IPL Permanent Hair Reduction
Hair removal with IPL Serving New York City, Philadelphia, & New Jersey
Our state of the art M22 IPL machine is relatively new to the cosmetic dermatology market and is extremely effective at treating an array of skin conditions. The Lumenis M22 IPL laser combines state of the art IPL treatment with a safe and effective non-ablative, fractional laser with a YAG laser all in one system.
What Is IPL?
Intense Pulsed Light (abbreviated IPL) describes the use of intense pulses of non-coherent light distributed over a range of wavelengths; from 400nm to 1200nm. The technology utilizes specific wavelength ranges to target various chromophores in the skin. This enables effective treatment of a broad spectrum of conditions, including vascular and pigmented lesions, skin photoaging treatments and hair removal.
How IPL Works?
Broad spectrum pulsed light is transmitted through a continuously cooled applicator, gently placed over the skin. Cut-off filters in the handpiece change the range of wavelengths, optimizing it for different applications and skin types. The light penetrates the tissue and is absorbed by either the relevant chromophores and damages them (blood chromophores when treating vascular lesions and melanin chromophores when treating pigmented lesions). The body’s natural processes then clear the lesion debris, giving the skin a more even and youthful appearance.
How does IPL help with permanent hair reduction?
Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) helps permanently reduce hair growth, most effectively in darker, coarser hair. Broad-spectrum light is applied to the surface of the skin, targeting melanin. This light travels through the skin until it strikes the hair shafts or the bulb (root). The bulb is usually where the highest concentration of melanin is located. As the light is absorbed, the bulb and most of the hair shaft are heated, destroying the hair-producing papilla. It is also claimed that heat conversion occurs directly in the darker capillaries that bring blood to the follicle.
Why do I need more than one IPL treatment for permanent hair reduction?
At any one time, not all hair follicles are ‘active’, and only active hair follicles can be affected by the treatment. ‘Inactive’ hair follicles can be treated as they become ‘active’ over time.
How many treatments do I need for hair reduction?
For IPL treatments, an average of 8–10 treatments are required to remove most visible hair. The area to be treated should be clean shaven and free of sunburn. Treatment sessions are usually 4 to 6 weeks apart.
Are there any contra-indications or precautions before getting IPL treatments for hair reduction?
Certain skin conditions, health irregularities, and medications can impact whether it is safe for a person to receive a light based hair removal treatment. Photo-sensitizing medications, or damage to the skin are contraindications to treatment.
How effective is IPL for hair reduction?
Hair count reduction was found to be ~60% (12 weeks), 75% (1 year), 60% (2 year). Permanent hair removal in these studies, as defined by the FDA, means the “long-term, stable reduction in the number of hairs regrowing after a treatment regime”. The number of hairs regrowing must be stable over time greater than the duration of the complete growth cycle of hair follicles, which varies from four to twelve months by body location. No treatment to date has shown the ability to permanently eliminate all hair growth, however many patients experience satisfaction with a significant and permanent reduction.
How does IPL compare to Laser hair removal?
A 2006 article in the journal “Lasers in Medical Science” compared IPL and both alexandrite and diode lasers. The review found no statistical difference in effectiveness, but a higher incidence of side effects with diode laser treatment. Hair reduction after 6 months was reported as 68.75% for alexandrite lasers, 71.71% for diode lasers, and 66.96% for IPL
What side effects are expected with IPL treatments?
Side effects were reported as 9.5% for alexandrite lasers, 28.9% for diode lasers, and 15.3% for IPL. All side effects were found to be temporary and even pigmentation changes returned to normal within 6 months.