They say that the right lighting is everything. It’s true: good light can make your selfie and bad light can break it. But did you know that light can also be used therapeutically to help you achieve a healthy complexion? What I’m talking about here is BBL: BroadBand Light Therapy, or the latest version of the ever-so-popular IPL, Intense Pulsed Light Therapy. BBL applies light directly to your skin to address a variety of cosmetic concerns.
How does BBL work?
The light energy that BroadBand Light Therapy applies directly onto the skin is converted into heat energy once it reaches the target area, also known as a chromophore. A chromophore is a group of light-absorbing molecules that are responsible for much of the colour of our skin, hair, eyes and more. The target area or chromophore absorbs the heat energy, and thermal damage to the area is created (don’t worry, this is intentional). The damage creates a natural healing response in the body, wherein the damaged tissue is eliminated and replaced by new, healthy tissue that produces more collagen and elastin. As the laser moves around your face, your chromophores become the target tissue; your body then begins to replace that damaged tissue. The results? A more youthful, healthy, glowing complexion (BBL also burns off bacteria, which can help alleviate acne).
BBL is non-invasive and relatively quick. Various filters target the skin’s different depths and cells to achieve your desired result and the sensation is that of a rubber band snapping against your skin (not pleasant, but as someone who’s sat through a number of tattoo sessions, I don’t think it sounds unbearable). A lubricating jelly is applied to the skin and protective goggles are provided. The length of the treatment can vary but it typically takes 15 to 30 minutes, and sessions are repeated every few weeks––please consult a dermatologist, however, for a specific treatment plan. There seems to be very little recovery time needed, if any, and it can take up to one week to see results. Prices vary depending on the clinic and the expert administering the treatment.
Who should try BBL?
BBL can treat a range of skin conditions, but it’s commonly used for the following:
- Sun spots and sun-damaged skin
- Pigmentation, including freckles and birthmarks
- Varicose veins
- Broken blood vessels on the face
- Wrinkles, sagging skin and shrinking pores
- Hair removal
Because the treatment doesn’t have a ton of contraindications, most people with any of the above concerns make great BBL candidates. However, it’s important to do your research and choose a reputable clinic with certified technicians and doctors. Then, snap your way to a more youthful complexion!