There is no official information about whether laser hair removal during pregnancy is safe or not, but there is a lot of speculation. Whichever way you choose to rid your body of excess and unwanted hair, you should first be clear on the procedure and on your other options.
Pregnancy: a hairy situation
During pregnancy, hormonal changes in a women’s body cause abnormal hair growth. Areas like the nipples, lower stomach and pubic area will often sprout darker, thicker hairs. This is uncomfortable and unsightly, leaving most women desperate to find a way to get rid of the excess hair. Shaving can be difficult as it often requires lifting arms, bending your neck, bending your body and balancing on one leg.
For a pregnant woman who is cumbersome in general, moving and bending can be very difficult and could even be dangerous. Waxing is painful and is also difficult to do by yourself. If you cannot see over your swollen belly you will be unlikely to be able to wax yourself successfully. Even if you have it done professionally you will still suffer the pain of waxing while you are incredibly sensitive and your hair will grow back which means a repeat experience.
Is laser hair removal safe during pregnancy?
There have not been any studies to prove whether or not laser hair removal could be harmful to the foetus or the mother if it is conducted during pregnancy, but because of the lack of information, most medical practitioners would recommend avoiding it while you are pregnant. Aside from the potential danger to you and your baby, there are several other downsides including the following:
- During pregnancy, the body becomes much more sensitive, especially in the area of the abdomen. As laser hair removal is somewhat painful under normal circumstances, doing it during pregnancy could be even more painful.
- Some medical practitioners suspect that laser hair removal over the breast area could affect your ability to produce milk and breastfeed successfully.
- Some medical practitioners suspect that having laser hair removal over the stomach and pubic area could negatively affect the foetus and the mother.
Before you go ahead with laser hair removal
Before booking an appointment at your local beauty salon, speak to your gynaecologist, your doctor and any other medical practitioner whose opinion you trust. If you are desperate to have your excess hair removed by laser hair removal, it might be best to only do areas like your underarms, your legs, your upper lip, your arms or any other area that is not in the danger zone. The areas to avoid are your breasts, abdomen and pubic area.
Of course, if you can, it is probably safer to avoid laser hair removal during pregnancy in general and wait until after your baby is born. It is always better to be safe than sorry. If you are desperate to have hair removed and you want to avoid laser hair removal, you could always ask your partner or a friend to help you shave. It is dangerous when you are not as well balanced as normal to try to bend and balance on one leg by yourself of to try to climb out of the bath by yourself.
What is laser hair removal?
Laser hair removal is one way to rid your body of excess hair almost permanently. With repeated sessions, hair stops growing back completely. An electric current is sent from the laser through the client which targets the pigment in darker hair and causes damage to the hair follicle. This stops the hair growing back. It is more expensive than waxing and shaving, but you do save money on razor blades and waxing sessions in the long run as with laser hair removal, you will only need to do it for a period of time.
It is also somewhat painful, but not any more than waxing would be. Most reputable beauty spas or salons will offer laser hair removal, including the following spas:
- Mayo Clinic of South Africa
- The Wembley Clinic