Laser vs. IPL Hair Removal – What’s The Difference?
Whether you shave, pluck, wax or use hair removal creams, you’ll know that removing unwanted body hair can be time consuming, awkward, embarrassing, painful and, particularly in the case of shaving, downright irritating!
With this in mind, it’s good to know that there are more permanent solutions available – namely intense pulsed light (IPL) and laser hair removal. But, what’s the difference?⠀
When used as hair-removal methods, both lasers and IPL use light to heat hair follicles and prevent regrowth of hair but, whilst that description makes them sound similar, the technology really isn’t. The key difference between them is the light source used. Not every light energy is created equal and by this token, laser and IPL are most definitely not the same thing.
Laser treatment affects hair in its active growth phase, with beams of precisely controlled pulses of light energy which are absorbed by the pigment in the hair, reaching into the active hair follicles that lie beneath the skin. This energy heats the hair right down to the bottom of the root, causing hair growth to slow significantly or, in many cases, stop altogether. Because the laser targets the follicles very precisely, it has a very low risk of causing any damage to the surrounding skin and tissue. The laser hair removal device that we use here at The Dr Jenni Clinic also uses different light colours to target different types of skin and hairs, which means that darker skin tones can also be safely treated. This is something that’s often not possible with IPL.
IPL technology is not a laser treatment. In contrast to laser hair removal, it uses a broad spectrum of light (like a lightbulb, or the beam from a torch) with multiple wavelengths. IPL energy is scattered, weaker and because it produces a range of different wavelengths and colours that are dispersed at various depths, the diffused energy doesn’t only target the melanin in your hair follicle, but the surrounding skin too. This means that there is a much higher risk of surrounding skin damage and it also means that some skin types and tones cannot be safely treated by IPL.
At The Dr Jenni Clinic we only offer true laser hair removal, using our world-class laser device. The laser technologies we work with are more advanced and effective than their IPL counterparts and they come with a promise of less discomfort, as they are fitted with their own integrated cooling systems. In addition, our laser can treat a wider range of skin and hair types than an IPL would.
Laser hair removal is quick and easy. It requires a course of treatments for full results because hair grows in cycles and the laser can only treat hair while it is in its active growth stage. To treat an area properly, up to 8 sessions are needed, spaced 2-8 weeks apart.
Laser hair removal at The Dr Jenni Clinic is very safe. The incredibly advanced laser device that we use targets the hair follicle only and leaves the skin around it unharmed. In addition to this, you have the benefit of being treated at a medical clinic, so you can be rest assured that you’re in good hands. The lasers used for hair removal are very powerful, so it’s extremely important for your safety that you choose a provider who achieves the highest health, safety and hygiene standards.
If you’d like more information on laser hair removal, we’d love to see you for a consultation.
Dr Jenni 💋x