Intense pulsed light therapy provides rejuvenation and healing for aging skin in San Mateo, CA
There are many benefits to growing older and wiser, but most people would agree that the toll that aging takes on your skin is not one of them. Fortunately, due to advances in skin care technology, revitalizing your appearance has never been easier. With intense pulsed light therapy, otherwise known as IPL or photofacials, you can rejuvenate your skin with little to no downtime. We are excited to offer our patients this effective treatment at Allura Skin & Laser Center in San Mateo, CA to combat the signs of aging and improve the appearance of several other skin conditions.
What is intense pulsed light therapy?
IPL photofacials are a non-invasive way to revitalize aging skin and improve your complexion. Many people think of IPL therapy as laser technology, but it is actually a different form of light therapy. A laser uses a focused beam of a single wavelength of light to target a specific color or issue in the skin (such as redness or the dark ink of a tattoo), whereas IPL therapy utilizes a broad spectrum of wavelengths of light that is delivered in short, quick pulses to the skin. Some specific wavelengths are filtered out using selective filters, and the light energy is then absorbed by targeted pigments in the skin. When the pigmented cells absorb the light, it breaks them down and destroys them, and they eventually rise to the surface of the skin and flake off over time, revealing less discoloration and a more even skin tone.
Benefits of IPL photofacials
Because it uses multiple wavelengths, IPL is a versatile and gentle treatment that has a wide range of benefits. Even though IPL therapy is often called a “photofacial,” it can be used in many areas of the body! The most common areas are the face, neck, backs of hands, chest, and other parts of the body that are regularly exposed to the sun. IPL therapy is effective at combating:
- Hyperpigmentation, also known as sun spots or age spots
- Pink or red discoloration in the skin
- Spider veins
- Enlarged Pores
- Sun-damaged skin
The light energy in the treatment also boosts your skin’s natural production of collagen, the protein that gives your skin elasticity and firmness, so many patients notice the extra bonus of smoother skin and a diminished appearance of fine lines and wrinkles after treatment.
It is important to note that new discolorations or other sun damage can occur if you are re-exposed to the sun’s harmful UV rays, though, so it is important to regularly apply sunscreen to minimize sun exposure.
What to expect during your IPL therapy session
IPL treatments are relatively quick and painless. The whole appointment usually takes less than an hour, though the exact treatment time varies by the location that is being targeted. Many people say that the device only causes a slight stinging sensation, and although the IPL device works by heating the cells in your skin, there is a cooling mechanism built into it to keep the surface of your skin cool to minimize discomfort. While some cosmetic treatments require local anesthetic, it is usually not necessary for IPL therapy.
After your treatment, you will not need to dramatically alter your daily activities. You may experience some slight redness or swelling for a few days, but it is fine to use makeup to cover up these areas. Over the few weeks following treatment, the targeted pigmentation spots will flake off your skin.
We typically recommend that patients undergo two to four treatment sessions for optimal results. These treatments are usually spaced several weeks apart to allow the previously targeted cells to be cleared from your skin.
Learn whether you are a good candidate for IPL treatment
With three board-certified dermatologists at Allura Skin & Laser Center, we are always ready to consult with new patients about their cosmetic goals. If you are tired of trying to cover up dark or red spots on your skin or are embarrassed about visible signs of aging, we encourage you to call us at (650) 344-1121 today! Our office is conveniently located in San Mateo, CA at 280 Baldwin Avenue.
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