What Is IPL? Get The Facts, Here

Hey there,

I thought I’d share with you my experiences of having IPL, so you can make an informed decision on whether or not it’s suited to you.  I  performed the treatments for my clients in London for over 6 years and have also been a client myself, many times…….Happy reading.

IPL-Standing for INTENSE PULSED LIGHT, is a light treatment used to permanently REDUCE HAIR GROWTH, REJUVENATE the skin cells, and directly treat facial THREAD VEINS.

IPL HAIR REDUCTION ~ The light produced by the machine is pulsed not direct (as you’d find with laser) and is attracted to the hairs colour.  There are variations of effectiveness/results depending on depth of hair colour and skin. The ideal client would have fair skin and dark, thick hair although treatment settings can be widely adapted to suit the individual.  When pulsed, the light is immediately attracted the the hairs colour and the hairs density determines how much light is absorbed into the hair.  When this happens, a heat reaction occurs and over a course of treatments, weakens the hair follicle thus reducing the strength of hair production.  The light is localised to the area treated and usually covers a 2 inch area per pulse.


I was always asked to explain to my clients “it feels like a hot elastic band, snapping against the skin”.  This makes me laugh now, as every time I had MY treatment it did NOT feel like the sting of an elastic band! It is however, totally bearable for the results you gain. Once you get to the third session and your hair gently falls away from the skin, you’ll be so happy with your choice to take the plunge. It’s a very quick procedure, depending on the area chosen to be treated and each pulse is quite literally, the speed of light!


Directly after a treatment, the area will feel hot and quite possibly, tender.  This only lasts a maximum of 24hrs so if you’re having it on your face, consider a Friday night or Saturday appointment.  This will allow enough recovery time, ready for Monday morning!  It isn’t until the second or third sessions that you’ll start to see results.  7-10 days after your treatment, hair will grow back as normal and then begin to shed.  You can help this process by gently exfoliating the hair away.

** DO NOT be alarmed when your therapist explains that the area treated needs to be shaved with a razor each time you visit.  I promise you, its fine.  The treatment counteracts the shaving unless you have hormonal hair growth on the face.  In which case, you’ll be properly advised.


IPL SKIN REJUVENATION ~ Using a slightly different approach, the light is attracted to any discolouration on the skins surface, causing a heat reaction and breaking down melanin which has grouped together to cause the pigmentation.  This technique works on pigmented acne scarring, age spotting and sun damage as they fall within the same ‘family’.  The treatment can created a burn like appearance on the skin which quickly goes away.  Believe it or not, this is a positive reaction as it shows the breaking down of the pigmentation.  Once it has been broken down, it is drawn up and out of the skin as new skin cells are produced and sloughs away at the skins surface.  An average of 3 treatments are advised and results are seen quickly.


As above, a hot ‘pinging’ sensation as that of the IPL hair removal


In the next few days you’ll notice any pigmentation looks darker and scabbing may appear.  This may increase over the course of 7-10days depending on the depth of the treatment and will then begin to lighten from day 10 onwards


IPL THREAD VEINS ~ Using a slightly different approach again, the pulsed light causes a heat reaction within the vein causing the blood to heat and coagulate, slowly breaking down the cell wall and removing the blood via the bodies natural waste system.


The more intense of the three, feeling slightly hotter and deeper.  The areas which are usually treated are more often than not, very small ie tips of cheeks & around the nose.


You’ll notice a spongy feeling to the areas treated, especially on the cheeks.  My cheeks swelled up a little, which i didn’t mind too much.  The area will look red for a few days and when that subsides, you’ll be left with a much clearer looking skin.

x  Rosie

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