Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) is the latest trend for long-lasting hair removal. Standing out from laser hair removal, IPL hair removal is less painful while providing equally lasting results. However, precautions must be taken to achieve the desired effect. We have listed for you everything that needs to be done and what should be avoided when using pulsed light hair removal.
Pulsed Light Hair Removal: What to Do and What Not to Do.
Pulsed Light Hair Removal: What Needs to be Done.
Protecting the skin from the sun.
Protect your skin from the sun before, during, and after your pulsed light sessions. Indeed, UV radiations are the cause of tanning, which is characterized by a higher rate of melanin on the skin's surface. Tanning may then attract the pulsed light to your skin instead of the hair, causing discomfort or even a burn. If you cannot avoid sun exposure, use a sun care product on your face and body with a high protection factor, making sure to cover the areas to be treated.
Shave before the sessions.
It is recommended to shave the hair on the area to be treated one to two days before the session to promote light absorption. In this way, the pulsed light can directly reach the hair roots, which allows for quick results.
Allowing the skin to "breathe".
Wait a few days after the session before applying any type of care products, such as deodorant or makeup, in order not to further sensitize the skin.
Adhere to the established regimen.
It is strongly recommended to adhere to the prescribed session schedule and not to hasten the process. Indeed, closely spaced sessions will not accelerate the results. Similarly, sessions that are too far apart will not yield effective results, as you risk missing the hair growth phase. During this phase, hairs are particularly receptive to pulsed light due to the maximum concentration of melanin.
Pulsed Light Hair Removal: What Not to Do.
For your safety and to avoid risks, it is recommended to take some precautions when following a pulsed light hair removal program.
Exposure to the sun.
Indeed, as previously described, sun exposure is not recommended, as it will increase skin sensitivity and promote tanning. The latter can cause burns during the session, as it presents a high level of melanin on the skin's surface. Moreover, directly exposing oneself to the sun after the session is not a good idea, as the skin is still highly sensitized and more prone to sunburn.
Waxing or bleaching body hair.
If you wish to remove your hair between sessions, use a razor instead of waxing, bleaching your hair, or applying a hair removal cream. These practices alter the hair growth cycle and its ability to absorb light. However, it is recommended to shave within the 48 hours preceding the session.
Taking photosensitizing medications or applying photosensitizing skincare treatments.
This technique is incompatible with medications or any other photosensitizing compounds that may pose risks, such as burns, depigmentation, or an increased sensitivity to light in general. This is the case for certain active ingredients found in the composition of skincare products like retinol, fruit acids (AHA), etc.