Photoepilation is a method of removing unwanted hair with high-frequency high-intensity light pulses. Devices that are used for photo-epilation are called the abbreviation "IPL", which translates as "Intense Pulsed Light."
Despite the fact that IPL systems (like lasers) use pulsed light - they are not lasers after all. The fact is that all lasers emit light waves of one strictly defined wavelength (for example, 755 nanometers), and IPL systems simultaneously emit light waves of different lengths - from 580 to 980 nm.
Photoepilation: how it works
The process used in IPL systems is called “photothermolysis”. The intense light energy flux created by the IPL system acts on the hair follicle, which causes its intense heating and destruction. A similar process occurs when using laser hair removal systems.
Like other systems, photoepilation acts only on follicles that are in the stage of active growth (approximately 75-80% of all follicles). Also in the thickness of the skin there are sleeping follicles, of which the hair does not grow yet. Photoepilation cannot act on such dormant follicles. Therefore, to obtain a good result, you will need a series of several procedures.
IPL system features -
IPL hair removal systems are more flexible than laser hair removal systems, because they have additional settings for changing the length of light waves. The skin of each person is individual: its color, type, hair color is different. In IPL devices, the length of light waves, the intensity of the luminous flux, the duration of each pulse can be adjusted individually for your skin.
All these settings allow you to specifically damage only the hair follicles, reducing the possibility of damage to the surrounding tissues around them. All this reduces the risk of adverse reactions and complications. Since the parameters are set individually for each patient, the results of the procedure will differ slightly from patient to patient.
Professional IPL devices for photoepilation -
In general, the IPL devices were originally developed not for photo-epilation, but for photo-rejuvenation of the skin - the treatment of pigment and vascular lesions of the skin. For example, spider veins, age and age spots. Those. Professional IPL devices can be used for both hair removal and cosmetic purposes.
Photoepilation: photo before and after
The advantages of photoepilation -
- possibility of individual settings (taking into account the type of skin and hair),
- less risk of damage to surrounding tissue than with laser hair removal,
- the ability to process large areas of skin in a short time.
Disadvantages of photoepilation -
- can not be used on tanned, dark skin, as well as in summer,
- does not work well with light hair, unlike "ELOS",
- IPL systems (when mistreated) can damage melanin-producing pigment cells, so the risk of pigment spots is darker or lighter than your skin.
Key questions about IPL that patients ask -
Below we have compiled a list of basic questions that will allow you to quickly understand: is the photoepilation technique suitable for you ...
1. What hair is suitable for photoepilation?
Photoepilation works well with most types of skin and hair, however, it works best on light skin and dark hair. For blond hair, red or gray hair, photo epilation remains less effective.
Other systems are currently being developed for blond hair, for example:
→ epilation system "E.L.O.S.",
→ Alexandrite type of laser.
2. Is photoepilation painful?
In general, photoepilation - reviews claim that the procedures bring only mild or moderate discomfort during its implementation, and the discomfort becomes less from procedure to procedure, since skin gradually gets used. For example, this distinguishes photo epilation from laser epilation, which is very painful.
3. Deep bikini photo-epilation - is it safe?
Doctors-dermatologists consider the procedures absolutely safe - bikini photo-epilation is deep and bikini photo-epilation is classic. The studies collected results from various clinics conducting thousands of these procedures per month. Keep in mind that deep bikini photoepilation requires a VERY fine tuning of the IPL system, so turning to an inexperienced specialist is an increased risk of side effects and complications.
Photoepilation deep bikini: photo before and after
4. How many sessions are needed?
All hair follicles go through three stages of growth - the stage of active growth, the stage of rest and the stage of sleep. Photoepilation affects only hair follicles that are at the stage of active growth. Over time, dormant follicles wake up, and hair starts to grow from them too.
Therefore, to achieve excellent results and the most complete reduction in hair growth, several procedures are required. On average, it takes from 1-3 procedures to reduce the amount of hair by 20%, and from 4 to 8 procedures - to reduce hair by 95%.
5. Photoepilation for how long: reviews
In 2007, a survey of 207 patients who were subjected to photo epilation on the face and other areas of the body was conducted. All these patients had similar hair types and skin color and the same photo-epilation system settings were applied to them. Patients performed from 1 to 13 procedures, most of them from 2 to 6 sessions.
The results were as follows -
- 45 respondents (22%) were very pleased
- 93 respondents (45%) were satisfied
- 69 respondents (33%) were not satisfied with the results of hair removal using this method.
The answer of the majority of respondents to the question: photoepilation on how many reviews are enough - the achieved result lasts quite a long time, up to several years. But in order to fully preserve the result obtained, you will need to repeat the procedure once - once every 6 or 12 months.
6. How much can a photo hair removal machine help at home?
Dermatologists say that home-based photo-epilation machines are good only for supporting procedures, and that they will never be able to provide long-term results as the main type of treatment. All IPL devices for home use are limited in power and settings (according to the rules of the European Union and the FDA).
However, every year all new models of photoepilators are launched on the market, which use more and more advanced technologies. Such devices no longer require high power pulses, since They use the combined effect of several types of energy.
Keep in mind that the highest-quality machines will be approved by medical associations such as the FDA (Food Agencies, Medicines and Equipment Control Organization in the USA). You can see the detailed rating of home photoepilators by clicking on the link (prices are also indicated there).
An example of high-quality devices for home photoepilation -
- The device "Iluminage TOUCH Permanent Hair Reduction System" (Fig.14) -
This system is the first IPL system for home use, in which light pulses are combined with radio frequency exposure (E.L.O.S. technology), which several times increases the efficiency of the device. Suitable even for blond hair. FDA approved.
- The device "Remington i-Light Pro Plus QUARTZ" (Fig. 15) -
also approved by the FDA, and in addition is the best-selling device in Europe. It has a built-in skin tone sensor that allows you to customize the device to the individual characteristics of your skin and hair.
Photoepilation: contraindications and consequences
- Photoepilation: contraindications and consequences
→ diabetes of any type,
→ hormone replacement therapy or chemotherapy,
→ taking photosensitizing drugs,
→ tanned skin (hyper or hypopigmentation is possible),
→ pregnancy (not a strict contraindication, however, consultation of a gynecologist is necessary, since there is a high risk of pigmentation due to the unstable hormonal background of pregnant women).
- Side effects -
→ reddening of the skin it treated area of the skin,
→ burning sensation after the procedure,
→ possible development of folliculitis (inflammation of hair follicles),
→ temporary hypo- or hyperpigmentation of the treated skin areas.
Photoepilation or laser: which is better
If you want the hair in certain places never to grow at all, then only a few methods are suitable for you, one of which will, of course, be photoepilation. Alternative photoepilation techniques will be -
- laser hair removal
- epilation system "E.L.O.S."
Laser and photoepilation are similar in that they affect the problem of hair removal in a similar way. It heats the hair, which destroys the hair follicles and the small capillaries that feed them. The main difference is that the devices for photoepilation emit light waves of different lengths, and the laser uses light waves of only one length.
Special filters in IPL systems are designed to help achieve the optimal wavelength of light to solve the problem in each particular case, depending on the color of the skin or hair. Lasers do not have the ability to customize. Photoepilation in Russia tends to become more popular and more common than laser hair removal - because of its cheapness relative to the latter. In the United States and the European Union, everything is quite the opposite: it uses only laser hair removal.
The last word in hair removal unwanted hair -
In recent years, a new hybrid method of hair removal has appeared on the cosmetic services market, which uses a combination of IPL (pulsed light) and radio frequency effects. The original name of this hair removal system is “E.L.O.S.”, the link to which we gave a little higher.
According to doctors and patients: the effect of this system is superior to both the laser and the IPL. In addition, it is completely painless, easily tolerated and much safer for the skin than all other types of traditional and hardware hair removal.
Photoepilation and traditional hair removal methods - comparison
There are traditional methods of hair removal, which are not associated with lasers, light or any electrical equipment. These methods are based on mechanical hair removal. The main advantage of traditional methods: firstly, cheapness, secondly, removed hair can grow back if you suddenly want to grow it again. These methods include -
- shaving plucking
- depilation creams
- wax epilation
- epilation with sugar (shugaring).
Differences of photoepilation from traditional methods -
- Save time -
removing unwanted hair with shaving or waxing / waxing - you have to constantly spend time maintaining the result. Using methods of photoepilation of unwanted hair, you save your time in the long term.
Photoepilation procedure is performed once every 4-6 weeks (the main course of treatment, consisting of a total of 3-10 procedures). In the future, you will need to do only the supporting procedure only once every six months or a year.
- Safety, comfort, lack of "ingrown hair" -
hair removal for a long time using photoepilation is most relevant for those who have sensitive skin that reacts to creams and depilation waxes, or are prone to rashes after shaving. The ingrown hairs that appear after being removed from wax / sugar are a particular problem. With photoepilation ingrown hairs are not formed.
- Cost -
photoepilation is also more cost effective in the long term. Spending a certain amount once for several procedures may be more profitable than the constant spending of money on other hair removal products.
For the photoepilation service - prices will depend on which zone of the body you are planning to carry out the procedure, as well as on the price policy of the clinic. How much photoepilation costs - in some clinics, the number of required pulses / flashes can also affect the processing of a specific zone. Many clinics set the cost per 1 impulse, and their number depends on the particular patient and the amount of hair on the treated skin.
Photoepilation - cost in Moscow for 1 procedure ...
- upper lip - from 890 rubles to 1400 rubles,
- armpits - from 1300 rubles to 2400 rubles,
- classic bikini - from 2200 to 4600 rubles,
- deep bikini photoepilation - from 4500 rubles,
- legs of the leg - from 4500 to 5800 rubles,
- legs completely - from 6700 rubles.
Author: editors of the portal.