Is IPL for me? Inside the skin rejuvenating benefits of light therapy skincare.

Although there is still plenty of warm weather ahead of us, summer is in the process of winding down—which means it’s time to undo all the damage from days spent sitting poolside or gardening under the hot noonday sun. So as thoughts of back-to-school and cooler autumn days start to creep in, and we all begin to look forward to the change in seasons, now is the perfect time to schedule a rejuvenating skin treatment, in particular: an intense pulsed light (IPL) facial.

Sometimes referred to as light therapy skincare, intense pulsed light (IPL) facials are nonablative skin treatments that use multiple wavelengths of light to penetrate the deeper layers of the skin, and in that process—help rejuvenate the appearance of dark spots and redness on the skin, as well as improve firmness, texture, and, tone. In addition, IPL may also help reduce the appearance of large pores and unwanted facial hair.  Because IPL facials are non-invasive, recovery time is brief, and side-effects are minimal (i.e.: very little redness) making IPL the perfect lunchtime skin treatment as no one will be any the wiser when you get back to the office!

Skin types that benefit most from an IPL facial are light, non-tanned tones that show marked sun damage or redness, or have a loss of firmness and tone.  If you have olive or darker skin tones, be sure to discuss the risks involved with an IPL facial for your skin tone, which can include hypopigmentation, or over-lightening of the skin. 

Here, the top skin concerns that can benefit from an IPL facial:   

  1. Dark Spots. Who isn’t frustrated by those little (and not so little) dark spots on their face, neck, chest, and even backs of their hands?  Called hyperpigmentation, these annoying splotches can be caused by a variety of factors. Some people are genetically predisposed to dark spots, such as freckles. For other people, sun exposure can hasten or cause their appearance. However dark spots showed up on your skin, an IPL facial is a great way to brighten and refresh the skin, and help reduce the appearance of this kind of skin discoloration—particularly at the end of the summer when your exposure to strong summer sunshine is over for the season.  
  2. Redness.  Whether chronic rosacea, melasma, or a small patch of broken capillaries, the flushed, red appearance caused by these kinds of skin issues can be very frustrating, particularly if you have very fair skin.  However, redness of all kinds can be greatly reduced by an IPL facial as the light may help to repair those small, minor blood vessels that cause redness.
  3. Loss of firmness.  Another skin concern that IPL can help alleviate is skin sagging and loss of firmness, particularly around the eyes and the nasolabial fold around the nose/mouth.  The high energy light waves used during an IPL facial encourage the natural production of collagen—a connective protein found in the skin which keeps it looking smooth and supple, that is diminished with age and sun damage…or both.

One of the best things about IPL is that today’s devices are very sophisticated, and able to treat a variety of skin conditions at once. So if you have dark spots and have noticed a loss of firmness in your skin, IPL can (and will!) help with both. Plus, IPL facials are less expensive than other more invasive treatments, such as laser resurfacing, yet they still offer visible benefits that often, are seen after one treatment.    

No matter why you are choosing to get an IPL facial, the one thing you must do after your treatment is remain vigilant about sunscreen—even on a cloudy day and in the cooler weather. Just because you are not outside in the sun on purpose, like at the beach, UV rays are still affecting your skin during the wintertime, and you run the risk of undoing all the rejuvenating effects of an intense pulsed light treatment if you don’t take precautions.   To learn if an IPL photofacial is right for your skin, schedule a complimentary consultation today!

Posted on August 5, 2016 .