Best home IPL hair removal for dark skin

This guide explains why most home devices aren't safe for dark skin, the science behind those that are, what each is like to use, their pros & cons, & results you can expect.
Most at-home devices aren't safe for dark skin because the intense light burns your skin - but you do have a few options which are safe. Learn more in this round-up...

Whoa there!

By now, you've learned that not all at-home devices are safe for dark and black skin. It's down to the science behind the intense light energy. But, fret not. You still have options which work and are safe for your skin tone. That's why I created this guide. It explains, shortlists and compares the best home IPL devices safe for dark and black skin.

 

Watch the video round-up

Yup, this is an indepth juicy round-up. You can start with this 6 minute video for all the key info. 

Why most home devices aren’t safe for dark skin

Most home IPL and laser devices aren’t safe for dark skin because of how the light energy behaves. It works like this:

First, there's a dark pigment (called melanin) that gives your hair it's dark colour. This pigment absorbs several wavelengths of the strong light energy, and then it converts to heat. This heat damages key areas of your follicle and stunts your hair growth. After a few sessions, hairs stop growing. And after several more, results can last months.

Darker skin tones have much more melanin than light skin, and this is not good for at home laser & IPL hair removal

However, there’s also melanin in your skin.

Dark skin has much more melanin than light skin. And this is bad for laser and IPL hair removal. That’s because with little contrast between your skin and hair colour, your melanin-rich skin cells also absorb the light energy and becomes very hot. This causes pain, blisters, and even burns! Yikes!

That’s why laser and IPL work best on light to medium skin tones with dark hair.

Manufacturers use the Fitzpatrick skin chart to show the safe skin tones for their devices. The complete Fitzpatrick scale details skin tone, hair colour and skin response to the sun. But for home laser and IPL, we use the skin tone scale only.

The Fitzpatrick skin tones from 1 lightest to VI darkest.

There are 6 Fitzpatrick types, measured from type I (the lightest) through to the darkest type VI. All home IPL and laser devices are safe for Fitzpatrick types I to IV. 

This guide is about the home devices safe for darker tones V and VI.

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Which skin tone type are you?

Check different body areas too, because your tone can vary! And your skin tone deepens and darkens in the Summer too. So, choose a device that’s safe for your darkest tone in the areas you wish to treat.

How some devices are safe for dark skin

The very first home devices were safe for skin tones I to IV only. But now we have options safe for all skin tones, including types V and VI. So, how are these devices different and what makes them safe?

A selection of recent at-home IPL devices safe for darker and black skin tones

These home IPL devices are safe for dark skin types

Those safe for dark tones have:

  • Low energy IPL settings (around 3 J/cm2 or lower)
  • Wavelength filters
  • Special configuration of the IPL flashes

The combination is gentle on darker skin because only the longer IPL wavelengths travel through your skin. They jump passed the melanin-rich, dark epidermis (outer skin layers) down to the hair follicle depth. And the flash duration is configured to avoid pain too. The result is IPL that works and is safe for dark skin.

Some devices also check the IPL intensity matches your tone:

✔️ The Smoothskin and Braun Pro models share technology developed by Cyden Ltd which auto-adjusts the IPL intensity before every flash.

✔️  Philips Lumea Prestige has a manual scan and match function.

✔️ Silk’n scans and then deactivates the levels too intense for your skin tone.

✔️ And all these devices won’t flash if your skin is too dark.

However, even this gentle IPL isn’t safe for the darkest skin tones. We need even gentler IPL. But the problem then is, anything less intense simply can’t damage the hair follicles enough to work!

Arrgggh.

Fret not. To fix this, a few manufacturers combine IPL with other energies. These combinations work better together to safely heat your hair follicles, whilst keeping the darkest skin safe.

Let’s look at these combinations now.

IPL & Galvanic by Silk’n

The Infinity is rather special because sessions are quick, and the clever, combined technology means it’s gentle and safe for dark skin tones too.

The Infinity is safe for ALL skin tones

The Infinity by Silk’n is safe for dark and black skin because it uses gentle IPL with special configuration, and combines it with Galvanic current.

So, what is Galvanic current and what does it do?

Galvanic is a different type of electric current. It’s painless and you can’t feel it. It creates a circuit as your fingers touch the base electrode and your skin touches the silver electrode around the flash window.

The Galvanic plate and contact electrode on the silkn Infinity create a circuit as you position, hold & flash the device

The galvanic plate and electrode create a circuit sending gentle current into your skin opening your pores wide

It flows through your skin widening your pores. This exposes more of your hair shaft and so it absorbs more of the IPL energy, reaching deeper-down into your follicle. There, it heats the melanin-rich hair and follicle cells. Therefore, you can direct gentle IPL to where it’s needed so it’s more effective and still safe to use on the darkest skin tones.

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TIP: The Galvanic energy also means your skin’s extra absorbent so apply moisturisers afterwards for extra soft and hydrated skin! Your pores close naturally a short time later.

The intensity selector wheel illuminating up to level 2. Levels 1 and 2 of the Infinity are safe for dark and black skin.

The sensor activates only safe levels 1 & 2 for dark and black skin.

The Infinity has 5 intensity levels from 3 up to 4 J/cm2. Only the lower levels are safe for darker tones. So, to keep dark skin safe, it has a sensor which scans your skin. It activates only levels 1 and 2 for dark skin. Therefore, you can’t hurt or burn yourself with too-intense IPL.

However, it’s important to note that in the UK and Europe, Silk’n promote the Infinity safe for all Fitzpatrick types I to VI. But in the USA the range is from I to V. So, why the difference?

Silk’n Infinity & FDA

Silk’n Europe have clinical data supporting safety and effect on dark skin tones type V to VI. This is enough to market it as such in the UK and Europe. But it works differently in the US. There, Silk’n need clearance from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

US Food & Drug Administration logo

Silk’n Infinity is not yet FDA-cleared for the darkest type VI skin.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) protect the nation’s health by making sure medicines and medical devices are safe and effective. Therefore, before you can market or sell a home-use laser or IPL device in the US, they must be FDA approved or cleared.

If a manufacturer proves their device is substantially similar to a previously cleared, or predicate device, they can get 501K FDA clearance. The Infinity has such clearance for Fitzpatrick types I to V. However, for clearance on type VI using combined IPL and Galvanic energies, it’s the first of its kind, so no predicate devices exist.

Instead, Silk’n must get approval from the FDA to market the Infinity as safe for type VI. This is a much longer and expensive process compared to clearance. So, for now at least, Silk’n US promote it safe for types I to V only.

Rest assured, the Infinity has other proof to show it’s safe and it works. The Infinity has:

✔️ CE certification to meet European safety and manufacturing standards

✔️ Clinical test data supporting it’s safe and works on dark skin types V and VI.

The small 15 subject test concludes:

“Low energy pulsed light combined with galvanic energy may be applied safely and effectively for at-home hair removal for people with dark skin types V and VI.”

A concise version is available as a pdf from this Silk’n page here or the full study version is here.

Silk’n also confirmed to me all Infinity models work in the same way. So, if you buy from a US or Canadian store you can still use it on the darkest skin tones despite the advertised range being different.

IPL & Radio Frequency (Elōs) by Iluminage & Me

The Iluminage Precise Touch (left) and the larger Touch model use IPL combined with RF. They're safe for all skin tones.

I've tested the Iluminage Precise Touch (left) and Iluminage Touch (right). Elōs tech is also available in the Me Chic and Me Sleek devices.

Elōs devices use very gentle IPL and combine it with Radio Frequency (RF) current. The two energies work even better together to heat your hair follicles. So, they can use super-gentle IPL which normally wouldn’t work alone.

OK, so first let’s look at what RF is.

RF is a painless electric current sent through the skin from one electrode to the other. The spacing of the RF electrodes on either side of the flash window is just right to send the RF current down to the depth of your hair root and follicles. You can’t feel it at all. But as it flows through your skin, the RF encounters resistance and this creates heat in your tissues. It works equally well on light and dark tones because it doesn’t rely on any melanin.

 

The 2 silver RF electrode bars on the top and bottom of the flash window send the RF current into your skin, creating a circuit from one electrrode to the other.

Two silver RF electrodes either side of the flash window create the RF circuit through your skin

Illustration of the Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) and Radio Frequency (RF) energies used in the Iluminage Touch and Iluminage Precise Touch

The RF travels down to the depth of your hair root

Now, let’s understand how IPL and RF work so well together…

You probably know that electricity flows along the path of least resistance, right 🤓? But did you also know that warmer structures are less resistant and so attract electrical current? This means, as each super-gentle IPL flash heats your hair shaft and the surrounding follicle, it draws the RF current towards it. And, because the keratin in your hairs resists the current, it then concentrates all around the follicles, right where it's needed. So, your follicles get an extra dose of heat from the RF.

This combined heat from the IPL and RF is enough to work. However, you must cover your skin in flashes then repeat for a total of 2 or 3 passes. This is quite time intensive, especially on legs, but it zaps each hair with enough IPL energy to work. Therefore, it’s the combined energies and multiple passes of gentle IPL that both work and are safe for dark and black skin.

 

The lowest ELOS level and indicator light selected on the Iluminage Touch control panel.

Start LOW and move up to MED and HIGH only if comfortable

The Touch & Sleek, and Precise Touch & Chic, each have three IPL intensities levels ranging from 2 to 4 J/cm2. The lower are safe for the darkest skin tones. There’s no skin tone sensor – simply start on LOW and move up only if it’s comfortable.

 

The Iluminage Touch & Me Sleek are best for face & large areas, the Iluminage Precise touch & Me Chic for face & smaller areas only. All use conbined IPL & RF energy (called Elos), are safe for ALL skin tones and work on dark & fair hair colours (including grey hair).

Different look, but the same Elōs technology inside the Iluminage and Me devices.

The Elōs Iluminage and Me devices are both clinically proven and FDA-cleared for all skin tones, including the darkest type VI. The first home Elōs device was FDA-cleared safe for all skin tones, including V and IV, back in 2012. There are subsequent 501K clearances by Syneron Beauty Ltd and Iluminage Ltd for the Precise Touch and Me Chic, and the Touch and Sleek.

What results will I see and when?

Now, all home laser and IPL devices recommend a start-up treatment schedule, followed by less frequent maintenance sessions.

The following table shows the advertised schedules for each of my recommendations and runners up. Plus, any additional information I found relevant for darker skin users.

Device# of start-up sessionsFrequencyTop-ups
Silk’n Infinity 4 on high intensities
Up to 12 on lower intensities*
1 every 2 weeks As you need.
Iluminage Precise Touch
Me Chic
7 on high & low intensities** Weekly As you need.
Iluminage Touch
Me Sleek
7 on high & low intensities** Weekly As you need.
Braun Pro 3 IPL 4 to 12 on high intensities
Up to 12 on lower intensities
Weekly As you need.
Braun Pro 5 IPL 4 to 12 on high intensities
Up to 12 on lower intensities
Weekly As you need.
Smoothskin Pure 12 on high & low intensities Weekly As you need.
Philips Lumea Prestige 4 or 5 on high & low intensities 1 every 2 weeks As you need.

* I found info this in the Silk’n study on dark skin V and VI tones.
** Iluminage share that for the first 6 or 7 weeks, you can use their devices 2 to 3 times per week on your face.

Typical results & top-ups

 

Shaving your hairs before laser and IPL hair removal gives your very best results.

Shave (or dermaplane facial hairs) for your very best results

Shave/dermaplane your hair before each session and in between as you need, unless there’s no hair left! You can learn more about shaving vs plucking here.

  • After 4+ sessions you should notice finer and lighter hair which grows ever more slowly.
  • After 6+ sessions you should have just very light regrowth and even bald patches. Shaving gets very easy, and soon you may not even need to.
  • Complete the full start-up plan. Most of these schedules accommodate plenty of sessions for you to significantly reduce hair growth on all skin tones light to dark. But you can safely continue with the start-up frequency if you need more sessions to get smooth.

Once you’re smooth, you can switch to less frequent top-ups. Most brands suggest one every month. However, you may need them slightly more frequent because you’ll use the lower IPL levels. If you notice hairs poking through before a month’s up, shave them away and do another zapping!

 

A diagram showing top-up sessions every 4 weeks to keep your skin hair free and smooth

Do top-ups every few weeks to months, as you need them.

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YOUR TOP-UPS ARE SUPER IMPORTANT!

A recent long-term study of home IPL devices found that the top-up sessions continue to work on your hair follicles. The effect deepens, so the more you do the longer your hair-free results last. If you have the best results this means smooth skin for several weeks to months at a time.

However, results do vary by individual and all brands caveat this on their websites and in the user manuals. Please read this for 👉 more important info about results.

And remember, inactive hair follicles can wake-up and sprout new hairs, so don’t ditch the razor! You’ll need to shave and zap them as they appear!

How to stay safe

Before you start your sessions, and ideally before you buy a device, read the user manual.

Check the important list of warnings and reasons you may be unsuitable to use home laser and IPL devices. These range from pregnancy and breastfeeding, to diabetes, epilepsy, chemical peels, and certain medications which can make you extra sensitive to the light. There’s more in each user manual so check them to stay safe and learn more about contraindications here.

Only use the device on safe areas. For women this is from the cheekbones down, and for men it’s from the neck and down.

❌ Don’t use it on your genitals, anus, or nipples either, or on birthmarks, moles, or large freckles.

With all home devices, you must also protect your skin from sun exposure before and after your sessions.  Even if your skin doesn’t tan, sun exposure still increases your skin’s sensitivity and so the risk of skin reactions and side effects from the IPL. There’s more on them later.

Here’s the tanning and sun exposure guidance for each of the recommended devices:

DeviceUse on recently tanned skin?Cover up or use SPF 30+Avoid sun before sessionsAvoid sun after sessions
Silk’n Infinity
Level 1 only
4 weeks (if using levels 2 to 5) 2 weeks
(if using levels 2 to 5)
Iluminage Precise Touch
& Me Chic
2 weeks 2 weeks
Iluminage Touch
& Me Sleek
2 weeks 2 weeks
Braun Pro 3 IPL 7 days 7 days
Braun Pro 5 IPL 7 days 7 days
Smoothskin Pure 7 days 7 days
Philips Lumea Prestige 2 weeks 48 hours

How to prepare

Shaving your hairs immediately before your sessions gives the best and fastest results. But, for a lady, shaving your face is not fun. So, I recommend dermaplaning instead. It cuts facial hairs without foam or irritation.

You can also wax, epilate, or pluck with the Braun, Philips and Iluminage devices. However, they each have different guidelines and you’ll have much slower results. You can learn more about dermaplaning, and plucking vs shaving guidelines here .

What do they feel like?

You’ll hear the cooling fan whir and a small pop or click with each IPL flash. The IPL flashes are bright but harmless when flush against your skin. You don’t need protective goggles. If you find the flashes irritating, wear sunglasses to help ease the glare.

On dark skin tones V and VI you’ll use the lower intensity settings. So, it’s no surprise that the Iluminage, Me and Silk'n are the most comfortable with an IPL low of 2 and 3 J/cm2 🐇🐇.

The devices with a higher IPL range can sting a little more for some, especially if your skin is within the safe range and Fitzpatrick type V. Therefore I recommend the Iluminage, Me and Infinity devices because they give more flexibility and reassurance, with even gentler intensities and sensations should you need them.

Here’s how the devices compare for power and sensation:

DeviceTypeSafe tonesPower J/cm2Sensation*
Silk’n Infinity IPL & Galvanic All I to VI 3 to 4
Gentle warmth
Iluminage Precise Touch
& Me Chic
IPL & RF All I to VI 2 to 4
Gentle warmth
Iluminage Touch
& Me Sleek
IPL & RF All I to VI 2 to 4
Gentle warmth
Braun Pro 3 IPL IPL I to V
Not the darkest
3 to 4 ⚡⚡⚡
Warm to hot
Braun Pro 5 IPL IPL I to V
Not the darkest
3 to 6 ⚡⚡⚡
Warm to hot
Smoothskin Pure IPL I to V
Not the darkest
3 to 6 ⚡⚡⚡
Warm to hot
Philips Lumea Prestige IPL I to V
Not the darkest
2.4 to 6.5 ⚡⚡⚡
Warm to hot

* This sensation grade is based on both my tests and feedback patterns & consensus from collated user reviews. It typically varies by individual.

Possible skin reactions & side effects

Hot, tingly red skin are common skin reactions. And it can also feel dry and itch a bit too, but these reactions usually fade within 24 to 48 hours. Use ice, a cool face cloth, cooling water sprays, Aloe Vera gel or a non-scented moisturiser to soothe it. If these reactions don’t go away, get advice from your doctor.

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Sun protection!

Remember, you must avoid the sun, cover-up or wear a sunscreen SPF30+ to protect your skin. It’s extra sensitive to the sun after your sessions, and exposure before your sessions increases your risk of skin reactions and side effects.

Side effects are rare but can occur. They include temporary or permanent patches of light or dark skin, burns, excessive redness and swelling around your hair follicles, blisters, and scarring. In these cases, consult your doctor.

Another extremely rare side effect on the face and neck is called Paradoxical Hypertrichosis. Paradoxical Hypertrichosis is increased hair growth in the treatment areas. The reasons behind it are unknown but it’s thought to occur more frequently in users of Mediterranean descent, and/or with underlying medical conditions such as hirsutism.

Best home IPL hair removal for dark skin tones V & VI

The Silk'n Infinity, Iluminage Precise Touch and Me Chic, and the iluminage Touch and Me Sleek are top choices for dark skin users. Learn their pros and cons in this roundup of the best home IPL hair removal for dark skin by Wearebodybeautiful
Fitzpatrick skin tone chart showing it's safe for ALL skin tones from I to V!

For all dark skin tones (Fitzpatrick types V and VI), choose either the Silk’n Infinity, or the Iluminage and Me devices with Elōs tech. They’re clinically proven safe, and the Elōs devices are also FDA-cleared for the darkest skin tones. Keep reading for the pros & cons for each...

1. Silk’n Infinity

"Fast & affordable at-home IPL hair removal device that’s safe for ALL skin tones."

Silk'n Infinity best home IPl safe for dark & black skin

4.4 / 5

Face, small bits, legs & large areas

💰💰 to 💰💰💰💰

US & Canada 60-day money back guarantee

Safe for ALL Fitzpatrick skin tones:

Colour swatches of the 6 Fitzpatrick skin tones from light (I) to darkest (IV)

Hair colours it works on:

Works on black, dark brown, mid-brown and dark blonde body hair colours. Doesn't work on light blonde, red, white or gray body hair colours.

Infinity video review

Learn the pros & cons of the Silk’n Infinity at-home IPL in this quick but comprehensive 5-minute video review.

Silk'n Infinity deals

I earn a small commission when you shop via my links. Thank you for your support!

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🇳🇱 Nederland

🇺🇸 United States

🇨🇦 Canada

🇦🇺 Australia

🌏 International

The Silk’n Infinity is my top recommendation for dark and black skin because it’s clinically proven, gives fast sessions and decades of flashes. It’s also one of the most affordable at-home IPLs.

If you missed it earlier in this post, learn how the Silk’n Infinity is safe for dark & black skin.

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IMPORTANT:  Silk’n in the US and Canada don’t promote the Infinity safe for the darkest and black skin tones. That’s because it’s FDA-cleared for Fitzpatrick types I to V, but NOT the darkest type VI. In the UK and Europe Silk'n do promote the Infinity safe for the darkest skin (the FDA has no jurisdiction there).

All models are identical across countries.

Close ip shots on the Silk'n Infinity at-home IPL device showing the neat design, power cable, flash window and power intensity select button.

The mains-powered Infinity is light-weight, comfy and intuitive to grip with a large flash button and simple controls. There’s one medium-size flash window, which is good for most areas, although it’s bulky and tricky to flash on the upper lip.

It’s decent quality with a flexible 180cm power cable. And I like the sturdy storage case too. The IPL bulb gives flashes for over 15 years of whole-body sessions too. That's many more than you’ll need for decades of silky-smooth skin. And there’s a good 2-year warranty too.

The intensity selector wheel illuminating up to level 2. Levels 1 and 2 of the Infinity are safe for dark and black skin.

Use the lowest IPL levels on dark skin. The sensor keeps dark skin safe too.

Press the power button to scroll through the five intensity levels. Use the lower levels on dark skin. You can’t make a mistake because the clever skin tone sensor scans and activates only the lower intensity levels safe for your skin tone.

Place the window flush against your skin and flash, move to the next position and repeat. Cover your skin in flashes. Keep the flash button pressed for continuous flashes. I can flash my full leg on the lower intensities in around 9 minutes. That’s the fastest home IPL that’s safe for the darkest skin tones.

Unfortunately, there’s no UK money back guarantee. But buy from Silk’n in the US and Canada and you do get 60-days! So, you can try it and if it’s not for you return it for a refund.

Results on dark skin tones

Shave immediately before each session, and inbetween as you need, unless there’s no hair left. And try dermaplaning if you don’t want to shave your face.

For dark and black skin tones using lower intensities (1 to 3) a Silk’n study shows you’ll need more sessions than on lighter skin. Silk’n recommend up to 12 sessions at 2-week intervals to get smooth (around 5 months). Then, switch to top-ups as you need them.

Therefore, on the lower intensity levels it’s important you have realistic expectations about the effort, patience and commitment needed to get results.

If you live in the US or Canada, you can try it for 60 days with their money back guarantee. Yay. I love this extra reassurance. But if you live in the UK or Europe, no such luck because they don’t offer a money back guarantee. Boo.

Silk'n Infinity Summary

Yup, the Infinity is rather special because sessions are quick, and the clever, combined technology means it’s gentle and safe for the darkest skin tones too. 

Here’s a quick summary round-up of my test scores, and pros and cons to help you decide.

The Infinity is rather special because sessions are quick, and the clever, combined technology means it’s gentle and safe for the darkest skin tones too.
Lamp lifetime

⚡⚡⚡⚡⚡

It’s superb value with flashes to last 15+ years of use. One of the best.

Ease of use

👍👍👍👍

Simple, light-weight, a tad bulky but comfy design. Clever skin tone sensor detects darker tones and activates only the lower, safe intensities.

Effort & Results

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Results take longer on dark skin using the lower intensities. Do up to 12 sessions, one every 2 weeks. Then switch to top-ups every few weeks to a month, to stay smooth. 

Pros

  • Fast & affordable
  • Safe for ALL skin tones including dark & black
  • Gentle IPL for painless sessions
  • Level 1 intensity safe for tanned skin
  • Clinically-proven, FDA-cleared & CE certification
  • 60-day money back guarantee in the US & Canada

Cons

  • Not FDA-cleared in the US for black skin
  • Tricky on upper lip
  • No money back guarantee in the UK & Europe

If you want even more info and photos check out the full Infinity review here. But if you’ve found this review helpful and are ready to buy, please support my reviews and shop via my links. I earn a small commission, but your price stays the same. I really appreciate your support 🙏!

2. Iluminage Precise Touch & Me Chic

"Safe & effective for ALL skin tones & ALL body hair colours, & best suits face & small body areas"

The Iluminage Precise Touch (& Me Chic) is safe for ALL skin tones, including the darkest.

4.3 / 5

Face & small bits
(not legs!)

💰💰💰

Safe for ALL Fitzpatrick skin tones:

Colour swatches of the 6 Fitzpatrick skin tones from light (I) to darkest (IV)

Works on ALL hair colours:

This device works on dark hairs (black, dark brown, mid-brown, dark blonde) and fair hair colours (light blonde, and red). It wasn't tested on white or gray body hair but will work by the same principle. You must wax, epilate or pluck fair hairs before use.

Iluminage Precise Touch & Me Chic deals

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Iluminage Precise Touch:
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Me Chic:
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🇨🇦 Canada

Iluminage Precise Touch:
Lookfantastic

Me Chic:
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🇳🇱 Nederland

🇩🇪 Deutschland

🌏 International

Iluminage Precise Touch:
Lookfantastic

Me Chic:
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🇭🇰 Hong Kong

🇸🇬 Singapore

I recommend the Iluminage Precise Touch and Me Chic for dark and black skin users especially if you’ll treat your face and/or small body areas. That’s because they’re clinically proven and FDA-cleared safe for dark tones V and VI, they give decades of flashes for small areas, and are particularly suited to facial use.

If you’ve missed how these are safe for dark & black skin, find out here.

Iluminage Precise Touch & Me Chic IPL + RF hair removal device

Iluminage Precise Touch & Me Chic best for ALL skin tones and face & small areas

The Precise Touch and Me Chic are mains-powered hand-held devices, each with a slightly different shape. They’re very comfy to hold and easy to position. The small flash window is the perfect size for your upper lip and is easy to flash around your chin and jaw too. It’s also good for underarms and bikini line.

The small flash window on the Precise Touch and Me Chic is the perfect size for your upper lip and is easy to flash around your chin and jaw too. It’s also good for underarms and bikini line.

The angled small and precise flash window is perfect for your face and smaller body areas.

These are decent quality, although the mains-cable is a little thin and tangly. However, you get ample flashes for face and smaller areas lasting around 10 years of monthly use. They’re not suitable for legs and large areas as it uses up too many flashes and takes ages with the small flash window.

Press the elos button to cycle up through the intensity levels and back down to one.

Test the 3 elos levels to see which is best for your skin.

They’re very simple to use too. Choose from the three Elōs intensity levels, then and position flush on your skin. Wait for it to flash then move to the next spot. There’s no flash button to press – the flashes come on skin contact. Cover your skin in adjacent flashes, then repeat for a total 2 or 3 times. It’s quick on face and small body areas.

They’re also clinically proven to work on fair hair too, if you pluck the hairs immediately before zapping. The IPL then targets a microdot of blood left in the follicle. This is another reason I recommend them for facial treatments. I love they’ll keep working even if your facial hairs turn grey! You can also pluck fast growing dark facial hairs before zapping, but note it takes longer to see results!

Results on dark skin tones

Shave immediately before each session, and inbetween as you need, unless there’s no hair left. And try dermaplaning if you don’t want to shave your face.

The Elos treatment schedule is the same for light and dark skin tones. Treat weekly for seven sessions to get smooth. You may use the device more frequently on facial hair if needed – up to 2 to 3 times per week. Then switch to monthly top-ups.

Seven weekly sessions is usually enough to get to smooth. But on darker skin using the low intensity level you may need a few more sessions. And some people may need slightly more frequent top-up sessions to maintain smooth, fuzz-free skin.

Iluminage Precise Touch & Me Chic Summary

The Iluminage Precise Touch (& Me Chic) is a top choice especially for facial and small areas hair removal. The clever combined IPL & RF mean it’s gentle and safe for ALL skin tones, including the very darkest. And it works on ALL body hair colours too, including blonde, red and grey hairs if you pluck before hand. However, it takes twice as long to work on these fair hair colours. 

Here’s a quick summary round-up of my test scores, and pros and cons to help you decide.

The Iluminage Precise Touch (& Me Chic) is a top choice especially for facial and small areas hair removal.
Lamp lifetime

⚡⚡⚡⚡⚡

The flashes last for 10+ years of monthly sessions for face & smaller body areas (bikini line & underarms). That’s more flashes than you’ll need for decades of smooth skin.

Ease of use

👍👍👍👍

Decent quality, simple, precise, comfortable & fast to use on your face & small areas. Gentle, no stinging sensation. For fair hair removal, you must pluck/epilate/wax before zapping.

Effort & Results

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Medium & gentle power IPL. Seven weekly sessions for smooth skin, then top-ups every month or so to stay that way. You may need a few more for dark skin using the low intensity level. And results take weeks longer (14+) on fair/grey body hair!

Pros

  • Decent quality & comfy
  • Small accurate flash window & easy flashes
  • Decades of flashes for face & small areas
  • Clinically proven & FDA cleared for ALL skin tones
  • Clinically proven to work on blonde & red hair (grey works in the same way too)
  • Works even if your dark facial hairs turn grey
  • You can pluck, wax, or epilate hairs before sessions
  • FDA-cleared & CE certification

Cons

  • The Precise Touch is expensive at full RRP
  • No money back guarantee
  • Several more sessions than advertised for fair hair users
  • Not suited to large areas & legs
  • No longer available in the UK

If you need more info, check out the full Iluminage Precise Touch review. But if you’ve found this review helpful and are ready to buy, please support my reviews and shop via my links. I earn a small commission, but your price stays the same. I really appreciate your support 🙏!

3. Iluminage Touch & Me Sleek

"Safe & effective for ALL skin tones & ALL hair colours, & suits face, small or large body areas"

Iluminage Touch IPL works on shaved, waxed, epilated or plucked hairs

4.1 / 5

Face, small bits, legs & large areas

💰💰💰

Safe for ALL Fitzpatrick skin tones:

Colour swatches of the 6 Fitzpatrick skin tones from light (I) to darkest (IV)

Works on ALL hair colours:

This device works on dark hairs (black, dark brown, mid-brown, dark blonde) and fair hair colours (light blonde, and red). It wasn't tested on white or gray body hair but will work by the same principle. You must wax, epilate or pluck fair hairs before use.

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NOTE: The Iluminage Touch and Me Sleek are both mains-power devices which use Elōs technology. Both are safe for ALL skin tones and work on fair hair as well as dark. Their branding and looks are slightly different, but they work in exactly the same way.

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I recommend the Iluminage Touch (and Me Sleek) for dark and black skin on small and large body areas because it’s clinically proven and FDA-cleared for all skin tones including V and VI. It’s also very easy to use.

If you missed it earlier in the article, learn how this device is safe for dark and black skin tones here.

Iluminage Touch & Me Sleek IPL + RF hair removal devices

Different brands and look, but by the same manufacturer with patented Elōs technology.

The Iluminage Touch and Me Sleek model work with Elōs technology, the same way as the smaller Precise Touch and Me Chic devices. But the design and operation is better if you’ll treat large areas, as well as small.

It’s a mains-powered base unit and corded applicator design, which whilst slightly outdated, is robust and very comfortable to use. The applicator-cord is durable, long, and supple, and the applicator itself compact, lightweight, and easy to manoeuvre around your body. The medium flash window (3cm2) fits most body areas, and it has an additional precision cap which covers half the window for easier flashes on your upper lip.

A robust, simple and comfy, if slightly outdated corded flash applicator and base unit design on the Touch and Sleek Elos models

The angled small and precise flash window is perfect for your face and smaller body areas.

There are two Touch models; one with 120,000 and the other with 300,000 flashes. The first lasts around 2 years of monthly whole-body sessions and so is probably best for face and small areas. The latter around 5 years. These aren’t as good as the Silk’n Infinity, but decent enough and with a 1 or 2-year warranty depending where you buy it. Replacement flash cartridges are available too.

However, the Me Sleek gives unlimited flashes so this is a longer lasting investment from the start.

Unfortunately, there’s no money back guarantee with any of these models.

The lowest ELOS level and indicator light selected on the Iluminage Touch control panel.

Start LOW and progress up to Med or HIGH only if comfortable

It’s simple to use. Just chose your Elōs intensity level and place the flash window flush on your skin. Wait for it to flash then slide to the next position, covering your skin in adjacent flashes. Then repeat for a total 2 or 3 times. It flashes on skin contact, so there’s no button to press.

The flashes are fast on the lowest intensity – around one per second – so you can work to a steady pace. And it’s easy to get a flash too. However, it takes a while to cover your whole legs because you must do multiple passes. On the lowest intensity (with fastest flashes) it takes me around 20 minutes to flash one meticulous full leg with 2 passes.

Results on dark skin tones

Shave immediately before each session, and inbetween as you need, unless there’s no hair left. And try dermaplaning if you don’t want to shave your face.

The Elos treatment schedule is the same for light and dark skin tones. Treat weekly for seven sessions to get smooth. You may use the device more frequently on facial hair if needed – up to 2 to 3 times per week. Then switch to monthly top-ups.

Seven weekly sessions is usually enough to get to smooth. But on darker skin using the low intensity level you may need a few more sessions. And some people may need slightly more frequent top-up sessions to maintain smooth, fuzz-free skin.

Iluminage Touch & Me Sleek Summary

The Iluminage Touch and Me Sleek are easy to use, quality devices. But they really stand out because the clever combined IPL & RF mean it’s gentle and safe for ALL skin tones, including the very darkest. And it works on fair and grey hairs too but only if you pluck/wax/epilate before hand. They’re the only devices clinically proven to do so.

Here’s a quick summary round-up of my test scores, and pros and cons to help you decide.

The clever combined IPL & RF in the Touch and Sleek mean they're gentle and safe for all skin tones, including the very darkest. And the design is good for both large and small areas.
Lamp lifetime

⚡⚡⚡⚡⚡

The Touch’s flashes last around 5 years of monthly whole-body sessions. That’s long enough to get you smooth and stay so for many years. Replacement cartridges are available, but rather pricey. Or choose the Me Sleek with unlimited flashes so you'll never run out!

Ease of use

👍👍👍👍

Simple to use with a lightweight corded applicator. Flashes with skin contact, so no button to press. Very comfortable to use, average speed sessions and gentle on the skin. Wax/epilate or use with the epilator attachement (touch onl) for fair/grey hair removal.

Effort & Results

⭐⭐⭐⭐

Medium & gentle power IPL. Seven weekly sessions for smooth skin, then top-ups every month or so to stay that way. You may need a few more for dark skin using the lower intensity level. And results take weeks longer (14+) on fair/grey body hairs!

Pros

  • Nimble applicator, robust & easy to use
  • Flashes on skin contact, no button to press!
  • Use LOW intensity for dark skin, this also gives the fastest sessions
  • Me Sleek gives unlimited flashes
  • Clinically proven on ALL skin tones including the darkest black
  • Clinically proven to work on fair body hairs (blonde & red, but grey works in the same way too)
  • FDA-cleared & CE certification

Cons

  • The Touch is expensive at full RRP
  • No money back guarantee
  • Slow & time consuming sessions vs rivals
  • Longer than advertised results for fair hair users
  • Some Touch models give fewer flashes (you can buy replacement cartridges but they're pricey)

If you need more info, check out the full Iluminage Touch review. But if you’ve found this review helpful and are ready to buy, please support my reviews and shop via my links. I earn a small commission, but your price stays the same. I really appreciate your support 🙏!

Best home IPL hair removal for dark skin tones up to V

Which are the best IPL hair removal for dark skin tones up to Fitzpatrick type V? Well, as recommended by Wearebodybeautiful it’s the Braun Pro 3, Smoothskin Pure, Braun Pro 5 and the Philips Lumea Prestige. Learn their pros & cons summary in the full round-up…
Fitzpatrick skin tone chart showing it's safe for tones I to V, but not VI (the darkest).

And for medium to dark tones (up to Fitzpatrick type V), choose any device above, or the affordable, fast and super-safe Braun Pro 3 IPL.

If you’ve more to spend, consider too the superb quality Lumea Prestige, or the super-safe and fast Smoothskin Pure and Braun Pro 5 IPL.

4. Braun Pro 3 IPL

"A fast, affordable medium-power at-home IPL which suits medium to dark skin"

The Braun Pro 3 IPL is safe for light to dark skin tones Fitpatrick types I to V

4.5 / 5

Face, small bits, legs & large areas

💰💰

UK 100-day money back guarantee

Safe Fitzpatrick skin tones:

Fitzpatrick skin tone chart showing it's safe for tones I to V, but not VI (the darkest).

Hair colours it works on:

Works on black, dark brown, mid-brown and dark blonde body hair colours. Doesn't work on light blonde, red, white or gray body hair colours.

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The Pro 3 IPL is Braun’s affordable mid-range home IPL device and I think it’s a top choice for medium and dark skin up to type V. That’s because the low to medium strength IPL matches darker skin tones, it’s fast and easy, and super-safe.

It shares the same compact, comfortable ergonomic design as the more powerful and expensive Braun Pro 5 IPL, but in white and lilac. It’s mains-powered with a long and flexible cord. The flashes last 15+ years and it has excellent build quality.

If you need something more affordable than the Pro 5, don't mind a few more sessions or have medium to dark skin, consider the Braun Pro 3 also. Checkout the comparison review on WeAreBodyBeautiful.com

The Pro 3 IPL is the more affordable model from Braun, with medium-power IPL to match darker skin tones to type V.

The Pro 3 is super simple with a clever and super-safe skin tone sensor. Before every flash, this auto-adjusts the three IPL power intensities to match your skin tone. There’s a gentle mode too for extra control.

The IPL range is low to medium, and this perfectly matches medium to dark skin. Therefore, you needn’t pay more for a high-power device (like the Braun Pro 5, Pure or Prestige) when you can’t use the high intensities anyway.

  • The highest intensity is 4 J/cm2 which is safe for light to medium-dark skin type IV
  • The lowest is 3 J/cm2 which matches darker tones up to type V
The Braun Pro 3 has a super safe and zero faff sensor which checks your skin before every flash, and auto matches 1 of the 3 intensities to your skin tone, 1 to 3 white lights on the side of the device show which level it selects.. And it won't flash if your skin is too dark either.

Clever Braun Pro 3 IPL does all the hard work and matches the IPL to your tone.

And sessions are fast, steady and accurate. On the lower intensities it takes under 9 minutes to flash a full leg. 

Results on dark skin

Shave immediately before each session, and inbetween as you need, unless there’s no hair left. And try dermaplaning if you don’t want to shave your face.

Braun say you need between 4 to 12 weekly sessions to get to smooth and hairless skin. You may get there before 12 sessions or it may take the full 12.

Then, you can switch to less frequent top-up sessions to maintain your results. Most need them every 1 to 2 months, however you may need them slightly more frequently when using the lowest intensity levels.

And hurrah! If you live in the UK or Ireland there’s also a reassuring 100-day money back guarantee.

Braun Pro 3 IPL Summary

I recommend the Braun Pro 3 IPL for any body area, especially if you have a medium to dark skin tones. That’s because the IPL intensity range matches these darker tones perfectly. It’s super quality, fast and comfy, and with the same plug-and-zap simplicity and safety as the more expensive Pro 5. But this is a steal at around £200, with a UK 100-day money back guarantee from Braun too.

Here’s a quick summary round-up of my test scores, and pros and cons to help you decide.

I recommend the Braun Pro 3 IPL for any body area, especially if you have a medium to dark skin tones.
Lamp lifetime

⚡⚡⚡⚡⚡

One of the best with IPL flashes to last 15+ years of monthly use. More than you’ll ever need to stay smooth.

Ease of use

👍👍👍👍

Fast, simple, easy-to-handle mains-power home IPL. Super-safe, it adjusts to your skin tone before every flash. Small window for face and tricky areas.

Effort & Results

⭐⭐⭐⭐

A medium to low power IPL device. Use it weekly until smooth (up to 12 sessions) then switch to top-ups as you need them. Dark skin may require more frequent top-ups.

Pros

  • The lower intensities perfect for medium to dark skin tones
  • Straightforward, fast, plug-&-go operation
  • No-faff safety sensor adjusts to your skin tone
  • Compact, lightweight, robust & long-lasting flashes
  • Clinically proven, CE certification & FDA-cleared
  • UK 100-day money back guarantee from Braun

Cons

  • Expensive at full RRP, but offers are common

If you need more info, check out the full Braun Pro 3 IPL review. But if you’ve found this review helpful and are ready to buy, please support my reviews and shop via my links. I earn a small commission, but your price stays the same. I really appreciate your support 🙏!

5. Braun Pro 5 IPL

"Fast & no-faff premium at-home IPL hair removal device"

Braun silk Expert Pro 5 best fast & no-faff home IPL

4.7 / 5

Face, small bits, legs & large areas

💰💰💰

UK 100-day money back guarantee

Safe Fitzpatrick skin tone range:

Fitzpatrick skin tone chart showing it's safe for tones I to V, but not VI (the darkest).

Hair colours it works on:

Works on black, dark brown, mid-brown and dark blonde body hair colours. Doesn't work on light blonde, red, white or gray body hair colours.

Braun Pro 5 video review

Learn the pros & cons of the Braun Pro 5 IPL at-home IPL in this quick and concise 5-minute video review.

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Hell's fire! There are rather a lot of Pro 5 IPL models. Each has a nice storage case, Venus razor, standard and precision flash window (excluding PL5014). Some then have additional flash windows too. See the options below👇. You can also check out this Braun Pro 5 IPL models comparison review.

4x heads: 
Standard, 2x precision & wide

3x heads: 
Standard, precision & wide

2x heads:
Standard & precision

1x head:
Standard head only

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The Pro 5 IPL is the top spec model in Braun’s IPL range. The design is compact, lightweight, ergonomic, and excellent quality, just like the Braun Pro 3 IPL. But it’s styled in a more refined white and gold. It has the same long and supple power cable and flashes that last 15+ years of monthly use. 

There's also the same clever skin tone sensor technology. Before every flash, it checks your skin tone and matches it to the safest and best intensity level. You get the added reassurance of  gentle mode which lowers the intensity a notch or 2. And you get extra gentle mode too, which flashes the very lowest intensity level. And that’s handy because it has a broader IPL power range than the Pro 3 IPL too. You get a low to high IPL of 3 to 6 J/cm2 in 10 increments (versus 3 to 4 J/cm2 in 3 increments with the Pro 3 IPL). 

The Braun Pro 5 IPL has a clever skin tone sensor which scans your skin tone and matches the best of 10 IPL intensities to your tone. The IPL range is low to high (3 to 6 J/cm2). The sensor won't flash if your skin is too dark.

Effortless Braun Pro 5 IPL matches the IPL to your tone before every flash.

However, remember you can’t use the high IPL levels on darker skin. Therefore, on dark tones to type V the Pro 5 IPL will match and flash the lowest intensity levels to your skin. 

Another key benefit over the Pro 3 is that the Pro 5 IPL has a faster flash rate. It takes just 6.5 minutes to flash a full leg on the lowest intensity, versus under 9 mins with the Pro 3. That's one of the fastest. So, you’ll save yourself a little more time if you choose the Pro 5 IPL. 

Results on dark skin

Shave immediately before each session, and inbetween as you need, unless there’s no hair left. And try dermaplaning if you don’t want to shave your face.

Braun say you need between 4 to 12 weekly sessions to get to smooth and hairless skin. You may get there before 12 sessions or it may take the full 12.

Then, you can switch to less frequent top-up sessions to maintain your results. Most need them every 1 to 2 months, however you may need them slightly more frequently when using the lowest intensity levels.

And hurrah! If you live in the UK or Ireland there’s also a reassuring 100-day money back guarantee.

Braun Pro 5 IPL Review Summary

The Braun Pro 5 is a popular and solid choice because it’s quality, straightforward, fast and very easy to flash.  

Here's a quick summary round-up of my test scores, and pros and cons to help you decide...

The Braun Pro 5 is a popular choice because it’s quality, straightforward, fast and very easy to flash.
Lamp lifetime

⚡⚡⚡⚡⚡

One of the best with IPL flashes lasting 15+ years of monthly use.

Ease of use

👍👍👍👍👍

Fast, light-weight & nimble. Perfectly balanced safety & power in every flash. Large, medium and precision flash windows to fit different body areas. Straight-forward, no-faff sessions.

Effort & Results

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Silky skin after 4 to 12 weekly sessions, then top-ups every month or so to stay smooth. A low effort device.

Pros

  • Excellent quality
  • Compact lightweight & elegant
  • Powerful IPL auto-adjusts to your skin tone
  • Gentle & extra gentle mode for stingy bits and extra control!
  • Very easy to flash all round your body
  • Fast sessions – one of the best
  • Small precision flash window for upper lip
  • Clinically proven, CE certification & FDA-cleared
  • 100-day UK & 90-day Australia money back guarantees

Cons

  • Getting used to the variable speed flashes
  • Expensive at full RRP, but offers are common

If you want more photos and information on the Braun Pro 5 IPL, check out the full review here. Or see how the Pro 5 compares to the Lumea Prestige. But if you’ve decided on the Pro 5, awesome choice 👊! Money back guarantees are available in the UK and Australia. Please support these reviews and shop via my links. I earn a small commission, but your price stays the same.

6. SmoothSkin Pure & Pure Fit

"The easiest & fastest, best value premium at-home IPL"

Smoothskin Pure Best ultrafast & value premium IPL

4.8 / 5

Face, small bits, legs & large areas

💰💰💰

Worldwide 90-day money back guarantee

Safe Fitzpatrick skin tone range:

Fitzpatrick skin tone chart showing it's safe for tones I to V, but not VI (the darkest).

Hair colours it works on:

Works on black, dark brown, mid-brown and dark blonde body hair colours. May work on light blonde hair

Pure video review

Learn the pros & cons of the Smoothskin Pure at-home IPL in this no-waffle 5-minute video review.

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The Smoothskin Pure is another top choice, very similar in performance to the Braun Pro models.

I love the sleek, glossy black styling and quality build. And I find the shape, weight and balance slightly more comfy to move, position and flash. It also has a long, supple power cable and unlimited flashes so you’ll never run out.

It shares the same skin tone sensor too (Cyden Ltd build them all). So, before every flash, it checks your skin tone and matches it to the safest and best intensity level.

It also has the same IPL power range as the Pro 5 (3 to 6 J/cm2 in 10 increments) and a gentle mode too. But in place of the extra gentle mode is speed mode. This lowers the IPL intensity right down so the flashes come fast but steady. I can zap a full leg in 7 minutes, it’s one of the fastest you can buy.

The Smoothskin Pure has a clever skin tone sensor which scans your skin tone and matches the best of 10 IPL intensities to your tone. For dark skin, it's the lower intensities. The IPL range is low to high (3 to 6 J/cm2). The sensor won't flash if your skin is too dark, there's a gentle mode and a speed mode that flashes on the lowest intensity.

No-faff easy operation matches to your skin tone, with a gentle and speed mode too.

However, just like the Pro 5 IPL, the Pure matches the lower IPL intensities to darker skin up to type V. So, you can’t use the higher power levels. But still, the Pure is an awesome device - it’s the most affordable and best value of the premium at-home IPLs.

Results on dark skin

Shave immediately before each session, and inbetween as you need, unless there’s no hair left. And try dermaplaning if you don’t want to shave your face.

Do 12 weekly sessions. You’ll notice softer and less hair typically after 4 to 6 sessions, but continue for your longest lasting results right from the start.

Then, you can switch to less frequent top-up sessions to maintain your results. Most need them every 1 to 2 months, however you may need them slightly more frequently when using the lowest intensity levels.

Plus, there’s also a reassuring worldwide 90-day money back guarantee. Top job.

SmoothSkin Pure Review Summary

I think the Pure is the best value premium at-home IPL hair removal device. That’s beacuse sessions are fast and it’s just so darned easy. And with a worldwide 90-day money back guarantee too.

Here's a quick summary round-up of my test scores, and pros and cons to help you decide...

The Pure is the best value premium at-home IPL hair removal device beacuse sessions are fast and it’s just so darned easy.
Lamp lifetime

⚡⚡⚡⚡⚡

Unlimited IPL flashes so you’ll never run out. Superb, and the best of the best for value.

Ease of use

👍👍👍👍👍

Auto-adjusts the IPL to match your skin tone before every flash. Light-weight & handy, with power, gentle & speed modes for extra control. The Fit has a small precision window for easy flashes everywhere.  The fastest and easiest high-power home IPL for no-faff sessions, done in a jiffy.

Effort & Results

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Up to 12 weekly sessions for long-lasting hair-free results, then top-ups 4 to 8 weeks keep it so. A low effort device.

Pros

  • Excellent quality
  • Handsome, handy, lightweight & comfy
  • Powerful IPL auto-adjusts to your skin tone , so it's fool-proof & super-safe
  • Gentle mode for stingy bits
  • Fastest sessions, with speed mode for legs
  • Easy flashes with a precision window for tricky areas (with the Fit)
  • May work on blonde hair (with more sessions)
  • Clinically-proven, CE certified & FDA cleared
  • Worldwide 90-day money back guarantee

Cons

  • Easy to accidentally cover the air vents

You can learn more about the Pure here. Or see how the Pure compares to the very popular Braun Pro 5 IPL. But if you’re sold, you can try it with a 90-day money back guarantee by shopping through my links. I earn a small commission, but your price stays the same. Oh, and there’s a special discount code too, just for you.

7. Philips Lumea Prestige

"The most comfy & precise home IPL, and my overall favourite."

Philips Lumea Prestige best overall home IPL

4.9 / 5

Face, small bits, legs & large areas

💰💰💰💰

UK 100-day money back guarantee

Safe Fitzpatrick skin tone range:

Fitzpatrick skin tone chart showing it's safe for tones I to V, but not VI (the darkest).

Hair colours it works on:

Works on black, dark brown, mid-brown and dark blonde body hair colours. Doesn't work on light blonde, red, white or gray body hair colours.

Prestige video review

Learn the pros & cons about the Philips Lumea Prestige at-home IPL in this 5-minute video review.

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The Prestige is my personal favourite at-home IPL because I love the comfy gun-shape, superb quality, corded and cordless use and easy-flash curved window (especially on legs). It's a tad heavy, but overall the comfiest and most precise device I've tested. The flashes last 15+ years of monthly use and it has superb build quality.

There's a broad IPL intensity range - from 2.5 to 6.5 J/cm2. Although there are 5 intensity levels to choose from,  only the lower levels are safe for darker skin up to type V.

If you need help choosing the right one, the Prestige has a check and match skin tone sensor which scans your skin and then highlights the best-match intensity. It also won't flash if your skin is too dark.

3 images showing how the Smartskin sensor works. The magnify glass button activates the sensor, the 1 to 5 intensity level indicators illuminate white in a round as it works. The 'tick' button lights-up white once it is done along with the maximum appropriate intensity indicators. Press the 'tick' button to choose it.

Press > scan > check to find which level is safest for your skin tone.

Simply press the sensor button and place the window against your skin. The 5 intensity level indicators light-up in sequence as it detects your skin tone. Then, pess the check button to choose the intensity level.

Place the window flush against your skin and flash, move to the next position and repeat. Cover your skin in flashes. Keep the flash button pressed for steady, continuous flashes. I can flash my full leg meticulously on the lower intensities in around 9 minutes. 

Some users with darker skin report the Prestige can sting a bit at times. So, it's important to use the check and match function as you move to different body parts.

Results on dark skin

Shave immediately before each session, and inbetween as you need, unless there’s no hair left. And try dermaplaning if you don’t want to shave your face.

Do 4 or 5 treatments during start-up, once every 2 weeks. Then switch to monthly top-ups.

On darker skin using the low intensity levels you may need a few more sessions. And some people may need slightly more frequent top-up sessions to maintain smooth, fuzz-free skin.

Philips Lumea Prestige Review Summary

I think the Philips Lumea Prestige is a top-notch at-home IPL hair removal device - it's my favourite. That's because of the low to hight IPL intensity, intuitive gun-shape, easy-flash windows, fast sessions, cordless option and clever sensor. It's superb quality and comes with a UK 100-day money back guarantee too.

Here's a quick summary round-up of my test scores, and pros and cons to help you decide...

The Philips Lumea Prestige is my favourite at-home IPL because it's got all the best features and it's comfy and precise to use.
Lamp lifetime

⚡⚡⚡⚡⚡

More flashes than you’ll ever need, lasting 15+ years of use. It’s one of the best.

Ease of use

👍👍👍👍👍

Most intuitive, comfortable and precise home IPL I’ve tested. Easy flashes with the curved windows. Use it fast on mains-power or cordless on small areas in your bathroom.

Effort & Results

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Long-lasting smooth after 4 to 5 sessions (1 every 2 weeks), plus top-ups every month or so. A low effort device.

Pros

  • Superb quailty
  • Most comfy gun-shape
  • Easy-flash precise curved windows hug your skin
  • Corded for fast legs
  • Cordless for small tricky areas
  • Powerful, safe & fast
  • Clinically-proven & CE certification
  • UK 100-day money back guarantee

Cons

  • It’s quite big & heavy
  • Expensive at full RRP
  • Not yet FDA-cleared in US

If you need more info, check out the full Lumea Prestige review. But if you’ve found this review helpful and are ready to buy, please support my reviews and shop via my links. I earn a small commission, but your price stays the same. I really appreciate your support 🙏!

Laura Gladman
I'm a bit obsessed with at-home beauty devices. It's a habit I've had for around 8 years now. I love the science, testing and reviewing them, and sharing my experience and feedback on my site Wearebodybeautiful.com. I'm also a crazy dog lady, and I don't care.

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