Swelling and other side effects


I’ve just had my first laser treatment after many years of suffering from facial hair on my chin from a reputable clinic recommended by my doctor and attached to a local hospital. Although I knew the treatment was going to be painful I found the pain a lot more extreme then I had expected. I thought my pain threshold was high after having three children but obviously not!

A medium laser was used and I had no adverse reactions to the previous medium and high patch test. But straight after the skin around my chin is swollen, irritated and there is patchy discolouration. My skin is not particularly dark - olive toned, but the hairs are coarse - however I wasn’t expecting this much of a reaction.

Perhaps I was expecting too much from the treatment, but as I have five more sessions booked some reassurance and advice would be appreciated about side effects.


I had my upper lip done about 2-3 weeks ago now and I have to agree, it hurt like hell, even my TEETH hurt!!

When she was done, I got to look in the mirror, and I had some redness, but not as much as I expected… The pain and most of the redness was gone in about an hour (pain was gone in about 1/2 hour)

I had my underarms done on friday as well, I got there early and they put me in a room and asked if I wanted to try the Emla cream… I said sure, so they did that and it stayed on about 10-15 min, not long enough, I know, but I do believe it worked a little bit… It still hurt, but not as bad as the upper lip… I was pretty suprised when I looked after she was done, My underarms were cleanly shaven when I went in, when she was done, there was like black ‘goo’ all over them, she said it was hair that was killed (looked like it exploded in the pores and just came out)… Again, I had some pain, some redness (a little bit of scabbing in ‘lines’ where the handpiece was moved) but again, the redness and the pain didnt last very long…

It has been 2 days, and it is still a bit painful, only when I apply deoderant, and I think its the scabs that hurt, but those are slowly drying up and going away as well…

If the pain and the swelling havent gone away, I’d be calling them and letting them know about it. I dont think it should be a prolonged pain? It wasnt with me…

I am also olive toned with coarse hair.

[ March 23, 2003, 10:49 AM: Message edited by: jan ]


Well, the pain and swelling seems to have gone and now its just incredibly itchy!

I suppose its going to get worse before it gets better. At the moment where the hair has been burnt right down to the follicle it’s even darker and harder and more importantly, more noticeable than before! Although its starting to fall out its doing so in patches so I look bit moth-eaten instead…I suppose I’ll just have to be patient.

Thanks for replying - glad to know I wasn’t the only one in agony!


How long ago did you have it done? My upper lip took about a week to get back to normal, little scabs and everything… most of the pepper spots were gone then too…

My underarms, have only been 4 days now, seem to be healing and shedding a bit slower, but still not doing too badly…

Just need time and patience.


Upper lip is the most painful area for most of us, especially up near the nostrils. Tons of nerves! You might consider a topical anesthetic if it’s too much for you.

As far as clearing up, that’s one of the tough things with laser-- waiting for the hairs to fall out. You should be looking better by now. Keep us posted!