This morning, I got my face photo-rejuvenated. Okay, so I just had one session of IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) treatment... but at R900 a pop, you kind of expect even a single session to transform you into a dewy-skin twelve-year-old.

My beauty therapist, Anina, quickly abused me of this notion, Apparently, while a course of 10 makes a substantial difference, a one-off half hour is unlikely to do anything more than leave you with a significant glow.

How it works
I was worried that the treatment was going to be painful (which was the main reason I tried to talk Deirdre my business manager into going instead of me at the last minute), but it actually feels exactly like what it is – having a small section of your face exposed to a hot lamp for a fraction of a second. Pre-painful, but not painful.

Once the computer has been told what kind of skin you have, and the treatment you are having (photo-rejuvenation, hair removal, stretch mark or acne treatment) it then picks the right light beam, intensity and duration.

I had a 280 joule treatment, and if you are at all like me you want to shout out at the therapist, "Juice me up! I can handle more!" (Luckily, Anina tells me the IPL machine has a built in cap.)

It worked like this:

  • My eyes were covered with rectangles of white gauze and then cute purple goggles.

  • Flashes of light were applied to sections of skin, one by one, in a clockwise motion from forehead, down to chin and then back up. This happened twice.

  • My nose and upper lip were then treated separately.

  • After all this (which took about 20mins) a cooling red lamp light was applied for 10 minutes, after which an SPFwas rubbed in and I was free to go. (Actually I would have liked to stay. Even with such a non-squidgy treatment, Anina’s fingers felt like heaven.
  • So how do I look now? Well, I am writing this about 5 hours later and my skin is no longer tingling. I can't really tell I have had a treatment, but everyone around me says I look like I have had a facial. Which is a good result, I think, for a single treatment.

    So is it worth it? You decide.

    Sam's treatment was sponsored by Romney Park Wellness Centre, in Green Point. The treatment was performed by the fabulous Anina, using an Epic Plus IPL machine. To contact Romney Park Wellness Centre, phone (021) 439 4555, email or visit

    Turning back the clock on your face is every woman's dream. If cost was no barrier, what would you have done?

    Photographer: Jacques Weyers