At CosMedic Clinic we use the Cryo Broad-light 2 (CBL2) IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) system for hair removal. It is a unique and highly sophisticated IPL system that uses 6 filters and built-in technology that automatically determines the correct wavelength. It has an in-built cooling system that lessens side effects and makes the treatment more comfortable.
Our CBL2 system is not only used for hair removal, but we also use it in photo-rejuvenation treatments for collagen induction, acne and to reduce red veins/rosacea, facial flushing and pigmentation or sunspots. Please see our IPL – photo-rejuvenation page for more information.
We recommend a course of 6 to 8 treatments spaced 4 to 6 weeks apart for hair reduction, with maintenance treatments as required. IPL will only work on dark hair. The colour contrast between the hair and skin helps the IPL device to pick up on the melanin pigments and interact with them properly.
Lasers and IPL have been used in for hair reduction since the 1990’s. IPL was invented 30 years ago by Israeli researcher Dr. Shimon Eckhouse and the first IPL device received FDA approval in 1995 for the treatment of spider veins.
IPL can be used on all body areas except around the eyes. Common areas used for hair removal include, above the top lip, chin, jawline, sideburns, underarms, bikini, legs, abdomen, back, and arms.
IPL and lasers are an advanced industry. The knowledge required to treat people is more advanced than people sometimes realise. There are huge variations in devices used, number of treatments required to achieve results, and the training of operators in New Zealand, so it is vital that you go to a reputable clinic and to someone who has the qualifications and experience to perform the treatment. We are always very transparent about our training and equipment, and happy to answer any questions you have around this.
Treatments are performed by a Registered Nurse with Laser Safety Certification.
Where there are variations in pricing this is dependent on the surface area being treated, number of pulses needed, and time required. Prices may vary and we offer a discounted rate when treating multiple areas. This is discussed after consultation and more accurate pricing will be given.
We recommend a course of 6 to 8 treatments spaced 4 to 6 weeks apart with maintenance treatments as required.
Below is a price indication per treatment for some of the more common treatment areas:
Treatment area Price
Upper lip $80
Chin and upper lip $120
Chin and Jawline $140
Chin/upper lip/Jawline $180
Hands or feet $120
Snail trail $120
High Bikini $220
Inside thigh add on $80 to $120
Half leg lower (includes knee) $400 to $550
Full leg $600 to $750
Shoulders $200 to $350
Chest $300 to $450
Abdomen $200 to $350
Half back $300 to $450
Full back $500 to $650
Half arm $300 to $400
Full arm $400 to $500
See our FAQs below for more information.
For the treatment of redness, rosacea, red veins, acne, pigmentation, blemishes, sunspots and collagen induction please see our IPL-Photo-rejuvenation page.
Looking for IPL Photorejuvenation?
We also use IPL for photo-rejuvenation to reduce redness caused by rosacea, broken capillaries or red blood vessels, reduce pigmentation and sun spots, help manage active acne and overactive sebaceous glands, even skin tone, and reduce fine lines.
How does it work?
IPL is a broadband of light that uses multiple wavelengths and endpoint targets. It works by penetrating deep into the skin with intense pulses of light. Our CBL2 IPL system uses a series of filters, depending on the target and has a built-in cooling system to decrease the risk of burning and relieve pain. The target’s include melanin (the pigment that gives skin and hair a particular colour) and haemoglobin (a protein in blood cells that can contribute to skin redness and red veins). It can also kill the bacteria in your hair follicles that cause acne.
When used for hair removal or reduction, the light emitted by th IPL is absorbed by the pigment in the hair. This causes a build-up of energy which turns to heat. The heat travels down the hair follicle and destroys the cells that cause the hair to grow.
IPL hair removal works best on darker hair, and during the anagen stage (growth stage) as this is where the hair is at its darkest pigment and allows for the best transfer of heat energy to the hair follicle. The anagen phase usually lasts 2-3 weeks. This is also why IPL is not effective if you pluck, wax, or use hair removal cream on the hair during your treatment course.
Due to the process of hair growth and the cycle it follows, multiple treatments are required to eliminate all the hairs which are at different stages of their cycle.
Long hairs will take up the energy and prevent all of it from reaching the hair follicle, so it is recommended that the hair ideally be 1-2mm at the time of your treatment.
Will IPL work on lighter hair colours?
Contrary to what you may have heard, IPL will only work on dark hair. The colour contrast between the hair and skin helps the IPL device to pick up on the melanin pigments and interact with them properly.
IPL will work best on black hair and can be used in dark brown and dark blonde hair but may require more sessions and the results can be variable. The darker the hair the better the result. Very blonde, red, or white hair won't be effective at all.
How many treatments will I need?
We recommend 6 to 8 treatments with the CBL2 spaced 4 to 6 weeks apart. Maintenance treatments are often then required as you may get new hair growth. Maintenance treatments could be required as often as every 6 months or never. This is a dependant on the person and certain medical conditions and hormones can influence new hair growth. We aim for an 80% hair reduction by the completion of the course.
When will I see results?
In the weeks after the treatment, you may notice some of the hair has fallen out and there will be less hair, but then new hair growth will appear. You will slowly start to
notice less new hair growth coming through with each treatment. This generally takes around 3 treatments before it becomes more noticeable. IPL targets hair in the active growth phase and you should expect hair reduction of around 10 – 25% per treatment but this will be dependent on the colour and thickness of the hair and individual response.
By the completion of the treatment course most people will have around an 80% reduction in hair and will then go onto maintenance treatments as required.
Is laser or IPL more effective?
IPL uses a light source that emits noncoherent light with a wavelength of 430–1200 nm. Very similar to laser treatment. The basic purpose of IPL is to cause selective thermal damage to a target, and most comparative studies have certified that IPL and lasers show similar effectiveness.
IPL treatment has been found to be superior to laser therapy because it uses wavelengths that can penetrate diverse levels of the skin and target both the epidermis and the dermis at the same time. The head piece of IPL is larger than most laser spots, and IPL has a millisecond-range pulse duration, which allows for agile treatment of large areas and reduces the risk of heat-related inflammation due to enhanced thermal diffusion.
How do I preparing for treatment?
Please shave or trim the area a few days before treatment so the hair is ideally 1-2mm long at the time of the treatment.
Avoid tanning lotions for 2 weeks prior to treatment and between treatments.
No waxing, plucking or hair removal creams for 4 weeks prior to treatment and between treatments.
Avoid prolonged sun exposure in the weeks leading up to treatment and use a broad-spectrum SPF daily.
You must avoid exfoliants including AHA’s BHA’s and retinols for 5-7 days prior to treatment.
For hair removal to facial areas, avoid facial treatments including chemical peels, micro-needling, Tixel resurfacing and muscle relaxants for at least 2 weeks prior to treatment and 4 weeks for dermal fillers and other injectables.
What can I expect during the treatment?
Your eyes must always be protected when having an IPL treatment. Your practitioner will cover them with special eye pads, googles or dark glasses. A cool gel will be spread over the area of skin to be treated. The surface of the handpiece is placed against your skin, and you will be aware of the pulses of light flashing. You will feel a slight sting that will feel hot and as if a rubber band is being snapped against your skin. Some areas are more sensitive than others. Areas where there is more hair growth tend to be more painful as more heat is generated, however as the hair starts to thin out, the treatments become less painful.
The length of the treatment will depend on the size of the area being treated which could be anywhere from 15 to 90 minutes. At the end of the treatment, a post laser cream and sunscreen will be applied.
Does it hurt?
There is some discomfort associated with IPL, but everyone’s pain tolerances are different. The treatment is mostly very quick, and any discomfort is usually short lasting. The CBL2 has a built-in cooling system that helps to minimise pain. Where there is less hair growth there is not as much heat generated and the treatment is more tolerable. People often describe it as feeling like a rubber band is being snapped against their skin and most cope fine with it. There can be a mild stinging sensation that usually fades soon after. You will be aware of the pulses of light flashing, but we use eye shields or protective goggles to protect your eyes.
What is the downtime?
Before you leave the clinic, we will apply a post laser lotion and zinc based tinted sunscreen to exposed areas of skin. Avoid hot baths and showers, swimming, and exposure to extreme temperatures for the next 48 hours such as saunas. Avoid sun exposure to the treated area for 48 hours and minimise time outdoors between treatments, keeping the area covered where able. Apply sunscreen to exposed areas and avoid retinols and exfoliants such as AHA’s and BHA’s for 5-7 days. Avoid shaving for 48 hours post treatment.
No waxing, hair removal creams or tanning between treatments.
Your skin may look blotchy, red an a little swollen immediately after treatment. It is also common for the skin to feel tight or like you have a mild sunburn.
What are the potential complications?
Because IPL is not an exact science, no guarantees or assurances can be made as to the outcome, However, based on experience, there is a strong likelihood of a positive result from the treatment and most side effects are mild and self-resolving with very little downtime.
Clinical results may vary depending on individual factors, including, but not limited to, medical history, skin sensitivity, amount of sun damage and redness in the skin, textural problems, compliance with pre/post-treatment instructions, and individual response to treatment.
Potential complications are rare and are not usually permanent, but can include, extensive swelling, hives, hyper or hypo pigmentation (darker or lighter patches of skin), skin infection, bruising, prolonged redness, blistering and burning and very rarely scarring. Eye damage is possible without the use of protective eyewear. We make all patients wear protective eyewear during the treatment and ask that you keep your eyes closed, so the likelihood of this is very rare.
As we are a nurse led clinic with Dr oversight, we can have medications prescribed and use our medical knowledge to help manage any
complications in the unlikely event that they occur. It is very important that you follow all pre and post care instructions including sun avoidance and prepping your skin using our medical grade skincare prior to treatment to help lessen these risks.
Who is not suitable for treatment?
IPL is not suitable for those with darker skin types due to the increased risk of adverse effects. Please see our Tixel Resurfacing treatment or DermaFrac micro needling treatments instead which are suitable for all skin types. Below is a list of further contraindications:
- Recently tanned skin.
- Keloid scarring.
- Those who suffer from PIH (Post inflammatory hyperpigmentation).
- Medical conditions such as Epilepsy.
- Certain medications such as Roaccutane (you will need to wait a minimum of six months after Roaccutane to commence treatments).
- Active skin conditions including eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis, fungal or bacterial or viral infections such as HSV.
- If you have any suspicious lesions in the area these will need to be cleared by a Dr first.
- Pregnancy and breastfeeding.
- Recent or upcoming surgery on or near the treatment area.
- Use of tanning products in the treatment area in the past two weeks.
- Those with very sensitive skins, allergies or certain immune conditions may not be good candidates and we will need further information to determine suitability.
If you spend a lot of time outdoor over the summer months, it is strongly advised you delay treatments during this time. We top treatments over the warmer months when treating areas that have a lot of sun exposure such as the face.
Who should perform the treatment?
IPL and laser are an advanced industry. The knowledge required to treat people is more advanced than people sometimes realise. There are huge variations in devices used and the training of operators in New Zealand, so it is vital that you go to a reputable clinic and to someone who has the qualifications and experience to perform the treatment. We are very transparent about this.
Our Registered Nurse and cosmetic nurse Jaime has over 13 years of experience working with IPL and has completed numerous training programmes over the years including her Laser Safety Certificate which she renews regularly. As we are a nurse led clinic with Dr oversight, this allows us to have medications prescribed and use our medical knowledge to help manage any complications in the unlikely event that they occur.
Our IPL machine is the CBL2 and was purchased from the reputable company Cryomed Aesthetics (aesthetic device supplier to Australia and New Zealand). The device is well maintained and serviced regularly.
We value confidentiality and this is very important to our clients. Our space is set up with this in mind and is very private. We gain informed consent before performing any treatment and all our patient photographs that are viewable to the public are used with the consent of the patient. You have the right to withdraw the use of your photographs at any time.
We also offer our patients the option to prepay to our bank account. If prepaying, please use your name as a reference. You must already be a patient of ours and of discussed the treatment you wish to prepay with us to use this service. If you have prepaid and no longer wish to continue with treatments, you can either keep this as a credit for future use on any of our products or services, or you can have a refund. There is a $50 admin fee to have the credit refunded back to your account.
You can purchase vouchers via our online shopping page. When booking an initial appointment online, vouchers are not accepted, and you must make the payment online but they can be redeemed in the clinic towards your treatment or on products. If booking through us the initial booking fee must be made as a bill payment to our bank account. Returning patients are not charged a booking fee.
Bookings can be made by going to the book now or visiting our FB or Instagram pages. We support online bookings.
Patients can also book by texting or phoning the clinic on 027 3876 393, filling in the contact form below or emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org
If contacting us by phone or email, please be aware reception is not always covered and we are often busy with patients but will endeavour to get back to you at our earliest convenience.
Cancellations and No-shows
We ask for at least 48 hours’ notice for any cancellations. The more notice we are given the more chance we have of filling that appointment space so please be mindful of our time.
Cancellations outside of this time may be charged a fee depending on individual circumstances and no-shows will be charged a fee.
We try and accommodate our patients to the best of our ability and if you have paid a booking fee and notice has been given, we can reschedule your appointment and hold the deposit. If you do not pay your late fees, you will be unable to book with us in future.
Contact CosMedic Clinic
81B Don Street, Invercargill
027 387 6393
Appointments are essential