Is Laser Hair Removal Painful? (INFOGRAPHIC)

You deserve to know the truth about laser hair removal.

If you’re looking for an honest and factual answer to the question “Does laser hair removal hurt?” you’ll be pleased to know that we are here to give you the hard facts.

Here is our infographic.

Is Laser Hair Removal Painful Inforgraphic

What do you think about it? Is it cool?

The truth is that this procedure isn’t painless – it does cause some discomfort, although most people find that the level of discomfort is tolerable.

Laser hair removal is more popular with the ladies – however, both genders are able to access great results from this non-invasive cosmetic procedure.

Pain Factors

Laser Hair Removal Pain Factors

The sensation of getting laser hair removal has been likened to “the snapping of a hot rubber band” upon the skin.

Since everyone has a different level of pain tolerance, some people may find this sensation to be mildly uncomfortable, while others will perceive it as moderately painful or very uncomfortable.

You should also know that pain levels are dependent on more than personal pain tolerance.

Here are some other variables which may influence how much pain a person experiences during laser hair removal…

The four factors which impact discomfort levels during treatments are:

  • Type of Hair
  • Type of Skin
  • Overall Health
  • Area of Treatment

Type of Hair

Women (and men, too!) who have darker, coarser hair may experience more pain during laser hair removal. The reason for this is that lasers are drawn to the pigment (melanin) in hair.

The more pigment there is in your tresses, the more you’re likely to feel the “rubber band sensation” as it works to remove excess hair and minimize hair regrowth.

However, no matter what your hair color is, you’ll find that any discomfort related to your treatment ceases right after the procedure is complete.

As well, you should know that there are ways to ease discomfort while you’re having laser hair removal procedures. We’ll talk about those later.

We’re only mentioning this now in order to let you know that discomfort may be managed during treatment.

Type of Skin

Your skin color may also play a role in how much pain you have to deal with during this type of cosmetic procedure.

Just as the laser is attracted to pigment in hair, it’s attracted to pigment in skin. So, darker skin may trigger a bit more discomfort when compared to fairer skin.

So, the same principle applies here. The laser will target pigment in skin and the more pigment there is, the more discomfort you are likely to feel.

Overall Health

Your overall health may play a role in how you respond to laser hair removal.

For example, if you have a health condition which makes you rather sensitive to pain (Fibromyalgia is just one example), you may find this type of procedure to be more uncomfortable than those with stronger overall health do.

If you have questions about this, speak to your family physician and/or consult with an experienced and reputable laser hair removal technician.

Area of Treatment

Some areas of the body may trigger more unwanted sensations than others, for example:

  • underarms;
  • bikini zone (brazilian);
  • upper lip.

Brazilian laser hair removal pain may be more intense since it happens in a very sensitive place.

However, some people make the procedure easier by using naturally methods, including numbing creams, herbal pain relievers and meditation.

Let’s talk about reducing the level of pain on.

How to Reduce Pain

How to reduce pain Laser Hair removal

The key to getting great results from laser hair removal – without the downside of pain – is applying a numbing cream before the treatment begins.

Some people prefer to take painkillers before their procedures. Others may do both.

In terms of numbing cream, the most commonly-used option is EMLA Topical, which has a strong and positive reputation in terms of efficacy.

There are plenty of other numbing creams out there and your laser hair removal technician may recommend something different.

Putting on the cream twenty to thirty minutes before your procedure (apply it only to the affected area) will work wonders, although it may not eliminate discomfort entirely.

One painkiller which is frequently used before this type of treatment is Ibuprofen. It’s a good choice as its anti-inflammatory.

Advil and Aleve are examples of brand-name Ibuprofen formulas.

Women may wish to book their appointments at times when they are not menstruating, as menstruation often triggers more sensitivity.

As well, avoiding alcohol and caffeine before procedures (drink plenty of pure water instead) may be helpful in terms of minimizing discomfort.

What Hurts More – Laser or Waxing?

Waxing can be quite painful – after all, during waxing, hair is ripped out by the roots and this definitely feels unpleasant!

While laser hair removal may trigger the “rubber band” sensation, it’s usually not painful on the profound level that waxing is.

However, waxing happens quickly and laser hair removal takes more time.

Opinions vary about which procedure is most painful. Those who prefer the “rubber band” sensation over the intense, short-term pain of waxing also appreciate the long-lasting benefits of laser hair removal.

They know that any discomfort from this type of procedure is well worth putting up with, as they will experience less hair regrowth in the future.

Waxing doesn’t offer the same long-lasting benefits as laser hair removal and waxing really hurts, particularly in the body’s most sensitive areas.


We’ve now told you about the reality of laser hair removal discomfort. We’ve explained that it varies from person to person and that there are ways to minimize or eliminate it.

While most people do experience some discomfort, it’s generally pretty manageable, unless a person’s pain threshold is really high or a very sensitive part of the body is being worked on.

Now that you know the truth, you’ll be ready to decide whether or not this type of hair removal treatment is right for you.

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