There are so many acronyms in the world of lasers that it’s easy to get confused, particularly when talking about IPL and BBL. VIDA Aesthetic Medicine offers only the best, proven, and safest laser and energy-based treatments to help you achieve your skin goals. Before we untangle the IPL and BBL confusion, let’s start with the basics: not all “lasers” are lasers.

The term laser skin rejuvenation typically refers to any treatment that uses a laser, light, or energy-based device to improve the skin. There are more lasers on the market than any other type of device, and lasers were the first to be released, which is why “lasers” is the umbrella term. However, state of the art technology has revealed that lasers aren’t the only option for improving skin. Light-based devices like IPL and BBL can also work wonders.

Understanding the World of “Lasers”

Light-based devices use a non-invasive light wave in order to refresh the skin. You can use devices like intense pulsed light (IPL) and broadband light (BBL) on virtually any part of the body. Skin that has undergone sun damage can be dramatically improved with these treatments, whether it’s the face, neck, chest, shoulder, or backs of the hands. However, just like with real lasers, light-based devices also require multiple sessions. The exact number of treatments will depend on the damage, treatments areas, and your goals. On average, the benefits of a full series will last up to one year and most people opt for maintenance sessions every six months or so.

IPL was the first light-based device that was widely accepted. It delivers a range of light waves that can target melanin and hemoglobin while simultaneously kick-starting collagen production. Collagen is a must to reduce signs of aging such as enlarged pores and skin laxity (it even helps with acne scarring!). The light works right below the skin’s surface to reduce sun spots, enlarged pores, and hyperpigmentation.

BBL is the second generation of IPL. This photothermal energy improves upon the results available with IPL. It can also reduce redness while firming the skin. Both IPL and BBL can effectively treat dilated blood vessels and even minimize symptoms of rosacea and melasma.

Which is Better, BBL or IPL?

Undoubtedly, BBL has dramatically improved on what IPL can offer because of that “broadband” aspect of it. In fact, BBL is exclusively what VIDA offers! However, a lot of people call BBL “IPL” or consider the terms interchangeable. That makes sense considering BBL is the second generation of IPL. When clients express interest in IPL, a lot of the time they actually mean BBL. Other times, they might have experienced great results with IPL treatments and don’t realize there’s a new and improved version—BBL.

BBL is different than IPL because it features handpieces with cooling technology, too. If you want the most comfortable experience or thought IPL was a little too hot to handle, BBL is a must-try. BBL is able to provide powerful energy with minimal discomfort and virtually no downtime. This option also has more settings than IPL for a more personalized treatment. BBL is created to tackle imperfections at their core, below the skin’s surface. It can help with every common skin complaint from age spots to birth marks, sagging skin to broken blood vessels, poor skin texture to freckles, and more.

Go Deeper with BBL

The light and heat from BBL are capable of taking on darker pigment that is deeper in the skin’s surface compared to IPL. However, what really sets BBL apart is that it repairs skin on a molecular level. Our DNA gets damaged as we get older, which makes it tougher to self-renew. We have slower cell turnover, meaning that old cells stay on the surface of the skin longer, making our skin look aged and dull. A study in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology revealed that BBL (not IPL!) actually rejuvenates at the molecular level, essentially coming close to reversing the aging process.

Ready to give BBL a try for yourself? Start sessions now and you’ll be able to show off beautiful, youthful, radiant skin just in time for the end of summer. It’s the perfect Mother’s Day gift—or gift to yourself. Book your complimentary consultation at VIDA today by calling the office or completing the online form.