Can I Self-Tan After Laser Hair Removal?


Is your idea of the perfect skin smooth, hairless and glowing with a golden tan? Laser hair treatments are one way to remove hair for silky-smooth skin. As far as the golden tan goes, Fake Bake self-tanning products can provide the gorgeous glow you’re looking for. You may be wondering, can you self-tan after laser hair removal? The answer is, not immediately after – or immediately before, for that matter. If you are about to undergo laser hair removal or are in the middle of your sessions, you may want to put your Fake Bake sunless tanning products aside until you've finished your treatments. Follow medical advice by leaving time between your self-tan and laser hair removal sessions. This will help make both your tan and your laser hair removal more successful. 

The Science of Sunless Tanning

Fake Bake no-sun tanning products have 100% naturally derived DHA, which reacts with your skin's amino acids to achieve that radiant tan color. Known as the Maillard reaction, this is the process in cooking that turns meats or baked goods brown. Luckily, sunless tanners don’t actually "cook" your skin like the sun's harmful UV rays do. 

The Science of Laser Hair Treatments 

The lasers used for hair removal produce light that the melanin in hair absorbs, converting it to heat that damages the hair follicles below the skin’s surface to prevent regrowth. A contrast between pale skin and dark hair responds best to most laser hair treatments, and it usually takes a series of sessions to achieve a smooth result. 

How Self-Tanning and Laser Hair Removal Affect Each Other 

When your skin is tan, even from sunless tanning products, it can increase the risk of laser hair removal’s side effects. Thoroughly exfoliated skin may be more prone to redness, swelling and irritation from laser treatments. Some people can even experience hypopigmentation, a loss of pigment resulting in white spots. Tan skin may also make laser hair removal less effective because the light may be less directly focused on dark hair follicles. The tan skin cells next to the hair follicles could blister or burn as a result. The last thing you want is to have to undergo extra treatment sessions because the laser didn’t remove as much hair as it should have! 

A Better Approach

When it comes to self-tanning, most trained aestheticians recommend a waiting period before and after you have laser hair treatments. Stop self-tanning at least 10 days before your appointment to give your tan time to fade. After your session, your skin may be sensitive, so it’s best to wait another week or two before applying sunless tanners. The good news is that you can continue to fake tan the rest of your body, just not the skin undergoing laser hair removal. Feel free to apply your favorite Fake Bake sunless tanning products everywhere else to keep that summery vibe going until the rest of your skin can join in. Before you know it, your patience will pay off with smooth, beautifully tan skin. Fake Bake has more than just the best no-sun tanners. We also have oil-free moisturizers and exfoliating wipes or mitts to remove your tan before laser hair treatment or prepare your skin for self-tanning once you’ve finished. Shop our website to find everything you need for a gloriously glowing tan.

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