Can Laser Hair Removal leave a Scar?

Using laser light energy which emits pulsed beams of concentrated light to damage the hair at the root and reduce further growth, laser hair removal is not a procedure to be considered lightly and certain risks are involved. Indeed, any laser-based procedure will carry an element of risk and many laser hair removal clinics will require a consent form to be signed which states that the patients are aware of the dangers.  However, it should be highlighted that the possibility of a scar by laser hair removal is relatively small. The best way to guarantee a safe laser hair removal procedure and reduce the likelihood of adverse side effects is to ensure that the laser technician is experienced and skilled and that the clinic is reputable.

Different lasers are available for this procedure and it is vital that the right one is chosen for the client. This is particularly true for people with very dark skin who need to be more cautious of laser hair removal. This is because the darker the complexion, the more melanin there is in the skin. This may result in the skin absorbing the laser light energy which is designed to target melanin in the hair follicle, leading to skin blistering or scarring. For this reason, people with black or Afro-Caribbean skin were, until recently, unable to have laser hair removal treatment. As the popularity for this method has increased, the lasers used have become more advanced and now many clinics will offer the procedure to those with very dark skin. However, a very skilled technician is needed so it is essential that research is done to ensure that the practitioner has extensive experience in this area of laser hair removal.

Other risks involved with laser hair removal are swelling, redness and pigment changes such as the darkening or lightening of the skin after treatment. Generally these issues resolve themselves within a few weeks at most although this depends on the ability of the body to heal.