Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) Therapy

Cosmetic Procedures

Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) Therapy

What is IPL therapy?

Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) treatment, also known as a photofacial or photorejuvenation, is a powerful tool to lessen signs of aging, including dark spots and sun damage. IPL therapy targets problem areas on the face by removing hyperpigmentation and restoring a glowing complexion. IPL treatments also can be used to target wrinkles, freckles, acne rosacea, large pores, and unwanted hair. It has also been shown to effectively treat dry eye.

Our providers will use a handheld device that emits light penetrating the layers below the skin’s surface, breaking down melanin that causes dark spots and treating other signs of aging. The light waves are gentle, meaning patients typically have minimal downtime after treatment. Minor hyperpigmentation might be corrected in just one session, while other cases may take more treatments. Unlike laser therapy, the light is released at many different wavelengths.

Who is a good candidate for IPL therapy?

IPL Therapy is most effective on light to light medium skin. Good candidates may have sun-damaged skin. The procedure is not recommended for patients with darker or tanned skin, people suffering from acne or taking an acne treatment, or pregnant people.

What should I expect during IPL therapy?

IPL converts light to heat as it reaches the skin, targeting dark spots, freckles or hair. Patients typically report that they experience a mild stinging sensation. Sessions usually last between 30 and 90 minutes. A topical anesthetic cream can be applied prior to the treatment to ease any discomfort.

What will my skin look like after IPL therapy?

Afterward, your skin may appear sunburnt. Sunspots and other problem areas may appear darker over the next few days prior to lightening up. That is a sign that the treatment is working. Within a week, the dark spots should flake away. You can apply makeup 24 hours after the procedure.

Your provider will recommend some good moisturizers and will advise you on experiences to avoid, including hot showers, strong chemicals, and sun exposure, as your skin recovers.

How often should I do IPL therapy?

Talk with your provider about how many IPL sessions would best benefit you. Most patients are recommended to undergo at least three sessions scheduled on a monthly basis. Your Cizik Eye Clinic provider will discuss any additional side effects with you and answer any of your questions before the procedure.

Meet Our Team

Turn back the clock with an aesthetic or cosmetic treatment with one of our board-certified ophthalmic plastic and reconstructive surgeons.


Ying Chen, MD

Assistant Professor
Director of Oculoplastic Surgery
Ruiz Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Science
McGovern Medical School at UTHealth Houston

Timothy McCulley MD

Timothy J. McCulley, MD

Professor and Chair
Richard S. Ruiz, MD, Distinguished University Chair
Ruiz Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Science
McGovern Medical School at UTHealth Houston


Ore-ofe Adesina, MD

Associate Professor Medical Director, Robert Cizik Eye Clinic
John P. McGovern Distinguished Professor in Ophthalmology
Ruiz Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Science McGovern Medical School at
UTHealth Houston

Contact Us

At Robert Cizik Eye Clinic, we offer patients access to highly specialized eye and vision care. To ask us a question, schedule an appointment, or learn more about us, please call (713) 486-9400, or click below to send us a message. In the event of an emergency, call 911 or go to the nearest Emergency Room.