IPL stands for Intense Pulsed Light, a technology that is used to gently target the deep tissues under the skin and prompt the body to produce more collagen, a process that slows down with prolonged sun exposure and age. IPL energy can also be used to target the damaged, visible blood vessels and redness associated with rosacea to help clear the skin and resolve redness. Following the treatment, improvement will be gradual as the body works to clear away damaged tissues and create new, youthful structures.
Candidates for IPL treatment are healthy adults with sun damage (brown spots, dull, damaged skin), fine lines and wrinkles, enlarged pores, spider veins, or rosacea. IPL is a versatile treatment that is appropriate for many potential patients, but it is not right for everyone
Just prior to IPL treatment, the skin will be cooled to help prevent discomfort during the procedure. A handpiece is used to direct light pulses directly into the areas of the skin experiencing problems. IPL is a straightforward procedure that nonetheless requires the skill of an experienced licensed aesthetician to optimize results. Depending on the size of the area(s) and the complexity of the treatment, IPL sessions typically take 30-90 minutes to complete. Several sessions will be needed to achieve desired results in most.
Following the procedure, patients can return to most normal activities immediately. There are some restrictions for the first few days, such as no sun exposure or swimming in chlorinated pools. The treated skin will be very sensitive, and it is important not to irritate the skin with chemicals, heat, or perfumed products. The skin will probably swell and redden, which will last a day or two, on average. Along the areas that have sun damage, brown spots may initially appear darker, similar to coffee grounds on the skin. This can last for up to two weeks before starting to fade. Blistering and scabbing are rare but can occur. If side effects persist for more than two days, it is important to contact us.
How many treatments will I need?
The number of IPL treatments needed can vary, depending on the patient. Many patients see satisfactory results with a series of three to five treatments, but you and your surgeon or aesthetician will determine what treatment plan is best for you. Treatment sessions are usually spaced approximately three to six weeks apart to give the skin time to improve between sessions.
Can I have IPL treatments if I have dark skin?
Since IPL reacts to the melanin (dark pigment) in the skin, IPL on darker skin can be tricky and risky. We will assess your candidacy carefully and determine whether IPL or a different treatment is the best option for your skin tone.
Is IPL therapy painful?
While there is some discomfort involved with the IPL procedure, it is generally well-tolerated by most patients. Many patients describe the sensation as similar to a pinprick or the snap of an elastic band.
How long do the results last?
The longevity of IPL results depends on the lifestyle and skin of the individual. However, results of the procedure are typically long-lasting if patients are diligent about aftercare. Many people see results for a few years following treatment, but individual results vary.
Will I need touch-up treatments?
IPL results cannot last forever, since time and environmental factors will always continue to affect the skin. If you wish to maintain the results of the procedure, you may need touch-ups in the future.
Can I have the treatment while I have a tan?
No; IPL reacts to the melanin in your skin and intensifies the light energy on darker skin, so you must refrain from sun exposure and tanning for at least four to six weeks before the treatment. Since you will need to have a series of treatments, you will need to avoid sun exposure for much longer than this and be diligent about sun protection following the treatment. If you are insistent upon tanning, IPL is not an appropriate treatment for you.
What areas can be treated with IPL therapy?
IPL therapy is gentle and safe and may be performed on various areas of the body. Patients most often request treatment on the face, neck, chest, and hands.
Is IPL the right skin treatment for me?
Everyone is different, and there are many different types of cosmetic skin treatments available to suit almost every need. Only you and an expert cosmetic surgeon or licensed aesthetician can determine the treatment that is right for you, so keep an open mind and focus on your overall skin rejuvenation goals when heading to your consultation.
Are there any pre-treatment instructions I will need to follow?
Yes; you will not be able to tan (natural, salon, or spray) or use products containing bleach, glycolic acid, or retinol before your appointment. Your doctor will give you specific timeframes and a list of guidelines during your consultation appointment. Avoiding these activities and products is essential to getting optimal results and avoiding cosmetic complications.
Are serious side effects possible?
IPL is a very safe treatment, and typically patients will only notice minor swelling and redness following treatment. However, blistering and scabbing can occur, and it is important to follow all of your doctor’s instructions post-procedure to care for your skin properly and avoid damaging it. Not following doctor instructions can lead to problems such as poor healing and skin discoloration, so be careful.
Taking the Next Step
If you have questions about IPL Photofacial or would like to schedule a consultation, call Innova Aesthetics at +92 321 5428888, or complete the following form to request your IPL Photofacial consultation today.