What is laser hair removal?

Laser hair removal has become an increasingly popular procedure in the UK. The procedure involves a powerful laser or an ‘intense pulsed light’ (IPL) that is used to eliminate unnecessary and unwanted hair. The laser heats and eradicates hair follicles within the skin. The hair is therefore prevented from growing. This procedure is highly common on the face, arms, underarms, legs and bikini line.

What can go wrong with laser hair removal?

Common injuries suffered due to laser hair removal include:

  • Burns;
  • Scarring;
  • Swelling/soreness;
  • Skin irritation or redness;
  • Severe sensitivity of the skin;
  • Tenderness of the skin; and
  • Psychological problems.

What should a beautician do when carrying out laser hair removal?

There are a number of things a laser hair removal beautician is legally obliged to do when performing the procedure:

  • Carry out an assessment of the client’s health and skin condition to make sure that the laser hair removal is unlikely to cause any injury;
  • Ensure that the client is provided with realistic expectations as to the results of the procedure;
  • Inform clients about the potential risks associated with the laser hair removal procedure;
  • Make detailed notes about the client's medical history to determine if they have any condition that could potentially pose some risk of injury;
  • Perform a patch test 24 hours before the procedure is performed;
  • Give clients the opportunity to change their mind;
  • Ensure the client is aware of any after-care and what to do in case of any problems arising; and
  • Use sterilised and clean equipment and proper techniques while performing the procedure.

Can I make a laser hair removal claim?

In order to commence a laser hair removal claim for compensation we must be able to establish that the beautician or clinic was at fault for the injuries you have sustained. 

They may, for instance, have failed to inform you of the side effects of the procedure and the known risks involved in order for you to make an informed decision about whether to proceed. Or you may not have been given an opportunity to change your mind before having the treatment. Alternatively, a procedural or technical mistake may have caused you injury.

If you feel that you have suffered injury as a result of laser hair removal and want to know if you are entitled to make a compensation claim then call our free legal beauty treatment helpline.

What should I do if my laser hair removal goes wrong?

If your laser hair removal treatment goes wrong you should report your concerns to the beautician and the clinic, spa or salon in which they operate as soon as possible. If a compensation claim is made we will need to consider the following:

  • proof that the beautician or clinic is properly insured;
  • photographs of the cosmetic appearance of the treatment;
  • your medical records;
  • the receipt for the beauty treatment you received; and
  • any correspondence or documents you have received from the beautician, clinic, spa or salon, including any complaint made by you.

Can I make a laser hair removal claim if I signed a disclaimer?

You may be able to make a claim even if you have signed a legal disclaimer. Signing a disclaimer does not mean the beautician, clinic, spa or salon is immune from having a claim made against them. They have a legal duty to ensure you are not harmed and that duty applies even if a disclaimer was signed.

Are there time limits for making a laser hair removal claim?

There are strict time limits for bringing a laser hair removal claim. You must issue court proceedings prior to the third anniversary of the treatment or the first date that you became aware of the problem arising from the treatment. It is therefore important that you speak to a specialist lawyer as soon as you suspect something is wrong.

How much compensation is my laser hair removal claim worth?

This is a very common question. Each case will be different and will depend upon the nature of the injuries suffered and any financial losses incurred. Although we cannot provide exact figures for your particular claim, please see below some compensation guidelines that have been determined by Judges for injuries that may arise in laser hair removal claims.

Injuries suffered

Compensation

Description of injury

Minor injury

Up to £600

Complete recovery within 7 days.

Minor injury

£600 to £1,200

Complete recovery within 28 days.

Minor injury

£1,200 to £2,150

Complete recovery within 3 months.

Dermatitis and other skin conditions

£1,500 to £3,460

 Itching, irritation and/or rashes that resolves within a few months of treatment.

Less Severe psychological injury

£1,350 to £5,130

The level of compensation will be determined by the extent to which sleep, and daily activities were affected, as well as the length of the period of disability.

Moderate psychological injury

£5,130 to £16,720

 The level of compensation will be based on future vulnerability, impact on relationships, and the victim's ability to cope with work and life.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

£3,460 to £20,290

Good recovery within one to two years with only minor symptoms persisting over any longer period

Minor scarring

£1,500 to £3,090

Trivial scarring.

More significant scarring

£3,460 to £12,050

 

One scar which can be camoflagued or a number of small scars – not likely to affect appearance.

Very severe scarring with some psychological reaction

£26,120 to £85,340

Where the effects have been or will be reduced by plastic surgery (typically in teens to early 30s) and the psychological reaction is severe.

If the type of injury you are suffering from is not listed above, then please give us a call and we will be able to advise you further.

How we can help

Almost all the beauty treatment claims we deal with are funded on a No Win, No Fee basis. This means that if you are unsuccessful in your claim for whatever reason, you will not be required to pay any legal fees.

If you or someone you know has been let down by beauty treatment that has gone wrong, contact Carly Sylvester on 0808 139 1592 or via email at info@cosmeticsurgerylaw.co.uk for a free case assessment.