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It’s a favorite among other InStyle editors, too.
Thick hair that grows quickly is both a blessing and a curse. I love to have Chaka Khan-like volume in my curls, but not how often it needs to be cut or trimmed — and my body hair is a different story altogether. And that story is that in areas where I shave, the hair grows back at an alarming rate and in very thick, dark, black hair.
If that works for you, then God bless — but I like to have shaved legs, a peach fuzz-free face, and a stomach without a happy trail. I never seriously considered professional laser hair removal because it is so expensive and, honestly, I know myself; I would not finish a full course of in-office treatment. The introduction of Braun’s newest IPL Silk Expert Pro 5, one of my favorite products of 2022, has been a marvel.
IPL (intense pulsed light) devices are home laser hair removal devices. After reading an eye-glazing amount of information, here’s what I’ve gathered about how they work: The device emits light pulses that make the roots of your hair go into a resting phase. With repeated use, the hair follicles stop growing hair permanently.
Shop now: $359; amazon.com
I followed the instructions to a T and shaved my legs and stomach before using the Pro Silk IPL. I then sat on the floor and worked the device across my legs and stomach while watching a movie. Compared to the previous models (one of which an InStyle-tested top pick,) this one seems lightyears simpler. It comes with four different sized caps, so it’s as easy to zap your upper lip as it is to do your thighs. It also has a sensor that adapts to your skin tone and flashes red when the device is improperly placed on the skin. Finally, there are three levels of intensity, on the lowest setting I noticed a flash of non-painful pricks, and on the highest, a slightly uncomfortable (but not too bad) two-second sting.
I noticed the results two weeks after my first session. That’s usually the amount of time I feel comfortable going in between leg-shaving sessions. I prepared for my usual routine, but noticed it wasn’t yet time: The hairs had grown back less dense, lighter, and much shorter. In all honesty, I was stunned; while I expected the Braun IPL to work eventually, I didn’t think I’d see results so quickly, especially considering how hairy I consider myself to be.
To date, I’ve completed three sessions on my stomach and legs, and I plan on moving to my face and armpits next, now that I feel comfortable with the process. My only personal complaint is that I wish there was a clear way to tell which spots I had already covered or previously missed. Another issue — not for me, but for others — is that it may not work on all skin or hair colors, so consult the photograph before purchasing.
The Braun IPL Silk Expert Pro 5 is an investment, but one that has a permanent payoff. Head to Amazon to shop it today.
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