The Women's Journal

Does It Really Beat The Competition? Part III 

By  |  0 Comments

By Joanne Graves, Owner of Sanctuary Spa

Find out how HydraFacial stacks up to other non-invasive facial treatments, including microdermabrasion, chemical peels, photo facials, and more.

There’s no denying that medical spa treatments can go a long way in treating your skin, from reducing fine lines and wrinkles to improving acne and rosacea.

One of the latest non-invasive facials on the market is HydraFacial — a treatment that claims to be “the most effective type of facial you can get.” How does HydraFacial stack up to other tried-and-true facial treatments?

In part three of a four-part series, we’ll explore HydraFacial versus photo facials, or IPL. IPL stands for intense pulsed light. It’s a type of light therapy used to treat wrinkles, spots, and unwanted hair.

What is the HydraFacial? 

To perform a HydraFacial, estheticians use a proprietary machine — the HydraFacial MD by Edge Systems — to perform four distinctive facial rejuvenation procedures in one single treatment.

This multi-step treatment cleanses, exfoliates, and extracts dead cells. It then rejuvenates the skin by applying a serum infused with antioxidants, peptides, and hyaluronic acid.

It’s mainly used to address the following concerns: 

  • Fine lines and wrinkles
  • Dark spots
  • Hyperpigmentation
  • Clogged pores
  • Enlarged pores
  • Mild acne
  • Oily skin

How does the device work? HydraFacial employs a unique, spiral suction tip that dislodges impurities and delivers the serum deep into the pores by opening them up during the treatment.

This painless in-office procedure promises to deliver immediate, long-term results for people of all skin types, with absolutely no downtime.

Although some people experience slight tightness and redness for about an hour or so following the treatment, the side effects and risks of HydraFacial are minimal across the board.

HydraFacial Vs. IPL photo facial 

Intense pulsed light (IPL) is a photo-rejuvenation cosmetic skin procedure that employs laser-like pulses of non-coherent light to fix sunspots, age spots, blotches, large pores, and many other common skin conditions.

These lights penetrate deep into the skin and cause the collagen and blood vessels to constrict, which helps to reduce the appearance of redness and age lines. Although considered effective, IPL treatments do have some drawbacks. For one, they don’t work on all discolorations. Deeper discolorations — such as deep freckles and age spots — are often better treated with microdermabrasion and other skin lightening techniques. The IPL photo facial is often recommended for people with delicate skin disorders or issues such as rosacea and is considered to be a relatively gentle treatment.

It’s also popular for its quick, minimally invasive appeal. Patients can receive a photo facial treatment in 30 minutes or less and can resume their regular activities immediately following the procedure — including driving themselves home from the treatment.

However, those who have had IPL facials do report that the side effects — especially redness, enlarged pores, and the appearance of aged skin — can linger for several weeks following treatment. Some people also report that the treatment affected their teeth that have fillings, causing discomfort like chewing on tinfoil.

Best for:

The IPL photo facial is a good choice for those with surface discolorations, rosacea, and other skin issues. It is not recommended for those who have darker skin tones, those with deeper wrinkles and scarring, or those who are taking Accutane. IPL treatments are also not a good choice for people with severe cases of acne or rosacea, or women who are pregnant.

If you are ready to start working on your skin care goals, please don’t hesitate to contact Sanctuary Spa at 302-487-1469 to schedule a complimentary consultation with one of our estheticians to determine the best treatment options for you.

Mention this article for a free gift when scheduling your HydraFacial at Sanctuary Spa!

This is part three in a four-part series. SO tune-in next issue for more!

Contact us at or call us at 302-475-1469 for a personalized consultation!