If you’re curious about how stuff works this is pretty cool progression to check out. Recently my client Maria came in to clear up her age spots and redness in her chest as well as boost up tightness in the skin in that area as well. We chose to use the IPL Laser to conquer all of these issues at once. It’s an amazing machine that generates great results in a single OR multiple treatments. If you’d like to know all the nitty-gritty how IPL works, check out my previous blog, What Is An IPL And What Does It Do?

In regards to Maria, this is her first time with the laser. The questions (and the answers that go with them) that usually arise when discussing the IPL are:

How much is it?

IPL runs $320 for the first area and then increases depending on how much area you need to hit. So for example doing your face OR your chest would run $320 but if you did your face AND your chest it’s $450. If you’re doing larger areas like arms, legs or back you should get a quote.

Where does it work?

IPL is effective on faces, necks, chests, arms, legs, backs and more!

What should I look for when I’m choosing who does it for me?

There are a couple of key factors in choosing your laser location AND technician. When calling to schedule I would look for a place with the latest technology so asking machine age is relevant. Also regular maintenance on the machine can make a HUGE difference in performance. We maintenance our laser every six months to keep it up to snuff! With your technician, I would ask how long they have been using the machine, how long they have been working in general and how much time they usually spend lasering folks in a given week. A well kept machine and an experienced technician makes ALL the difference in the world! And one more thing, I would NEVER, EVER buy an IPL on Groupon. You can read more reasons why in my blog about Groupons here.

How many times does it take?

While results vary per person, with a quality machine and technician at the helm, you should see results the first time you go in for sure and it should take 2-3 treatments for basic redness or age spots but more like 4-5 treatments if you have full fledged rosacea. If your spa tries to sell you a package of 6 treatments, they are likely ripping you off!

Does it hurt?

Honestly, IPL is pretty annoying in its feeling. It’s a bit like a rubber band snap, without the stinging afterwards. But the good news is that once it’s over the only sensation is heat, sort of like a mild sunburn. Even that feeling only lasts about 20-45 minutes or so.

What’s the downtime?

The spots darken up a bit and rise to the surface and fall off. It takes a few days to get through the process but it’s not really that obvious….most folks can hide any down time with clothing or just a bit of makeup. It’s truly not difficult to hide at all.

How much result will I see?

That’s a tough question to answer because everyone is different, I’ll show you Maria’s results to give you an idea of what to expect.

So Maria arrived with quite a bit of age spots and redness. Here is her before picture:

Before Treatment
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She left hot and red but here she is the next day, I must note that faces don’t usually have as big of a reaction:

IPL Chest Day After Treatment
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Here’s Maria a week later as the spots are falling off:

IPL Chest One Week After Treatment
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And here she is two weeks later, what an amazing difference!

IPL Chest Two Weeks After Treatment
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It takes 4-6 weeks to see the full effect but what a great start! Also, if she does a second treatment she will absolutely look unbelievable!! I do believe in her case, two treatments would be all she needs.

So you see the power and effectiveness of the IPL! We hope you consider having one yourself if you’re plagued by age spots or redness.
Jennifer Warmann-Bloss

-Jennifer is a blogger, mom and owner of Elemental Esthetics in St Louis, MO

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