Nowadays when you talk about hair removal methods, the most popular thing that can come to your mind is hair removal with a light source and two methods use light sources to damage hair roots and remove hairs permanently.
So again you have to select one option out of two, one is IPL and the other is laser hair treatment. The main difference between IPL and laser is the source of light, IPL has a broadband light source that is emitted in flashes or pulses and laser beam consists of a coherent monochromatic source of light.
Both these hair removal treatments damage hair roots and hair growth is either slowed or stopped because they target melanin colour pigment in hair follicles therefore frequent sessions can lead to permanent removal of unwanted hairs.
Latest advancements in the field of science and technology have led to the invention of laser and IPL hair removal methods and many of you may be unable to decide which method has better results. For your ease, we have tried to compare both methods in detail.
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Many people confuse laser hair removal therapy with IPL hair removal therapy. Both method indeed uses light energy and both can give a permanent solution to hair removal of unwanted hairs.
The point where the similarity ends is the technology used for light sources because IPL and laser have different light sources that damage hair growth.
As the name indicates, IPL is derived from Intense Pulsed Light and it is a technology used by IPL devices but it is not the laser. The light source of IPL has multiple different wavelengths that make it a broad-spectrum source of light.
IPL device emits light similar to a camera flash and it spreads over a larger area with low focus therefore its light energy is also less focussed and its absorption to skin is less deep as compared to a focussed beam of light.
Laser hair therapy also termed selective photothermolysis which means a light source of a specific wavelength is used in a laser beam that is selected based on hair type. It is focused and targeted killing of melanin in hair follicles.
Laser light is focused on only hair follicles and it does not damage surrounding areas of skin, where it prevents the blood supply to hair follicles from completely damaging them and stopping hair growth.
Although IPL and Laser hair removal are somewhat similar in results both processes are different in the kinds of light source and technology used to deliver the light energy to the site of action. There are some key differences;
Type of Wavelengths:
The types of light in Laser and IPL are quite different and the way both are delivered to the site area is also different. Therefore results from both therapies are different. IPL wavelength penetrates less deeply as compared to laser light therefore laser can damage roots more deeply as compared to IPL.
Type of Technology:
As it has been mentioned both therapies have differences in technology and types of light energy. The light source of the Laser machine is concentrated and specifically targeted to an area to be treated with it and it goes in one direction that makes it more effective to damage hair roots.
On the other hand, an IPL device provides multiple wavelengths of light at a time to make a single flash of light as of camera flash. This decreases the intensity and power of the therapy and produces less productive hair removal.
During laser hair removal therapy, light is more concentrated and targeted therefore it damages hair follicles more efficiently as compared to IPL so results are better with laser hair removal treatment.
For best results almost 6-8 sessions are required to get hair-free and smooth skin permanently while the light energy of IPL is weak and scattered therefore more sessions are required as compared to IPL.
Duration of Each Treatment:
Laser hair treatment requires less time as compared to IPL because IPL is less intense and less focused light to target hair follicles and destroy them.
Safety of Treatment:
Laser hair removal therapy is safer because it involves the use of specific wavelengths that target hair follicles while IPL uses broad spectrum wavelengths that scatter all over the skin other than the targeted area and can damage skin.
On a final note, IPL is at-home therapy to remove hairs permanently but it requires more sessions and a longer duration for treatment. Laser hair removal therapy requires professional setup and personnel to carry out and is a safer, more effective, and cost-effective treatment.