Touch Light | Photo-exposure and Photo-ageing
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Photo-exposure and Photo-ageing

Photo-exposure and Photo-ageing

IPL is a commonly used abbreviation, meaning intense pulsed light.

This technology has many other names, most often they depend on the manufacturer, technology improvements or other factors.

You have probably heard many of them:

  •  E-LIGHT, ELOS (Electro-Optical Synergy) is a combination of light and electricity (IPL + RF);
  • VPL (variable pulsed light) variable pulsating light;
  • AFT (advanced fluorescence technology) and others. 

In essence, all these names mean the same thing – light therapy. Light therapy or IPL phototherapy is one of the techniques used in cosmetology to achieve a variety of different cosmetic effects.

What is behind the concept of phototherapy? After all, we all know that the abuse of exposure to direct sunlight adversely affects the skin and leads to its rapid ageing. This process is called photo ageing. So how can a light, which takes away youth, bring her back? In fact, there is no contradiction here. It is only necessary to understand how the light is arranged in order to see all its possibilities. Sunlight consists of rays of a different spectrum. 10% is ultraviolet, 40% is the visible spectrum and 50% is infrared radiation. Ageing does not cause all the rays, but only ultraviolet does. Under the influence of ultraviolet, collagen and elastin fibres are modified and coarsened, creases and wrinkles form on the skin surface. The vessels and capillaries of the skin also become more fragile, which leads to the appearance of a vascular network and spider veins. Due to age accumulation of melanin, pigment spots appear on the surface.

In phototherapy, broadband intense pulsed light is used, with a wavelength spectrum of 400-1200 nm. It is completely devoid of the ultraviolet spectrum and is a stream of photo particles of visible light and near infrared.

The principle of operation of the IPL, as well as the laser, is based on the theory of selective photothermolysis. Light impulses, depending on the wavelength, are absorbed in the skin by certain target cells (chromophores), providing certain expected effects.

IPL technique is often mistakenly called a laser, but they are not similar, because they differ in their physical properties.

IPL technology uses light in a wide range, from 400 to 1200 nm, and thanks to special glass filters, which cut off the light source at a certain wavelength, allow you to achieve the desired effect and solve specific problems. So depending on the filter used, IPL can be used in aesthetic medicine for:

Skin Rejuvenation;

Pigmentation elimination;

Elimination of vascular defects;

Acne treatment;

Elimination of unwanted hair;

In IPL rejuvenation, a non-ablative effect is applied, in which the light pulse is directed into the deeper layers of the skin (derma), triggering the synthesis of collagen and elastin, without affecting the epidermis, which allows for several procedures to rejuvenate the skin, improve tone, rid it of fine wrinkles, capillary net, superficial pigmentation, narrow pores, improve complexion. You can rejuvenate the skin of the face, hands and neckline without a recovery period.

The clarification and elimination of pigment formations is based on the fact that light is absorbed by the melanin pigment, leading to coagulation of the pigment formation, as a result of which they are gradually peeled off.

When the vascular defects are eliminated, the light is absorbed by the hemoglobin of the blood, as a result of which the walls of the pathological vessel are glued together and the vessel becomes invisible, the surrounding tissues are not damaged.

Phototherapy for acne is based on the fact that the light energy is absorbed by oxyhemoglobin, which is located in the vessels and capillaries that feed the sebaceous gland. The vital activity of the sebaceous gland is impaired, resulting in a decrease in acne lesions, a decrease in sebum production, and an improvement in the physiological processes in the skin. Also, light energy has a direct effect on porphyrin, the product of the vital activity of propionic bacteria that cause acne. As a result of a series of photochemical reactions, propionic bacterium dies, reducing the detrimental effect on the skin.

The principle of photo epilation does not differ from laser hair removal and is based on the absorption of light by the melanin contained in the hair, the hair bulb dies as a result of thermal damage, ensuring the removal of unwanted hair for a long time. But there is a large list of conditions and diseases that may become relative or absolute contraindications for phototherapy:

Most of them are related to skin integrity problems due to physical or chemical damage.

Phototherapy should not be carried out after treatment with chemical peels, depilatory creams, after waxing and sugaring, in case of infectious skin diseases and various rashes, including allergic ones.

In the case of herpes infection in the treatment area of ​​the IPL procedure.

Absolute contraindications:

The existence of artificial pacemaker (cardio stimulator);

Carrying out the procedure on tanned skin (exposure to the sun or tanning bed less than 2 weeks ago) and the use of tanning;

III, IV, V, VI Fitzpatrick’s skin phototype scale;

Pregnancy and lactation;


Epilepsy or other conditions in which flashing light can cause an unexpected condition, mental disorders;

Diseases of the thyroid gland;

Increased photosensitivity of the skin and taking photosensitizing drugs;

Oncological diseases.