Best home IPL hair removal for blonde, red & white / grey hair

Best home laser hair removal machines for blonde, red and white or grey hair
L ight skin and dark hair respond best to home laser and IPL hair reduction. That’s because dark hair has lots of dark melanin pigment called eumelanin. It absorbs the IPL and laser light energy, heats it up and damages the hair follicle. This stops hair growth.

All laser and IPL devices work on black, dark brown, brown and light brown / dark blonde hair. If that’s you simply check out the best buys to see which you prefer.

Black, brown and dark blonde hair (left to centre) contain the dark pigment eumelanin. Light blonde hair (right) contains just a tiny bit.

But what if you have fair hair that’s light blonde, red, white or grey?

Unfortunately, there’s just one home laser and it’s NOT effective on fair hair. And most IPL devices won’t work either.

That’s because:

A lock of red hair

Red hair has a type of melanin called pheomelanin. It won’t absorb IPL and laser energy.

A lock of light blonde hair

Light blonde hair has a small amount of eumelanin and pheomelanin, it won’t absorb IPL and laser energy.

A lock of grey hair

Grey and white hair don’t have any of the melanin types and so won’t absorb the light energy.

You do have a few options you can try based on brand information.

  • The Smoothskin Muse – for light blonde hair too
  • Silk’n Infinity 400,000 – you may see results on light blonde, red and grey or white hair

N.B. With both it’s likely you’ll need more treatments on fair hair to see results. So be patient and extra committed!

Learn more below.

The Smoothskin Muse

Buy from CurrentBody | £250 to £399

Smoothskin advise you may see results on light blonde hair. This excludes blonde hair that’s virtually white.

There’s no clinical data or proof to support it’ll work on lighter blonde hair. However, Smoothskin offer a 90-day money back guarantee. This means you can treat your light blonde hair for the full guarantee period and, if you aren’t happy with the results, return it for a refund.

The chart below comes from the Smoothskin website. You can see it here.

Note: It may take several more sessions to see results on blonde and light blonde hair than with darker hair. You may need more frequent top-ups too.

The Smoothskin Muse is a fantastic device too. A top choice and a recommended best buy, because it’s sexy, powerful, with endless flashes and it’s fast. You can learn more about the Muse here.

The Silk’n Infinity

Buy from | £140 to £220

On the Silk’n EU website they say the Infinity works effectively on nearly all hair colours. On in the US they say it ‘may work on blonde, grey or red hair if there is enough pigment’. They’re less committal here because it’s not FDA-cleared to work on these hair colours.

The chart below shows the effective skin and hair colour combinations.

Skin tone and hair colour combinations chart from Silk’n.

So, why would the Infinity be effective?

That’s not clear, and not something Silk’n have answered yet. I’m hoping for more information on how it works and what schedule to follow. It may have something to do with the IPL light energy combined with Galvanic energy. That’s different to all other home IPL devices.

Unfortunately, there’s no clinical data supporting this. So, there’s no extra reassurance here. However, do give a 60-day money back warranty so that’s extra peace of mind if you live in the US or Canada. Hopefully it’s plenty time to try and see results to keep going.

There’s no money back guarantee in the UK or Europe so you’d be trying it at your own risk.

You can compare them both in the table below. Do read the full in-depth reviews to learn the pros and cons.

Smoothskin Muse Silk'n Infinity 400,000
4.6 out of 5
4.4 out of 5
Price £250 to £399 £140 to £220
Type IPL IPL & Galvanic energies
Fitzpatrick tones

Safe for skin tones I to V

Safe for ALL skin tones
Hair colours

Black to dark blonde, may work on light blonde.

Black to dark blonde, may work on lighter hair
Skin tone sensor Protects too dark skin & selects the best intensity for your skin tone Skin tone sensor activates safe intensities for your skin tone
Operation Mains-power, 200 cm cord Mains-power, 180 cm cord
Attachments x1 multi-use flash window x1 multi-use flash window
Lifespan / Total body area: Unlimited
  • 15+ years of use
  • 1,080,000 cm²
  • 10 levels
  • 4 to 6 J/cm²
  • 5 levels
  • Max 4 J/cm²
For fair hair It's possible to see results on light blonde hair with more sessions. Try with the 90-day money back guarantee Shave first, fair hair on darker tones will not work
Proven? Clinically proven, FDA-cleared (but not for light blonde hair) Clinically proven (but not for fair hair)
Speed per leg
  • Advertised: 8.5 mins
  • Test: 10 mins
  • Advertised: 8 mins
  • Test: 10+ mins
Treatment App
Online score
4.5 out of 5
4.3 out of 5
Warranty 2 years 2 year (UK & Europe)
Money back guarantee 90-day guarantee in UK & Europe 60-day guarantee in US
Full review Learn more Learn more

What about the Iluminage Touch and Precise Touch?

photos of the discontinued Iluminage Touch and Iluminage Precise Touch devices side by side.
Iluminage Touch and Precise Touch

You may have heard of these.

These devices from Iluminage Beauty Ltd and Iluminage Beauty Inc are both clinically proven and FDA-cleared effective on fair hair. They use a combination of IPL and Radio Frequency. But unfortunately, Iluminage Beauty ceased trading in 2018.

You may find final stock available through some retailers. However, before buying you should check if the retailer honours the manufacturer warranty. If anything breaks or fails during the warranty period it’ll be peace of mind as the retailer can either replace it or give a refund. Otherwise you’ll there’s no one to help if anything goes wrong.

Another question I’m sometimes asked it would it work on fair hair to follow the Iluminage Touch treatment protocol with the Infinity?

The Treatment Protocol for the Touch devices on fair hair is to remove hair at the root (wax or epilate) and then treat with the device. The tiny bit of blood left in the follicle (after pulling out the hair) is what absorbs the IPL and RF energy. You’ll need around 14 weekly sessions to see good results. And it may take a while for results to become noticeable.

So, would this work?

It’s impossible to say because Silk’n have not tested the Infinity with this protocol or even with waxing or epilating before use. They advise only shaving beforehand.

So, it’s difficult to say and an experiment at your own risk.

Check prices and buy below.

Where to buy

Found this review helpful? Please support future reviews and shop via these links.

Read the Smoothskin Muse review

Smoothskin Muse for body & face, try on light blonde hair with 90-day money back guarantee

Silk’n Infinity for body & face, IPL & Galvanic energies may work on fair hair

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