If you’re considering buying a home IPL hair removal system and have done a bit of research then you’ve probably noticed that there are a dizzying number of brands and models out there all making big claims about their hair removal powers. You’ll have also noticed that IPL devices vary greatly in price depending on the model, features and functionality which makes it even harder to know which is the best system for you.
But don’t worry, we’re here to help! Below we’ve reviewed the best home IPL hair removal systems out there at the moment and provided the pros and cons of each so you can decide which is right for you and your budget.
Before we start it’s worth you thinking about the following:
- Your hair colour and skin shade. IPL treatment is not effective for people with red, grey or light blonde hair and should not be used at all if you have medium brown or darker skin as it can actually cause skin damage. Many devices will automatically scan your skin and adjust their light intensity settings to optimise your treatment.
- What part of your body are you looking to treat? If you’re looking to treat large areas such as the torso or legs then it’s worth looking for an IPL hair removal system with a long lamp life; auto flash functionality and good battery life / mains powered. If you are looking to treat the face, armpits or bikini area then consider an IPL device with additional filter attachments designed to allow for a more targeted flash or the treatment of coarser hair (though check out the amazing Tria Laser Hair Removal Precision below first).
- Your Budget. Looking below you’ll see the prices can vary by over £200. You’ll typically be paying more for the newest IPL hair removal models when their previous models will often be perfectly suitable for your needs. You may also be paying more for things such as additional filters and other features so work out if you actually need them. To help with your budget we also check daily who’s giving the biggest discounts for each of the IPL products discussed so you don’t pay a penny more than you have to.
So, with these considerations in mind, let’s take a look at our list of the best IPL hair removal systems out there.
Philips: Philips Lumea IPL
Philips produce the award winning Lumea IPL Hair Removal system and are constantly updating their models with new features. They are one of the most popular brands with over a million users and, for performance and features, we rate them as the best cordless IPL out there. We’ve highlighted below the models we feel offer the best functionality and value, explaining what specific features each has so you can decide which is best for you.
Biggest Saving on:
Philips Lumea SC2007/00: Amazon – £300
Save £150 (33%)
Philips Lumea SC2004/11: Amazon – £223
Save £127 (36%)
Philips Lumea SC2008/11: Boots Online – £300
Save £10 with code VC5100 and collect £171.60 worth of Boots points
Pros: The Philips Lumea IPL is a multi-award winning and popular brand (used by over 1 million people according to their website) and clinical studies have demonstrated significant hair reduction within two fortnightly treatments and “optimal hair-free results” achieved after four to five sessions.
Pros: Lots of models to choose from at the moment (especially online) varying in functionality and price so there’s something for every budget and need.
Pros: Great lamp life with all the models listed above claiming at least 100,000 flashes (SC2007 to SC2009 models boast 140,000) which means you’ll not need to replace any Philips Lumea device.
Pros: 5 intensity settings to cover all skin / hair types and treatment areas plus an in-built UV filter.
Pros: The SC2007, 2008 and 2009 models come with a smaller precision filter you can attach when treating around the face or other sensitive areas. The SC2008 and SC2009 models (the latter is much more expensive so don’t go there) also have a second smaller attachment with a filter specifically designed for treating the bikini area where hair is typically coarser. The SC2004 does not have any additional attachments filter but is typically much cheaper so we’d suggest getting this if not treating face, armpits or bikini area.
Pros: Built in safety ring feature prevents accidental flashing
Pros: All models above feature a “Slide and Flash” option that tracks the movement over your skin and automatically flashes the light, making treatment (especially of larger areas) faster and easier. Manual “Step and Flash” mode is available for when you want more control around face / bikini line etc.
Pros: Battery powered so makes for good flexibility as to when and where you can use it. Recharging only takes 100 minutes
Pros: Comes with a soft case for safe storage and a DVD explaining how to use it
Cons: No in-built skin sensor available but comes with an easy-to-use skin colour guide to help set the correct intensity for your skin.
Tria Beauty: Tria Hair Removal Laser 4X
High on our list of favourite hair removal devices is the market leading and award winning Tria 4X Hair Removal Laser. OK, the flash from this hair removal device comes from a laser as opposed to an Intense Pulsed Light so technically it should not be appearing in this list. However, you can see it looks remarkably similar to the Philips Lumea IPL; you use it in basically the same way and, importantly for you, it has been clinically proven to provide more permanent hair removal results than the IPL method. All this makes the slightly higher cost justified if you have a bigger budget.
…oh, and it also comes in different colours which we rather like!
Biggest Saving on: Tria 4X Hair Removal Laser: Direct from Tria Beauty – £340
Save £35 off the normal £375 price by simply buying the Deluxe kit that comes with a Priming Cleanser (even if you don’t want the cleanser)
Pros: Market leading and award winning device with proven track record for excellent results
Pros: This uses a laser as opposed to a typical IPL light, giving off 3 times the hair removing energy of any other home IPL system, so hair removal results will typically be faster and more permanent.
Pros: Built in skin sensor ensures you’re using the optimal light-intensity-setting / preventing skin damage at all times
Pros: Digital LED display on device provides clear information during treatment on things such as the intensity setting, battery levels, skin sensor indicator and lock status of your device. It also includes a pulse counter on the display to ensure you treat the target area with the optimum number of flashes
Pros: Cordless – so can use anywhere and it only takes 2 hours to charge fully
Pros: Available in different colours so you can get one to match your style
Cons: Battery charge lasts 30 minutes (this should be ample but it might need a quick recharge if doing a larger area)
New: Tria Hair Removal Laser Precision
If you are taken by the benefits of the Tria 4X Laser but feel it is a little out of your price range or excessive for your needs, then there is a great alternative that will save you about £140. Tria has launched the Hair Removal Laser Precision that, as the name suggests, is designed for quickly treating smaller areas such as the face, armpits and bikini area.
Pros: Probably the perfect option for treating small areas of your body – you get the permanent results of the Tria 4x laser for a very competitive price.
Pros: Being much more compact than the Tria 4X or other IPL devices it’s easier to target those trickier to reach areas
Pros: Tria claim you’ll see a 70% reduction in hair growth in only 2 treatments.
Cons: The battery lasts 15 – 20 minutes which is ample for treating smaller areas but will possibly need a recharge if treating multiple areas in one session
“I have dark hair on my upper lip and chin. Tried everything including electrolysis but the hair always grows back. Being really dark it only takes a mm for it to show (well at least I can see it). Always been embarrassed. Someone recommended this laser so I got it. WOW! I have used it for 4 treatments and 3 months later not one single hair has grown back… this has truly changed my life“
Biggest Saving on: Tria Hair Removal Laser Precision: Direct from Tria Beauty – £221
Save £14 off the normal £235 price by simply buying the Deluxe kit that comes with a Priming Cleanser (even if you don’t want the cleanser)
Remington i-Light Pro IPL
Remington are a well known Brand and one of the leading producers of quality IPL devices. We like them as they come with most of the features found on other top brands but at a more competitive price.
They do tend to bring a lot of new versions onto the market – the latest currently being the Remington i-Light Pro 6500 and Prestige 6750 – which can make choosing the right one slightly confusing but never fear – we’ve highlighted the main features on each new model for you below.
Biggest Saving on:
i-Light Pro 6500: Boots Online – £214.99
Save £10 with code VC5100 and get £8 of Boots Points
i-Light 6250: Amazon – £171.05
Save £28..94 (14%)
i-Light Prestige 6750 : Amazon – £371.98
Pros: All models come with 5 intensity settings – pretty standard across most brands these days
Pros: All models have both single-flash and multi-flash options (for targeting specific areas such as face or treating larger areas of your body faster)
Pros: The 6250, 6500 and 6750 models have a 50% bigger flash window compared to older models to speed up treatment on larger areas such as legs and torso
Pros: The 6750 Prestige model also comes with 2 smaller attachments for treating the face or bikini line
Pros: Integrated skin sensor on all models ensures safe light intensity is used at all times
Pros: LED display lets you easily check light intensity, skin-sensor activity and bulb life
Pros: The models listed here all use an infinity bulb that “will never need replacing“
Cons: Mains powered so you lose some of the flexibility of a cordless device – however it comes with a generous cable and has the added benefit of you not having to to worry about recharging it
Cons: More of a warning as does not relate to the above models but on the earlier 4000, 5000 and 6000 models (not the 6000F and any above) the lamp life was very poor. The 6000 model came with 3 bulbs to try and alleviate this issue (and iLight replacement bulbs are also available for around £20 if necessary) but we personally would not go with these.
Gillette Venus Naked IPL
Made by Braun this IPL device has been around for ages and has loads of great feedback. It bucks the trend of the other devices in that it recommends you use an IPL gel (they sell their own but others are available) to make the treatment more effective. Apparently the gel magnifies the light but also makes for a more comfortable overall experience.
Biggest Saving on: Gillette Venus Naked: Amazon – £279.99
Pros: Made by Braun so a well known name in the electronics and beauty market
Pros: Mains powered so no waiting for batteries (though you do lose flexibility of where you can use it)
Pros: Skin sensor ensures you’re using the optimal light intensity setting / preventing skin damage at all times
Cons: They recommend you use with Gillette IPL gels for best results which are about £5 a tube
Cons: Although it has a skin sensor it is separate to the treatment lamp so you have to put it against your skin and then slot it back into the machine to analyse and adjust settings. Not a massive deal but not as good as being built in.
The SensEpil by Silk’n is a popular IPL system that has many of the features that you get with the more expensive devices listed above – but with a price tag around the £200 mark. With a less impressive lamp life than some devices this is probably not the best device to choose if you wanted to treat large areas of your body.
Biggest Saving on: Silkn: SensEpil: Amazon – £215
SAVE £35 (14%)
Pros: Built in skin sensor ensures you are using the optimal light intensity setting / preventing skin damage (on newest model)
Pros: Triggers flash on lightest contact with skin (old model relied on actual pressure on skin)
Pros: Large lamp head and fast pulse repetition means quicker treatment of larger areas (chest / legs etc)
Pros: Mains powered so no battery charging issues
Pros: Comes with a DVD giving advice on how to use it
Cons: The lamps do not last as long as others – especially compared to the Tria, Philips Lumea and Remington devices
Cons: Maximum intensity achieves 5 Joules which is slightly lower than other devices and means treatment may take longer.