Tuesday, September 4, 2012

IPL Round 3

I just scheduled my third IPL (Intense Pulsed Light photo facial) for this Thursday and I can't wait!

I've been lucky and had great results with each session which I've spaced out about every 6 months.  I could probably do them a little more often but I don't want to spend too much money (about $190 for my cheeks and a few spots on my forehead).  I mostly just get my cheeks done to combat the hyperpigmentation that has developed there.

Have you ever had one of these treatments?  I find it ridiculously satisfying when the pigmentation turns into "coffee grounds" on my skin and slowly disappears.  Here is a photo of my forehead two days after my last treatment.  By day 4 or 5 they were all gone and I had clear, freckle-free skin there.

Remember to NEVER pick at the brown spots.
They will literally just wash away in their own time.
There's no need to scrub at them either.

Both times I've had IPL treatments there was some redness to my skin immediately after and it felt hot like a sunburn.  That redness was gone in a couple of hours and the pigment started to come out almost immediately.  I'd say that all the brown pigment was usually gone in about 5 days.

The day after my treatment my cheeks were a little puffy but that slowly went away throughout the day.  I felt fine to go out in public on day two with a little makeup.  I know they say IPLs can be a lunchtime treatment but I always schedule mine when I know I have a day or two off.  The pigmentation is really obvious and it's best to stay out of the sun anyways.

The question everyone always asks is, "Does it hurt?"  The answer is not too much.  It's definitely not comfortable and certain spots hurt more than others.  The areas closer to your nose, lips and eye hurt more because the skin is thinner there but the actual treatment has only taken a maximum of two minutes both times I've done it.

Most places will encourage you to get a few treatments with a month or so in between but my results have lasted about 3 months before I start to see pigment coming back.  This next round I'm going to be better about maintenance in between treatments by using a hydroquinone lightening treatment.   I know hydroquinone is controversial but as long as the FDA still says it's ok I'll use it.

Do you have an experience with an IPL treatment to share?  I'd love to hear your tips and tricks for maintaining results.

Photos: Me

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