Broadband Light High Energy Rapid Output

BBL HERO is our newest laser offering at O’Neill Plastic Surgery. The acronym stands for Broadband Light High Energy Rapid Output and it’s the latest light treatment from Sciton Lasers. The technology is faster than a pulsed light device and stronger than your average intense pulsed light (IPL) treatment. Here’s what to know about this anti-aging, photo-correcting procedure.

What is the BBL HERO?

BBL HERO is a new take on a tried-and-true favorite. The original BBL treatment is a special type of IPL treatment that is called broadband light. The procedure uses dual-lamps to deliver visible and infrared light with smart filters to target your skin problems. It’s been shown to rejuvenate skin at a cellular level and treats brown spots, redness (including erythema from rosacea and acne), and skin laxity.

The upgraded BBL HERO uses increased speed, shortened pulse width, high peak power, and twice the cooling capacity of the original to help keep irritation away. These improvements to broadband light treatment can be attributed to the duration of the pulses. A typical machine may take up to one second apiece for a light flash. A BBL HERO pulse can take as little as three milliseconds, which means you will get 1,200 to 1,500 pulses in a single face session versus 250 to 350 pulses with the original BBL or IPL.

The new technology allows practitioners to move the handpiece fluidly in motion. Previous stamp and pulse method (a technique in which the head of the IPL is placed on each area with a pause for the light to flash before moving to the next spot) were effective but this allows for more patient comfort while distributing faster and more effective energy to your skin. It has made treating the face, hands, arms, legs, back, and chest easier and more comfortable.


BBL HERO at O'Neill Plastic Surgery

Benefits of the BBL HERO

The uniformity of the results is also impressive with the BBL HERO. In the past, IPL of the face and especially on the chest, arms, or legs could lead to patches of uneven skin. The IPL handpiece has a limited ability to deliver a consistent amount of light energy quickly, even with a perfect technique. With BBL HERO, ‘track marks’ from the IPL stamp and pulse technique are no longer a worry for treated skin.

BBL HERO can also be combined with multiple modalities to achieve further results. We used to have to allow the skin to heal weeks before performing new techniques. Now, we can use BBL HERO combined with Microneedling, RF Microneedling, or Fractional laser during the same visit to achieve the desired result without injury to the skin.

The ideal candidate for BBL HERO doesn’t have any recent sun exposure, no broken areas on the skin, and has sun damage and/or redness they would like addressed. It does include a wavelength option for darker skin tones but it can be recommended for those at the light to medium dark end of the Fitzpatrick skin tone scale. A consultation with a laser specialist will let you know if you are a candidate.

As with any IPL treatment, most patients feel the flash of warmth that accompanies each pulse during BBL HERO. Most people can tolerate it without anesthetic numbing cream. As the light finds the melanin in your skin, the pigment will begin to darken, helping you know that you had an optimal treatment. Over time the body’s natural healing process will remove the pigmented cells, replacing them with fresh undamaged cells.

BBL HERO Downtime and Results

While BBL HERO is considered a ‘little to no downtime’ procedure, treated skin may look and feel sunburned in the first few hours following treatment. Cool compresses and ibuprofen may be used if you feel discomfort. If you are treating blood vessels be on the lookout for post-procedure bruising. And, regardless of the treatment area, you’ll want to be extra diligent with your sunscreen routine. Your skin will be sensitive to sunlight for two weeks or more after treatment. Excellent sun protection is the best way to protect your results.

Realistically, you can expect a return visit or two. While results can be seen after a single BBL HERO treatment, optimal results often require two to five treatments depending on the condition being treated. Our average with the new HERO technology is three treatments spaced 4 to 12 weeks apart for skin revitalization. Most people will need two to five treatments to reach their desired improvement level. One treatment is unlikely to completely fix sun damage – it’s a journey – that includes maintenance treatment every 6 months to a year to keep your results.


The O’Neill Plastic Surgery Team is committed to working with you and the other members of your health care team to ensure that you receive all of the information you need to make the best decision regarding your BBL HERO Treatment. Call our plastic surgery office at 843-881-2130 or contact us online.

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