Is IPL Hair Removal Same As Laser Hair Removal?

Ive been using IPL treatments for hair removal. Is it the same as laser hair removal? I've had 6-7 IPL treatments and I can't really see any change in hairs. I'm light-skinned and the hairs are dark. If they are different, is it worth it for me to try laser hair removal? Should I try other clinics if they are just the same?

Doctor Answers 2

IPL vs laser for hair removal, what is the difference

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IPL is not effective for laser hair removal. It never has been. IPL has been promoted to physicians as a device that can do it all.  But, it really isn't the best at anything. IPL costs less than lasers, but in the long run, a device that isn't effective costs much more.  

In my Raleigh, NC office, I have used several different types of lasers for hair removal, skin tightening and vein removal. I did purchase an IPL . We knew better than to use it for hair removal, but we found that other lasers were far more effective and safer for skin rejuvenation as well. 

Lasers have been proven safe and effective for hair removal of all skin types. The alexandrite laser is safest and most effective for light to medoum toned skin and the long pulsed nd yag is best for darker toned skin

Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 123 reviews


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No these terms are often used interchangeably, but they mean two different procedures.

I.P.L. stands for Intense Pulsed Light.

L.A.S.E.R. has become a word but actually stands for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation.

Individuals respond differently to these modalities, which can be effected by pigmentation, hair density and color.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

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