Published: Oct 02, 2021
BBL Photofacial: The Big Difference with IPL
BroadBand Light (BBL) treatment has continued to grow in popularity as one of the top light therapy treatments anybody can receive. Though, this is hardly a surprise with stunning results being shared by countless people who have participated in the treatment. In general, BBL Photofacial focuses on using pulsed light to solve several skin issues, including those that have been caused by overexposure to the sun or aging. This makes it one of the best ways to improve your skin tone and texture, leaving you looking younger and more refreshed.
If you are already familiar with light-based therapy, then you may have also heard of the IPL treatment. While upon first glance they may seem similar, there are several differences that you must be aware of. So, in this article, we will be performing a deep dive into the BBL Photofacial, focusing on the differences between BBL and IPL while also debunking many myths about the treatment. This should leave you feeling much more confident if you are considering getting a BBL Photofacial.
What is a BBL Photofacial?
BBL treatments are delivered by directing multiple light wavelengths over a targeted area. Your body will receive this light as heat, which will help to destroy the cells in that problem area. In addition, newer and healthier cells are stimulated by this heat. This will help to give your skin a strong and smooth texture, which can help make you feel rejuvenated.
In general, the BBL Photofacial treatment is used for beautification purposes. This means that it focuses on skin issues that may have been caused by aging or sunlight exposure, which is why we always recommend this treatment to patients that may have wrinkles and fine lines, uneven skin texture, or stretch marks.
Additionally, the BBL Photofacial can be used to treat:
- Rosy cheeks
- Dullness in the face
- Broken facial vessels, capillaries, or spider veins
- Acne and surgical scars
What Happens During a BBL Photofacial?
Before your procedure, you should have received various instructions about how to prepare for your session. Depending on the issue that you have, you may already have received a session schedule with advice that you must follow. For example, we will likely suggest that you keep away from the sun as much as you can before you receive treatment.
During the treatment, the light energy will be directed towards the target area. So, if you have issues with Rosacea on your face, we may target the light beams on that area. Before the procedure, several patients often worry about the pain of the treatment, but it is only mildly discomforting, and some patients have described it as a “popping” sensation.
Are BBL and IPL The Same Treatment?
This is one of the most common questions that we receive, but because there is an overlap, this is hardly a surprise. The simple answer is that although they are both light-based treatments, they are not the same nor are they always used for the same purpose. In general, we suggest using IPL when a specific area needs to be targeted meanwhile the BBL should be used in cases where the focus is over a larger skin area.
In essence, a BBL Photofacial is an improved form of Intense Pulsed Light that takes everything great about the IPL to an extra level. This means that it can treat far more skin issues than an IPL ever could. However, this does not mean that the IPL has become redundant. There are still various cases where the IPL shines over the BBL and you must speak to your skin therapist before undergoing any treatment. They will be able to recommend the best treatment for you.
Does BBL Photofacial Really Work?
Much like in the case of many other beauty treatments, there is no straight answer to this question. This is because there are various factors to consider before getting a BBL and your skin may require a different type of treatment depending on its condition. So, we always recommend that you speak to a professional before undergoing any procedure, though if your skin is in the right condition to receive the treatment, then you should see immediate changes.
If the treatment has been successful, then you should also expect that the results will last for several months, but we always suggest that you have multiple treatments to keep your skin looking refreshed and smooth all year round. You must also not expect the Photofacial to do all the heavy lifting, to keep your skin in optimal condition, you should continue using sunscreen and other recommended skincare products.
How Long Does It Take to Heal from BBL
While some patients may experience some darker spots after the treatment, this can be quite rare. BBL treatments are both non-invasive and non-ablative, you should not expect to see any burning or peeling on your skin after the procedure. This means that there is no healing or downtime after the treatment, which is one of its greatest advantages.
After your BBL, you can continue your general routine without any worry and most patients can even apply makeup right after. In any case, if you do discover any dark spots, do not fret, these will generally disappear after a few hours.
Difference between IPL, BBL, and Photofacial?
One of the many questions that we are asked is, “What is the difference between IPL, BBL, and Photofacial?” This confusion is often expected as it is easy to get jumbled by all the different terms in the world of skin treatment. However, you must know all the differences, especially if you are considering receiving this treatment.
Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) is a very popular term as it was one of the first forms of light-based therapy. By using light waves, it revolutionized the way that redness of the skin or wrinkles could be treated. This led to it being one of the most sought-after skin therapy treatments. Essentially, IPL works by using light to penetrate the skin.
This energy not only reduces wrinkles and fine lines by causing collagen and blood vessels to constrict, but it also helps to destroy darker particles. This makes redness less visible and gives your skin a more even texture.
While BBL treatments work in the same way as the IPL, certain things place this type of treatment on a much higher pedestal in terms of light-based therapy. By using broadband light rather than a single intense beam, the BBL can focus on a wider area of skin, making it more viable for issues where more skin needs to be affected. By being able to deal with more skin, the BBL has become a more comfortable option.
By using this advanced form of technology, the BBL casts a much wider net in terms of the treatments that it can perform, excelling in areas such as firming or tightening the skin. Additionally, BBL also made safety and comfort a priority with the addition of new features such as advanced cooling.
Photofacials are simply the general name for light-based skin therapies. So, both BBL and IPL can be considered as Photofacials but there are other forms as well such as Light Emitting Diode (LED) Photofacial. Photofacials can also be used to refer to specific treatments e.g., Rosacea Photofacial, which may be performed using BBL technology.
What to Expect After the Treatment?
Many factors will affect the result of your BBL Photofacial, such as the issue you are trying to treat. You must also remember that this procedure is not magical and it requires you to put in effort for you to see the best results. For example, if you have a severe skin issue but attend a singular session, then you will likely not reap the full rewards. In general, we recommend that you have at least 3-4 sessions in a single treatment for optimal results. In addition, we also recommend maintenance visits at least once a year.
Additionally, aftercare is crucial for BBL Photofacials. This means that you must continue to take care of your skin even after the procedure is over. So, if you had an underlying issue such as Rosacea and your doctor had already prescribed gels and ointments, then you must continue to use these as they will help keep your skin in optimal condition.
You may also find that, in the first few days after the procedure, you are sensitive to sunlight. You must do your best to avoid sunlight and make sure that the target area is properly shielded from the sun. For example, if you had an issue with your leg, you may want to wear trousers rather than shorts after the BBL. It is also important that you wear your sunscreen at all times.
If you can follow these steps, then you will notice how effective the BBL Photofacial is. By attending all sessions and being patient, you will begin to notice that your skin has become fresher or firmer, or gained an even tone and softer texture.