Tips & Articles for Your Skin

What can you expect during the IPL healing stages?

The purpose of this article is to provide you with information on how IPL healing varies from person to person. We’ll be discussing the different IPL healing stages.

IPL treatments have important benefits for the skin. It is non-invasive and offers many benefits to the skin. By applying light directly to the dermis, the machines specifically target the unwanted cells found there. You will notice how the skin's surface improves little by little each day after the IPL treatment. This process is called the healing phase.

We must also remember that not everyone experiences the post-IPL healing phase in the same way. Each type of skin possesses a unique sensitivity and recovery process.

How Does IPL Healing Stages Work?

Pulses of intense light are emitted directly into the dermis using a manual machine. Light attracts the heat in the cells, and when they react together, the heat destroys the damaged cells. When this occurs, the IPL healing stages, just start; the skin begins to experience redness, sometimes swelling, and even peeling.

When light destroys the cells, they have to leave the system somehow; and they do so by going across the surface of the skin. Consequently, darker spots or other conditions may appear worse than they were; this is due to the healing process.

The IPL treatment is considered a highly effective and complete skin rejuvenation procedure. It considerably improves the condition of the skin, promoting collagen regrowth, and creating positive aspects for your complexion such as:

  • Improved skin texture.
  • Unifying skin tone.
  • Reduction of wrinkles.
  • Redness.
  • Acne scars.
  • Promoting new capillaries, among other benefits.

We should also note that IPL procedures vary in type, but the healing process is usually similar. An IPL photofacial is a treatment that carries out different stages of healing. Basically, it helps restore the skin's brightness by illuminating it with intense light. Alternatively, patients can receive photorejuvenation sessions to treat skin conditions or age-related damage. Both procedures work the same way and heal the patient similarly.

What are the IPL Healing Stages?

The first thing you should know at this point is that since IPL is an aesthetic (nonsurgical) treatment, the recovery process is short. You can resume your regular activities immediately after receiving the treatment. Furthermore, we explain the IPL healing stages in detail, so you know what to expect during each stage of the recovery process.


Stage One: First 24 Hours

Remember that before starting the procedure, each patient is put on protective eyeglasses; because the effect of light could be very invasive for them. That is why its surroundings are areas that are not treated with this technology either.

During IPL, patients are required to wear protective eyeglasses; this is because the light can be very damaging to their eyes. A cooling gel is then applied directly to the treatment area. The gel will serve as a conductor of light to the dermis. Similarly, the gel will also act as a heat insulator, so you will only feel a small stinging during the 30 to 45 minutes it takes to apply the procedure.

After the procedure, you can return to your regular routine, maintaining the precaution of not exposing your skin to the sun.

During the first hours following the treatment, you will probably feel the same way you do after getting a sunburn: swelling and redness. During the treatment, the heat from the light affects the unwanted cells, causing them to react.

To avoid irritating the skin, we recommend avoiding makeup application, cold compresses for a few minutes, washing your face without chemicals, and avoiding hot water contact. If you are not at home, always wear sunscreen.

Stage Two: From Day Two to Five

Following the IPL treatment, you may notice a reduction in the redness and swelling on the first day, but you will also see that the treated area appears irritated. For example, if you've treated brown sunspots, the area will look darker than it did before the treatment.

During this stage of the healing process, you will gradually notice that the spots become darker. After the first treatment, 40% of dark spots disappear and 90% by the end of the first few sessions assigned by your specialist.

The darkening we are discussing does not affect every patient. Patients with treated acne scars will experience stinging and peeling skin during this stage.

You should keep hydrated, eat well, and take precautions for your skin's health during this stage of the recovery process. Wash your face with liquids that are not too strong, and use creams or moisturizers now and again. Don't forget to use sunscreen and continue to avoid hot water, at least on your face. Do not exfoliate your skin for the first twenty days after the first treatment.


Stage Three: From Six to Tenth

Your skin should already be showing signs of improvement at this point. Stains will gradually fade until they mostly disappear. If you have acne scars or another condition, you will notice that tiny scabs start forming on the skin.

The scabs must flake and fall on their own. Don't let them bother you. Avoid touching or irritating the skin since your body won't heal properly otherwise. Peels and hot water baths and products with strong chemicals, such as acids or Vitamin A, should be avoided during this stage.

To allow your skin to heal, wear sun protection. As the scabs fall off, you'll notice your skin's texture becoming softer and shinier while having fewer spots and scars.

You can repeat the procedure at your next appointment after the four-week treatment period is over. Depending on what you are treating, you will need at least 4 or 6 initial sessions for the results to be optimal and long-lasting. Upon completing the initial treatments, it is only necessary to return for a few review sessions every year to maintain the results and stimulate collagen regrowth.

IPL on Skin Conditions

Above, we mentioned that IPL works very well, especially for treating various skin conditions. Now that you know how the procedure works and the stages of IPL healing, let us discuss some conditions and benefits of the procedure. 


Sunspots usually appear on the face, neck, and chest. They are brown, irregularly shaped, and bigger than a common mole. Typically, sunspots are suffered by people over 50 years of age because they represent the loss of collagen in the skin. The pigmentation in sunspots is caused by more photosensitivity and melanin production (responsible for pigment production in the skin).

IPL can diminish the appearance of these spots by over 80% and, in turn, stimulate collagen. Over time, this means that the skin is not as prone to develop new spots as it was before.



Facial redness is also common in older people. Blood vessels rupture as a result of exposure and damage. Sometimes this only causes redness, while in other cases, it creates the well-known spider veins on the cheeks and sides of the nose.

The intense pulsed light melts these skin cells and destroys them, resulting in a clearer, more uniform appearance to the skin.

Fine Lines and Wrinkles

Collagen production decreases by one or two percent each year as we grow older. Thus, the skin's texture starts to change, and the skin begins to wrinkle due to certain gestures and expressions. Fine lines become wrinkles over time.

These benefits mean that both adults and young people can benefit from IPL treatment. Consequently, collagen production will not be inhibited, allowing for a longer-lasting natural skin appearance.