When to Stop Shaving Before Laser Hair Removal?

How close to a Laser Hair Removal treatment should I shave? I am thinking about just letting them shave me right before the laser--will this affect the laser's efficacy?

Doctor Answers 21

Shaving before laser hair removal

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Shave the night before or the morning of laser hair removal. If you cannot get all hair completely, like people sometimes experience when getting a full brazilian, laser hair removal around the thing line, etc. we can touch up areas. if people require a full shave, there is a small charge
It is important not to have hair on the surface of the skin, otherwise, that hair will absorb some of the laser energy. The objective is for the laser energy to go directly to the rot of the hair. This is a reason to select the ideal laser for your skin type. The alexandriite laser is best for light to medium toned skinned individuals. The long pulsed nd yag is best for dark skinned types

Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 123 reviews

Laser Hair Removal Prep

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When having Laser Hair Removal, we want you to be as clean shaven as possible.  We recommend doing it in the morning before you come.  If you shave immediately prior to the laser, you can possibly have increased inflammation/redness after the treatment. 

Dr. Grant Stevens


Grant Stevens, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 152 reviews

Prep for Laser Hair Removal

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 You will receive the best results when you show up to your appointment with a clean shave and non irritated skin. 

Shaving Before Laser Hair

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I always recommend shaving the day before or the day of the procedure.  We use an electric razor at the time of the appointment so that we can see exactly where the hair is and avoid any irritation for the patients before the laser hair removal.  Please consult an expert in laser hair removal for the best cosmetic results.  Best, Dr. Green

A Couple of Days Max

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Dear meus,

Great question as the amount of hair present on the body during the laser hair removal treatment does make a difference. The laser can only target the hairs that are growing at the time of the treatment. This may only be 15% of all the hairs that are living in that area of tissue. Hairs grow about half an

inch per month. The laser needs a target to focus on, and thus some small growth of hair should be present for successful treatment (about 2 days of growth after shaving). Hope this information helps!

Dr. S

Bruce Saal, MD
Los Gatos Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Shaving and hair removal

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you can shave any time before laser as long as there is no surface hair at the time of treatment. the patient can get superficial burn due to surface hair and additionally the treatment efficacy may be decreased. in between sessions you should not wax or use any treatment that gets the follicles out but shaving is ok but do dont have to till the night before or day of treatment. Best Parham Gharagozlou MD FACP

Parham Gharagozlou, MD, FACP
Walnut Creek Physician

When to shave for laser hair

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Ideally shave the day prior or morning of your laser hair procedure.  Not shaving prior to your procedure, will take more time for your procedure, may make your procedure hurt more, and if the office has to shave you incur a shave charge.

Anil R. Shah, MD
Chicago Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 181 reviews

When to Stop Shaving Before Laser Hair Removal?

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When having laser hair removal I recommend shaving the morning of your appointment. If you shave right before coming there is a risk of irritation. If there is hair above the skin then the laser will be absorbed by the hair and not the follicle and the treatment will not be effective.

Hardik Soni, MD (not currently practicing)
Summit Emergency Medicine Physician

Shave Prior To Treatment

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When having laser hair removal, it is best to shave one day prior to treatment. If you shave too soon, such as the morning of treatment, irritation may occur.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Shaving Prior to Laser Hair Removal

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It is best to shave the day before or the day of your treatment. Use a fresh razor with shaving cream to avoid razor burn. Shaving during your appointment can lead to cuts and razor irritation due to a dry shave, and is not recommended.

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.