Laser hair removal is often heralded as the be-all end-all of getting rid of unwanted hair. In commercials, those who have received the treatment are seen throwing away their razors, wax and tweezers in favor of having their body hair removed once and for all. While it’s a nice sentiment, it isn’t exactly accurate.

During laser hair removal, the roots of the hair are destroyed, and follicles become dormant. After a while, some hairs may begin growing back. However, they will be lighter and finer, making them far less noticeable. They will also be fewer in number.

In order to get the full effect of laser hair removal, you need to undergo the treatment more than just once. Here’s how often you should be getting laser hair removal:

How Many Treatments Do I Need?

Most people need to undergo four to six laser hair removal sessions in order to see optimal results. However, depending on your skin and hair color, the texture of your hair, your hair growth cycles and a variety of other factors, you may need more (or fewer) sessions. These sessions need to be spaced out correctly for maximum effectiveness.

Usually, you will need to space out your appointments to be about four to six weeks apart. This means your treatment could last anywhere from four to nine months in total. But, the effects of laser hair removal will be almost immediate. You’ll notice the hair in the treated area is either gone or falls out in the days following your session.

While you technically can get laser hair removal as often as you want, it won’t be effective if you get it too quickly. The four-to-six week interval lines up with the normal hair growth cycle, so the laser targets the hair root again as it begins growing back.

In Between Sessions

In between sessions, you should avoid actively tanning for a few reasons. In the first few days after your session, your skin will be extremely sensitive to UV light. Additionally, the darker your skin is, the harder it is for the laser to target the hair. Finally, having laser hair removal performed on freshly-tanned skin can cause discoloration — an issue no one wants to deal with.

You’ll also probably begin growing some of your hair back in between sessions. Avoid waxing or plucking. As we mentioned before, the laser targets the hair root; waxing and plucking remove that root. However, shaving is just fine. In fact, you should shave the treatment area within 24 hours of your next appointment.

After Your Treatment Has Ended

According to a specialist from BodyDetails, once your laser hair removal treatment sessions are all concluded, you should see a lack of any real noticeable hair in the area for a long time. Any hair that grows back can be shaved, waxed or plucked as you see fit. Though this is considered a long-term solution to unwanted hair, it is not technically permanent. You may want to get a touch-up treatment once or twice a year.

Though laser hair removal isn’t permanent, it is a great way to make sure your unwanted body hair is all but gone for a long time. And when it does grow back, it is much less noticeable — if it’s noticeable at all. If you’re ready to put down the wax and razors for months at a time, find a reputable laser hair removal specialist near you!

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