IPL for Hair Removal and PIH?

About a year ago i started 808mn Laser Diode hair removal treatment. After 10 treatments in face, legs, arms, underarms , i have not remove the hair and now i got PIH (post inflamatory hyperpigmentation) in legs and face. I had been treating PIH with Hidroquinone, citric acid 10%, lactobionic acid 10% and Glycolic acid 25%, and i had reduced the hyperpigmentation but is still there. I have skin type 4 with very black hair. Should I try IPL for hair removal and for removing PIH?

Doctor Answers 3

IPL for hair removal

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For Type IV skin, I would not recommend IPL for hair removal.  You would be much better served with a 1064nm NdYAG for your skin and hair type.  I would expect better results and less chance of PIH. Continue with the hydroquinone and exfoliating products to help with the PIH and avoid sun exposure to those areas.  Always use sunscreen. 


Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 152 reviews

Not IPL for your Hair Reduction and PIH treatments

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Lasers work better overall for hair reduction than IPL devices.

With your skin type and history of unsuccessful treatment with a diode-type laser, you may wish to try a long pulsed Nd:YAG (1064nm) laser for your hair reduction treatments and continue with a streamlined skin care regimen. When your laser hair reduction treatments are complete, reassess the condition of your skin, to see what  if any hyperpigmentation persists. At that time you may want to look into a series of peels in addition to a hydroquinone protocol.

IPL for laser hair removal

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You need to use the long pulsed 1064nm laser if you desire better hair removal with less risk of complications in a Fitzpatrick skin type 4.  Be sure that you see a trained dermatologist who specializes in lasers since you have already had complications from your previous treatments.

Shawn Allen, MD
Boulder Dermatologist

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These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.