After IPL I Have Two Burn Blisters and Dark Marks That Never Existed - is This Normal?

After IPL , I have two burn blisters on my forehead and darkened marks that never existed on my forehead, and this was the clearest part of my face... is this normal??

Doctor Answers 6

Normal After IPL and Will Go Away

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You actually have a fairly normal, although maybe a little exuberant, reaction to an IPL treatment. The good news is it will go away, but you can minimize this by making sure you are on an appropriate skin care routine for the condition you are treating. Most of these will contain antioxidants and other products that will help minimize the redness or the exaggerated response you have – so if you are not on a skin care routine, go somewhere where skin care is as important as the procedure itself.

Nashville Dermatologic Surgeon
3.9 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Blister after IPL

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We try to avoid blisters with IPL but they can happen and your provider needs to be notified. Protecting the area with Aquaphor and avoiding any sunlight whatsoever are both very important. You stand to see great improvement in your skin from this treatment as long as you don't pick, peel or get sun exposure. 

Roberta Lucas, MD
White River Junction Dermatologic Surgeon

Dark spots after an IPL treatment

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Blistering rarely happens but if it does, notify your provider, keep the area clean and apply aquaphor or Vaseline ointment.   You will notice brown spots darken in appearance after the treatment.  These areas will gradually slough off or gradually fade and the spots will be lighter than before the treatment.

John Soderberg, MD, MPH
Raleigh-Durham Dermatologic Surgeon

Dark marks after IPL

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Darkening of the skin after IPL is not abnormal.  Areas of sun damage, even those we've never seen as blotchy, can react quite significantly after treatment.  The skin in these areas can become darker, blotchy, dry and flakey.   Blisters are not 'normal' but they are possible and a known side effect/reaction.  Don't pick or peel any blister or skin that starts to dry and flake...this can lead to scarring.  Keep the blistered area moist with something like Aquaphor Healing Ointment and make sure to follow up with whoever treated you so they know exactly what happened and can help in your aftercare. 


Grant Stevens, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 152 reviews

IPL treatment more red than typical

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Your photo shows greater skin reaction and redness than typical after IPL.  This will likely resolve but absolutely should be evaluated by your treating or supervising physician where the IPL was done to insure proper management.

Mark Beaty, MD
Atlanta Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

After IPL I Have Two Burn Blisters and Dark Marks That Never Existed - is This Normal?

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NO! Overtreated. Seek immediate in person care from supervising doctor of the IPL. From MIAMI DR. Darryl j. Blinski

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.