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Does Laser Hair Removal Hurt?

Most clients at The Angel Laser Clinic say that hair removal is virtually painless and certainly more comfortable than waxing. However, everyone has a different pain threshold and the sensation of the laser varies between areas of the body. One of our patients said:

“In my case I did not feel any sensation on my arms except for the cooling air. My legs were a bit more sensitive. My bikini line was quite a lot more sensitive but the cooling air really helped relive the discomfort during my laser hair removal.”

Do You Use a Cooling Device to Reduce Pain?

At The Angel Laser Clinic we use the FDA approved Cynosure Elite laser. This is equipped with a Cooling Device (SmartCool 6) which provides maximum patient comfort while minimising side effects during aesthetic laser treatments. The SmartCool 6 provides a continuous flow of chilled air before, during and after the treatment. The practitioner can customise the intensity of skin cooling by choosing between six different airflow rates. The SmartCool 6 protects the tissue and skin from possible thermal damage, allowing the use of higher energy for increased efficiency in the hair removal process.

Can Creams Alleviate the Pain of Laser Hair Removal?

Often clients describe their laser hair removal treatment in Angel as feeling like a rubber band snap or a slight stinging sensation. Few request any additional pain control during treatment. The practitioner always discusses the options with the patient based upon his/her skin tolerance and the body area to be treated. If patients need additional pain control we normally recommend the use of EMLA cream (an abbreviation for Eutectic Mixture of Local Anesthetics). This contains 2.5% each of lidocaine and prilocaine which causes dermal anesthesia. Important considerations when using EMLA cream include:

  • Apply the EMLA cream 1 hour before the hair removal starts.
  • Use an occlusive dressing (e.g. cling film). This will help absorption of the anesthetic into the skin.
  • Before laser hair removal begins, remove the cling film and the cream and clean the skin thoroughly. The dermal anesthesia (numbing sensation) will last for around one to two hours.
  • Certain medical conditions (e.g. severe liver disease and some blood disorders) are likely to prevent the use of EMLA cream during laser hair removal.
  • EMLA cream should not be used for very large areas of the body (e.g. full legs). In very high doses, adverse effects could occur which might impair the functioning of the cardiovascular system, even leading to possible cardiac arrest.

For more information about skin sensation during laser hair removal in N1, please contact us our laser clinic in Highbury and Islington.