Laser hair removal is popular with people wanting a solution to hair removal that is more permanent than some other methods.

Before embarking on the therapy, however, you should make aware of some side effects of laser hair removal:

  • Redness and irritation
  • Crusting
  • Changes in skin color
  • Eye injury
  • Risk of skin infection

    Side Effects

    A few different side effects can appear after laser hair removal. Most side effects are minor and temporary. Anyone experiencing lasting side effects should consult a dermatologist.

    Redness and irritation

    Laser hair removal damages the follicles of the targeted hairs. The body reacts to this, and many people experience redness and irritation in the affected areas. The skin may tingle or feel tender, and may even appear to swell slightly.

    The symptoms are usually short-lived. Irritation should ease after the initial reaction, usually within a few hours of the treatment. Swelling and redness may respond well to ice packs or a cool bath.


    Some people may experience skin crusting in the affected area. This is typically a minor issue but can be inconvenient.

    Crusting can sometimes lead to scabbing or scarring.

    By taking care of the treated area after laser removal, such as by using a moisturizer, which may prevent any lasting issues from this treatment.

    Changes in skin color

    Some people may notice minor color changes to the treated area of skin. It may get slightly darker or lighter, following laser hair removal.

    People with lighter skin may be more likely to experience darker pigmentation changes. People with darker skin tones may be more prone to lighter pigmentation changes. These changes tend to fade away over time, and the skin returns to normal.

    Eye injury

    The hair removal procedure involves the use of powerful lasers. This means there is a risk of potentially serious eye injury, especially when a practitioner is working on a person’s face.

    Both the person receiving the treatment and the practitioner should wear protective eye equipment to help prevent injury while the procedure is carried out.

    Risk of skin infection

    As with other cosmetic hair removal methods, damaging hair follicles with a laser can create an infection risk.

    The affected area should be treated as a wound while it heals. People should report any signs of infection to a dermatologist.

    Finally, they should not apply over-the-counter (OTC) antibiotic creams to large areas of skin if an infection arises.

    Risk During Pregnant

    Experts do not recommend laser hair removal for people who are pregnant. This is because scientists have not carried out any human studies that prove the safety of laser hair removal during pregnancy.

    Pregnancy causes hormonal changes in a person’s body. This can commonly cause extra hairs to grow in unwanted places. While this growth can be embarrassing, the hairs often go away on their own.

    Is Laser Hair Removal Safe? 

    The majority of people who use it find that laser hair removal is safe and well-tolerated. There do not appear to be any laser hair removal side effects long term.

    However, some people may experience minor side effects after laser hair removal. People should ask their dermatologist to test how a small patch of skin reacts to the treatment before having it done on a larger area of skin.

    How to Prepare?

    If you're interested in laser hair removal, Before laser hair removal, schedule a consultation with the doctor to determine if this is an appropriate treatment option for you. The doctor will offer specific instructions to prepare for laser hair removal. These might include:

    Staying out of the sun- you might need to avoid sunbathing and sun exposure as much as possible before and after treatment. Tanned or dark skin runs the risk of hypo or hyperpigmentation, because the hair laser can mistake the darker skin pigment as the target—the hair follicle. If you have a tan you’ll need to wait till it fades before you can start your treatment.

    Lightening your skin- Avoid any sunless skin creams that darken your skin. Your doctor might also prescribe a skin bleaching cream if you have a recent tan or darker skin.

    Avoiding other hair removal methods- Plucking, waxing and electrolysis can disturb the hair follicle and should be avoided at least four weeks before treatment.

    Shaving treatment area- Trimming and shaving is recommended the day before laser treatment. It removes hair above the skin that can result in surface skin damage from burnt hairs, but it leaves the hair shaft intact below the surface.

    What about laser hair removal at home?

    At-home laser hair devices are pretty safe and are a great alternative to professional laser hair removal. Most devices don't actually use 'laser' but intense pulsed light (IPL), which is absorbed by the pigment in the hair follicles, a great maintenance treatment for in-between professional laser hair removal and is a wonderful option for home use.

    With salons and spas closed indefinitely, brands like Padapada, Silk'n, Elelsilk developed IPL hair removal handset, which is a  pretty nice choice if you want to remove hair at home.