By Laini Moman, Aesthetician & Aesthetics Coordinator
Have you noticed how, as the years go by, you are not only seeing some more lines on your face but also age spots, uneven skin tone, redness, and small blood vessels? You would like to rejuvenate your skin without resorting to invasive techniques, but you figure you might have to go in for multiple types of treatments to address each issue. At Vitalogy Skincare we offer BBL™ Treatments that can address all of these while leaving you with firmer, smoother, and younger looking skin.
What is BBL™ and How Does It Work?
BBL™ stands for Broadband Light. It is an intense pulse light (IPL) treatment that uses a broad spectrum of wavelengths to target unwanted blood vessels and superficial pigmentation in the skin by gently heating the targeted area. Your skin absorbs the heat and energy from the light, destroying the pigmented skin cells and closing off the superficial blood vessels. This also stimulates your cellular turnover rate and your body’s collagen production, leaving it looking more youthful and providing a more even skin tone.
This treatment is used for superficial sun damage, pigmented lesions (freckles, age spots), redness, uneven skin tone and texture, small blood vessels, rosacea, and acne. As a bonus, it is a fabulous anti-aging treatment as it promotes collagen production and elastin fibers are stimulated. BBL can be performed almost anywhere on the body, but the most popular areas are the face, neck, and chest.
You will likely need to do a series of treatments initially to get you to the desired endpoint. The number of treatments depends on factors such as the treatment area, severity of the issue that needs correcting, and your existing skin pigmentation. Most issues can be treated with 3 to 5 treatments spaced out two to four weeks apart. Once you complete the series, we recommend an average of 2 treatments per year to maintain the results.
Preparing for Your BBL Treatment
Preparation may look different for each patient, but the most important for all patients is to avoid the sun and tanning beds 4 to 6 weeks before your treatment. Stop using sunless tanners two weeks before and any photosensitizing topicals. This is essential for a successful treatment.
You must also follow these guidelines in between your sessions.
Other preparations may include not using your preferred topicals or medications, which your Provider will explain, if necessary. Be sure to let your Provider know about any medical conditions and medications you are taking.
On the day of your treatment, you will be provided with goggles or glasses to protect your eyes. Then a thin layer of ultrasound gel is applied to the treatment area to keep your skin cool during the session. As the treatment begins, you can expect a bright pulse that creates a warm sensation on the skin. The Provider will complete as many pulses as necessary to cover the treatable area fully. Although the pulses can initially have an uncomfortable sensation, using ultrasound gel and other cooling options will help create a more comfortable experience.
Many of our clients ask if BBL is safe. Yes! Not only does BBL have safety settings built into the machines, but the Providers performing this procedure are highly experienced and knowledgeable, making this a very safe treatment.
What is recovery like?
Two words- easy-peasy! BBL is great because it has virtually NO downtime. The main side effect is mild redness and a sunburn sensation on the day of treatment. This usually resolves itself within hours of your session. You can apply a cold compress to the area or take over-the-counter pain medication to relieve swelling and discomfort.
You must avoid the sun for 5-7 days and keep your skin cool the day of treatment, so it is best to avoid anything that causes sweating or flushing, such as exercise, hot temperatures, and saunas. You should also keep your skin protected with proper topicals.
Some pigmented lesions slowly turn dark over the first three days. It is essential to resist picking or scrubbing the spot to avoid scarring. These will peel off on their own and should be gone in one to two weeks. This treatment can even be done on your lunch break because wearing makeup after is allowed!
You can expect to see noticeable results in your skin within days. Your skin will look firmer, your blemishes will clear up, and your pores will look smaller. Within two weeks, you will notice less visible freckles, sunspots, age spots, and pigmentation and lessening the appearance of your blood vessels.
Pros and Cons of BBL
- Quick and relatively painless
- Downtime is minimal
- Even skin tone
- Reduced sun damage
- Reduced rosacea/vessels
- Youthful glow
- Healthy cells
- Improved texture
- Some preparation is required, and you need to protect your skin post-procedure.
- A warm pulse sensation during the treatment, but the benefits outweigh this brief uncomfortable sensation.
If you are interested in getting more information about BBL Treatments and how they can help you minimize fine lines, wrinkles, and skin texture, see one of our highly experienced Providers. Whether you are looking for medical or cosmetic dermatology services, our commitment is to restore and maintain your skin’s health. Vitalogy Skincare has eight convenient locations in Southwest Austin and the surrounding area. Book an appointment online today.