I am writing this because I see in many pages that people totaly condemn IPL because it is not laser. It is true that IPL isn’t laser but they work in the same way, that is they target dark pigment in the hair roots. And if used in the right way IPL and laser should have the same effect (or no effect if this is the case). It is the degree of heat that reaches to the hair root that is the thing that kills or damages the hairfollicle . I does not matter how this heat is produced (electricuty, laser or IPL).
the problem is usually with people who operate these devices. They first perform other skin procedures and hair removal is an afterthought for this machine in general. So a lot of people doing this procedure with an IPL don’t know much about hair removal in general, so don’t end up setting correct settings for best results. There are very few success stories from IPL treatments on any forums…
My experience of IPL practitioners has been limited, but I’d have to agree with lagirl.
While “testing” a number of clinics, I tried one that used IPL. At first glance the lady seemed knowledgeable… she pulled out books of graphs to show how the IPL targeted hair, and it all sounded very scientific.
Then she told me that IPL was ideal for people with darker skin types.
“Really?”, I said. “I thought the Nd:YAG was generally accepted to be better.”
“Oh no!”, she assured me. “You are much less likely to be burnt with IPL.”
This was the exact opposite of what I’d read on these forums, but I smiled politely and nodded.
Then I asked her about tanning. Despite having just told me the IPL worked well on darker skin, apparently tanning was an absolute no-no. Oh, and fake tanning was bad too. I could understand this (if the skin was darker, for whatever reason, it would obviously heat up more), but what about applying a fake tan a few weeks AFTER the treatment? Surely, provided it had worn off before the next session, there wouldn’t be problem? No, she insisted, that would still be a problem.
It was at this point I decided she didn’t have a clue what she was talking about. <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/tongue.gif" alt="" />
The thing is that here in Sweden many places have both lasers and IPL and use both for hair removal. So I’m guessing that the practitioner should be equaly skilled in using laser and IPL for hair removal. At least the practitioner that is going to treat me uses both LightSheer and IPL (StarLux). I have skin type 5 so I am not well suited for the LightSheer (at least that’s what I’m reading on this forum), and here in Sweden YAG lasers are not used for hair removal. But my practitioner’s reason for recomending me IPL is that it has a larger spot size than LightSheer (I am doing my hole upper body) and is less painful (due to the large spot size and short puls duration). But she says she will treat me with LightSheer if I want to.
LightSheer COULD be ok, depending on how high they can set the settings safely, without burning your skin. have them do a few test spots at different settings and see if it’s worth it. Btw, I think if it hurts more, it might be more effective…that’s the general rule comparing one laser machine anyways. No pain, no gain with this. LightSheer treatments will get rid of the hair faster anyways.