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  • Writer's pictureZak Lockhead

Vascular treatments with IPL and Laser devices

Updated: Apr 1, 2022

Modern technology is fantastic. We are now at a time where we can perform advanced beauty therapies that are highly effective, cheap to do, and extremely efficient! One of these is the removal of vascular lesions such as spider veins using IPL devices. The very thought of removing a vein sounds harmful though doesn’t it, however it isnt and I will explain why below. This is why I have written this article to take you through everything you need to know about vascular treatments with IPL devices.

What is a Spider vein?

Firstly, we need to discuss what a spider vein is. Spider veins are damaged veins that usually appear on the legs or face. Basically (without trying to bore you too much) veins contain valves and when these become damaged, blood stays within the vein and results in spider veins. Spider veins can also occur when blood vessels burst, which usually happens due to an increased blood pressure or UV exposure.

Spider veins and IPL
Example of Spider veins on the face.

Isn’t destroying a vein harmful to the body?

In short, no. This is because these veins have already been damaged and therefore do not actually do anything. So don’t worry, removing them is highly safe and is great for improving the appearance of the skin. You might also be worried that this treatment will be harmful, but fear not, this treatment is virtually pain free and there is absolutely 0 downtime following treatment.

IPL vascular treatment
Example of a broken vein.

Image adapted from

How does the IPL device work for Vascular treatments?

To answer this, I will briefly explain how the IPL beauty device works and keep this as simple as possible. The IPL device releases energy (light) with wavelengths between 400-1200nm. The light that is released by the IPL device must be absorbed by something for treatments to work. Now, different particles located in the skin absorb light and generate heat. Luckily for us, one of these particles that absorbs light from the IPL device is haemoglobin. Haemoglobin is a red blood cell that carries oxygen around the body that is found within these veins. So basically, when we use the correct filter on the IPL machine and shoot the device at the spider vein, the haemoglobin in the spider vein absorbs the light, generates heat which leads to the vein actually clotting. Once it clots, It is destroyed and its appearance is visibly reduced (Figure 1). And it really is that simple.

IPL and veins
Figure 1. The IPL device targets haemoglobin in the damaged vein (1), the damaged vein absorbs this light and is heated (2), this leads to the vein clotting which reduces its appearance (3).

How do I do vascular treatments with an IPL device?

Although I cant advise on the settings you use (unless you buy a machine from us), it is recommended that a wavelength of 600nm is used to avoid any potential complications such as hypopigmentation and also be efficient for tartgeting the haemoglobin located in the vein. The successful treatment of vascular lesions depends on the type and size of the vessels. Smaller and more superficial lesions are more easy to destroy and therefore be treated with IPL device

It will also take approximately 1–3 treatments for a noticeable effect, and I advise leaving approximately 3-8 weeks between treatments (But check with your insurance first).

What IPL device works for vascular treatments?

Haemoglobin absorbs light in the wavelengths of approximately 600nm, so we need to have a device that is capable of emitting these wavelengths. My personal favourite for these treatments is the E-light device. This device also combines an ultra-modern technique called radiofrequency which can also make the treatment more efficient.

IPL E-light device
IPL E-light device

Do you sell devices for spider removal?

Yes, we do. Before starting this business, I worked at medical research facilities through the United Kingdom completing my Ph.D. Following this, I used my experience to design the most quality and high specification and high-quality devices available. Unlike other providers, I will not charge astronomical prices! Please check out all our devices here.

What if I want to know more?

I offer an accredited Level 4 IPL and Skin Rejuvenation course that runs through everything in much more detail! Click here to see.

As always, Thank you for reading my articles. If you have any questions, please remember I offer a free consultation.

Dr Lockhead

0113 418 0464


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