Let’s face it, as we get older many of us take a more critical look in the mirror. Age and motherhood can certainly take its toll. A lack of sleep coupled with the endless needs of children can result in a sorely neglected beauty and health regimen. For me, it also didn’t help that I pursued sun worshiping as a career path in my youth. So, after my 40th birthday I began researching an “all of the above” strategy on fighting the aging process.
Would a simple cream do the trick? What does Botox really do and what are the drawbacks? In addition to the usual wrinkles, I also had some sunspots that I was anxious to get rid of. My journey started with a routine trip to my dermatologist to have a small mole checked. (I’m convinced that with my beautiful children and happy life…surely a shoe is ready to drop in the form of some malignancy. But my paranoia about moles is another story.) After going through our normal check up, I asked about the age spots on my face. She wrote a prescription for a brown spot lightening cream. Well…it takes 8 weeks, morning and night application, etc. Frankly, I am just not that disciplined. When I asked about other options, she had none. The quest for knowledge continued.
On one occasion when I was getting a facial, I could not help but notice that my 64-year-old aesthetician looked wonderful, much younger than in previous visits. She told me it was Botox. She went onto to tell me about the fabulous team at the MediSpa at Lifetime Fitness in Loudoun. I had been to the gym at Loudoun a few times and noticed that the spa looked very impressive and the free childcare was pretty enticing.
I made an appointment to talk about all of my options with Taylor Kern who is an Aesthetic Nurse at Lifetime MediSpa. Taylor and I sat down and discussed a number of procedures that I might be interested in trying. It didn’t hurt that she is gorgeous and is a walking billboard for her work! She explained that these are procedures that she does religiously. It shows! Damn it, must buy more sunscreen.
Okay…I was ready to start the assault against aging. I recently tried an IPL treatment and wanted to report back. Here are some facts about IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) provided by Lifetime’s LIFESPA:
1. HOW DOES LASER PIGMENT REMOVAL WORK?
Lasers produce light that passes harmlessly through the top layers of the skin. The light from the laser is selectively absorbed by your pigment, fragmenting the pigment into smaller particles. These are gradually removed by the body’s immune system. This treatment will remove age spots, sunspots and other brown-colored spots.
2. WHAT TYPES OF PIGMENTED LESIONS CAN BE TREATED?
Except for moles, most pigment lesions are successfully treated and respond quickly to laser therapy.
3. DOES IT HURT?
It can feel like a rubber band snapping the skin.
4. IS IT SAFE?
There is little risk of side effects with this procedure. Your provider will discuss potential risks of your specific condition prior to treatment.
5. HOW DO I PREP FOR THE PROCEDURE?
2 WEEKS PRIOR - Avoid direct sunlight and/or tanning booths.
6. HOW LONG WILL IT TAKE?
It takes 10-30 minutes, depending upon the size and number of areas being treated
7. WILL I NEED MORE THAN ONE TREATMENT?
Pigmented lesions usually require 1-2 treatment sessions spaced 4-8 weeks apar
8. WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT AFTER TREATMENT?
Following treatment, the area may become whitish-colored and swell slightly. The site might form a scab that should heal in about 7-10 days.
There are just a few notes that I would add: after the procedure I felt as though I had a sunburn on my face; however, the discomfort was gone within hours. Luckily, a friend who had the procedure warned me in advance that you aren’t date night ready for at least a week. It was closer to 10 days before my face healed completely. Although it was only little brown spots or exaggerated freckles, I laid low. So, do not plan an IPL around a big event, it will take time to heal!
Overall, I was really happy with my first session. Many of the stubborn smaller discolorations are gone. Some of the more problem spots will require a second trip. Taylor had told me, as does the literature, that a second visit will be mostly likely be needed for your darkest spots. I did return for my second session this past week. The brown spots were much less noticeable after the second IPL and Taylor also focused on those little broken blood vessels that pop up on your face.
One BIG piece of advice, YOU MUST, MUST, MUST start wearing a good sunscreen after your IPL. I choose Oil of Olay Regenerist with SPF 30. I noticed that some brown spots were returning since I was right back in the sun with my daughter after my first treatment. I learned my lesson and started being more religious about suncreen before my second treatment.
While you can certainly find a number of MediSpas in the area, as I mentioned, I had a very positive experience at Lifetime Fitness Loudoun. Here is some additional information about the staff at the Lifetime Fitness Loudoun MediSpa.
Dr. Elizabeth Zapp & Taylor Kern, RN.
Clients using the spa can take advantage of the daycare even if you aren’t a member. Consultations are free and they typically run specials for various MediSpa offerings. Currently, all IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) treatments are $200.00 for first time customers. Additional treatments are currently $400.00.
For more information about other services, see the attached menu of options. To contact Lifetime Fitness Loudoun MediSpa, visit this link.
Although Lifetime LifeSpa provided me with a discount on the IPL procedure, the opinions expressed in this blog are entirely my own.
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Lifetime Fitness LifeSpa
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