What is the difference between laser and IPL?

Article medically reviewed by Dr. Gavin Chan (MBBS, cosmetic doctor, liposuctionist)

Templestowe Lower, Berwick and Beaumaris Clinics

Dr. Gavin Chan has a background in intensive care, anaesthesia, and emergency medicine. Since 2005, Dr. Chan has provided cosmetic procedures, including anti-wrinkle injections, dermal fillers, liposuction and laser treatments. He is a doctor trainer for various dermal fillers and anti-wrinkle injections. Read More

I often get asked ‘What is the difference between laser and IPL?’. Furthermore, I often find that people mistake IPL. So I thought I would blog about the difference.

Lasers have been used for several decades for the treatment of various skin conditions. Different lasers have different purposes and different wavelengths, and each is targeted to a specific skin condition. For just over 15 years now, IPL, or Intense Pulsed Light, machines were released as an alternative to laser treatments, and have become popular for skin rejuvenation and hair removal. But remember, IPL is not a laser! One of the reasons for the IPL machine’s popularity is the fact that they are cheaper to purchase than a series of lasers, but they don’t do the same job. Although, IPL is a versatile machine as it can treat multiple skin conditions and remove hair, it is never as good as a specific laser for a given job. Its like a two-in-one shampoo/conditioner – they never do as good a job as a separate shampoo and conditioner.

For more information on the difference, click on the following link;

Also, Dr. Sandy Fieldhouse explains the difference between laser and IPL in the following video;