Understanding IPL & Permanent Hair Removal | Philips (2024)

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Many of us dream about waking up in the morning without having to worry about stubbly armpits and hairy legs. A life without hairy problems – wouldn’t that be great? Everyone’s talking about permanent hair removal right now – from beauty salons to lifestyle blogs, to your best friend.

But why are we so infatuated with the idea of permanent hair removal in the first place? What exactly is “permanent” hair removal, what methods are available for long-lasting hair removal, and how much does it cost?

But why are we so infatuated with the idea of removing hair permanently, what exactly is permanent hair removal and which methods can make this a reality?Man könnte splissige Haare als sanften Appell verstehen, dass der nächste Friseurbesuch ansteht. Aber mal ehrlich: wer mit Apps & Co so gut organisiert ist, kann auf die Erinnerung von Mutter Natur verzichten. Also was tun bei Spliss und vor allem, was hilft wirklich gegenSpliss? Wir geben hier nützliche Tipps gegen Spliss im Haar, wenn er einmal da ist, und sagen dir, wie du mit guter Pflege und entsprechenden Produkten, Spliss vermeiden kannst.

Permanent hair removal: a dream come true?

Body hair is completely natural, with each one of us having approximately five million hairs on our body. There is no reason why you shouldn’t wear your hair with pride. Nevertheless, removing body hair is a common trend these days – not just for women – as hairless skin has its own advantages, such as boosting performance in sports, improving hygiene, or even simply as a way to feel more comfortable.

However, smooth skin has its price. No matter what your preferred hair removal routine is – shaving your armpits and bikini zone in the shower every morning, epilating your legs every two or three weeks, or waxing your body hair in the salon – it is time-consuming. And despite all the effort, your hair is back in what often feels like the blink of an eye.

The futility of this endless chore makes a permanent hair removal solution sound like a dream come true. But there’s no such thing as permanent hair removal – at home or elsewhere. However, hair removal that promises permanently smooth skin is a sought-after – and attainable, solution. But can it really keep its promise?

Understanding IPL & Permanent Hair Removal | Philips (1)

A promising solution to “permanent” hair removal

So, what’s the best way to permanently remove hair? The most well-known permanent hair removal treatment is laser hair removal, which you can have done at a salon. The hair will grow back over a long period of time – so it’s not 100% permanent, but the expensive, long-lasting hair removal treatment offers almost-permanent hair removal after a series of repeat visits. So how does it work?

Laser hair removal safely sends light pulses from laser to growing body hair. Melanin, which is responsible for the pigmentation in hair, absorbs the light, which is converted into heat and directed towards the hair follicle. This encourages the hair to enter its resting phase. Between sessions, it sheds naturally, and new growth is inhibited. Since only the hairs in the growth stage are treated this way, several sessions are required for complete depilation, depending on the body part, hair density, and hair type.

Before undergoing laser hair removal, and since every skin type is different, it’s best to consult your dermatologist or visit a laser removal clinic to fully understand the process and its effects, before making any decisions for yourself and your body.

Compared to shaving or epilating, laser hair removal could be considered the most permanent hair removal treatment, after at least six sessions, each one four weeks apart. Laser hair removal can significantly reduce hair growth over time, however, there’s no guarantee that laser hair removal is permanent. Generally, laser treatment is less effective for fair hair with low levels of melanin, but you can still find isolated regeneration of hair roots years later, on any skin or hair type.

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  • Understanding IPL & Permanent Hair Removal | Philips (3)

    Philips Lumea IPL 9000 Series IPL hair removal device for face and body


    • SmartSkin sensor
    • 4 intelligent attachments: body, face, bikini, underarms
    • With SmartSkin sensor
    • Both cordless and corded use

    4.4 (497 reviews)

    Overall rating 4.4 / 5

    View product

Permanent hair removal at home

Although many would prefer a permanent hair removal treatment, laser treatments only come very close, with no guarantee of lifelong hairlessness. So, perhaps a more appealing alternative that achieves a similar long-lasting hair removal solution – but without the frequent trips to the salon or laser treatment clinics – is IPL hair removal, which you can do from the comfort of your own home!

The methodological difference between laser and IPL is that IPL hair removal can cover a larger area of skin. IPL technology uses the complete light spectrum and filters it to the effective wavelength range instead of being dependent on a single wavelength, like the laser.

Both laser and IPL translate to higher costs at first when compared to shaving or waxing. However, the results are considerably longer lasting, making IPL – or laser – worthwhile investments. If you choose IPL treatment, you have the option of achieving laser treatment’s almost-but-not-quite permanent hair removal, at home. Despite the one-off investment, overall costs are lowered substantially. Additionally, you can perform the treatment wherever’s comfortable, whenever it suits you!

An IPL device such as the Philips Lumea Prestige is a hair removal solution that has been designed for you and has four different curved attachments for body, face, bikini and underarm areas. With these attachments, each body part receives the attention it deserves.

The Philips Lumea Prestige is handy, safe and achieves 92% hair reduction.
1 At the same time, you only need 8.5 minutes to treat both lower legs.2 Who would have thought that long-lasting hair removal at home would be this easy?
So, don’t be afraid to break the endless cycle of hair removal methods – choosing the right long lasting hair removal method for you may be your hairway to heaven!

1 Adherence to the treatment plan; detected at the legs after the third treatment. Individualresults may vary.

2 When used corded; for highest intensity setting.

Understanding IPL & Permanent Hair Removal | Philips (4)

Discover your beauty every day.

Whether you are looking for facial, hair care or hair removal beauty solutions – Philips has everything you need.

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Discover your beauty every day.

Whether you are looking for facial, hair care or hair removal beauty solutions – Philips has everything you need.

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Understanding IPL & Permanent Hair Removal | Philips (2024)


Does IPL really remove hair permanently? ›

The hair will grow back over a long period of time – so it's not 100% permanent, but the expensive, long-lasting hair removal treatment offers almost-permanent hair removal after a series of repeat visits.

Is it possible to remove 100% of hairs with IPL? ›

While IPL can significantly reduce hair growth, it does not guarantee permanent hair removal. Many users notice a significant reduction in hair density and thickness, making regrowth finer and lighter.

How many IPL treatments for permanent hair removal? ›

Hair is most receptive to laser or IPL hair removal while it is in the active 'anagen' growing phase. That's why a series of 6 sessions is required, in order to treat the maximum amount of hair at the peak point of the hair growth cycle, when it is most receptive to treatment.

Do you shave your legs before an IPL? ›

In addition, skin tone and hair colour must work with IPL, and you need to avoid IPL on birthmarks, moles, scars and other skin conditions. It's also important to prepare the legs first, so shave on the day, or alternatively you can epilate or wax the day before, and wash and dry well before the treatment.

Does hair eventually grow back after IPL? ›

Targeted hair will fall out in about 2 weeks after an IPL session. Regrowth will be lighter and finer, and some hair might not grow out, leaving patchy areas in the duration of treatment. Once most of the hair has been targeted, the treatment area will eventually be uniformly bare.

Can I use IPL on pubic hair? ›

IPL hair removal is a progressive treatment that offers full body hair removal - but you can use IPL to treat separate areas, such as your arms, legs, or pubic area, depending on your individual needs. When using IPL, you'll hold a flashgun device that delivers a spectrum of light to the skin.

What are the downsides of IPL? ›

Redness and Skin Burns

One of the most common side effects of IPL treatments is a slight redness in the treated area. This is primarily due to the continuous exposure to heat during the procedure, which can cause minor skin damage similar to a light burn.

Does IPL leave stubble? ›

When using IPL, you'll need to shave less and less as your treatments go on. As the hair follicles will be empty, you'll notice fewer ingrown hairs and less stubble 'shadow'. IPL treatment helps to smooth out the texture of your skin, whereas waxing or threading can cause inflammation.

Can you overuse IPL hair removal? ›

Using IPL too often can be ineffective and painful. IPL is most effective while your hair is in the growth phase –if you treat your skin multiple times a week, your hair can become dormant and IPL treatment won't work as well.

How to make IPL more effective? ›

To maximize your IPL treatments' effectiveness, you can do a few before and after to optimize your results. The treatment area mustn't be tanned or exposed to direct sunlight two weeks before your procedure. Sun exposure encourages the production of melanin, which can interfere with your IPL's results.

What happens if I use IPL every day? ›

You can overuse at-home IPL. If you use your device too often, you won't speed up your hair removal treatments and could set yourself up for side effects. Like nearly everything in life, IPL works best when following the recommended treatment plans. That's typically twice a week over 8 weeks, for starters.

Do I have to shave my upper lip before IPL? ›

To prepare for your first IPL treatment, you will need to shave the treatment area beforehand so that the hair follicles can adequately absorb the laser light.

What happens if you do IPL without shaving? ›

If you forget to shave, the effectiveness of your treatment may diminish. The laser, instead of focusing on the follicles, might target surface hair. This can lead to heightened discomfort, potential stinging, and a risk of burns. Surface impurities like dirt and oil can also reduce efficacy.

How to tell if an IPL is working? ›

You will notice that the hair growth after four weeks of IPL treatment will be lesser and thinner. After completing a session of 12 weeks, the hair growth will reduce completely, providing you with silky, smooth skin for a longer time. However, you may have to continue touch-ups as needed.

Does IPL work on grey hair? ›

Remember the laser light is attracted by the pigment of the hair. So due to the lack of pigment in grey/ white hair the laser isn't able to penetrate the skin. And therefore the procedure won't be effective.

How long do IPL hair removal results last? ›

We refer to IPL as a semi-permanent hair removal treatment as although the initial course of treatments will remove all of your hair follicles your body will eventually produce and develop more. We find that clients typically require a 'top-up' treatment once every six to twelve months to keep unwanted hair away!

Does hair fall out after IPL hair removal? ›

So, exactly when does hair fall out after IPL? It can take up to 3 weeks for the treated hair to actually fall out.

Can I pull hair out after IPL? ›

It is possible, immediately after treatment to pull a hair using tweezers. If it can be removed without pulling on the skin, this is proof of a good result. Also if per-follicular papullae or redness appears around the hair follicle, this also indicated the treatment has been successful.

What happens if you use IPL too often? ›

Using IPL too often can be ineffective and painful. IPL is most effective while your hair is in the growth phase –if you treat your skin multiple times a week, your hair can become dormant and IPL treatment won't work as well. Additionally, while IPL is a gentle treatment, too much of it can be a bad thing.

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