Are these IPL burned marks, PIH, or just normal browning? (photo)

I got these around my mouth 2 days after my IPL session, which had never occurred to me before. Just wondering if they are burned? PIH? or they are normal and will eventually flake off like all others....Please help. I tried Googling but didn't see anything similar....I've been putting hydrocortisone 1% twice a day and using hydrating mask containing hyaluronic acid. Is it the right thing to do?

Doctor Answers 2

Darkening around the mouth after IPL

Thank you for your question vbyrd. IPL is a great treatment for overall rejuvenation of the face. Sometimes dark spots may come to the surface within a few days after a treatment and they resolve within a week or two. Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation (PIH) is seen after a treatment but lasts longer. PIH can be treated with topical products such as hydroquinone, kojic acid, retinoids, vitamin C, and hydroxyl acids. Hydrocortisone works for irritation or itching. Hyaluronic acid hydrates the skin and is a good product to use in general. Sometimes after a treatment cold sores are seen. They can be anywhere on the face but the areas around the lips are most common. This can be treated with antivirals like valacyclovir (Valtrex). Please speak with your doctor for specific recommendations. Good luck!


Encino Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

IPL and Hyperpigmentation - Combination approach with Fraxel and/or microneedling/PRP

IPL causes crusts and scabs and should be treated with skin care.  pigmentation cannot occur for some time after IPL if it were to occur. In the future, do fraxel treatments for a better result long term.  Best, Dr. Emer.

Jason Emer, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 167 reviews

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.