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Hair removal has to be the most commonly requested beauty service in the world. We'll try just about anything to rid ourselves of unwanted body hair. Over the centuries we have used everything from seashells and rocks to hot wax, caramelised sugar and exceptionally smelly creams.
Imagine what a breakthrough it was when IPL Hair Removal was invented. It was like a wonder machine promising silky smooth hair-free body parts at the flick of a switch. Amazingly this technology was actually invented for something completely different.
Light Bulb Moment
IPL stands for Intense Pulsed Light and it was created to treat skin conditions and imperfections. Dermatologists noticed that hair often didn't grow back in the treated areas. It was one of those light bulb moments!
Over time new IPL machines were developed specifically to remove hair. These started becoming popular in the 1990s, but they are far advanced in technology today. They work by zapping the hair follicles with light.
This is also how Laser Hair Removal works, but the latter uses one single wavelength of light while IPL uses several. It's important to remember that both work on pigmentation. That's why the type of treatment you have largely depends on your skin tone and hair colour.
IPL Hair Removal vs Laser Hair Removal
When it comes to IPL Hair Removal vs Laser Hair Removal it really comes down to personal choice. Some people consider Laser Hair Removal more effective, yet others believe IPL Hair Removal is safer. The third player in this game is Electrolysis and that is different again.
Laser and IPL Hair Removal Clinics use something called the Fitzpatrick Scale. Developed by Dr Thomas B Fitzpatrick in 1975 it is used to decide the most suitable solution for each individual. At your first consultation you will be asked various questions about natural hair colour, skin tone and sun sensitivity. This information is fed into the machine to determine both the number and intensity of treatments.
For example if you have very pale skin, blonde or red hair and you burn easily in the sun you are a 'l' on the Fitzpatrick Scale. Dark brown or black skin is a VI. Collating this information is extremely important for your safety.
What To Expect
As you would expect there is some pain involved with IPL Hair Removal. No pain no gain, right? Some people describe it as mild discomfort while others feel as if they are being zapped by rubber bands. It really depends on which area is being treated and how high your pain threshold is.
Steps can be taken to minimise the pain and numbing creams are sometimes used. Some lasers also require the application of cooling gel before treatment. It's best to cover all this at your first consultation. Ask as many questions as you need to feel completely comfortable with the whole procedure.
Remind yourself that these treatments involve the use of lasers and light wavelengths so there are bound to be some side effects. Again these vary from patient to patient.
Hair Reduction Not Removal
Just about everybody is left with some temporary skin redness. There may also be discomfort, itching and swelling. All these symptoms should disappear in a few hours. It is rare to experience blistering.
Remember IPL Hair Removal and Laser Hair Removal offer permanent hair reduction not removal. Over time, depending on how many sessions you have, hair growth in the treated areas will slow right down or perhaps stop but there's no guarantee. You will also need to go back over the same area a few times. This is because your hair grows in different stages and some will be missed the first time.
IPL Hair Removal is increasingly popular and it does offer good results. It's not for everyone. To find the best IPL Hair Removal in your area take a look through our directory. Booking is fast and easy with our online system.