Integrated Dermatology Group of Reston

If you spend a lot of time in the sun, you might develop blotchy looking freckles on your face. Some people wear these as marks of pride–to show just how outdoorsy they are–but not everyone quite digs their aesthetic.

For those individuals who don’t like the look of sun spots, Intense Pulsed Light treatment is a great option for not only getting rid of their sun spots, but also doing general skin rejuvenation.

How Does IPL Work?

Contrary to popular misconception, IPL is not actually a laser. Intense Pulsed Light does use very high levels of energy transmitted to the body in very brief flashes — but the difference is that IPL is broad-spectrum rather than a single wavelength.

For most patients’ purposes, this translates into IPL being a generally gentler treatment than lasers, though it still has the same effect of stimulating collagen and elastin production.

For sun spots, the energy breaks down the pigments that cause sunspots, which are then flushed out through the lymphatic system.

What’s the Actual Treatment Like?

The first thing you’ll notice with the treatment is the goggles they give you, and the second thing you’ll notice is the cold gel they slather onto your face.

You’ll lie down on the bed, and when the IPL handpiece is placed against your skin and activates — you’ll feel the sensation of a snapping rubber band. Mileage varies from individual to individual, some describing the sensation as painful, while others would describe it as uncomfortable.

The treatment takes about 20 minutes, as the device needs to work its way through your face sequentially in quadrants.

Your face will look blotchy for about two days. Within days, your sunspots should form into scabs and actually come off the face.

Want to know more about IPL for sun spots, redness, rosacea or another condition? Contact Integrated Dermatology of Reston today to schedule an appointment with Dr. Morgana Colombo.