What is Pulsed Light for Hair Reduction?
Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) is a gentle, safe and cost effective way to permanently reduce unwanted hair on most parts of the body.
Are all IPL Machines the Same?
No, not all IPL machines are effective enough to successfully damage the hair follicles within a normal treatment cycle of 4 to 6 sessions. The aim is for permanent reduction, although rare failures do occur and some need repeat sessions.
We feel medical strength pulsed light should be used under medical supervision, as the side effects can be serious and misdiagnosis is possible.
At Absolute Cosmetic Medicine, we recommend and use a Quantum Pilfer machine which combines effectiveness, power and safety.
|Procedure Name:||Hair removal|
|Also Known As:||Laser Hair Removal, Epilation, Intense Pulsed Light, Hair Reduction|
|Great For:||Unwanted or excessive facial or body hair growth|
How does it Work?
The Quantum IPL is an intense pulse light device used for the removal of unwanted hair and skin spots that leads to rejuvenated skin and a reduction in hair. The wavelength, exposure duration and energy levels are chosen to selectively damage targeted hair follicles (and unwanted skin spots) with minimal damage to the surrounding tissue. The intense pulsed light is absorbed by the hair follicles, resulting in their heating. The follicles are damaged by the energy and these damaged follicles result in hair removal (permanent reduction). For this reason, it is important to stop waxing or plucking before you start your IPL treatment as the hair must be growing in the follicle for it to be successfully heated and damaged. It is necessary to shave or clip the hair shortly prior to your treatment.
Clinical results have shown that dark hair and light skin makes the most successful combination. Patients with darker skin or lighter coloured hair can also be treated, but may require more treatments than average as the machine settings must be reduced for their safety. Unfortunately blonde and grey hairs cannot be detected by the light and their results are variable.
Is IPL Hair Removal the Same as Electrolysis?
IPL provides the same results as electrolysis without the pain of injecting a needle into every individual hair follicle, and therefore it is also faster. At the time of treatment, a cooling gel and a hand held treatment unit are gently applied to the skin. Each pulse of light to the skin can disable hundreds of hair follicles simultaneously. When the gel is removed, much of the hair is wiped off with it and the remaining hair in the treated area falls out within a week or two.
Is there an Alternative to IPL Hair Reduction?
It is always recommended to start your hair reduction treatments with IPL, however, if you have lighter hair, red hair or stubborn hairs that have not been successfully treated after a standard IPL course, our clinic also offers a ‘doctors only’ LightSheer Diode Laser. (Only medical clinics can offer laser for stubborn hair removal).
What can I Expect?
- Pain – Some patients can feel discomfort during their treatment and report the light feels like a warm rubber band snapping against the skin. Exposure is limited to an extremely short pulse and most patients report minimal pain. To minimise discomfort, a small tube of numbing (anaesthetic) cream can be obtained from your pharmacy and applied 30 minutes prior. We then wrap your intended treatment area in cling wrap.
- Healing – There is always the slight possibility of developing a crust or blister. This is superficial and is treated like sunburn or any other blister. Short-term side effects such as reddening and a mild burning sensation are normal and may last up to a few hours. These symptoms may be reduced with the application of ice to the treated area immediately afterwards.
- Pigmentation – The treated areas will usually heal without any changes to pigment. There is however always the chance that areas of hyper pigmentation (darker foot printing) or hypo pigmentation (lighter foot printing) may occur. These are usually temporary and fade within one to six months. Sun exposure, fake tans and solarium use MUST be avoided during treatment, as it may intensify hyper pigmentation. It is rare that such a change is permanent.
- Scarring – Is very rare but it is important to follow all of the post treatment instructions carefully.
- Excessive swelling – May occur immediately after treatment, especially if the face has been treated. This is temporary and not harmful. Ice packs may be used to reduce the swelling.
- Fragile skin – The skin that has been exposed should be treated gently for a few days. It should not be rubbed and when applying make-up, always pat gently.
Why Choose Absolute for IPL Laser Hair Reduction?
- Doctor supervised treatments for safer, more effective medical grade treatment
- More than 10 years experience with medical IPL and lasers, treating over 20,000 patients to date
- Our clinic’s medical director was a previous lecturer in IPL, laser and advisor to CSPA and Arpansa for machine safety
- IPL Quantun is up to 4 times more powerful than other machines.
LightSheer Laser for Stubborn Hair
More people are seeking to remove unwanted hair every day. Absolute Cosmetic Medicine uses the LightSheer Diode Laser System, which offers high power and both short and very long (400 ms) pulses to safely and effectively treat all skin types including tanned skin and the broadest range of hair colours, diameters and depths. It is especially effective to remove stubborn hair if initial IPL treatment does not work.
Download the PDF for more information about one of our IPL Hair Removal machines:
Quantum Patient Info (219 KB)
Book a Consultation with a Skin Technician
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Please read all of the below before attending your consultation and to assist you in understanding the procedure. Download the PDF for more information about one of our IPL machines:
*Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.