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Nicole’s IPL Story

During a routine visit to her family doctor, our client Nicole bemoaned the fact that she had a number of very (to her, anyway) unsightly visible broken capillaries around her nose, and mentioned that she was feeling self-conscious about some of the freckles on her face and chest that had gotten darker and splotchier over the years. When she asked if there was anything that could be done to eliminate them, her doctor replied “Oh, you don’t need me for that – you need to go and see Dr. Van der Vyver at DermaNuva!”

At DermaNuva our goal is to “Repair, Replenish, and Regenerate” a client’s skin, and we are highly motivated by the desire to restore the confidence and self-esteem of every client that walks through our doors. A busy, fair-complexion mother of 3 with blue eyes, Nicole had suffered through her fair share of sunburns in her youth, but had only started really worrying about sun damage when she turned 30. Despite her current diligent daily SPF routine, damage from all of the summers in her 20’s that she’d spent frolicking in the Alberta sun had caught up to her, and she was growing increasingly dissatisfied with her appearance. At her first consultation appointment, a series of photographs were taken of Nicole’s face and chest, and she underwent a comprehensive skin exam to rule out any underlying conditions and skin cancers.

After assessing her skin, Dr. V explained that the freckling and splotchy areas that she was concerned about were the result of years of sun damage to her face and chest, leading to pigmentation, age spots and irregular texture. This had also contributed to the deterioration of her skin’s firmness and elasticity. He recommended a solution that would target her broken capillaries, the pigmentation caused by sun damage, AND increase collagen production at the same time: Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) treatments, also commonly known as photofacials.

IPL consists of intense, visible, broad-spectrum light that heats and destroys brown spots, melasma, broken capillaries, and sun spots. While they can overlap in use, IPL is not to be confused with laser treatments. While lasers also use intense light and heat to treat unwanted skin issues, they’re comprised of a single wavelength of light instead of a broad spectrum. IPL can also be used to treat a wide variety of skin issues, including acne scars, rosacea, melasma and birthmarks.


When discussing what her goals and priorities were, Nicole indicated that she was very motivated to improve the way her face looked and felt first and foremost, and a customized treatment plan was designed to suit her schedule and budget.

Dr. V explained that while IPL is good at what it does, it’s not instantaneous, and even with her mild pigmentation, she would likely need several treatments to achieve optimal results. He told her that she could expect the actual treatment to feel much like a rubber band snapping against her skin, and that the treated area might burn a little bit immediately after the session. He also told her to plan for about one week of downtime after her first treatment, and advised that her skin might appear to have dark coffee ground-looking spots, or may look muddled or dirty, but nothing that a little mineral makeup couldn’t cover. There were also several guidelines Nicole would need to adhere to prior each treatment, including avoiding sun exposure for 2 weeks prior and after, and not waxing or using Retin-A, AHA/BHA, and glycolic acid products for at least three days prior to and after treatment. Her appointments were scheduled four weeks apart to allow the treated areas to heal in between each session.

During her initial visit, a spot test was performed to confirm that Nicole was a good candidate for IPL, then her skin was cleansed and a cooling gel was applied. After being given protective eyewear, the IPL device was moved against her skin, and the light pulses being emitted began targeting her areas of concern. In the days following her first treatment, Nicole noticed that the pigmented areas on her face got much darker and looked and felt almost like scabs, then peeled off within a week of the treatment, revealing lighter, healthier-looking skin.

Slow and steady is the name of the game with IPL, but Nicole began noticing significant improvements within two weeks of her first session. “My skin looks brighter, healthier and more even already!” she told us when she arrived at the clinic for her next session.

After completing a series of 4 treatments, Nicole was beyond thrilled with her results. She described the experience as life-changing, and felt that she had reduced pore size, a more even skin tone and that her skin felt more plump. She was overwhelmed by the change she had seen in herself, and when we showed her the before and after photos, she couldn’t believe the transformation. We were able to restore Nicole’s skin and her confidence in her appearance!

We are offering our clients this life-changing treatment, and we invite you to book a complimentary consultation to begin your DermaNuva experience.

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