Should I be Concerned of Potentially Being Burned During IPL Hair Removal Treatments?

Hi, everyone. Recently I bought a voucher online to do 6sessions IPL hair removal treatments. I went to my first treatment today. My skin was not painful during the treatment but I could feel my hair was hot. Is it normal? My skin is really fine for now. Does it mean okay? I was looking at this website and found out many people got burnt from IPL. I'm just abit worrying if I will be like this. Thanks, Maggie

Doctor Answers 5

IPL Hair Removal Treatments

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Like many others who have commented here, we don't use IPL anymore for hair removal. The treatment takes too long and isn't as effective and other lasers - like diode, Alexandrite, YAG. IPL targets the color only, with a pulse of light energy; other treatments are able to actually destroy the follicle producing the hair, as well as the hair itself, and the machines can operate faster than a machine that does an IPL pulse. All of that being said, many, many offices offer discounts on hair removal procedures because they think they are cheap and easy. This usually means you're getting treatments done by new or not well trained technicians, and often, like in this case, with older technologies. Burns can occur from poor treatments, sun exposure, medications, etc. so be sure that the office you are going to is well trained and is asking you questions about your sun exposure, medications, etc. before treatments. This is one sign of a well trained technician!

Burn Concerns during IPL Hair Removal Treatments

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it is not unusual for your skin to feel warm (like you have a sunburn) after a IPL or laser hair reduction treatment. The sensation is typically temporary and lasts minutes to hours. No proceudre is without risk.  One of the risks of hair reduction treatments, despite your providers best efforts, is the possibility of a burn or blister.

At SkinMD, we prefer to use the Lumenis 810-diode laser and the 1064nm Nd:YAG laser for hair reduction.

No matter what modality you use, make sure all your concerns are addressed before you sign consent, and your first treament is [erformed. As your treatments progress, be sure to discuss any questions or concerns you have with your provider.

Burning after IPL hair removal

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IPL hair removal can be effective and safe if done by an experienced professional.

However, burns can occur occasionally: 1st degree burns (redness) and second degree burns (blisters) have been reported. The most unpleasant consequence of 2nd degree burns is pigmentation which can last a long time.

At Lakeviewderm, in Chicago, we have stopped using IPL for hair removal and are now using the Alexandrite Laser  for light to moderately dark skin and the Neodymium-YAG laser for very dark skin.

Make sure that you are being treated by an experienced, Board Certified Dermatologist or Plastic Surgeon.

People with darker skin types are more likely to be burned by IPL

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If you tan easily, you are more likely to have problems with IPL hair removal especially if the technician or doctor is not highly skilled.  Burns from IPL hair removal are the most common complication in the cosmetic laser arena.  I have been an expert witness on numerous cases.  Be certain that you are going to a doctor who is an expert!

Mark Taylor, MD
Salt Lake City Dermatologic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

ILP Hair removal

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You should be fine as long as you have no blistering or obvious burns.  You should feel like you have a sunburn and that should last a few hours.  IPL technology is a wonderful as long as you have an experienced professional doing your treatments.  If you have any concerns you should always contact your provider.

Arnold R. Oppenheim, MD
Virginia Beach Dermatologist

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.