Leah C, I don't find the 15 minutes of thorough chilling of my skin painful at all, the colder the better. That was using the soft covered ACE ice packs. If your ice packs are painfully cold wrap them with a thin piece of cloth maybe.
Different people will react differently to everything, of course. For me applying the EMLA (Lidocaine/Prilocaine cream) for an hour worked in less sensitive areas, but not at all for the more sensitive ones.
Now that the ice has reduced the pain and the inflammation response enough to raise the probe setting I can complete treatments and see some hair removal progress. The eruption of red spots two days later is the result of having more impact on the follicles. It's just that the higher setting damages my skin enough that the deep healing takes longer, not showing on the surface for a couple days, and makes the skin fragile.
It seems a good fraction of the follicle close, some pulling out as a short shaft of tissue, and it's that healing that leaves all the scabs...! So I'm just treating it with the most gentle care I can, a little Aloe plus very gentle cleansing to help start removing the scabs as it heals.
Even with the much improved technique I think my face needs another couple months off, to really heal again. !