Remember waking up for high school and finding a new friend pop up on your skin overnight? Growing up, I rarely had breakouts in my skin... but when I did break out, it was ugly - like scar ugly. I recently talked with Dr. Nukta at NOVA Plastic Surgery and made an appointment for a BBL photorejuvenation in December to remove some scaring that still bothers me today. I didn't know much about BBL (not to be confused with the Brazilian Butt Lift!), so I thought I'd do some Q & A with the NOVA Plastic Surgery Team and help share with you all who might have the same questions :)
What is BBL?
BBL, or BroadBand Light, is also known as Intense Pulsed Light or photorejuvenation. When you hear people say they are getting a photofacial, what they mean is that they are getting a BBL treatment. Also, a BBL treatment isn’t the same thing as a laser treatment. Lasers use a specific wavelength to treat the affected area, while BBL uses more than one wavelength, giving it a larger stable of treatment options.
What Are the Benefits of BBL?
A BroadBand Light treatment can treat any number of skin conditions, including: helping clear up acne, evening out skin tone, erasing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, treating the appearance of age spots or freckles, firming up the skin, and even removing hair. The treatment gives these dramatic results in a completely non-invasive way- no surgery, no incisions, and no surgical recovery. Since BBl isn’t a surgical procedure, you can have a photo facial done in the office in sometimes as little as an hour.
How Does BBL Work?
BroadBand Light treatments use the foundational idea that certain damage to the skin can be used to benefit its appearance. As we age, there is negative skin damage that we experience as we live our normal lives: pollution, sun exposure, cigarette smoke exposure, poor diet, and the simple existence of gravity can all work together to leave the skin looking dry, wrinkled, uneven in tone, and rough in texture.
A BBL or IPL machine sends controlled amounts of heat to the target area, which causes minor damage that signals to the body that it’s time to produce more collagen and go into overdrive to repair the area. The skin cells absorb the heat, which stimulates collagen production. The damaged skin is gone, and the result is smoother, firmer, more rejuvenated looking skin without the issues that can sometimes be associated with the use of lasers. And once you’re done with your treatment, you can go on about your day while your skin does the work for you.
BBL treatments can be performed on almost any area of the body, including the face, hands, and chest, which are common areas where aging shows.
What Is Recovery From BBL Like?
You might have some initial redness immediately after the treatment, but that will fade after a few hours. Most patients will be able to put on makeup, go back to work, and generally continue with their normal activities immediately after the treatment. Ice packs can be applied to the area after treatment, if that makes you more comfortable, though it’s not required.
Patients with brown hyper-pigmentation might notice that the spots get darker for a few days, and they may peel after treatment. Other patients might notice slight swelling, especially if the treatment is being done around the eyes (this is more common in people with red complexions). The swelling will fade within a few days.
Be sure to follow the physician’s after care instructions to get the best results. You’ll want to avoid drinking alcohol and avoid strenuous exercise for a few days after the treatment, to minimize any swelling or chance for bruising. You will also need to stay out of direct sun exposure until your treatment is completed, and avoid tanning for one month before and after each treatment session.
As soon as the redness and any swelling begin to fade, your results will become visible. You will notice tighter, firmer skin, with less visible freckles, sun spots, age spots, and pigmentation. Your pores will become smaller, as will any burst blood vessels that were previously visible. You will also notice a clearing of any acne you had before treatment.
How Many Treatments Will I Need?
The number of treatments you need depends on a lot of factors: the treatment area, severity of the issues you want to correct, and your existing skin pigmentation. In general, most issues can be treated within 3 to 5 treatments, with about two to four weeks between each session. Some people will need more treatments to get the results they want. Depending on your specific complaint, you might find that a microdermabrasion treatment between each BBL session will give you better, more quickly visible results.
Who Can Get BBL?
Almost anyone in Northern Virginia can get a BBL treatment! It’s excellent for treating skin complaints for both men and women, and can be used on almost any area of the body, including the hands, shoulders, chest, and face. Patients with suntans or darker skin tones might not be good candidates for BBL treatments because the light may cause hyper pigmentation. The doctor will tell you if your are a good candidate based on your existing skin tone at your consultation.
What Do I Need To Do To Get a BBL Treatment?
Just call our office to schedule a consultation for BBL treatment in Northern Virginia! You’re just a few treatments away from having smooth, firm, vibrant, blemish-free, visible-vein-free skin on whatever problem area is bothering you. Call our office today and come speak to a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon about what our BBL treatment can do for you. And November is the perfect time to start your treatments- it’s colder and you’re not going to be outside suntanning anytime soon anyway!
Hi! my name is Andrea and I'm a not-so-average Northern Virginia blogger, mom, and transplant from the Midwest. I host Girls Night Out events, meet ups, and write about events and my adventures in the DC area. I love to travel, brunch, and drink wine with my neighbors! I'm known to live on the wild side and order Venti iced double shots at 5pm.
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