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Harnessing Light to Heal & Repair the Skin Part 1

Photo Facials, IPL & Sciton’s Forever Young BBL

Today we are taught that light is “bad” for us but light comes in different forms and some are good for us! Light is measured in wavelengths and harnessing some of these wavelengths of light has created great strides in skin rejuvenation!

Many people have heard of IPL, BBL, Photo Facials and LED Light Treatments yet are unsure of how they work and what they can do. At The Summit we have been working with light therapy for skin healing for over a decade! In part 1 of our 2 part series on “Harnessing Light to Heal & Repair the Skin” we focus on our most asked questions about IPL, BBL and Photo Facials.
Why does the light from these devices not damage the skin like the light from the sun does?  There are many wavelengths of light that come from the sun. Some are visible and some are not. Some damage the skin and some do not. The sun emits harmful UV (ultra violet) light waves that can do more damage to our skin than good. Therefore the beneficial “visible” wave lengths of light (think of the colours of the rainbow) are neutralized by the skin damaging effects of the stronger ultra violet wave’s lengths. UV radiation is known to cause damage to all layers of the skin resulting in pigmentation and texture changes, wrinkling, sagging, skin cancer and triggering other skin disorders. On the other hand Light Therapy works by delivering only visible wave lengths of light energy, completely UV-free, that have been proven to energize cells, stimulate the body’s natural process to build new proteins and regenerate cells.
What does IPL and BBL stand for? They mean virtually the same thing in terms of wavelengths of light and stand for Intense Pulse Light and Broad Band Light. The difference between these two terms is simply the name the manufacturers give their devices. Our device of choice is the Sciton Forever Young BBL – it has a proven track record as the gold standard for this type of light therapy.
How does it work? It works similar to laser, although it is not a laser. It works by emitting a concentrated dose of light energy that targets pigment and stimulates your skin cells to regenerate new collagen. When it targets pigment in fine blood vessels and sun (age) spots it eliminates them thru photo-thermal or a heat & destroy action. Recently the findings of the first long term visual and clinical studies of Sciton’s BBL from Stanford University have proven that not only do BBL treatments eliminate pigment spots and superficial facial veins but they have demonstrated that BBL treatments can restore gene expressions patterns of aged human skin to resemble young skin! It was determined that clients treated regularly with BBL appeared 9 years younger than their actual age! These results are exciting to offer! Here is a great little video explaining how it works:
What conditions can be treated with BBL? It is amazing for improving the appearance of sun damaged skin- whether it is pigment spots or wrinkles. It is also an excellent treatment for clients with rosacea-prone skin which is one of specialties. The Sciton BBL effectively diminishes facial veins associated with this skin condition!
How many treatments will I need? The number of treatments varies between clients but most often we start with 3 treatments spaced one month apart. It is important for long term success to maintain the treatments every 6 – 12 months. For clients that simply wish a few small veins or pigment spots removed then spot treatments as need are recommended.
How does it feel and look after? You will briefly feel a warm or “rubber band snap” sensation as the light is absorbed by the targeted areas. This may take a few minutes to half an hour depending on the size of the area. You will experience some redness that should resolve within 24 hours. For some pigmented lesions, you will see a darkening of the spots followed by fading and flaking off within a couple of weeks. Your skin will feel smoother, fine lines and pores will be less noticeable and uneven pigmentation or superficial veins will fade.
Who will perform my treatments? Only our Master Clinical Estheticians will perform these treatments. We have set high standards at the Summit for performing these specialized treatments even though this is not currently a provincial requirement. Our Estheticians must have a minimum of 5 years of experience and be a Master Esthetician with a keen interest and experience in skin care before they begin their Clinical Skin Care Certification. This takes a further 6 months of training on average. Our Master Clinical Estheticians, on average, have 17 years of experience.
What kind of results can I expect? Unfortunately, we cannot control what clients do after their treatments in regards to diet, alcohol or drug use, smoking, sun exposure etc. so therefore we are not able to make any guarantees of the results. We can however say that this is one of our most popular treatments because of the outstanding results! Pictures speak volumes so be sure to check out this before & after photo gallery:

What is a Photo Facial? It is the name of a full face treatment with BBL or IPL.
What areas of the body can be treated? For pigmentation we most often treat the upper body – hands, arms, chest, upper back, neck and face although any area can be treated except over areas with a lot of hair growth. For vascular concerns the face, neck and chest are the most common areas although we can also work with small vessels known as cherry angiomas on the arms and legs. Large or varicose veins on the legs cannot be successfully treated with this type of light therapy.
How do I get started? Book a Clinical Skin Care Consultation with one of our Master Clinical Estheticians. This will take approximately 45 minutes. During this time we will discuss your concerns, perform an assessment to determine if this is the correct treatment for you. Your Master Clinical Esthetician will then outline the treatments needed and cost associated to achieve your desired results.
To schedule a consultation with one of The Summit’s Master Clinical Estheticians call 423-3888