IPL: Q&AAsk a Question
16 Doctor Answers | Asked by Kimorama in Los Angeles
The “peppering” or darkening of the hyperpigmented areas can take 7-14 days to resolve. This is normal. Depending on the amount of hyperpigmentation you have, you may need to repeat your IPL in a month. If you have a lot of sun damage, it can take 3-5 treatments. We recommend that our patients see our aestheticians for skin care in between their IPL’s. The facial with or without microdermabrasion will help remove some of the crusted pigment and prepare the skin for...
I agree with the other physicians. Normally, my patients see pigment lift almost immediately and take anywhere from about 4-14 days to flake off. I'd like to stress the importance of wearing sunscreen after any IPL treatment. Thanks for your question, and I hope you enjoy your IPL results!
Sun spots treated with IPL can take 1-2 weeks to resolve. Initially over the first week you will see a "coffee-ground" like substance form where the sun spots once were. Gradually, over the next week to 2 weeks, the pigment gradually dissipates. A vibraderm or silk peel 10 days following the IPL can speed up the process.
The reason it takes some time for spots (or hyperpigmentation as you put it) take some time to flake off is that the lesions that were being targeted in the treatment are not always right at the surface of the skin. The pigment is normally located somewhere in the epidermis (the upper layer of skin), but cell reproduction in the epidermis can take up to a couple months. Cell turnover is the time it takes new cells at the bottom of the epidermis to come to the surface, die and flake off...
After IPL, there may be swelling that lasts 2 days and redness that lasts 7-10 days. After 4-7 days the brown pigment appears to "rise" to the surface of the skin, but it may not start to peel off for an additional couple of days. Usually, the entire process is complete 2 weeks after you have the treatment.
If the pigmentation was a typical age spot (lentigo), one usually sees rapid darkening of the spot after the treatment ("peppering") and then gradual flaking off from 4 days to 2 weeks. If the pigment was from melasma, the result is often not as gratifying and may require a different treatment like a topical bleaching agent, such as hydroquinone. Mark Lucarelli, MD, FACS Madison, WI
The HP blotches may not come off during the first treatment, and may even get darker if it is Melasma. Hopefully you are pre-treating with a good bleaching cream plan and disciplined. Avoiding the sun and a sunscreen with SPF30 is a good start. Treatment of the face is not easy to remove if it is deep or multilayered and does take a series of treatments for best results.
If you are treating lentigoes (sun spots) with the IPL, they should reliably come off by about two weeks after being noticeably darkened for several days. A less reliable result can be found with melasma, a different, more difficult, and biologically complex skin darkening that is historically tougher to improve. The results for this will depend on the skill and experience of your IPL provider, the wavelengths of the machine used, and the quality of your skin and pigmentation....
When the IPL is used to treat pigmented sun spots on your skin, they will turn dark and eventually disappear. This generally takes 2 weeks. Be patient, you will be happy with the changes!
The darkening of the pigment after IPL usually peels off 7-10 days after the treatment. It depends on how aggressive the treatment was and how dark the hyper pigmentation was to begin with. If you had sun damage, which is usually more superficial pigmentation it will peel off faster. To help speed up the exfoliation you can try doing a microdermabrasion or a mild chemical peel. In addition you can use some Hydroquinone 4% which is a prescription cream to help lighten up the blotches after...