26 Oct Breaking Down BBL vs. IPL for Good
What’s the difference between BBL and IPL—and which one is for you? These two treatments are the most popular at RefinedMD, but figuring out the right one for you can be tricky. Let’s settle the debate for good and dig deeper into what BBL and IPL each does for your skin. BBL is also known as broadband light therapy, while IPL is intense pulsed light therapy. Both are “light-assisted” treatments for your skin, but they’re often grouped into the world of laser skin rejuvenation.
The foundation of BBL and IPL is nearly identical, but there are some key differences between them once you get into the nitty gritty. Both are also considered “photofacials,” which can be further confusing. First, let’s address how these two treatments are similar. Both use light waves that are non-invasive to improve skin quality. IPL and BBL can both be used on virtually any part of the body. However, they work best to treat areas that have been damaged by UV rays which includes the face, chest, shoulders, neck, and back of the hands.
How many treatments you’ll need of IPL or BBL is going to depend on you and how your skin responds. There’s no definite answer on which treatment will require less or more sessions, so don’t try to choose based on that factor. You’ll almost certainly require more than one session of either IPL or BBL to get the best results. It’s also usually recommended to combine light therapy with other aaesthetic treatments that complement it, such as microneedling. Both BBL and IPL results last anywhere from 6 – 12 months on average, and you can extend those benefits with a medical-grade skin care product regimen that includes proper sun protection.
All About IPL
BBL is kind of like IPL on steroids, so first let’s take a closer look at IPL. It was developed first. It works by using a variety of light waves that target the melanin (coloring) and hemoglobin in the skin. IPL kickstarts collagen production, which leads to a reduction in common signs of aging like sun spots, fine lines, and enlarged pores. Since IPL was one of the original technologies in the photo-rejuvenation realm, it’s well-established and highly trusted. It has been shown to help with more issues than aging, such as scarring, rosacea, and even dilated blood vessels.
IPL can be helpful with a particularly stubborn type of hyperpigmentation, melasma. Minimizing redness caused by a number of conditions is a staple of IPL, so those who struggle with lingering redness from scars especially opt for IPL. However, keep in mind that IPL machines vary. You’ll want an IPL machine deemed medical-grade, which are only available at clinics like RefinedMD. The skill of the professional using it also plays a role in results.
BBL takes IPL and kicks it up a few notches. One of the biggest differences is that it features handheld pieces with the latest cooling features, making it a more comfortable treatment. Discomfort is reduced and downtime (redness) is also minimized with BBL. BBL machines have a range of settings that allow a reputable practitioner to better customize your treatment. BBL was originally created to address imperfections at their core, which is well below the skin’s surface. It can help with more skin concerns than IPL, including birthmarks, freckles, skin laxity, and is more effective at correcting skin irregularities. BBL uses both heat and light—not just light—to stimulate collagen production and the body’s natural healing capabilities.
Studies have found that BBL is the only treatment that actually modifies the genes connected to longevity and aging. One study in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology discovered that BBL can create rejuvenation of the skin at the molecular level. This turns back the clock and saves our damaged DNA. This might make you think that BBL is a natural choice, but there’s a reason IPL is offered, too. Everyone’s skin responds differently, so some people find that IPL works better for them while others prefer BBL.
We’ll work with you to help determine which treatment is most likely to help you get the results you desire. Contact RefinedMD at (408) 688-2082 and schedule a complimentary consultation today.