What Is Intense Pulsed Light (IPL), Advantages And Disadvantages
To get rid of the extra hair, women and men take the help of many temporary and permanent methods like electrolysis, laser, and intense pulsed light. the following article discusses about intense pulsed light (IPL), its advantages and disadvantages. In simple words, it is a permanent hair removing procedure that uses various frequencies of light to damage the hair follicles and eventually inhibit the growth of hair.
Hormonal imbalance, increase in the production of male hormones, heredity, and other conditions like polycystic ovary syndrome are some of the reasons for excess and unwanted hair on women. Light colored hair on women may not be a problem, but, if the excess hair is dark in color then they are troubled and choose from a variety of temporary and permanent methods to get rid of it.
What Is IPL (Intense Pulsed Light)?
Let us understand more about what is intense pulsed light and how it works and what are the advantages and disadvantages of it.
Intense pulsed light is a permanent hair removing process that uses a range of different frequencies of white light to destroy the sacs or follicles from which the hair originate. For different parts of the body different filters are used while passing the light through the skin.
Intense pulsed light is passed through some fiber-optic tubes on the skin in quick successions for about a fraction of a second. This way the skin heats and cools down quickly but the hair takes time to heat up and cool down. Eventually after 5 to 6 pulses of intense heat the hair is destroyed. A cooling gel is applied on the skin to soothe it.
The darker the hair color the more time it takes to get damaged, because the melanin is more concentrated. More melanin means sustaining more absorption of heat. Also, the thickness of the hair, the sensitivity of the skin, and the color tone of it all matters.
Not all hair grows at the same time, while some could be originating, other hair could be in some other stage. Depending upon these factors, the number of sessions of intense pulsed light is planned with enough time period to let the hair grow and mature completely.
Points To Be Remembered For IPL (Intense Pulsed Light):
Intense pulsed light hair removal is much easier, cheaper, and less painful than laser and it also covers large areas of skin than laser can.
- Avoid waxing, sugaring, plucking, or any other hair removing methods at least 2 weeks before going for intense pulsed light way. Because, it weakens the skin which becomes prone to breaking. Also, for the process to be successful we need hair on the skin. The more hair the better.
- After each session of intense pulsed light, the skin becomes red and swollen bumps are visible. This clears on its own in 3 to 4 days, or you can apply cold compress to it, or use a cold cream, moisturizer, or aloe vera based lotion etc. While showering avoid using strong soaps, gels, scrubs, loofa etc. Wash it simple.
- Avoid exposing the skin to sun for about 60 days, as the chances of burn are more. Use a sunscreen that is more than 35 SPF.
- Intense pulsed light requires at least 6 sittings to completely remove the hair because all the hair are not fully developed but are in different stages of growing cycle. With enough time gap between each pulse session, the hair grows and matures which is easy to remove.
- Avoid using other temporary methods except for shaving in between two sessions. Plucking, tweezing, waxing, and sugaring should be avoided at all cost. Shaving just cuts the hair from the surface while the other procedures uproot it.
Advantages of IPL (Intense Pulsed Light):
- It is suited to almost all the skin types.
- It is a permanent method to get rid of the hair forever.
- It is beneficial for people with darker skin and hair color.
- The risk of damaging the skin is far less than laser technique.
- The treatment can be altered depending upon the skin type and texture, hair color, hair thickness, and other factors.
Disadvantages of IPL (Intense Pulsed Light):
- It is not affordable to all.
- It is not as effective in case of people with lighter skin tone and color, light hair color (white, blonde, red) etc.
- It can leave patches of tan on the skin as it damages the melanocytes – the color pigmentation cells.
- It involves many sessions.
The next time anyone asks What is intense pulsed light, answer them in the simple words that it is a permanent hair removing procedure which involves different pulses of light to destroy and get rid of the unwanted hair forever. It is a good idea to visit the intense pulsed light hair removal consultant once a week to assess the reaction and know more about the dos and don’ts about it.