As body care becomes a bigger category in the U.S. (it’s much more common abroad), many of us are taking a closer look at our skin and body hair from the neck down. For me, shaving can feel like a chore, so I’ve embraced at-home treatments like Ulike hair removal devices. These high-tech hair zappers use IPL (intense pulsed light) to keep hair growth halted for much longer than shaving can. But, the best part is that the painful zapping that made me wince is a thing of the past with the new crop of innovations hitting the market today.
One of the newest innovations from K-beauty brand Ulike is the Sapphire Air3, which is a hair removal device unlike any other I’ve tried in the comfort of my own bathroom. It makes pesky hair removal so easy, and it’s gentler, especially on more sensitive areas like the bikini line. You can use it pretty much anywhere hair grows, from your upper lip to your armpits, and the technology is FDA-cleared to be safe. The addition of cooling mimics in-office hair-removal lasers, providing one of the most advanced at-home treatments you can get right now. To learn more about the beauty breakthrough, I spoke to Beryl Hwang, lead product marketing manager for Ulike’s North America division.
What makes Ulike different?
“Our at-home hair removal device, the Air3, is different from others on the market because of our patented Sapphire Ice-cooling technology,” says Hwang. “This technology is based on clinical Sapphire contact cooling and is specifically designed for at-home hair removal devices. It protects the skin and ensures a comfortable user experience while performing an effective hair removal IPL treatment. Our technology is unique and we’re the first and top company to have it. We’re also proud that Ulike is recommended by top dermatologists worldwide.
You can use this one device on all areas as well. Soft Mode works on facial hair, the bikini area and any other sensitive areas. Body Mode works on the arms and legs, and Power Mode is recommended for the chest and the armpits.”
What is IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) and how does it get rid of stubborn hairs?
“IPL is a type of FDA-cleared light treatment that uses strong pulses of a broad-spectrum of polychromatic light to target the melanin in hair follicles to achieve permanent hair removal results,” Hwang explains. “As the pigment absorbs light, it gets heated up and destroyed. Hairs will grow back more sparsely and slower after each treatment, permanently reducing hair growth.”
Is this device a good option for both beginners and experts?
“Our Sapphire AIR3 at-home hair removal device is suitable for both beginners and experts,” Hwang says. “It’s incredibly easy to use. When you power on the device, the ice-cooling technology operates instantly. You can select the power level on the packaging based on your preference, and then press the treatment button, and the device will flash. Plus, this device also features our upgraded Auto Glide Mode, which can deliver flashes every 0.7 seconds. This allows users to get a full-body hair removal session in as little as seven minutes. There’s no need to take extra time to learn how to use it.”
How does the Sapphire cooling technology work exactly?
“Once the device is turned on, the active cooling system inside the AIR3 is activated, and you can even can see the sapphire light window gets frosty in five seconds,” explains Hwang. “Our cooling technology works by instantly cooling the sapphire light window in the device. When the sapphire light window is in full contact with the treatment area, it provides real-time cooling throughout the treatment. This cooling protects the skin and allows for higher fluences to be delivered to the skin. This increases the effectiveness of the IPL hair removal treatment.
The flat sapphire also applies light pressure to the treatment area, increasing the absorption of the target chromophore. The sapphire ice-cooling not only protects the skin and provides comfort, but also ensures a highly effective IPL hair removal treatment. This technology is unique to our product. It is not found in any other at-home hair removal device on the market.”
What tips do you have for anyone who is new to DIY laser hair removal?
“For people who are new to at-home hair removal, we recommend checking if your skin tone and hair color are suitable for IPL before using our Ulike device. [Below are the skin tones and hair colors the device is cleared to treat.] Our device also has a skin sensor that ensures safe and accurate treatment. Also, before using the device, shave the area you plan to treat,” Hwang says.
“We also recommend starting with the lightest power mode (soft), and then proceeding with the higher modes (body and power). You should also wear protective eyewear during each treatment. And afterwards, be sure to moisturize and avoid exposing your skin to sunlight. If you wear shorts, remember to apply sunscreen.”
How often should you use the device, and what results can you expect?
“During the first and second weeks, use it every other day,” Hwang says. “Weeks three through five, use it twice per week. Then, after the initial treatment phase—12 weekly treatments—treat the target area once a month, or as required, to maintain your results.
Most people begin to see evident hair reduction after three to four weeks. After each regular treatment, hair will grow much more sparsely and thinly, and eventually, the hair reduction becomes permanent. Both the outcome and frequency of the treatment are different for each user. According to FDA’s regulations, permanent hair removal means ‘continued and steady reduction of hair over a prolonged period’, which we provide. However, some may interpret the term ‘permanent’ differently. Please know that even the photo-therapy used in clinics is not entirely permanent.”
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