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5 Important Things To Know About Shaving Before Laser Hair Removal

By Viktoria
July 26, 2023
8 minutes

Are you on the quest for smooth and hair-free skin? Do you want a long-lasting solution to your monthly waxing and epilating? Laser hair removal is the most effective and popular solution.

The main advantage I found in this procedure is that it offers a long-lasting and almost long-lasting reduction of unwanted hair. Once you undergo this procedure, you no longer have to wax, shave, or pluck your hair before heading to the beach or party. Just imagine how time-saving and convenient it is!!

However, laser hair removal is not something that you can do one fine morning. There are certain preparations involved before you step into the treatment room. One among them is shaving prior to the procedure. In fact, I figured out that shaving before a laser treatment can significantly impact the outcome.

In this guide, we will look at the crucial things to consider about shaving before laser hair removal. Whether you are a first-time candidate or someone going for additional sessions, understanding these essential points can make a huge difference. In fact, it can drastically improve the effectiveness and overall satisfaction with the treatment.

Why is it crucial to shave before your laser hair removal?

Enhanced Precision

Just imagine sitting for a laser hair treatment with hairy legs! Of course, it looks gross. But more importantly, how will the doctor figure out where exactly the treatment should be done?

Shaving the treatment area prior to laser hair removal allows the laser to target the hair follicles beneath the skin precisely. When you shave the hair, the laser can directly focus on the melanin (pigment) within the follicles. Don’t you think it can drastically improve the results? Of course, it does.

In case you do not shave before the laser treatment, the laser gets dispersed or absorbed by the hair shafts above the skin. Shaving ensures that the laser treatment is spot on!

Optimal Treatment Results

Can you imagine spending a lot of money on the treatment and not getting the desired result? Of course, this is not what you want.

You should understand that laser hair removal is effective when the hair follicles absorb the laser energy. This leads to damage to the follicle and then a reduction in hair growth.

If you shave the hair before the laser treatment, it can target the hair follicles. It does not interfere with the visible hair. By removing the hair above the skin’s surface, the laser can penetrate deeper and provide more effective results. This provides one more reason for you to shave before the treatment!

Avoid Surface Burns

Laser hair removal leaves a certain picture on your mind. A silky soft skin that makes others envious! Well, that is what you ultimately want. Burns on the skin’s surface are the last thing on your mind.

However, when you undergo laser treatment without proper shaving, do you know what happens? The long hairs absorb the laser energy.

What does this mean? This means the energy spreads to the skin’s surface. It is not directed to the hair follicles where it is meant to be.

And what is the result? Burns on the skin and discomfort.

When you shave before laser hair removal, there is less chance for the hair shafts to absorb the laser energy. Thus the chances of burns on the skin’s surface are considerably reduced. Thus, it promotes a safer treatment experience.

Time and Cost Efficiency

We know that cost is a primary consideration while undergoing any cosmetic treatment. Don’t you agree? Yes, we know you do.

Laser hair removal treatment is no different. You want to reduce costs to any extent.

What happens if you undergo laser treatment with shaved hands or legs? It will definitely reduce the workload of the technician. Don’t you think so? And what is the result? Of course, efficient work and reduced cost and time.

How long before the procedure should you shave the hair?

This is one doubt that most aspirants have. When should I shave the hair? Can I do it just before leaving for the treatment? Or should I do it a day ahead?

To achieve the best results and ensure safe laser hair removal, we recommend shaving the treatment area one to two days before the scheduled session.

Now you might ask, “Why should I shave the hair in advance?”. “Can I not undergo the procedure without shaving?”

First of all, shaving the hair a day or two in advance allows the skin to recover from any potential irritation. Are you sensitive to shaving? Then, without a doubt, you should shave in advance as it helps the skin to recover before the procedure.

We figured out that for the laser treatment to work effectively, the hair should be a little short. Shaving one or two days ahead ensures the hair is short enough for the laser to target the follicles effectively.

Moreover, since the hair is short, it does not interfere with the visible hair above the skin’s surface.

“What if I forget to shave the area?” In most cases, the technician will call you up a day before to confirm your appointment. If even after that you forget to shave, it is best to reschedule your appointment.

What are the crucial things to know about shaving before laser hair removal?

  • Don’t Shave Immediately Before the Session

“I am having my laser hair removal appointment in an hour’s time. I will shave right away and go for the treatment.” Is this what you have in mind? Then you are wrong.

Shaving the treatment area too close to the hair removal session can cause minor skin irritations.

Have you ever observed your skin getting dry after shaving? Yes, the skin tends to get dry and flaky after you shave. If you undergo laser treatment immediately after shaving, it can cause itchiness and irritation.

It is for this same reason that we recommend shaving one to two days before the procedure. This allows the skin to recover and minimize the discomfort during the treatment.

  • Use a Clean and Sharp Razor

You know that a clean trim is a must-have before the procedure. But then how do you achieve it? Of course, by using a neat and sharp razor.

Have you ever noticed that a blunt blade can cause scratches and skin irritation? If you have not, yes it does. And it is sure to cause uneasiness during the laser procedure.

To avoid all this, you should change the blade before shaving. This ensures a clean and effective shave which is what you want!

  • Shave in the Direction of Hair Growth

Do you know that shaving in the wrong direction can lead to ingrown hair? Yes, this really can occur.

To avoid this, you should shave in the direction of hair growth.

There is one more benefit to this approach. Yes, you are right! It helps accomplish a closer shave. This, in turn, curtails the possibility of skin vexation after the procedure.

Avoid Irritating the Skin before shaving

It is very crucial that your skin remain non-sensitive while undergoing laser treatment. Thus, you should avoid harsh exfoliants, scrubs, or abrasive products in the treatment area.

Instead, you can opt for gentle cleansing and moisturizing products to keep the skin clean and hydrated.

  • Speak to your specialist in case of doubt.

Do you have any concerns or questions about shaving before laser hair removal? Then your laser hair removal specialist is the best person to consult.

These specialists can provide personalized instructions based on your circumstances. They also ensure that you have all the information you need for a successful treatment.

What are the other precautions to take before laser hair removal?

  • Avoid Sun Exposure

You should protect your skin from sun exposure at least four to six weeks prior to the laser hair removal procedure. It would be best to avoid tanning beds and sunbathing for some time.

We have noticed that sunburned or tanned skin is hypersensitive to laser energy. This can, in turn, augment the risk of aftereffects such as skin blemishes or burns.

If you have a tan, we would advise you to wait until your skin returns to its natural color before undergoing treatment.

  • Avoid Other Hair Removal Methods other than shaving

We have observed that hair removal methods like plucking, waxing, or using hair removal creams undoubtedly remove the hair follicles. Since hair follicles are the target for laser hair removal, we recommend you avoid the above hair removal methods.

Shaving is typically the only recommended method of hair removal before laser treatment.

  • Protect Your Skin

To get the best result from a laser treatment, you should keep the treatment area clean.

Do you apply any lotions, creams, or makeup regularly? Then it is best to stay away from it on the day of the procedure. These products can interfere with the laser’s effectiveness or cause adverse reactions.

It’s best to arrive with clean, freshly washed skin for the treatment.

If you use any medication or topical cream for your skin, you should inform your laser hair removal specialist.

Certain medications or products can make your skin more sensitive to the laser. For eg, retinoids or photosensitizing medications may not be a good option before laser treatment.

Your specialist will tell you whether to stop or adjust these treatments before your laser hair removal sessions.


Are you contemplating undergoing laser hair removal? Then we would advise shaving before the treatment. This helps in the accurate targeting of hair follicles and optimizes the adeptness of the procedure.

Shaving ensures safety and also curtails the risk associated with the presence of hair while undergoing laser hair removal. However, we would advise you to shave one or two days prior to the procedure to provide the best result.

You should use a neat and sharp razor for hair removal. This helps to remove all unwanted hair without irritating the skin.

Above all, you should follow the specific advice provided by the consultant. This helps achieve the best possible outcome.


Should I shave before laser hair removal?

Yes, you should shave before laser hair removal. Shaving helps discard long hair, which would otherwise meddle with the laser procedure. Moreover, the doctor can view the follicle precisely when the hair is taken off.

What happens if I do not shave before laser hair removal?

If you do not shave before the laser treatment, the laser will act on the surface of the skin rather than the hair follicle. Thus, you may not get the desired outcome.

Besides, the hair present on the skin will take in more heat, causing a lot of irritation to the skin.

Can I do waxing before laser hair removal?

No, waxing is not advisable before laser hair removal. This is because the laser will not have anything to target when the hair is removed from the root.

For this same reason, epilating is also not recommended before laser hair removal.

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