Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) - Premier Medical Aesthetics
SPECIALS

IPL & Photo Facials
Intense Pulsed Light

Ahh. The beautiful weather in Carlsbad. The residents here understand the jewel of a location in North County, San Diego. There are so many reasons vacationers flock here every year, and out-of-town guests find any excuse to visit. We enjoy the sun, warm weather, and outdoor lifestyles. From the beaches to the hills and everything in between, we love our fun in the sun. The sun can be a double-edged sword, though. No matter how meticulous you are with your sunscreen, those pesky brown spots or age spots like to visit too.
Photo Of A Beautiful Woman After A Photo Facial
Palomar Icon IPL Machine

Palomar ICON

WE USE THE LATEST IPL EQUIPMENT BY THE LEADING MANUFACTURER CYNOSURE.
At Premier Medical Aesthetics, we use an industry-leading laser from Cynosure to reduce unwanted pigmentation, skin redness, and rosacea. Along with our IPL Laser, we use the Skintel Melanin Reader to measure the amount of light reflected from our patient’s skin at various wavelengths, average those readings into a Melanin Index Value that wirelessly communicates the suggested parameters to our laser’s settings. These extra calculations allow us to optimize the effects of the IPL treatment without damaging the epidermis. Effective in repairing sun damage, hyperpigmentation, acne scarring, freckles, wrinkle reduction, and broken capillaries, patients often choose IPL because it’s non-invasive, effective, and affordable.
IPL Treatment Photo
IPL Photograph
IPL Photo

WHAT IS INTENSE PULSED LIGHT ALSO KNOWN AS IPL?

A safe and effective non-invasive light therapy, Intense Pulsed Light, or IPL photofacial, works by harnessing the power of broadband light to treat and improve the appearance of brown spots, dark spots, age spots, sun spots, freckles, birthmarks, rosacea, acne scars, and skin texture. Unlike other laser treatments, IPL uses different wavelengths to penetrate deep down to the dermis (second layer of skin) without damaging the epidermis (top layer of skin). The pigment cells in your skin absorb the light’s energy, convert it to heat, and the heat then destroys the pigment. The unwanted pigment gradually sloughs or sheds off, leaving younger-looking skin with even skin tone. Popular treatment areas include the face, neck, arms, hands, and décolletage. An effective treatment, the Intense Pulsed Light, works almost anywhere on the body where pigmentation, discoloration, blotchy skin, or redness occur. Give us a call to see if IPL is an effective treatment for your skin problems.

IPL Treatment Process

Patients seeking IPL should not be pregnant, taking medications, have a sensitivity to light, keloid scarring, or other skin conditions.

3-4 Weeks Before Treatment

LET US KNOW

If you have a history of hyperpigmentation (darkening of the skin) with laser treatments, please let us know. We may prescribe a lightening agent before the procedure to reduce this reaction.
3-4 Weeks Before Treatment

2-3 Weeks Before Treatment

NO SPRAY TANS OR SELF TANNING LOTIONS

Do not use spray or self-tanners before treatment. If you have some residual effects from a product, thoroughly cleanse the area to be treated by IPL with an abrasive or exfoliating-type scrub.

2-3 Weeks Before Treatment

2 Weeks Before Procedure

WHAT TO AVOID

Discontinue use of products containing hydroquinone, bleaching creams, Retin-A, retinol, benzoyl peroxide, glycolic/salicylic acids, astringents, or chemical peels. If you’re taking any antibiotics, it’s best to schedule your treatment at least 2-weeks after its completion.

2 Weeks Before Procedure

1-Day Before Procedure

PREP

If IPL is used to treat other areas than the face, please shave the treatment area.
1-Day Before Procedure

Immediately After Procedure

EXPECTATIONS

The treated skin may have some redness, bumps, or sensitivity for a few hours up to a few days. It is normal for the treatment area to feel swollen or like a mild sunburn for a few hours. You may use a cold compress, aloe vera gel, or 1% hydrocortisone if needed. If treating the face, continue using sun protection with SPF 30+ or higher daily for the entire treatment period.
Immediately After Procedure

24-Hours After Procedure

MILD SUNBURN

Avoid hot water and anything that could irritate the skin. If needed, take Advil or Motrin. Make sure to moisturize frequently. Contact our office if you have any signs of infection (pus, tenderness, or fever).
24-Hours After Procedure

24-48 Hours After Procedure

DARKER PIGMENTATION

Do not pick, flake, or peel sloughing skin. Doing so could irritate the area and lead to scarring or hyperpigmentation. You can wear makeup after any redness, blistering, or scabbing has dissipated.
24-48 Hours After Procedure

48 Hours After Procedure

PROTECT YOUR SKIN

Avoid using any irritants to your face, such as products containing Retin-A (tretinoin), retinol, benzoyl peroxide, glycolic/salicylic acids, astringents, or chemical peels.
48 Hours After Procedure

48-72 Hours After Procedure

Extra Precautions

Do not exercise, have body treatments, take hot showers, use saunas or hot tubs until the skin is back to normal. Do not wear tight or constricting clothing as irritation can occur, and the skin cannot cool properly.
48-72 Hours After Procedure

4-6 Weeks Post IPL

TA-DA! AMAZING SKIN

Hypopigmentation (lightening) or hyperpigmentation (darkening) may occur with any laser treatment and usually resolves within 4-6 weeks.

4-6 Weeks Post IPL
How IPL Works Info Graphic

WHAT HAPPENS WITH AN IPL PROCEDURE?

When you come into our office for a free consultation, one of our cosmetic laser nurses will assess your skin concerns to see if IPL is the right treatment. Before your IPL treatment, we’ll cleanse your skin, removing any trace amounts of makeup or moisturizer. We’ll apply a topical numbing cream and give it enough time to take affect. We’ll then use the Skintel Melanin Reader to get an approximate starting point for the power setting. We’ll provide special eyewear for you to wear to protect your eyes from the laser’s light. Once ready to begin, we’ll visually subsection the area, following a path to cover the entire treatment area with the IPL device. You may experience a mild pinching or stinging sensation as the laser works. Most people say the laser light pulses feel like a light rubber band snap. After treatment, your skin may feel like a mild sunburn; your spots will darken and slowly shed away.

What IPL Can Do

Typically, IPL works in 1-3 treatments depending on the severity of the skin condition. Some patients may require additional treatments. Patients experience significant improvements with sun damage, freckles, broken blood vessels, acne scarring, birthmarks, rosacea, mild wrinkles, and fine lines. Your skin will appear more evenly toned and younger-looking. Even with proper sunscreen, people with pigmentation may have changes in hormones or sun exposure that can affect the skin and cause future skin damage. For them, IPL is part of a yearly or biennial routine to maintain your look. Patients should consult with our office regarding additional IPL treatments.

IPL Treatment Cost

Most people consider IPL in the fall and winter months when sun exposure has dwindled. We try to run an IPL special around this time of year as a reminder that it’s the perfect opportunity to get the best results. Because every patient is different, it’s difficult to determine the scope of damage without a consultation. IPL prices are determined by the size of the treatment area and the number of procedures needed to achieve the desired results. If you’ve ever contemplated IPL, now’s the time to schedule your free consultation.

Intense Pulsed Light Treatment Zones

IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) is used to treat skin discoloration, damaged blood vessels, stretch marks, freckles, scars, and more.
Image of Woman Showing Areas Treatable with Intense Pulsed Light aka IPL

LEGS

Soften or remove birthmarks, brown spots, discoloration, freckles, scars, spider veins, and broken blood vessels. 1 of 8

FACE

Lighten or erase age spots, discoloration, fine wrinkles, freckles, redness from rosacea, broken blood vessels, birthmarks, and acne scars. 2 of 8

CHEST

Lighten or erase age spots, discoloration, fine wrinkles, freckles, and birthmarks. 3 of 8

NECK

Soften or eliminate age spots, discoloration, fine wrinkles, freckles, birthmarks, and more. 4 of 8

TORSO

Soften or remove birthmarks, brown spots, discoloration, freckles, scars, spider veins, and broken blood vessels. 5 of 8

HANDS

Soften or erase sun damage, discolored skin, freckles, scars, age spots, and birthmarks. 6 of 8

ARMS

Lessen or remove birthmarks, brown spots, discoloration, freckles, and scars. 7 of 8

FEET

Diminish or eradicate sun damage, discolored skin, freckles, scars, age spots, and birthmarks. 8 of 8
*Model shown. Number of required treatments may vary.
ASK AN IPL EXPERT
Ask The Doctor Photo
We’ve tried to answer the top most asked IPL questions below in our Frequently Asked Questions section. If you have any additional questions or concerns, please contact our office. We want our patients to have a full understanding of the process, aftercare, and expected results. Please call our office to schedule a free consultation with a skin assessment to see if IPL is right for you.

IPL Treatment FAQ

Everything you could ever want to know about Intense Pulsed Light (IPL), but don’t know who to ask.

What is IPL

All about IPL treatments and why they’re so popular.

About IPL

Okay, I’m ready to get started and smooth my skin tone.

IPL Precautions

Concerns you might have about Intense Pulsed Light treatments.

What is IPL

What is IPL

All about IPL treatments and why they’re so popular.

IPL or “Intense Pulsed Light” is a minimally invasive cosmetic skin treatment that uses powerful flashes of light to decrease the appearance of skin imperfections.

To reduce a patient’s sensitivity to discomfort, your clinical will apply a topical anesthetic. After the numbing cream has taken effect, the IPL technician will ask you to wear protective eye glasses or coverings, and then trigger flashes of light carefully across the treatment zone.
Even with a topical numbing cream, some patients report some slight discomfort and liken it to a light rubber band snap. Most patients handle the sensation very well. We can also take breaks if the process is too uncomfortable.

Intense Pulsed Light Photofacials treat a host of minor skin imperfections. Imperfections like sun damage, skin discoloration, rosacea, brown spots, acne scars, and vascular lesions.

A high-intensity light is focused on the skin’s surface to improve tone. IPL procedures target vascular irregularities and pigmentation, leaving patients with younger, healthier-looking skin.
Yes! When performed by an experienced licensed clinician, there is little to no safety concerns to worry about. During your consultation, we will not only cover your goals but will review your medical history to make sure IPL is right for you.

About IPL

About IPL

Okay, I’m ready to get started and smooth my skin tone.

IPL Photofacials are pretty quick. It takes about 20-30 minutes for the numbing cream to take effect and the actual procedure usually lasts somewhere between 20 and 45 minutes depending on the area being treated.

Desired results are typically achieved in three to six treatments. IPL Photofacial procedures should be spaced at least one month apart.

IPL procedures are excellent for anyone interested in improving the signs of aging. They work great on lighter skin tones, but it’s best to schedule a complimentary consultation to see if your skin tone and skin condition would benefit from an IPL treatment. Photofacials use deep-penetrating light to stimulate collagen growth and improve fine lines, wrinkles, age spots, pigmentation issues, vascular rosacea, brown spots, vascular lesions, and sun damage.
Be sure to stay out of the sun at least two weeks prior to treatment, apply sunblock with SPF 30 or more, and wear a hat when outdoors.

IPL Photofacials tend to be more expensive than treatments like chemical peels and microdermabrasion but less expensive than laser treatments. Because the severity of each person’s skin issue is different, there is no set time or price on IPL treatments. During your IPL Photofacial consultation, we will go over the cost related to your needs.

IPL Photofacials are extremely popular because you are unlikely to experience any downtown. You might experience some bumps or appear like you have a mild sunburn, but that doesn’t seem to keep our clients from setting appointments over their lunch breaks.
After your treatment, we recommend using a moisturizer with full-spectrum sun protection. For the next 30 days, avoid the sun as much as possible and continue to use a full-spectrum sunscreen of SPF 30 or more to protect against damaging UVA and UVB rays. For the initial 48 hours following your procedure, reframe from wearing make-up and taking hot showers or baths. To avoid skin irritation and possible infection, do not pick or scratch the treated area. Make sure to moisturize frequently and avoid bathing or showering in hot water. Avoid any products containing forms of vitamin A acids like retinoid acid, glycolic acid, tretinoin (Retin-A), and alpha-hydroxy acids. Do not use Accutane during the course of your treatment and thirty days after.
After your first IPL treatment, you will begin to notice smoother, tighter skin and pores will start to shrink. Hyperpigmented skin will become darker and quickly begin to shed away, leaving your skin with an improved tone. As collagen growth increases, fine lines and wrinkles will decrease. Each successive treatment will bring even more improvements to your overall complexion.
The key difference is that IPL treatments use high-powered, full-spectrum light while fractional laser treatments use an actual laser. IPL treatments focus on skin tone irregularities while fractional lasers concentrate on skin texture imperfections. Depending on the treatment area, Fractional Laser Resurfacing may require some downtime versus an IPL treatment where you can typically return to your normal routine.

IPL Precautions

IPL Precautions

Concerns you might have about Intense Pulsed Light treatments.

IPL treatments are very safe but can irritate your skin. It is not uncommon for clients to encounter some small raised bumps and redness post-treatment. These symptoms will subside over the next few days.

Our computer-controlled system makes it very difficult to cause harm. It is essential to always make sure wherever you receive treatments that your clinician is certified and licensed to perform IPL Photofacials.
Unfortunately, there aren’t any long-term studies of pregnant women undergoing IPL Photofacials at this time. We think it’s best to err on the side of caution and ask that you refrain from setting an appointment until after the birth of your child. During pregnancy, your body is producing a host of positive growth hormones that will likely make your skin glow anyway (there’s a reason there’s a term called pregnancy glow).
You should not have IPL if you have recently experienced a sunburn, have tanned, have active inflammatory acne, eczema, or dermatitis. People using photosensitizing or diabetes medications, Accutane, vitamin A acid-based products like retinoic acid, glycolic acid, tretinoin, and alpha-hydroxy acids are also not candidates for IPL. Individuals using St. John’s Wort or blood-thinners like Aspirin, ibuprofen, or Aleve cannot have IPL treatments. If you have an active herpes outbreak or infection, you will need to wait until the issues have been resolved. If you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or suffer from seizures, cancer, lupus, you shouldn’t seek IPL procedures. IPL treatments should be avoided if you have a history of keloid scarring, hypo pigmentation issues, and dark or sensitive skin.

Before & After IPL Treatments

IPL treatments work effectively to treat skin discolorations and more. Talk to an expert today to see if it’s right for you.
Before After
Before After
Before After
Before After
Before After
Before After
Before After
Before After
COMMON IPL USES

Intense pulsed light, also known as IPL, IPL photorejuvenation, or IPL photofacial, is a great cosmetic procedure for skin conditions like pigmentation (brown spots, age spots, or liver spots) often associated with sun damage or hormonal changes; rosacea; vascular redness; birthmarks; broken capillaries; spider veins or thread veins on the face; fine lines; and wrinkles. IPL is commonly used on the face, but treatment for skin discoloration can also be used on the chest, neck, and hands. Unfortunately, IPL is not effective on melasma and can exacerbate the hypopigmentation (patches of skin that are lighter than your overall skin tone). If you have melasma issues, we have a combination of non-inflammatory therapies and skin lightening creams that do not cause trauma to the skin.

COMMON IPL USES

Intense pulsed light, also known as IPL, IPL photorejuvenation, or IPL photofacial, is a great cosmetic procedure for skin conditions like pigmentation (brown spots, age spots, or liver spots) often associated with sun damage or hormonal changes; rosacea; vascular redness; birthmarks; broken capillaries; spider veins or thread veins on the face; fine lines; and wrinkles. IPL is commonly used on the face, but treatment for skin discoloration can also be used on the chest, neck, and hands. Unfortunately, IPL is not effective on melasma and can exacerbate the hypopigmentation (patches of skin that are lighter than your overall skin tone). If you have melasma issues, we have a combination of non-inflammatory therapies and skin lightening creams that do not cause trauma to the skin.
Common Uses For IPL
Premier Medical Aesthetics
Address: 3257 Camino De Los Coches, Suite 305, Carlsbad, CA 92009 • (760) 642-7014
About Our Office
When you’re searching for IPL near me, look no further than the state-of-the-art offices of Premier Medical Aesthetics. Our modern IPL machine has an advanced contact cooling system that maintains the temperature at 5 degrees Celcius during treatment to ensure our patient’s comfort.
Getting Here
Find your new neighborhood medspa for anti-aging procedures like cosmetic injectables, laser treatments, chemical peels, facials, and other aesthetic beauty services right down the street. Our modern office is conveniently located on the corner of Rancho Santa Fe and Camino De Los Coches in Carlsbad’s La Costa area.
Communities We Serve
We provide the best IPL treatments in the La Costa area of Carlsbad and neighboring cities of Encinitas, Rancho Santa Fe, Olivenhain, Cardiff, Solana Beach, Vista, Oceanside, and San Marcos. Check us out if you live in La Costa Oaks, Aviara, La Costa Greens, La Costa Valley, Bressi Ranch, San Elijo Hills, or Leucadia.

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