When it comes to removing unwanted facial hair, laser hair removal is an excellent choice for long-lasting results. The laser hair removal process is generally fairly quick, although several treatments may be required. Most users report only mild discomfort during treatment and recovery. For best results, always follow your dermatologist's specific instructions when preparing for laser hair removal and for aftercare.

Schedule your appointment for upper lip laser hair removal at least several weeks in advance.

Discuss your goals with your dermatologist so that you will know what kind of results to expect.

Provide your dermatologist with complete information on your medical history, including any surgeries, chronic conditions, allergies and scars. Expect photographs to be taken.

Provide your dermatologist with a complete list of all medications, over-the-counter and prescription, that you are taking. Be sure to include any vitamin or mineral supplements especially if they contain beta carotene and any medications with the potential to make you photosensitive (prescription bottles labeled “Avoid sun exposure”). Tell your dermatologist about all skin care products you are using. Tell your dermatologist if you are pregnant or trying to conceive.

Ask your dermatologist about performing a test patch; this allows you and your doctor to see how well you tolerate the treatment and make any needed adjustments before treating a larger area.

Stop tanning for four to six weeks before your laser treatments are scheduled to begin. Do not use self-tanners, bronzers or tanning beds. Use a noncomedogenic sunscreen with an SPF of 15 or higher whenever you are exposed to the sun. Laser hair removal works better on fair skin.

Stop removing upper lip hair by the root two to four weeks before your treatment is scheduled. Do not wax, sugar, thread, tweeze, use chemical hair removers or mechanical epilators.

Stop trimming or shaving upper lip hair at least three days before your appointment. Laser hair removal works better if some stubble is present.

Wash your face before your appointment using a mild cleanser. Pat dry. Do not apply any moisturizers or make-up.

Apply topical numbing cream before your appointment if directed to do so by your dermatologist.

Tip

Ask your doctor about taking an over-the-counter pain reliever, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, before your appointment to minimize discomfort. For best results, carefully follow your dermatologist's aftercare instructions.

Warning

If you develop a cold sore in the days before your appointment, call your dermatologist; your treatment may need to be rescheduled. If you know you have cold sores, talk to your dermatologist about using an anti-viral medication leading up to your treatment.

About the Author

Stephanie Crumley Hill

Stephanie Crumley Hill is a childbirth educator who for more than 20 years has written professionally about pregnancy, family and a variety of health and medical topics. A former print magazine editor, her insurance articles for “Resource” magazine garnered numerous awards. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Georgia.