Broadband Light/Intense Pulsed Light (BBL/IPL) Photorejuvenation
Broadband Light/Intense Pulsed Light (IPL): Photorejuvenation
We usually think of light as part of the problem. After all, light from the sun is a direct contributor to the development of fine lines in the skin, not to mention age spots and other imperfections. But light is complex. It turns out that the benefit or detriment caused by light has a lot to do with the wavelengths involved. When it comes to skin, the ultraviolet light from the sun is what is particularly damaging (it’s also the wavelength that causes you to tan—itself a form of damaged skin). Indeed, you generally want to avoid ultraviolet light when you can.
However, the wavelength of light used in our Sciton Broadband Light (BBL/IPL) photorejuvenation treatments is quite different. Where ultraviolet light is by its nature invisible (it’s beyond the capabilities of the human eye to perceive a wide spectrum of light), IPL treatments utilize non-ultraviolet portions of the visible light spectrum. This makes the light used more akin to a desk lamp than a tanning bed, and means that the results are more controllable and more dependable. It also means that instead of damaging the skin, as ultraviolet light does, IPL treatments can help rejuvenate the skin, giving you a more youthful, radiant final look.
For Patients in Minneapolis: BBL/IPL Procedures Defined
Also known as Broad Band Light (BBL), Intense Pulsed Light procedures feature quick successions of, as the name implies, intense light. These pulses are produced in specific portions of the visible light spectrum, accurately filtered and selected to eliminate unwanted targets in the upper layers of the skin. This gives IPL an advantage over some laser treatments, in that lasers operate at single precise wavelengths that target only very specific skin elements. This means that IPL treatments can effectively treat everything from skin redness to flat brown pigmented spots to mild acne scarring and fine lines. IPL’s broad-band capability gives the patient the opportunity to address a wide variety of troubling spots, rather than focusing on just one or two. Most clinical lasers are designed and intended for use on a single or very limited list of skin concerns, such as birthmarks or tattoos. Instead of the single wavelength (color) of a laser beam, IPL broad spectrum emission of light at multiple wavelengths allows multiple treatment options (acne, photorejuvenation, vascular and pigmented lesions) with one piece of equipment, and IPL can treat these skin conditions simultaneously.
IPL does this by allowing multiple target chromophores within the upper layers of the skin to absorb light energy and be treated. Since IPL machines emit light energy over a broad spectrum of wavelengths, this also provides light transmission to different depths within the skin. Treatment times are dependent on the size of the treated area, during which a technician will apply a hand-held broadband flashlamp/filter unit to the skin. An antiseptic cleanser may be applied just before treatment, in order to diminish oils on the skin that could decrease the effectiveness of an IPL treatment. IPL is generally painless, though you may feel some slight heat sensation during the procedure.
While you may start to see results by the first treatment, IPL photorejuvenation may take 2 to 4 treatments before optimum results can be seen, as superficial layers are treated first, and once cleared, the light energy penetrates to treat slightly deeper concerns. Successive treatments are generally scheduled 4-6 weeks apart. Most of our Carillon Clinic BBL patients are incredibly satisfied with their final results.
What is the Difference Between BBL and IPL?
Many of our procedures involve acronyms of some kind—that’s just the nature of the medical community. It can be confusing, then, for patients that are trying to sort out what procedure or treatment might be best. This is certainly the case when it comes to BBL and IPL photofacial treatments. It might be helpful, then, to clarify the differences between these two procedures.
- BBL Photofacial: BBL stands for BroadBand Light. Essentially, this device gives medical professionals a wide range of light bands to choose from. When treating your skin, some wavelengths of light are better suited for achieving specific results. In this way, BBL energy devices are able to provide patients with options for relieving lines and wrinkles, tightening skin, improving complexion and even (in certain devices) hair removal. The primary focus of a broadband light energy device is giving the medical practitioner (and by extension, the patient) a wide variety of treatment options.
- IPL Photofacial: Put most simply, IPL is a form of BBL. IPL stands for Intense-pulsed-light and is just that. IPL treatments work by sending pulses of directed energy into the skin. As with BBL treatments, any IPL is not a laser treatment (though it is what is referred to as an energy treatment). IPL Photofacials cover a specific and set energy wavelength, meaning that IPL devices are not quite as flexible as BBL devices. However, in some cases, IPL treatments may more effectively address your specific issue.
It should be noted that both IPL and BBL devices in these contexts are used for photofacial procedures. Both devices can be used to treat other areas of the body (such as the hands, arms, or neck) depending on your desired results.
If you’re interested in what BBL devices can do for you, the best way to find out is during a consultation at Carillon Clinic, where we offer premiere BBL Photofacials in Minneapolis. As a premiere Twin Cities MedSpa, we will be able to provide you with clear, understandable answers, and ensure you’re getting the right treatment for your desired final results.
Am I a Good Candidate for IPL/BBL in Minneapolis?
In general, those who are a good fit for IPL procedures are looking to improve the superficial qualities of their skin, predominantly related to color (redness or dark spots) and improved tone. Those looking for solutions to deep lines and wrinkles may want to try to Botox or other injectable options, and those looking to have loose skin tightened will likely need to consult for a surgical facelift at Minneapolis Plastic Surgery.
However, those who would be a good fit for BBL at one of our three Minneapolis locations will probably exhibit the following qualities:
- Lighter skin tone
- Refrained from recent tanning
- Looking to reduce redness, age spots, discoloration, and sun damage
- Looking to reduce irregularities in pigment
- Maintains a set of realistic expectations
Pricing For BBL/IPL
|Full Face & Neck||$525|
|Face, Neck & Chest||$750||$1995|
|$200 & up|
|Acne Therapy Treatments||$150-375|
Results from BBL/IPL Treatments
After 1-4 treatment sessions, our patients have often seen a reduction in the amount of small spider veins, telangiectasias, redness of Rosacea, and similar vascular conditions on their face and body. IPL is equally good at reducing pigmented lesions such as freckles, age spots, and sun damage. This means that after your treatment, you may sport a smoother skin tone and enjoy a more uniform skin coloration. Additionally, the heat energy involved in IPL jump starts some of the natural rejuvenation processes in your skin, including the production of collagen, which often helps thicken and tighten the upper layers of your skin and give it a more youthful appearance.
By reducing the amount of sun damage, discoloration, and redness in the skin, many patients report a smoother, fresher, plumper appearance to their skin. Those who suffer from Rosacea can see a reduction in the amount of redness in their skin with BBL photorejuvenation. If you would like to trade a weather-beaten face or wrinkly décolleté for one with a more youthful and fresh glow, you should consider BBL treatment at Carillon Clinic, Ltd.
Your skin may appear red for roughly a day after treatment. You should refrain from tanning or exposure to ultraviolet light for 2-4 weeks before and after treatment for best results, and avoid strenuous activity. You can protect your results by investing in—and wearing—excellent skin protection products, such as a quality sun screen, when you venture outside (especially in those Minnesota summers).
Any area may be treated with BBL including the face, neck, chest, shoulders, hands, and arms. A complimentary consultation with one of our certified estheticians is recommended to determine the right treatment plan for you. If you’re interested in BBL, contact us today to get started right away.