IPL Laser Hair Removal: What you can expect before & after

IPL Laser Hair Removal: What you can expect before & after

What to expect before:

Where you are using an at-home laser / IPL device at-home such as the very popular EvenSkyn Pulsar, or if you are getting you laser hair removal treatment done at a cosmetic clinic or salon, you are expected to follow some pre-care instructions prior to each session. We've collated some of them below:

  • In the case of an at-home IPL or laser hair removal device such as the Pulsar, you must read the manual received along with the at home IPL device and follow it diligently. 
  • One of the most important parts of preparing for IPL / Laser hair removal treatment is to avoid direct sun exposure immediately prior to or after the session. This includes avoiding self-tanning, tanning sprays, tanning beds and even going out in the sun without any sunscreen. Generally speaking, the higher the intensity the longer the wait prior to the session where you are not supposed to be exposing your skin to UV rays, i.e., at least four to six weeks prior to the treatment if getting your hair removal treatment done at a clinic that tend to use more precise and powerful lasers.
  • You should remove any make-up, lotions, or sunscreen that you may have used at the area of treatment before using IPL machine.
  • Again, in the case of an at-home device, do not use the device, if you take any of the following medications: 
    • If your skin is being currently treated with or has recently been treated in the past week with Alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs), beta-hydroxy acids (BHAs), tropical topical isotretinoin, and azelaic acid.
    • If you have taken any form of isotretinoin acutance or Roaccutane in the last six months, this treatment can make your skin more susceptible to tears, wounds, and irritations.
    • If you are taking photosensitizing agents or medications, check the package insert of your medication and never use the device if it states it can cause a phot-allergic reaction or if you have to avoid the sun if you are taking that medication.
  • People with dark skin have much more melanin than light skin, Laser hair removal for dark skin tone is to be avoided using any IPL because it can cause hyper-pigmentation or hypo-pigmentation.
  • Do not pluck, wax, or shave your hair just before the treatment. 
  • Wear protective eyewear-glasses before laser IPL treatment.
  • Do not heat the room too much.
  • Place the device at a 90angle on the skin.
  • Do not use the your at home IPL device such as the EvenSkyn Pulsar in water.
  • IPL treatment is advised to be done before getting a tattoo but in case you already have a tattoo, the location of the tattoo will impact the results of the IPL treatment. For example, if you have a tattoo on your ribs and want to get IPL hair removal, you are unlikely to face any issues. However, IPL cannot be done over tattoos but only in the surrounding areas around the tattoo. The larger the tattoo, the greater the problem to remove hairs by IPL.

What to expect after:

  • With most procedures, even if they are non-invasive, the body undergoes a healing process. It is normal to experience some of the mild side-effects. These side-effects or changes indicate that the treatment is working fine and are no reason for being concerned. 
  • You may experience a feeling of sunburn 24-48 hours post the treatment session. The side effects may last only a few days. There are no visible secondary effects in the majority of cases.
  • You can apply cold compresses to the treated area to help minimize swelling. You can apply a cold compress every hour on the day of the treatment, for about 10 minutes each time. 
  • You can expect gradual darkening of pigmentation. Patients are advised to not rub or scrub away the treated area. This is a part of the healing process and will begin to slough off in three to four days post-treatment.
  • For some, the sensation of prickling can persist for a week or two after each session. 
  • You must avoid direct sunlight for about four weeks post the treatment.
  • You can resume your regular skincare regimen after the treatment area is back to being normal.
  • IPL treatment with an at-home device such as the Pulsar can be done weekly but laser hair removal in a clinic (again, given the sheer power of some lasers use, which can also be quite painful) should be performed with a gap of at least four to six weeks, depending on the treatment reaction. 

We hope that some of these tips help you ready yourself for the next session and also be aware of the ideal after-care involved. Write to us with any questions or comments you may have about any of the aforementioned pieces of information, or if you'd like to know more about some of the innovative solutions and devices we manufacture.

 

Sources:

  1. https://www.audubondermatology.com/about/pre-and-post-care-instructions/intense-pulsed-light-ipl-treatment-pre-and-post-care-instructions/
  2. https://www.whowhatwear.com/ipl-treatment-review/slide3
  3. https://cfvanderloos.com/what-to-expect-after-ipl-photofacial/
  4. http://www.youthmaintenance.co.uk/treatments/ipl-hair-removal/
  5. https://www.hinchinbrookhealth.com.au/services/cosmetic-clinic/ipl/
  6. Evenskyn Instagram page

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