Cult beauty buy: Philips Lumea Prestige IPL

At-home IPL is fast becoming the easy way to remove your body hair with as little effort as possible. Who wants to be constantly shaving your legs, when this little machine promises your body will be up to eight weeks regrowth-free? Danielle Sen puts this device to the test...

I personally love winter, not only because of the cold chill in the air and the cosy nights spent hibernating at home, it's also a time when I don't have to bother shaving my legs. Yes, I admit it! I am one of those people who believe out of sight, out of mind. 

When I got the opportunity to road-test the Philips Luma Prestige IPL, I was instantly intrigued. I had endured many laser hair removal treatments in my time, but the thought of doing my own, at-home version of permanent-ish hair removed had me excited.

What is it?

IPL (short for Intense Pulsed Light) is an innovative technology where gentle pulses of light put hairs into a resting phase and will cause them to naturally shed in the following weeks, post-treatment. You simply point and shoot the device on the areas you want to treat, and following a set-out plan, you can expect to see up to 92 per cent of your body hair gone in as little as three treatments.

Where can I use it?

The best part about this machine is that it can be used almost everywhere on your body. There are four different curved attachments, which easily clip onto the machine, each designed to treat different areas. You can use the Lumea on your legs, face (upper lip, chin, and sideburns), underarms, bikini area, belly and arms. Simply switch the attachments depending on which area you're treating.

How long does it take?

Each area varies, but overall I was impressed with how fast the Lumea works. Especially for an at-home treatment performed by a novice like myself! You'll need to plug in the Lumea and charge it for some time if you want to use it cordless, or you can simply leave the machine plugged in, which is what I do if I am treating my full legs, arms, underarms and face.  

I also recommend downloading the Philips Lumea IPL app, which is like a personal coach to help you navigate your treatment plan and provide step-by-step guidance. It helps to determine which light setting you should be using and even sends push notifications when you have a treatment due. Handy!

Does it hurt?

To prepare, you will need to shave the area you want to treat just before using the Lumea, and be sure not to use any deodorant or moisturiser on the skin. Then, once you're all prepped and ready to go, hold the Lumea to the skin at a right angle and press the button. A small red light will flash, and you'll feel a tiny zap on the area.

To be completely honest, I was expecting a sting akin to laser hair removal, but I was pleasantly surprised to feel hardly anything on more hardy areas such as my legs and arms. Of course, sensitive areas like the bikini area did sting at some points but compared to other forms of hair removal, the sensation was much more comfortable than epilating, waxing or laser.

Results: My leg, after three sessions and two full weeks of hair regrowth.

The verdict

Here's the thing. You may gawp at the $799 price tag, but before you completely decide against making the investment, you'll need to weigh up your personal circumstances.

If you are someone like me, who is completely committed to being hair-free long term and you have multiple areas that you're going to treat, this is a fantastic, cost-effective alternative to IPL or laser hair removal at a salon. It's fast, safe, pain-free and I can use it from the comfort of my own home. What's not to love?

For more information and where to buy the Philips Lumea Prestige IPL, click HERE.

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