide long term results and work best on un-tanned skin and on hair that has not been bleached by the sun.
You can still go out, even in summer clothes. Just make sure you wear broad spectrum sun cream with a high SPF for the week prior to your treatment and avoid prolonged exposure to the sun, even if you have darker skin. This will also ensure the risk of burning and hyperpigmentation is minimised.
You shouldn’t undergo laser hair removal if you have sunburnt skin. This is because the light energy transfer from the sun requires the skin to heal. The laser also transmits strong bolts of energy deep into the hair follicles, which can seriously aggravate the sunburn.
If you already have a tan, avoid booking your treatment until it’s had time to fade. This will help make sure that you get the best results from the sessions.
Avoid sun exposure after laser hair removal treatments
After your treatment, your skin will be sensitive and will need time to heal. Excessive exposure to UV rays at this time risks damage to your skin, so it’s highly advisable to avoid sunbathing and tanning beds.
Again, apply sunscreen of at least SPF 30 when you go out. Make sure you choose a quality product with protection against both UVA and UVB rays. 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 and protect treated skin. Avoid trying 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.
What if I’m travelling to a hotter climate?
If you’re travelling to a hotter climate, it’s best to let your clinic know. Depending on the amount of time you’ll be spending there and what stage you are at in terms of your treatment progress, they will be able to advise on the best course of action to minimise treatment disruption and preserve results.
- Avoid tanning beds and minimise sun exposure before and after undergoing treatment.
- Be sure to wear a high SPF sunscreen and protective clothing if you need to go outdoors.
- If you already have a tan, postpone your treatment until it has faded to ensure optimal results
- If you have sunburns, postpone your appointment until the skin has fully healed and the tan has faded.
- Contact your clinic if you are due to travel to a hotter climate. They will advise what to do in order to avoid treatment disruption.
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