In the past, laser and waxing were two forms of hair removal that people could only really get in a beauty clinic. For many, relying on professionals to provide effective hair removal could be expensive, and for people in rural areas, it was too far to travel.
But these days both of these methods are far more accessible. We can buy IPL hair removal devices and waxing kits. Both can be used safely and effectively in your own time, for a much lower price than their clinical counterparts.
But which option is better? And what should you be spending your money on? We’re going to share the main benefits and drawbacks of using both of these hair removal methods, to find which we think will work best for you.
At-Home Waxing: Advantages
- Low-cost: Compared to professional sessions, at-home waxing can cost as little as 1/5th the cost of treatment, perhaps even less.
- Easy: Most at-home waxing kits are very easy to use. You either heat up the wax and apply, or you can simply use the wax strips straight out of the packet.
- No razor burn: Unlike shaving, you will never have to deal with razor burn on sensitive areas of your body.
At-Home Waxing: Disadvantages
- Messy: Some wax kits can be messy, particularly if you are simply using a small pot of wax and have to apply it to your skin directly. Heated wax can get on your clothes, hands, and floor if not applied carefully. And if the wax hardens you may have trouble removing it.
- Painful: While many consider waxing less painful than other hair removal treatments like tweezing and epilating, it can still be very painful particularly if you have a low pain threshold or no prior experience with waxing.
- More difficult than clinical applications: Yes, it isn’t going to be as simple as it is when done by a professional. Some patches of hair will have to be waxed multiple times before you get everything, and you may have to go back and tweeze any stray hairs that you might have missed.
- Can be slow: If your at-home wax kit has less grip, or you are very sensitive to pain, the procedure will take a lot longer. Less effective wax means having to repeat some areas, and low pain tolerance means you’ll spend a lot of time bracing yourself before applying that next strip.
At-Home IPL: Advantages
- No downtime: Unlike some laser-based cosmetic treatments, IPL requires no downtime after use.
- No skin damage: compared to the risk of ingrown hairs, razor burns, and burns from the more intense laser treatment, there is a relatively minimal chance that IPL will damage the skin.
- Quick results: an at-home IPL session can be completed in approximately 15-30 minutes.
- More long-term results: By using an effective IPL device on a long-term basis, your skin can eventually be smooth for as long as 8 weeks at a time, and you should notice a significant reduction of hair regrowth.
At-Home IPL: Disadvantages
- Minor side effects: In some cases, redness and minor swelling can occur after a session, though they should subside within 48 hours.
- Expensive: Though an IPL hand device will save you money in the long term, a high-quality handset can be an expensive one-off purchase that is not in everyone's price range.
- Can be limited: Depending on the device, some IPL handsets are not as effective on all skin and hair types, such as darker skin or blond and red hair.
IPL or Waxing?
In our opinion, using an IPL handset is a far more effective long term option for at-home hair removal. While waxing does keep hair regrowth at bay for longer than shaving and epilating, it does not compare to the long-term results of an IPL machine. If IPL is used regularly over time, you will find that hair growth is significantly reduced, and you can go as long as 2 months with no hair regrowth. The same cannot be said for waxing.
All in all, IPL is a simpler, more effective, and less painful treatment than waxing. And though it is more expensive than at-home waxing kits, it will save you in the long run. You will have to purchase wax kits indefinitely if you choose the waxing route, and it all adds up. An IPL is a one-off purchase.
If you are looking for a powerful hair-removal device, consider the EvenSkyn® Pulsar. This device uses the latest in IPL technology to provide very effective hair removal treatment and can be used safely by all skin types.