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Philips Lumea vs Braun Silk Expert IPL

Philips Lumea has long been one of the leading brands when it comes to IPL hair removal at home.  The Lumea range has soared in popularity in recent years as more of us search for a convenient alternative to costly salon visits.  Braun, who produce one of the best epilators on the market have moved into IPL home hair removal with the introduction of their Silk-Expert IPL BD5009.  So, how do they compare?  Lets find out.

Philips vs Braun IPL Technology

Both the Philips Lumea and the Braun Silk-Expert use IPL (Intense Pulse Light) technology.  This is a light-based treatment which targets the melanin (pigment) in the hair follicle to disrupt the cycle of hair growth.  Over time and with regular use hair growth is significantly reduced.

Braun Silk expert gentle and normal mode

Both Philips IPL and Braun IPL can be used on a range of skin tones and can be used on the face and body.  Please see our full and complete Philips Lumea Review for details on which Philips Lumea models are suitable for the face.

Skin tone varies across different parts of the body and so both devices offer the ability to adjust the settings to a suitable level for the area being treated.

Braun Silk Expert Skin Hair Chart

The Philips Lumea provides 5 adjustable light-energy settings.  These can be adjusted by you to the desired level.

The Braun Silk Expert IPL, with its SensoAdapt technology, does this automatically for you.  The in-built skin tone sensor continuously reads your skin tone, 80 times per second and automatically adapts the intensity of the light for maximum effectiveness and safety.  The Braun Silk Expert also comes with a gentle mode for those extra sensitive areas and those just starting off.

Braun Silk Expert IPL SensoAdapt

Philips Vs Braun IPL Features

Treatment Window

The Braun Silk Expert IPL has one large treatment window.

Braun Silk Expert Treatment Window

The Philips Lumea has a 4cm2 treatment window for the body and two further 2cm2 precision attachments, one for the face and one for the bikini (Philips Lumea 2008/11 and 2009/00).

Philips Lumea IPL Window

Philips Lumea review facial attachment

Philips Lumea Bikini attachment

Treatment Modes

The Philips Lumea comes with a Slide and Flash Mode for fast treatment of large areas such as legs.  It also has a Step and Flash Mode for precise treatment of smaller areas such as the upper lip.

Philip Lumea Review Face

The Braun Silk Expert IPL also offers a Gliding mode for smooth quick treatment of larger areas. However, like the Lumea you can also press and release for a more precise treatment of smaller areas.

Number of Flashes

The Braun Silk Expert IPL BD5009 has a lifetime of 120,000 flashes compared to the Philips Lumea (2009/00) 250,000 flashes.   Unlike some other IPL home hair removal devices the Philips and Braun do not offer replacement bulbs so this really is the lifetime of the product.

Ease Of Use

The Philips Lumea is cordless, whereas the Braun Silk Expert IPL device is corded.

The benefit of the cordless Lumea is flexibility in terms of where you conduct your treatment, ie. not having to be sat beside the nearest plug socket.  It does however need to be charged so you need to be organised in advance of your treatment.

Braun Silk Expert IPL in use

The benefit of having the cord with the Braun Silk Expert IPL device is that you can have uninterrupted treatments with maximum power and no rush.

Treatment Times

Braun claim that their Silk Expert IPL technology is up to 2 times faster than its competitors at the same energy level, with 0.9 to 1.9 seconds between flashes.  This compares with up to 3.5 seconds between flashes with the Philips Lumea.

To put this into perspective, treating a full leg could take 15 mins with the Philips Lumea but only take 8 mins with the Braun Silk Expert IPL.

Braun Silk Expert 2xFaster

Philips Vs Braun IPL Price

Philips Lumea models vary considerably in price, based on the specification.  The latest sc2009/00 model, which contains both the two additional precision attachments and 250,000 flashes has an RRP of circa £500.  You can get good discounts online with prices in the £300-£350 region at present.  Click here for the best online deals.

Philips Lumea Prestige IPL


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The Braun Silk Expert IPL BD5009 retails in the region of £300 (RRP. £399).  Check out the latest deals here.

Braun Silk Expert IPL Boxed

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Which should you choose?

Still cant decide? Check out our complete Philips Lumea review or to see reviews of the Braun Silk Expert IPL system Click Here.