Bodycare • 30 March 2020
Can’t get to your hair removal appointment? We got you.
There’s probably a lot of you out there who are midway through a course of professional hair removal treatments, or that can't get to the salon for your fortnightly wax or thread. IPL devices are the perfect solution to tackling hair regrowth when you can’t get your usual salon treatment.
The reality is, if you completely stop your treatments all together you’re going to lose the results that you’ve already paid for.
Our Product Expert, Emily, explains: "With in-salon laser hair removal, you’d usually book a course of ten treatments to completely get rid of the hair altogether."
If you’re half-way through those treatments or just a couple of treatments in, it’s probably a time when you’re going to want to start with an IPL device.
How does IPL at home work?
When held close to the skin, the intense pulsed light (IPL) is absorbed by the pigment in the hair. This quickly turns to heat which kills the cells that make the hair grow, penetrating the follicle and disabling it from growing.
Emily explains: “Your hair grows in stages known as the hair growth cycle, IPL works by breaking that cycle. With an IPL device, you have to do a series of treatments, exactly the same as you would in the salon.”
Is a home use IPL device the same as a salon treatment?
The results are very similar. However, the main difference is that it’s not quite as strong because they’re built for normal people to use at home. To get the best results from IPL, you have to do weekly treatments for around 12 weeks, after that you’ll have to do top up treatments around every month.
Your hair grows in stages known as the hair growth cycle, IPL works by breaking that cycle.
Do I have to shave before an IPL treatment?
Yes - this is the case for all IPL devices.
Why? Because if you don’t, the IPL energy will get absorbed into the hair itself rather than the follicle and the device won’t work.
To get best results, you need the hair to be as short as possible before treating with IPL. So we always recommend treating the skin 4 hours after shaving.
What device is right for me?
Whether you’re looking for the strongest, the fastest or the device that can treat greys, Emily explains the differences between our best-selling IPL devices.
Best if you want speed
“This is super speedy, you can treat your entire body in 10 mins. It works on a slightly slower pulse strength but I’ve seen some really effective results, mainly because it’s so quick you’re likely to use it and stick to the treatment times. It’s got two modes so you can pump and glide for larger areas - to me it’s a brilliant investment. "
We recommend weekly treatments over 12 weeks to see significant results. With facial hair you can treat slightly more often as it grows slightly quicker.
Best if you want strength
“This is the strongest device available on the market. The thing with IPL devices is that you’ve really got to choose what’s best for you. This one has 3 treatment modes and 14 different energy settings, so if you're looking for something a little more high-tech this is the one for you.
I’d thoroughly recommend both of the SmoothSkin devices, it really just boils down to what you prefer and what fits in to your lifestyle."
All SmoothSkin devices are FDA approved and both have some great safety features, such as the skin safety sensor - meaning that if your skin isn’t the right tone for the treatment it won’t emit the IPL.
What device is right for my skin tone? Use our hair removal finder to find out>
Best for grey and red hair
“Silk’n have studies that show that they have seen results from people with grey, red and pale hair. So if you’ve got any of those hair colours this is the best option for you.
"If you’re an ideal candidate - with dark hair and pale skin - you can expect about a 90% hair reduction, if you have grey or red hair you can get a reduction but it won’t be as significant - can you can expect around a 30% hair reduction - but you have to go into it with that mindset.”
Best if you’re on a budget
“Whilst IPL devices are effective, they can be expensive. If you’re not willing to part with a couple of hundred quid just yet or you’re just getting started with IPL, then this is the option for you.
It works in a very similar way to the other devices and also comes with a built-in sensor that assesses your skin type - only releasing the flash on suitable areas.”
Best if you’ve got time to spend on your treatments
“The main difference with Phillips devices is that they come with different attachments with different size heads, which are great for treating different parts of the body.
It’s a really effective device that’s easy to use but it does take a little bit of time to reboot after releasing each flash, meaning each treatment time can take a little longer.”
Best for tackling peach fuzz and eyebrows
“This nifty device removes all hair (known as peach fuzz) from your face, leaving skin instantly smooth and radiant.
It’s also fantastic for tidying up your eyebrows whilst you can’t get to the salon, meaning you won’t come out of isolation with a monobrow!”
Best for nervous newcomers
“This is perfect if you're new to IPL devices or have sensitive skin, as you can choose from normal, gentle and extra gentle modes, meaning you can feel more in control of your hair removal treatment.”
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