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IPL Fotofacial - Colorado

I am 44 with Irish-Scot ancestry and the brown...

I am 44 with Irish-Scot ancestry and the brown spots on my face have been bothering me for the past few years, so I signed up for 3 treatments for fotofacial including a laser for fine lines following each treatment. I could not find any negative reviews on the internet, but now that I think about it, anytime I googled it, a website came up with reviews from a fotofacial provider...which of course will all be positive. And they make it sound so safe with very little risk, so all the more reason to think it is ok.

Anyway, things went as they were supposed to...had slight sunburn after the fotofacial and this redness went away in a day or two. The brown spots sloughed off in a couple of weeks which was nice. I did feel dry afterwards for weeks (I still feel dry now 5 weeks out) which is a bummer because I live in a dry climate which makes matters worse.

I had signed up for 3 treatments, but decided to stop at 1 treatment for the following reasons...

The next morning afterwards, I did notice lack of plumpness in my skin, then continued to notice more hollowing around my eyes and still lack of plumpness that I had before the fotofacial, especially at nasal labial folds. I am 100% sure I lost plumpness, and it has never come back. I feel like I look older because the result of my fotofacial has been a more droopy look and some continued dryness (even now 5 weeks since the facial). It is driving me crazy & I just want my plump and pigmentated skin back! This was totally a bad decision!!!

The doctor's office made me feel like something was wrong with me for being so anxious about this, and perhaps my stressing about it so much has made me look worse. BUT I know how I looked before...I have a very detailed eye and I am 100% sure I did not have this droopy look before. I am thinking it may be due to dryness, which they told me would go away after 2 weeks, but it hasn't.

I keep reading horror stories on the internet about fat loss as a result of a fotofacial, and some sites say it can happen, and a few plastic surgeons seem to indicate fat loss can happen, but then the consensus of most doctors is that the laser could no way get to the fat layer. I don't know what to think who is right or who is wrong, but at this point I do not believe I have fat loss, but why are my eyes more hollowed and why is my face not getting back to its normal plump self? I have been drinking a ton of water, eating great, taking vitamins, getting sleep, & doing everything I can to feel healthy. But still it feels like my skin cannot produce moisture like it used to...it feels dry on the inside.

Anyway, so I would definately NOT recommend doing a fotofacial. It is TOTALLY not worth all of this anxiety I have felt, and I feel like a fool for doing something that isn't permanent anyway. I feel like a fool for being brain washed by Hollywood that I have to be perfect. It's a crock! I think at this point a will try to grow old gracefully and if I do anything else it will be facial massage (many websites talk about how to do this yourself) and cosmetic acupuncture. I may try cosmetic acupuncture to help improve what the fotofacial did to me.

So my words of advice are to accept yourself and all your faults. We are our own worst critics! People don't look at us the way we look at ourselves. They see beauty we don't realize is there because we are so focused on the negative.

Name not provided

The tech has done over 2000 fotofacial procedures with never any negative reviews, so I was told. I feel confident in the tech's ability...that she knew what she was doing, but I am scared of lasers at this point. If I was like WOW this made me look great I would continue on, but I feel like I look droopy and older so no way will I ever do this again!!!!

4 out of 5 stars Overall rating
4 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
4 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
4 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
4 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
3 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
4 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
4 out of 5 stars Payment process
4 out of 5 stars Wait tmes
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I had a fotofacial 6 months ago. I have very noticeable fat loss. The radiofrequency in the machine that does the fotofacial can cause fat loss. And the loss progresses with time. You notice something is wrong right away but within 6 weeks, wrinkles noticeably set it in as the skin contracts without the support it had underneath it. My damage has progresses for 6 months and has shown no signs of stopping. The body reabsorbs the fat and the skin just crumples. Stay away from fotofacials. They will ruin your life.
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I think that it could be safe. Surgeries are done with lasers. Melanomas are from sun damage. If lasers can remove the damage then its a good thing. I just cant seem to get enough unbiased info about the photo therapy.
Teri
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I am so glad I found your post before I decided not to do the IPL/Matrix. I have some friends who work at med spas and they think that it's totally safe and encourage these treatments!! I do not understand how one can think zapping away lines and sunspots with lasers is "safe"!
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I know...looking at yourself in the mirror everyday and hating yourself for doing this. I hate mirrors anymore. But it isn't our fault; we did not do this to ourselves, it is the machines and the people running them who did this...so we have to forgive ourselves....and go on. I truly think the people running these machines think they are absolutely safe...it is their training. But the reality is, you never know how your skin is going to react...and when you have negative effects like us, you realize the imperfections you saw before the treatment were really not that bad, and you would trade anything to have them back!
I think the skin is a wondeful organ, and overtime it will heal. It is on 28 day cycles, so i figure i am on cycle #4. I continue to see improvement in my skin with good skin care and supplements.
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Hello all, I would like to give another update, as I continue to be obsessed with the negative effects of the IPL/matrix. I have thought about this over and over again, and here is my conclusion...

I do believe I have fat loss in my face due to IPL / Matrix IR. I am not crazy, I know what my face looked like before this procedure. The day after the procedure I noticed sag at my nasal labial folds, also that the hollowing around my eyes was lower than before with more veins showing thru under my eyes. I believe this is evidence of fat loss. These things have never recovered, they are still there now 3.5 months later. I also had severe dryness after the procedure, and this lasted for weeks, and during this time my skin was deplumped and had loss of elasticity. The dryness went away, and plumpness returned, but the elasticity is still not what it was before the IPL / Matrix. It could be that it seems like there is less elasticity due to the fat loss, and therefore there is more looseness assoicated with that. Another issue I had after IPL / Matrix was bad skin texture, a definite sign my skin had been thru a traumatic experience. I did undergo a series of 10 cosmetic acupuncture treatments and this helped a ton with bringing back texture and plumpness to my skin, also really helped diminish the fine lines around my mouth and eyes. My skin felt really alive during the weeks of acupunture, but alas it could not get me back to where I was before IPL.....I believe because there is fat loss. I know in my original postings I stated I didn't think I had fat loss, but I think it was because I just wanted to believe what doctors are saying what cannot happen instead of looking at the evidence right in front of my eyes. There is no other explanation, other than perhaps loss of elasticity, but that would not explain why there are more veins showing thru undr my eyes. No, this indicates the skin is indeed thinner.
I am not crazy, fat loss from IPL / Matrix-IR did occur. It was somewhat subtle in my case, and I feel like it could have been much worse. Thank goodness I stopped at one treatment.
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I believe you!! My face intially "fell" from my series of Fraxel re:stores but at 3-4 months when my micro swelling went down I could see the true damage. Thankfully, mine is subtle. Marionette lines are larger and I have slight jowls. Sadly, my texture is awful!! You look at yourself everyday in the mirror...usually multiple times. How could you imagine these things?
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Epionce Medical Barrier Cream is what I used.
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@lancer... I signed up for a trinity skin laser treatment series which consisted of a photofacial, skin tightening treatment, and wrinkle minimizer (I am a redhead with fair skin and freckles). I was excited about the treatment then the day of my boyfriend insisted that I research some negative effects of these treatments. Come to find out, about 7 out of 10 reviews I found on various websites most people said that their skin aged FASTER and they looked much older after the effects of the treatments died down! I was terrified, being only 24 (the only reason I bought this treatment was because of a deal on groupon) and I definitely didn't want my skin to look older. So I canceled my appointment and now after reading this website I am thankful. I wanted to ask you, what moisturizing cream from Epionce do you use?
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Hi hig0035, I am glad I helped steer you away from these treatments, especially if you are only 24 yrs old. At your age you have youth on your side and a high cell turnover rate so I think if you really take care of your skin and work on good nutrition then you can really have wonderful skin for years and years and slow down the rate of aging...oh my goodness i cannot see how you would ever need IPL at your youth! Embrace your freckles and your wonderful fair skin, they are you! and you don't need any overnight "fixes". I am also fairheaded with some freckles and i was very abusive to my skin in my 20s...living in COlorado at high altitude in a dry climate and never wearing sunscreen until my 30s. Finally when i was 33, i started getting regular facials and using good products and doing yoga, and boy did it make a difference in my skin. My freckles really faded a lot and my skin was really smooth (probably due using AHA product at the time). The good skin care route did take time and it wasn't an overnight fix, but the aging process really slowed down, and now people are usually shocked when I tell them I am 44. I think the IPL/Matrix aged me about 3 years, so that is a bummer, but it could have been worse (and by the way, one year makes a huge difference in your 40s, unlike your 20s!). I do think there is too much risk with IPL to do this procedure, and i will always worry about long term effects on my skin.
Have you ever heard of Dr.Haushka products and their philosophy? You should google it. Quite interesting and I think long term a great approach to skincare. I am going that route at this point, as well as making sure I get plenty of vitamin C, vitamin K, and fish oils in my diet. Also started eating virgin coconut oil on a daily basis and i can tell the difference in my skin and hair. I am also brewing my own kombucha which is a great source of B vitamins which helps keep the skin hydrated. I think kombucha is the single biggest factor in slowing the aging process. It really has amazing benefits. And of course, drinking lots of water so your body can flush out toxins. And yoga (i love Bikram yoga!) always gives my skin a glow.

I think people want quick fixes and they dont realize they can get great results naturally and with a little bit of work. Good luck to you!
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Hi Lancer, i have olive skin and am 53. I am in the sun alot in the summer and sunblock dosent keep me from tanning. My dermatologist wants to do the photofacial but I am nervous. I had 3 test spots starting with the weekest level and moving up to the 3rd level. I dont know how many levels there are. I take really good care of myself and skin but I do have sun spots. What should I do??
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Hi Teriinindy, I went into my fotofacial also nervous and i was reassured that i had nothing to worry about and that my anxiety was not normal, so I went ahead with it. I wish i had listened to my instincts. From what I was told and what I have read, photofacials work best for those who have the Irish type of skin, and there is higher risk for those with darker skin and olive skin. There are different machines used for photofacials; the one used on me was Synergon (not sure about the spelling). The photofacial is at best a quick fix for sun spots, but it is a not a permanent fix...the spots will come back within 6 months or so depending on your sun exposure. This is fact and you should have been told this. If not, make sure you ask tons of questions. BUT my opinion is that it is not worth the risk....especially with your skin type...and it is not permanent, so why do it? I know of a lady with olive skin who had laser treatment to improve the lines around her lips, and the result was loss of pimentation around her mouth, she was devastated. It wasnt a photofacial, but it shows you how things can go really wrong...you just dont know how your skin will react. I also have a friend of a friend who had a photofacial and result was hyperpigmentation on her face. I dont know the machine used on her.
If you are patient, you can use product to lighten sun spots and improve your skin over time, and your skin will probably be healthier in the long run. I have switched over to Dr. Hauschka products which are holistic & organic....they are very picky about their ingredients...no substitutes and they are not like other companies who are on this bandwagon to pump vitamins into the skin which can overload and disrupt the skin, force change, and conceal conditions. But the Dr. Hauschka products are designed to penetrate into the skin and then cooperate with the skin's natural rhythms and functions to guide the skin to a very healthy state and lasting beauty. I have been a product junky in the past, and the dr hauschka is the real deal, they don't advertise but you can read about them over the internet. My dr hauschka estitician used to have acne scars but they have gone away over time since she started using their products. Sorry to go on this tangent, but i have been a product junky in the past and it is finally a relief to find products that are the real deal and very good for my skin. I also just wanted you to know there are other options to a photofacial, so please think about it, dont be hasty like i was, and dont let yourself be bullied into doing a photofacial like i was. Good luck with your decision. I wish you the best. -Lancer
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Thank you so very much for your information. We I had the 3rd test spot done on my face it really hurt so I knew it was not some treatment to be taken lightly. It seems like I just cant get lots of information about the proceedure. Like you said earlier, it is all by companies pushing the product. I would like to know more about potential risks and the levels of intensity and skin types that it works best on. Why cant I get this info??!! I am an RN so I investigate before I do anything. Noone told me that this was NOT a pernament fix for sunspots. I have friends who have had this done and they say good things about it but then again they are fair complected.
Thank you so much for your insight and help. I have an appointment with the dermatologist next week for my daughter and plan on really questioning her. I have delt only with her anestisian so far.
Joyfully,
Teri
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Hi Teri, glad I could help. There are different types of fotofacials...and I think the providers do think they are safe...perhaps they are naive...but in reality they are messing with layers of the skin that are not meant to be touched. I worry that you felt a lot of pain...that is scary...a definite red flag. Mine was not done by an estetician but by a laser technician who was very experienced, who went to school for lasers, and who herself gets fotofacials twice per year...and she went on and on about how safe it is and how she had done a thousand fotofacials with never a bad review. Then when i went back to see her a week after the procedure, i was very stressed about the results, and she told me nothing is without risk. I wish I had been told more about the risks before I did it. I was so focused on wanting perfect skin, and the tech was such a good sales lady, that I trusted everything she said. I used to look in the mirrow and just see those sunspots and wish I could get rid of them. Now I just wish I had my prefotofacial skin back....in reality the sunspots were really not that bad. Just me being a perfectionist. Glad I could help you. Blessings.
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Hi Lancer, you mentioned that your plumpness returned and but you had loss of fat. I'm a little confused. Did your skin get plumper after 3.5 months? Or did it get plumper from acupuncture? I am 7 weeks out and wanted to know if my skin would possibly plump out at all. Thanks
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Hi Kathy, some plumpness returned over time in my cheeks, but not in all the areas I had hoped for. Like under my eyes at the orbital bone that skin was thinned, causing lower eyelid sag and more veins showing thru especially at my tear ducts. The acupuncture helped with healing and lift. At this point, now 1.5 years later, I have gotten excellent results by doing facial massage and lymph drainage twice per day. My nasal labial folds have completely lifted. Also this increases blood flow to the face and so my face products absorb better. We are taught not to touch are face but I am finding it feels great and my skin feels healthier and some of the contours are filling in. It takes time, but I think this is the way to go for long term skin care. Acupuncture is great if you have the moneyy, but you also have to keeep going once per month after this. My friend does Flex Effect and she looks great, but you have to be careful not to overbuild. I may eventually trry this as well.
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PS- youtube has a ton of videos on how to do massage and lymph drainage of your face. I would start there. Then eventually try facercise or flex effect or carolyns facial fitness. There are a lot of natural face lift techniques. If you want plumpness back you should really start doing the massage at least, to get the blood flowing to support collagen building.
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My skin is a lot better now, the dryness went away after I went back to the fotofacial place and they gave me some ultra moisturizing lotion by Epionce. After using this product 24/7, my skin plumped back up to its normal self in about 2 weeks.
Now that my skin is plumped back up, I know that I was not crazy in thinking the fotofacial caused me to have loose skin and a more "drawn" look and deeper hollowing under my eyes. This "drawn" look lasted about 6-7 weeks with dry skin symptoms of feeling hot and irritated. Again, it wasn't till I got the ultra moisturizing cream & using it 24/7 for a week that these symptoms went away.
I think part of my problem from the get-go was that I was clueless about how to take care of my skin after the fotofacial. The instructions were, "you can use anything but Retin-A" after the facial. So I used some vitamin C serum and another moisturizer with no retin A. The Fotofacial done on me was used at very conservative settings (thank God!) and then afterwards they did laser for fine lines on my nasal-labial folds and around my eyes and in between my eyebrows. I don't know which laser caused me to de-plump and look so "drawn", but I would suggest to anyone doing a fotofacial to make sure you use a great moisturizer afterwards as well as sunblock and stay out of the sun. Also, it has now been 10 weeks since my fotofacial and the brown spots are coming back. They aren't all back yet, but I suspect within 6 months they will be all back. For something so temporary, then add in the risks of what could go wrong, I still stand by my original statement that the fotofacial is not worth the money!!!!!!!

--lancer
PS - I am Irish/Scot with lighter skin and freckles.
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I am undergoing a series of 10 cosmetic acupuncture treatments and I have already done 3 and the fine lines are diminishing, my skin is looking refreshed, and my body feels great! - digestion is better, a hip injury feels better too.
If anyone is interested in this make sure you research the providers in your area. I get about 100 needles in my face, and it hurts but it is totally worth it. Plus the products being used on my skin in the Dr. Haushka line, which is completely organic and wonderful.
Not everyone is a candidate for this, i.e. if you smoke, drink, do drugs, have poor eating habits, etc. But if you are a candidate, I would say go for it! Your body will thank you and there are no risks.
Cheers, and stay healthy and good to your skin!
--lancer
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I'm confused - did you have 2 procedures done that day? - the photofacial is not a laser, but light therapy. You are saying you (also) had a laser on your naso-labial folds and around the eyes? Then maybe it was the laser that caused the "drawn" look and not the photofacial?
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To clarify....I had fotofacial (IPL) followed my the Matrix IR. They were done back to back. The tech suggested Matrix for fine lines. Where the Matrix was done is where I had what appeared to be fat loss, so I think you are correct that the issues were caused by the Matrix. The tech said she did conservative settings on the IPL and on the Matrix.
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San01, I got a package of micros... the skin is slightly peeling right now and it the 'burnt marks' are peeling, so maybe I'll look ok after... and no, the micro was pleasant and I had no redness or anything. Just make sure you have high quality petroleum jelly or some aloe lotion to keep applying on your face, both are working wonders on mine. Let me know what you think. I say it's worth it.
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Hi Stelinha, 

Petroleum jelly, is new info to the community. Thanks for passing that little tip along. It would be awesome if you could post a review about your whole experience with IPL. You can do that right here. Can't wait to hear more. :)

Thanks so much,

-Britt

 

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Stelinha, I am going for microderm treatment, so just want to know how was ur microderm treatment did you get any side effects?
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I had my IPL after a microderm... HATE IT! she zapped some of my hair on the hair line and it hurts like hell! And I'm no cry baby, go to dentist and demand no numbing shots! Not only felt like torture, but hurt like that for hours afterwards. Have a line of dark spots like I used my curling iron on the cheeks and I'm so dry I could inject water on the face. I've been rubbing the inside of Aloe Vera plant on the face and using pretrolleum jelly if I'm home. Sunscreen all the time. It's been only 2 days but I know I'll have peels from now on and think about Carboxitherapy when I get on vacation on sunny Brazil for Christmas. Keep me updated.
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By the way, I'm part Italian, with medium to fair complexion.
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