Differences between laser hair removal and photoepilation?

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It is a very common question in forums, even among Aesthetic professionals and equipment manufacturers, but it is not technically correct and it is essential to know why, so we will easily understand the differences between both types of permanent hair removal.

IPL laser photodepilation by light

The term Photodepilation defines the hair removal that is done through the use of Light, with which we refer to the two classes of existing treatments, the Laser and the Pulsed Light (IPL), that is, that photoepilation are both methods and not only one of them.

Laser (Light Amplified by Stimulated Emission of Radiation)

Intense Pulsed Light or IPL (Intensed Pulsed Light)

In both techniques we find the word Light (light) and both use light to achieve hair removal.

The laser is best known for being the most veteran technique and the one that has evolved the most; Pulsed Light is more recent. Actually, the confusion is due to the fact that the term “photodepilation” has been associated with the Pulsed Light and not the Laser, that’s all!

Once the confusion is clarified, we will understand more clearly the “differences between Laser photodepilation and IPL Pulsed Light photoepilation”. Now if it is correctly written, right?

What is photoepilation?

Laser hair removal and pulsed light IPL

Permanent hair removal, also called definitive, consists of destroying the hair follicles so that they do not produce hair. To achieve this, there are Laser and Intense Pulsed Light or IPL photoepilation equipment.

The hair that covers the body is colored due to melanin. When light strikes melanin, the energy of light is transformed into heat by traveling through the hair to the bottom of the follicle, where the cells that make the hair grow, destroying them by thermal action.

The reason why several photodepilation sessions are required is that, at the time of treatment, the hairs of the body are in different stages of growth. The number of sessions will depend on the area to be removed, whether it is a man or woman and, in general, the individual reaction of each person to the treatment.

The stages of hair growth are:

Invisible anagen. The hair has just begun to grow and does not show on the surface of the skin. The Light can not affect, therefore, the photoepilation session will not be effective for the hair that is in this phase.

Visible anagen. The hair is visible from the outside and the duct through which it exits is continuous up to its matrix. In this phase, when the Laser or Pulsed Light can travel through the hair and reach the bottom, where the cells that you want to destroy are located.


Photodepilation phases hair growth

• Visible telogen. The hair is equally visible from the outside, but it is separated from the womb, so the path through which the Light must go is cut off. In this phase, it is possible to burn the hair, but the thermal energy does not reach the bottom, not being able to warm up the hair follicle enough, so the hair grows back. This session is of low effectiveness (refines the hair) or is not effective.

• invisible telogen. It is the resting stage, that is, there is no hair but the follicle at rest. The photoepilation session will not be effective in this phase as there is no path to light.

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