Test patches are carried out to determine the treatment parameters and to judge how your skin might react to a full treatment.
A test patch is a small trial in an area with similar hair and skin to the treatment site and allows us to assess how well the light energy is being absorbed and whether the skin is responding as would be expected.
Clients are asked to make a note of any redness or swelling and how long it takes to reduce following the test patch, also whether or not the skin blisters or feels excessively hot and for how long.
Pre – Treatment Advice
1. The area to be treated should be free from make up, perfume and body or face creams. Be careful when using spray deodorant prior to treatment.
2. There should be no active or fake tan in the area to be treated. Use of sunbeds or prolonged exposure to sunlight is not allowed in the month prior to treatment and an SPF 30 must be used on the area between treatments.
Suntans must be left to fade completely before treatment can start. Fake tans must be left to fade completely before treatment can start. Fake tans must also be fully faded before treatment can commence.
3. We reserve the right to charge for any appointment booked but abandoned due to active suntan or fake tan.
4. A medical history is taken at consultation, but we rely on you to inform us of any changes to this. We need to know of any medication you are taking including those bought from a chemist or herbalist.
5. Make sure you arrive in good time for your appointment; this will allow us to pre – cool the skin should this be required.
Post – Treatment Advice
1. In order to minimize skin heating and to reduce the likelihood of skin reactions, the treatment area may be cooled before, during and after the procedure. If the area still feels hot at home you can apply a cold flannel or cool pack. Do not allow ice packs or ice into direct contact with the skin.
2. Following treatment, the area may appear red and raised and you may experience a tingling sensation. This is completely normal and should settle over the next few days.
3. Occasionally you may experience swelling or bruising and this can last anything from 1 -2 days up to 1-2 weeks. If you experience swelling, it is usually worse one to two days following treatment. If it follows a treatment to a facial area, sleeping with your head raised on pillows will minimize its appearance. Ice packs will also help to reduce swelling. If your skin is particularly sensitive and prone to histamine reactions, you may also wish to consider taking an anti-histamine medication.
4. Following vascular treatments a bruise may appear at the treated area. This may last up to 15 days and as the bruise fades there may be brown discoloration of the skin. This usually fades in 1- 3 months. When larger vessels are treated they may take on a darker colour. Again this may take up to four weeks to resolve as the body re-absorbs the damaged vessels.
5. Make-up can be applied after several hours, if the skin is not sore or broken. However, we advise caution if the area is feeling sensitive. Remove make up carefully as rubbing the skin can cause irritation or infection. If the skin at the treatment area becomes broken, then make up should be avoided.
6. Care should be taken to avoid trauma to the treated area for 4 to 5 days afterwards. Avoid strenuous activities, sauna and steam; excessively hot baths, massaging etc.
7. Wash and bathe as normal but take cool showers, rather than hot baths. The skin should be patted dry and not rubbed. Use an aloe vera gel or after sun cream to keep the area moisturized and the skin protected. If there is any discomfort, treat the area, as you would sunburn.
8. Use a sunscreen (SPF 30+) and protect the area from sunlight as much as possible between treatments and for at least one month after treatment ends. Failure to do this can lead to sunburn and hyper-pigmentation of the treated area. (Most cases of changes in pigmentation occur when the treated area has been exposed to sunlight, or in people with darker skin types).
9. If blistering occurs contact us immediately for further advise. Keep the area clean and dry and allow to heal naturally. Do not use any lotions or creams on open skin as this may increase the risk of infection. Do not pick grazes or blisters – as this may increase the chance of a scar occurring. Once the skin has healed, a high protection sunscreen should be used daily for 12 months to prevent pigmentation changes to the skin.
If you have any urgent concerns or queries regarding the treated area, please phone us for advice.