Saturday, 22 May 2010

Update - Boots Smooth Skin IPL trial

Disclosure - PR sample

Last time I wrote about the Boots iPulse Smooth Skin IPL device, I mentioned that my first experience was a bit "yowch".

I'm using the unit on my bikini line, and I tried it on the "light" and "medium" settings, both of which stung quite a bit.

I have more positive news this time. Following the advice of Beauty Scribbler (who's a seasoned Smooth Skin user), I set the unit down to "dark", the lowest setting, for subsequent zapping sessions.

Since then, I've had much better luck. There are still occasional stinging moments, but overall the experience is painless. It's much like using the Lumea in that I get just a burst of sudden warmth when I hit the trigger. This makes sense to me given that the Smooth Skin's range of energy output is 7-10 joules, where Lumea's is 2 - 6.5, suggesting that high settings on Lumea correspond roughly to the lowest Smooth Skin setting in terms of power. (Figures from Beauty Scribbler's excellent IPL comparison post.)

Results-wise, I'm very impressed. As with Lumea, I saw results following the first session. I'd say at least 50% of the hair had gone after that first go (how permanently, I'm not sure). Follow-up sessions had less of a dramatic impact. The results are pretty patchy - I'm sure that's at least in part because of my rubbish technique, but I had the same thing with Lumea on my underarms, so it's also probably because of the way my hair grows.

I'm finding the trailing cord a bit of a pain, especially in combination with the gel. I need to angle the head carefully in order to get the sensors to connect. In doing that I find that the wire often ends up dragging in the gel and messing up the careful layer I applied. I also use the "prints" the handset leaves in the gel to check where I have already zapped, so having the cord drag through those also disrupts that process.

The time between zaps is quite short, and it's easy enough to get my bikini line done in a half-hour session at most. The unit does need a "breather" after several shots, but it's not maddeningly long until it's ready to go again.

Since switching down to "dark" I feel much better about the Smooth Skin than I did previously. I did notice after my first session that the areas I'd treated on "light" had better results than those treated on "medium", so it may be that I'll see an even slower response from "dark". However I'd rather that than be in pain or damage my skin.

Stay tuned for more Smooth Skin results in the next few weeks.


  1. The gel and cord sound really annoying :( though I think if I had the opportunity (and the moolah!) I'd get it

  2. My smooth skin just arrived today. Have had my first zapping. I used the fair setting on my bikini line and underarm's but had to switch to medium for my legs, maybe because i have caught some sun on them over the last few days but I definately felt more of a 'snap' on my legs on the fair setting. Fingers crossed for a hair free future!

  3. Hi

    I've found the reviews on Lumea & Smooth Skin very helpful thanks. I'm dithering over whether the price tag is justifiable for the Smooth Skin, and so all information is good. It's been a while since your last post about this - have you had any more improvement?

  4. Pussycat Hills20 June 2010 at 18:36

    I'm dithering about a Lumea or a Smooth Skin as well. Pale-skinned and dark haired, I've had VPL (variable pulsed light) treatment in a salon on my lower legs and it changed my life! It really was amazing. But I couldn't afford to have any more done on my upper legs especially. I'd very much like to be able to do the treatments at home, but I don't want to pay over £300 for something which isn't effective.
    Waiting with baited breath for your comments!

  5. Hi everyone - I've just started a new job and I've been a little remiss on my testing duties. I will plan in a zapping session this week I think. So far so good results wise - the bald bits seem to be staying bald.

    @Pussycat Hills I strongly recommend visiting Beauty Scribbler who has a complete Smooth Skin write up covering several months. I'm not ready to make a call on it yet, although so far definitely so good. She's had hers for a long time and been happy with it overall, but visit her blog for the full details.


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