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What Is IPL Treatment: How it Works, Results, and More

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What Is IPL Treatment: How it Works, Results, and More

Do you feel as though your skin is starting to lose its youthful glow?

Don’t worry—it happens naturally as you age. Sun spots, freckles, fine lines, and wrinkles will become more prominent as you grow older as a result of repeated sun exposure, lifestyle choices, and other extrinsic factors that impact your skin’s health over time.

Fortunately, there is technology available that can help reduce these age-related changes in the skin. Over the past two decades the IPL facial treatment has become the gold-standard treatment for treating pigmentation and restoring the skin’s natural tone and radiance.

But what exactly is this treatment and how does it work?

Keep reading to find out!

How Does IPL Facial Treatment Work?

Intense Pulsed Light therapy (IPL) – also referred to as “photofacial” – is a light-based treatment that targets pigmentation in the skin. It is used to treat a variety of pigment-related skin concerns including: brown spots, freckles, sun damage, redness/rosacea, and broken capillaries. IPL technology can also be used for hair reduction (i.e. laser hair removal).

IPL works when the light is absorbed by specific chromophores in the skin – primarily melanin (responsible for brown spots) as well as hemoglobin (responsible for skin redness). Depending on the target, the light will either break down pigmented cells or constrict blood vessels to trigger results, without damaging the surrounding skin or tissue.

The popularity of IPL and BBL (Broadband Light) treatments can be attributed to their impressive results and versatility, as both the face and body can be treated without downtime.

A patient receiving IPL treatment on their legs

What is IPL Treatment Like?

Unlike traditional laser therapy, IPL uses multiple wavelengths to target various concerns simultaneously. Therefore, it is a suitable option for patients who have both red and brown pigmentation on the face, hands, chest, or neck, or those who want to treat aging skin without downtime.

During an IPL treatment, protective goggles are placed over the patient’s eyes, and a cooling gel is applied to the skin. Light is then pulsed onto the treatment area, which typically feels like a warm elastic band snapping against the skin. After the treatment, the patient may experience a feeling of heat similar to a mild sunburn which typically resolves within an hour. Most regular activities may be resumed immediately after the treatment.

Most patients achieve optimal results with a series of 3-5 IPL sessions spaced approximately one month apart.

Side Effects & Risks of IPL Treatment

As with any other medical procedure, there are potential side effects you should be aware of regarding intense pulsed light therapy.

Immediately after IPL treatment, most patients experience temporary skin redness and a feeling of warmth in the treated area. Therefore, direct sun exposure should be avoided for several days after the treatment. Some patients also experience mild swelling after the treatment, which may persist for a couple of days. As with most light and laser treatments, rare side effects may include burning, blistering, and scarring. Following pre- and post-treatment guidelines will greatly minimize the risk of any complications.

How Long Do IPL Results Last?

While most patients see a noticeable difference after their first IPL session, maximum results are typically achieved after a series of three to five sessions scheduled four weeks apart. Results can be long-lasting, particularly when paired with medical-grade skincare and daily sunscreen use. Your clinician will advise you on how to best care for your skin before, during, and after your IPL treatments.

Who Should Get IPL Treatment?

If you experience one or more of the following skin concerns, you may be a good candidate for IPL facial treatment.

  • Sun spots
  • Broken blood vessels or capillaries
  • Brown spots, liver or age spots
  • Freckles
  • Redness from rosacea
  • Red marks from acne
  • Spider veins
  • Unwanted hair
  • Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH)
  • Acne

As will all medical procedures, there are some contraindications to IPL treatment that patients should be aware of. These include: pregnancy/breast-feeding, photosensitizing medications, infections, and certain skin disorders including skin cancer. Having a professional skin consultation done before any aesthetic treatment is highly recommended.

The Benefits of IPL Photofacial Treatment

IPL facial treatment is extremely popular due to its many benefits. Some of these include:

Reduces Sun Damage and Hyperpigmentation

While nothing can stop the aging process, IPL does reduce the pigmentary changes associated with aging skin and repeated sun exposure. This helps restore even skin tone, giving your skin a more youthful glow.

Helps Control Breakouts

If you suffer from constant breakouts, certain IPL treatments such as Forever Clear BBL can help by reducing inflammation caused by acne, and controlling acne bacteria in the skin. It also helps to fade the red or brown marks leftover from acne breakouts.

 A woman spreading a cream on her cheek below her eye

Can Be Combined With Other Skin Treatments

IPL treatments are safe to combine with other procedures, such as chemical peels, microneedling, or Hydrafacial. This combination approach may enhance overall results, particularly if a patient has multiple skin concerns.

In addition, IPL also pairs well with injectables such as Botox and dermal fillers. The former helps reduce dynamic wrinkles, while the latter restores facial volume that is lost due to the aging process. When even skin tone is restored with IPL, the results from injectables are more dramatic.

Get IPL Treatment at APT Medical Aesthetics

As you’ve learned, the IPL facial treatment is a highly sought-after cosmetic procedure that eliminates obvious signs of aging and restores your skin’s natural, youthful glow.

Let the masters of skin rejuvenation at APT Medical Aesthetics assist you! You can count on us to deliver effective IPL treatments that improve skin tone and various skin conditions, all while providing you with the most comfortable experience possible.

Book a free consultation today to learn more about our services!

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    Contact APT Medical Aesthetics now. Whether you want to book an appointment, find out a bit more about our services, or want to simply ask a few questions, we would love to hear from you!

    APT Medical Aesthetics Ltd. is world-class private complete skin care clinic in the Greater Toronto Area of Ontario, serving Oakville. We
    provide our treatments in a safe, trusting, comfortable environment. Our clinic is pleased to offer the most advanced and comprehensive skin care solutions
    including Botox Cosmetic / Dysport / Xeomin, Dermal Filler, Laser Skin Resurfacing to clients across Ontario.

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