Treating my Rosacea with IPL+ Photorejuvenation
I had a very deep conversation with close friend of mine, Sara, whom suffers from Rosacea. For those of you who don’t know, Rosacea is a skin condition that is characterized by frequent flushing or blushing and a generally bright red appearance to the sin on the face. Her rosacea is only on her cheeks and chin, and she has had it for as long as she remembers. This beautiful soul struggled with acne as a teenager and it definitely left some scarring which were noticeable on her skin. From what I remember, she has also almost always had big red patches on her face from the Rosacea that got worse with spicy food, sun exposure, exercise, dairy products and drinking alcohol.
“While I have tried different products and creams to calm the redness on my face, it is very persistent.” Sara mentioned. I told her to look into the proper treatments for Rosacea which is IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) Photorejuvenation or as some people say Photofacial. She didn’t know what IPL was and that it can be used to treat sunspots, redness, rosacea, broken capillaries, acne, acne scaring, fine lines and wrinkles.
I recommended her to go in for a free consultation at RX Super Spa located in Port Moody that does offer IPL+ and she decided to give it a try. Since she was open about her struggle with rosacea, she decided to document her IPL+ treatment so you can see her experience and see how her skin progressed /if it worked for her.
So far, she has had 2 treatments and have 2 more to go. The treatments are typically 3 to 4 weeks apart so in total hers will run about 3 to 4 months total. Each session only lasts about 15 minutes (with the actual IPL+ part taking about 7 to 10 minutes). Hanna at RX Super Spa does her treatments and Sara says she is amazing. “I’ll give you an idea of what the procedure is like, and then you can show them before and after photos of my first two treatments” Sara said.
She went on explaining: “First, Hanna puts a towel-headband around my hair to keep it off my face and then removes my makeup. Then, she applies a gel (that is similar to the gel used in ultrasounds) to the places where the IPL+ will be treating. Then, you get to wear some cotton pads and special eyeglasses to protect your eyes from the intense light. After that, she uses the IPL+ on the rosacea-affected areas. I know a lot of people will wonder if it hurts, so I’ll do my best to explain what it feels like. I have a very low pain tolerance generally. I’m terrible with needles and avoid anything that might cause me physical pain. The feeling of the IPL+ is not that uncomfortable and it’s tolerable. It is described as “snapping elastic against your skin”. The sensation is very quick and localized and only lasts about a second with each pulse.”
Her face (which gets red even just by putting water on it) always gets really red after the treatment. “The first time was the worst, with the redness being the brightest and lasting the longest. However, after my second treatment I noticed the redness from the heat and light was significantly reduced and went away faster too. Typically, I notice a difference in my skin a few hours after the treatment, after the initial redness from the treatment has subsided.” She added.
Here is a before photo of her bare skin right before starting IPL+:
“After the treatment Hanna puts on some soothing lotion which helps with calming down my skin quite a bit” Sara mentioned. “Then she applies a sunscreen; avoiding sun exposure for the duration of the treatments is essential, so if you go outdoors, make sure to wear sunscreen, a hat and stay in the shade as much as possible” She added.
Here is a photo of 1 hour after the treatment. The redness does down quite a bit even in that first hour:
And here is a photo of a few hours after her treatment. As you can see, the redness subsided A LOT, especially on her chin and the sides of her cheeks.
Recently Sara did a campaign for Rosacea Awareness Month where she shared a no makeup selfie and encouraged others to do the same.
“My skin is far from blotchy and dark red like it used to be. It’s more of an overall pink flush, with my cheeks sometimes getting red/hot if I have alcohol or spicy food. Overall the feeling of my skin is MUCH more even in temperature (instead of my cheeks always feeling SUPER hot.) I also notice that when I work out my skin doesn’t feel so hot and irritated, which is amazing. I recommend IPL+ treatments to anyone who is a candidate for it! It made me much more comfortable in my skin (literally) because the hot and flushed feeling is mostly gone, and it also made wearing makeup MUCH more enjoyable. I even switched to a tinted moisturizer instead of foundation and have been loving it. It allows my natural skin to show through a bit, but still provides a bit of coverage and protection, which makes me more confident in public.” Sara explained.