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Laser Skin Treatments

What are lasers used for in the beauty industry?

Lasers and intense pulsed lights are becoming a choice method to remove or reduce hair or tattoos.

What are the risks?

Lasers are powerful devices which, if faulty or used incorrectly, have the potential to cause serious injury to those operating them, recipients of the treatment and other persons in the vicinity, as well as the ability to ignite flammable materials.

What do I need to do?

The removal of hair and tattoos can have serious health consequences. You are advised to seek medical advice before undergoing treatment. The technique of removing or reducing tattoos, hair or for other skin treatments using a laser no longer needs to be registered. The use of Class 3B (except where the laser is used by or under the supervision of a health care professional) or Class 4 lasers, whether for medical or cosmetic treatment poses a number of risks which must be strictly controlled. Before purchasing or using a Laser, you should consider the guidance note DB 2008(03) - Guidance on the safe use of lasers, pulsed light sources and LEDs which contains a lot of information on the standards expected.

Where can I get training?

The Hair and Beauty Industry Association (HABIA), The Health Protection Agency (HPA) offer a variety of courses in laser safety and other training providers are likely to available if you . The minimum requirement to operate a laser safely will be a core of knowledge on laser safety and you will also need access to a competent person for advice.

How do I complain about a local business?

If you are concerned about the standards or practices within a local business or are concerned that they do not appear to be registered please use the Cosmetic/Beauty Business Advice and Complaints form.

If enforcement action has been taken against my business, how do I appeal against it?

For further information, please see our Enforcement web page.

Where can I get further information?

The HABIA booklet at the bottom of the page, "Safe Use of Lasers and Intense Pulsed Light Equipment" is very good as is the the guidance note DB 2008(03) - Guidance on the safe use of lasers, pulsed light sources and LEDs

If you would like further advice about the standards or practices within a local business please use the Cosmetic/Beauty Business Advice and Complaints form. 

Contact Details

  • Name Environmental Safety and Health
  • Address People Directorate, 3-5 St James's Road, Dudley, DY1 1HZ
  • Telephone 0300 555 2345