Why am I hairier after laser hair removal?

Why am I hairier after laser hair removal?

Trying something new is not exiting all the time. So, whether you just had your first laser hair removal appointment or do some research before trying one, some people might experience more noticeable hair growth after a laser treatment compared to an electrolysis session. If this happened to you, take a deep breath. It’s a common assurance to notice more hair after laser hair removal. In most of the cases this doesn’t happen because of a failed treatment.

Shedding vs. Regrowth – Understanding the Hair Growth Cycle

So, let’s see first how laser hair removal works. When you get laser on your skin, the laser targets hair follicles in their active grow phase (anagen phase) with concentrated light. When the light gets to the follicles it disrupts the follicle’s ability to produce new hair. There are two different phases that hair follicles cycle through: growth transition and resting. The laser can only affect follicles in the anlagen phase. What happens to the follicles in the other phase? Here’s where the “extra hair” come in:

  • Shedding: After treatment, some follicles in the anagen phase may be damaged and eventually shed the existing hair. This shedding process can push dormant hairs (telogen phase) into the active growth phase, making them more visible for a short period (1-2 weeks). This is just the treated hairs exiting, not new growth.
  • Incomplete Treatment: Multiple laser sessions are typically needed for optimal results because not all follicles are in the anagen phase at once. So, initially, you might see some “untouched” hairs that were in the resting or transition phase during your first session. These will be addressed in subsequent treatments.

Rare Cases: Paradoxical Hypertrichosis

In rare instances, laser hair removal can stimulate hair growth, a phenomenon known as paradoxical hypertrichosis. This typically occurs on the lower face, especially in individuals with light skin and dark hair, or those with hormonal imbalances. If you suspect this might be happening, consult your technician to discuss alternative hair removal methods.

What to Do After Your Laser Hair Removal Treatment:

  • Follow your technician’s aftercare instructions: This might include avoiding sun exposure, hot showers, and using soothing lotions.
  • Be patient: Multiple sessions are needed for long-lasting results. Stick to your treatment schedule for optimal hair reduction.
  • Don’t shave: Shaving doesn’t affect laser treatment effectiveness, but waxing or plucking can disrupt the hair growth cycle and should be avoided. You can trim the hair if it becomes bothersome during the shedding phase.


This blog post is more an informative information. We strongly recommend you consult your laser hair removal technician if you’re concerned about the amount of hair growth after your treatment. Usually when you have your consultation, they should tell you about these cases but if they didn’t, you can always contact them. In most cases with a little patience and by following the recommended treatment plan from your laser hair removal technician you’ll achieve that smooth, hair-free skin you desire. And as a final note, if you are not happy with your technician, you can always find another one. Most of the hair removal clinics offer free consultations. This is a great option to consult with multiple other professional laser hair removal technicians.

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