What Is IPL™ Photofacial/Fotofacial?
A photofacial, or “fotofacial,” is a 30-minute procedure in which intense pulses of light are used to penetrate deep into the skin. IPL™ photorejuvenation then causes collagen and blood vessels below the epidermis to constrict, reducing redness and age lines. The procedure involves only minimal discomfort, while the redness and swelling that sometimes occur after treatment disappear shortly. Most benefits of a photofacial/fotofacial occur gradually in the weeks following treatment. For even greater cosmetic enhancement, patients may also opt for a FotoFacial RF™, a procedure that combines radio waves with light waves to achieve excellent results.
People who have blotchy, sun-damaged, or discolored skin, or whose skin is affected by large pores, freckles, or wrinkles, may benefit from an IPLTM photofacial. The procedure is also quick and involves no downtime, making it a convenient option for people with busy schedules. Those with dark or deeply tanned skin sometimes experience complications following IPLTM photofacial treatment. Patients should discuss such issues with a trained dermatologist before undergoing treatment.
Ideal IPLTM Photofacial Candidates
People with white, untanned skin that is still somewhat elastic are the best candidates for an IPLTM photofacial. It is also important for patients to have a realistic understanding about what the procedure can do. When performed on the right person, it effectively improves skin texture, eliminating discolorations, reducing pore size, and minimizing wrinkles and fine lines. If you have rosacea, a condition that causes blotchy redness in the face, you may also benefit from an IPLTM photofacial. For more serious issues – heavy facial lines and severe acne scars, for example – patients may wish to consider more aggressive treatment, such as a face lift or a brow lift.
Who Is Not a Good Candidate for Intense Pulsed Light Treatment?
People with tanned or naturally dark skin sometimes experience changes in skin pigmentation after IPLTM photofacial treatment. African-Americans and people of Greek and Italian descent, for example, may wish to discuss possible side effects with a dermatologist before opting for this procedure. Additionally, people who are taking the medication Accutane® should not have an IPLTM photofacial until at least six months after they stop using the drug. Pregnant women should also postpone treatment until after they give birth.