COVID-19 Update: Kryger Institute of Plastic Surgery values the health and safety of our patients. Read more about how we are addressing the current situation. Read More

IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) in Thousand Oaks

IPL is an effective, non-invasive treatment for skin rejuvenation. It is used to reduce the appearance of age spots, acne, vascular blemishes, and rosacea. It may also be used for hair removal.


Who is a good candidate for IPL?

The ideal candidates for IPL are men and women with fair skin and moderate sun damage, rosacea, or moderate active acne. IPL is ideal for Fitzpatrick skin types I-IV.

Who is not a good candidate?

Darker skin types (Fitzpatrick V and VI) are more prone to complications after IPL. Anyone who has a history of Post-inflammatory Hyperpigmentation (PIHP) or melasma may develop darker pigmentation after IPL treatment. Patients who have a history of cold sores (oral herpes simplex infection) must take prophylactic anti-herpes medication (such as acyclovir) before undergoing IPL treatment.

Are there other uses for IPL?

Yes, IPL may be effective for removing hair that is resistant to laser hair removal.

How does IPL work?

Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) is a technology similar to a laser. Instead of a single wavelength, IPL uses multiple wavelengths of bright light and filters to target pigments (like melanin) and blood vessels within the skin. The light energy penetrates just below the surface of the skin to damage the targeted pigments and blood vessels. The body’s natural healing process will remove the damaged tissue and result in improved tone and texture of the skin. It requires 3-6 treatments, spaced out every 3-4 weeks, to achieve optimal results.

Is IPL performed in the office?

Yes, IPL treatment may be performed in the clinic, and you can return to work the same day. Most people will experience an “afterglow” that looks like a sunburn.

How painful is IPL?

The procedure is usually described as feeling like a rubber band being snapped on the skin. A topical numbing ointment may be applied prior to the procedure to minimize any discomfort.

What can I expect after IPL treatment?

The advantage to IPL treatment is that downtime is minimal. Initially patients may have redness and swelling, similar to a sunburn appearance, that may persist for up to 2 days. Patients may also experience a slight darkening of sun spots before the treatment area lightens.

How long does it take to work? And how long does it last?

Lightening of the skin occurs over the course of 1-2 weeks, and the treatment may be repeated every 3-4 weeks. Strict avoidance of sun exposure and the use of recommended topical products will prolong the lightening effects of IPL.

What do I have to do after IPL?

It is important to avoid sun exposure for at least two weeks after IPL. This will help to reduce the risk of hyperpigmentation. Your practitioner will recommend specific topical products and give specific instructions that will optimize your results and reduce the risk of complications.

What if I have a problem? When should I call the office?

The Kryger Institute welcomes calls from patients. If you have any concerns at any time, please feel free to call our office. If it is an emergency, the answering service is available 24 hours a day, including weekends and holidays. There is always a plastic surgeon or physician assistant on call. Your practitioner will discuss all the risks and potential complications with you before treatments. You will receive detailed instructions about situations that warrant a call to the office.

Schedule a Consultation