IPL Reviews

Silk’n Flash & Go Compact review (150,000 flashes)

Silk'n Flash&Go Compact Laura G
Silk'n Flash&Go Compact


The Silk'n Flash&Go Compact is new from Silk'n for 2016. It's a neat, compact, mains-powered home IPL device with an attractive price. The skin tone sensor keeps you safe so you can't flash skin that's too dark. It's very simple to operate and comfortable to use. The bulb flashes will last you over 5 years of full body treatments so it’s a great investment. But you may wish it had faster treatment times. Learn more in the full Silk'n Flash&Go Compact review.

  • Use on body & face
  • Mains-powered
  • Manufactured by Silk’n Home Skinovations
  • User score 3.6 stars 
  • Silk’n Flash&Go Compact price: $$
  • Suited to small areas like bikini line, underarms, arms:
  • Treat a total body area of 450,000 cm2
  • 200+  small area applications lasts 15+ years
  • Underarms take from 1:07 to 2:36 minutes

Looking for the latest Silk’n Flash&Go Express 300,000?
It’s faster to apply, gives double the treatments and is slightly more expensive.

Silkn Flash&Go Express review


  • It’s attractively priced at $199
  • It’s excellent value for money and will last 5+ years
  • Quick treatments of small areas
  • Compact design is comfortable to hold and easy to store
  • Comes with a sturdy and convenient storage case
  • Simple to operate
  • It’s mains-powered, so simply plug in and go
  • All the safety and treatment features you’d expect
  • Integrated skin tone sensor
  • Integrated UV filter
  • FDA cleared and CE mark (EU declaration of conformity to meet safety requirements)
  • Easy to follow user manual
  • Quick and helpful responses from Silk’n USA customer support



  • Other devices have faster treatments times like the Silk’n Flash&Go Express. More in the full review.
  • It’s sometimes difficult to activate on uneven areas like knees and shins
  • It’s awkward on the upper lip
  • Skin tone sensor doesn’t select your intensity level
  • More info on the Patented HPL™ Technology would be helpful

The Silk’n Flash&Go Compact is available in the USA. In the UK and Europe, this is the Silk’n Glide 150,000 model. Silk’n Home Skinovations manufacture both devices.

Where to buy the Silk'n Flash&Go Compact

I receive referral commission if you buy through these links.

Silk'n Flash&Go Compact reviewSilk'n Flash&Go Compact, for body & face

Buy from Silkn.com: USA & Canada orders, free shipping, free gift pack and 60 day money back guarantee
15% coupon code on Silkn.com valid until 31 July 2016

Buy from Amazon: US & International orders

Buy from Amazon: UK & Europe orders
Silkn Glide 150000 in purple Silk'n Glide 150,000, for face & body

Buy from Amazon: UK & International orders

Suitable skin tones and hair colours

skin-tone-chart-i-to-ivYou can use it on black, dark brown, brown, dark blonde hair and light to medium skin tones (Fitzpatrick skin types I to IV).

You can’t use it on dark brown, brownish black and darker skin tones (Fitzpatrick skin type V and VI), or on freckles and moles. It won’t work on light blonde, red or grey / white hair.

Read more on IPL and suitable skin types and hair colours >>

Is the Silk’n Flash&Go Compact good value?

Yes. It’s attractively priced at around $199 and you’ll get over 5 years of full body treatments.

The treatment window size is good at 2.7 cm², and combined with the 150,000 flashes you can treat a total body area of 405,000 cm². That’ll give you around 100 full body treatments. A full body treatment means upper and lower legs, bikini line and underarms. With 100 treatments you could use it monthly and it will still last over 5 years.


And if you want to use it on various smaller areas like your face, underarms, bikini line and forearms, you’ll get 200+ treatments for 15+ years of use.

It’s a great value choice, but you may wish treatments were faster on large areas like full legs. Keep reading to learn more.

N.B. I’ve used only the bulb life to calculate the years of use. General usage and wear and tear can also affect how long the machine keeps working.

How easy is the Flash&Go Compact to use?

It’s small and lightweight. The mains-powered, hand-held applicator is easy to operate, position and comfortable to use. It’s suitable for body and facial treatments below the cheekbones (ladies only).

What’s in the box?

  • Flash&Go Compact hair removal device
  • Deluxe carrying case
  • Adaptor and power cord
  • User manual

To get a good overview and understanding about how everything works, start with the user manual. It tells you how to be safe and get best results. Pay close attention to the list of warnings and safety precautions for important reasons not to use the device.

The manual says to start your first treatment on the lowest energy intensity setting. If it’s comfortable and you have no reactions it says to move up a level for the next session. I have 2 concerns over this.

  1. There’s no direction to perform a skin sensitivity test.
  2. It will take you 5 treatments / over 6 weeks to reach the highest intensity level (if it’s suitable for you). Because the device is most effective on the higher levels this will slow down your results. The advertised and expected results will take longer to see.

I think the solution is a skin sensitivity test, and I’d advise you to follow the guidelines from the UK Silk’n Glide user manual, as follows:

For the skin test, shave first then after checking your skin with the skin tone sensor, simply start at the lowest level (1) and flash your skin. If that’s comfortable move up a level and repeat (on a different spot). Stop if it becomes uncomfortable or painful. Wait for 1 hour and if there’s no reaction continue with your treatment at the highest level that was comfortable. Do this for each body area you want to treat.

The Silkn.com FAQ section also says “Progress quickly to high energy levels – once you have tested all treatment areas on the low energy setting, we recommend you move up to higher levels.” I therefore suspect this direction has not been clearly translated into the user manual.  If you’re unsure what to do, please check with Silk’n customer support.

Getting started

The Compact is simple to use and it’s easy to get started.

  1. Shave first and make sure the area is clean, dry and free of lotions and deodorant.
  2. Set yourself up. You’ll need to be near a power socket. Try using an extension cable so you can choose the most comfortable area, like your bed, or close by to a mirror.
  3. Plug it in and simply press the power button to move up the levels and the indicator lights around the button show the selected level.
  4. A ‘ready’ light will flash when it’s in full contact with your skin, press the flash button.
  5. When you press the flash button the skin tone sensor checks your skin and will flash only it’s a suitable tone. When it flashes you’ll hear a ‘pop’ sound.

Skin tone sensor & Safety

Your skin tone is checked by the small safety sensor window next to the light exit window. It checks at the start of your treatment and periodically throughout your session. It won’t flash if your skin tone is out of the safe range.

Sensors around the window make sure it’s is fully covered by your skin before it will flash. This means you can’t accidentally flash into open air and damage your eyes.

Treatment modes

The Compact has 2 standard treatment modes; stamping for a single flash (called Pulse) or continuous flashes (called Glide).

Pulse mode: making sure you get full contact, position it on your skin, then press and release the flash button. With just the right amount of overlap, move to the next spot and repeat. It’s like a stamping action.

Glide mode: position the device on your skin, press and hold the flash button. Keeping good contact, slowly slide (or skim) the device over your skin. Aim to get good coverage and full contact in time with the flashes. It’s more comfortable for treating larger areas like legs.

How quick are the treatments?

Let’s compare it to other devices and see how long it takes to treat a pair of underarms.

The Flash&Go Compact has a 2.7 cm² treatment window and it flashes every 1.5 to 3.5 seconds, dependent on the intensity level selected. To treat a pair of underarms (an area roughly 120 cm²) it’ll take from around 1:07 minute up to 2:36 minutes.

The lowest intensity level (1) flashes every 1.5 seconds. The highest intensity level (5) flashes one every 3.5 seconds. The higher intensity levels are more effective so you should use the highest that’s safe for you. This means fairly slow treatments if you can use the highest levels.

It takes 16 minutes per leg. That’s slow, so it’s not a great choice if you want to treat large areas like full legs, back, torso. It’s better suited for small areas such as the bikini line, forearms and underarms. These treatments are quick and much more manageable.

What are the alternatives?

The most attractive alternative to these Flash&Go Compact is the newer and faster Flash&Go Express.

It has the same compact, no-frills design and an attractive deep blue colour. It’s faster, twice as quick to apply, so it’s better for full body and large area treatments. You get twice as many flashes too, enough to last up to 15 years of use. It usually sells for around $299 and is worth the extra cost if you can afford it.

Also worth considering is the Philips Lumea SC1983, another no-frills compact device. It’ll last for a few years longer than the Glide 150,000 and has comparable application times all at a similar cost. Reassuringly, Philips customer service is excellent too.

Learn about other top home IPL machines with my Best Buy recommendations.

Should I buy the Flash&Go Compact?

Yes. It’s a good choice for treating small body areas like the bikini line, underarms and lower arms.

It’s a good no-frills budget choice. The negatives are a shape that’s a bit awkward, specifically on facial areas and uneven surfaces. It’s slow and tiresome on large areas but it’s quick enough and suited to small areas like the bikini line, forearms and underarms.  You’ll get loads of treatments from it too, so it’s a great investment that will see you through years of use.

Where to buy the Silk'n Flash&Go Compact

I receive referral commission if you buy through these links.

Silk'n Flash&Go Compact reviewSilk'n Flash&Go Compact, for body & face

Buy from Silkn.com: USA & Canada orders, free shipping, free gift pack and 60 day money back guarantee
15% coupon code on Silkn.com valid until 31 July 2016

Buy from Amazon: US & International orders

Buy from Amazon: UK & Europe orders
Silkn Glide 150000 in purple Silk'n Glide 150,000, for face & body

Buy from Amazon: UK & International orders
Share this Story