How does Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) hair removal work?
Light is selectively absorbed by melanin (the pigment hair follicles). The light energy heats the pigment and effectively destroys the hair follicle without damaging the surrounding skin cells.
How is the IPL treatment carried out?
The Intense Pulsed Light or laser is positioned on the skin and a short pulse of light is released, which targets many follicles simultaneously. The applicator is then moved to the neighbouring area of skin and the process is repeated until the required area is treated. For Intense Pulsed Light treatment a thin layer of chilled gel is applied to help guide the light, but this is not required for a laser procedure.
Am I suitable for hair removal treatment?
Most people are suitable for this treatment. Best results are often achieved with clients who have fair skin and dark hair. Dark hair is more easily treated as it has a high concentration of melanin. Fair hair however, contains less melanin and is harder to treat. Grey/white hair has no melanin so is not suitable for treatment.
How does the treatment feel?
Treatment sensation varies but is often described as a ‘flick of an elastic band’. Typically no anaesthesia is required and most clients describe the discomfort as moderate and tolerable.
What will I see after the treatment?
The hair follicles are damaged by heat but the hairs remain in the follicles. The dead hairs shed after 1-3 weeks as the epidermis renews. During this period the hairs will seem to ‘grow’ as they are pushed out by the new epidermis.
Are there any side effects?
The skin may be red immediately after treatment and the hair follicles may be swollen and bumpy but this usually subsides within a few hours. Adverse reactions are rare but may include a small blister, or temporary lightening or darkening of the skin.
How many treatments are necessary?
Only hair that is actively growing is affected, therefore multiple treatments are needed. Treatment is conducted every 4-8 weeks, depending on the area treated, until a satisfactory result is seen. The required number of treatments varies, but typically 6 or more treatments are needed for optimum results.
How long does each treatment take?
Treatments can take as little as ten minutes to an hour, depending on the size of the treated area.
Prior to treatment, a consultation is conducted in which a medical history is taken to confirm suitability for treatment, there is also an opportunity for any questions you may have to be answered. Before treatment commences you must provide written consent and a small test patch will be carried out.
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