Dr. Roberto Garcia | 03/15/2021
I have normal to dry skin with occasional hormonal breakouts. I've been blessed with three amazing kids and with that, I have developed several dark spots on the cheeks. We're also in Florida for a reason: we love the sunshine and with that comes the sunspots (I call them fun spots), fine lines and wrinkles.
When asked what my biggest concern about my skin is, hands down, I always say my dark spots and acne scars from the hormonal breakouts. Over the course of the year, I've been committed to my skin, using ZO Skin Care line to properly clean and moisturize. I have tried brightening serums but haven't received the results I am looking for. So, I reached out to the team at Contoura for their expertise. After discussing various treatments, we decided on an IPL of the entire face.
A FEW FACTS
IPL treatments are also referred to as “photofacials.” IPL treatments boast 50-75% improvement rate in treating rosacea, sunspots, age spots, brown spots, chronic sun damage, fine lines and skin. Cost per treatment ranges from $300- $600. You can purchase a package of several treatment visits, which can reduce the total costs. Most professionals suggest 2-5 (depending on damage) treatments for optimal results. Talk to your Aesthetician about what they recommend for your skin.
Contoura, located near the Beaches, boasts a beautiful office and surgery center. Dr. Roberto Garcia, Brookes and Becky, all licensed medical professionals, were extremely thorough, explaining the entire procedure and what to expect in the days following. The treatment starts with putting a numbing cream on the entire face. The reviews I read online at Real Self from other folks claimed the numbing cream made them feel blotchy and itchy. I did not experience this at all. I actually felt quite calm. Perhaps it was Becky's calm voice just walking me through all the feels I would have, or maybe it was the super comfy warming bed I was on. Hard to tell. Either way, I'm ready. Bring it on.
WHAT TO EXPECT
Before the treatment begins, you will be given eyewear to protect you from the bright flashes of light. Becky then applied a cool gel to my skin; this helps lubricate the handpiece and cool the epidermis during the treatment. This felt heavenly! Now comes the laser, I have to say, the anticipation might be the worst part. The laser feels exactly like how Becky explained it to me, like a hot rubber band snapping your skin. Now, that sounds pretty terrible, but the entire procedure only lasted 15 minutes. After a few minutes of knowing what to expect, it was easy. Now, would I sign up for that for marginal results? No. But, keep reading.
POST IPL TREATMENT
Here's the fun part. My skin inflames very easily, so my face was like a tomato after the treatment, red and hot. Becky put on some magic cooling air on my face (lifesaver) and gave me 2 ice packs which helped cool my face. The heat was intense and made me want to hide in a closet for a few hours, but it actually subsided after about 2 hours. In reality, after about an hour, my face cooled and felt fine, kind of like the day after you had too much sun, precisely the reason I am getting this treatment in the first place!
Here's a fun collage of my IPL Before and After photos. In the first photo, check out the clump of red and brown spots - they are pretty red in this photo mainly because that was the major focus during treatment.
I discovered that the downtime after an IPL Treatment in terms of discomfort, is pretty minimal. An hour and a half post treatment, the heat was gone. Based on my experience, I wouldn't want to go to work immediately after the IPL, but the day after I did. Waking up the next day, it was crazy to see how dark the pigment was! Wow, that was fast! Clearly my skin has a lot of deep damage, damage that I didn't even think I had! To all my peeps out there- Sunscreen, Sunscreen, Sunscreen!
And to anyone who is still contemplating this amazing photo facial, I cannot express how many times I've received compliments on my skin this past week. The texture is so much smoother, less wrinkles and all those nasty brown melasma spots are so much lighter, leaving me to call and booking my next IPL Photofacial appointment at Contoura. I found reading real reviews and looking at Before & After photos very helpful in setting my expectations. Contoura has a ton of these on their IPL Before and After gallery here.
SKIN CARE REGIMEN POST TREATMENT
AM and PM Regimen-
1.) Cleansed my skin with ZO® Gentle Cleanser
2.) Applied ZO® Hydrating Creme
3.) Obagi® Daily Hydro Drops
4.) La Mer sunscreen for day. You don't want to exfoliate the skin until all of the coffee grounds slough off naturally! As far as makeup goes, I was able to wear it the following day, of course you could still see the dark pigment but hey, it was a great conversation starter!
I am blown away with my results! Minimal recovery time with a huge payoff, I am beyond thrilled with this treatment! My dark spots that I was most self-conscious about are gone, I have reduced pore size, smoother texture and I feel like my skin is more plump, all in just 2 weeks!
Under the direction of visionary double board-certified facial plastic surgeon Dr. Roberto Garcia, Contoura Facial Plastic Surgery offers the latest surgical and non-surgical procedures in a relaxed and serene setting. Schedule a virtual or in-person consultation today to get the first glimpse of your future self.
230 A1A N, Ponte Vedra Beach, FL 32082