We study the total cross section for the collision of two highly-virtual photons at large energies, taking into account the BFKL resummation of energy logarithms with full next-to-leading accuracy. A necessary ingredient of the calculation, the next-to-leading order impact factor for the photon to photon transition, has been calculated by Balitsky and Chirilli using an approach based on the operator expansion in Wilson lines. We extracted the result for the photon impact factor in the original BFKL calculation scheme comparing the expression for the photon-photon total cross section obtained in BFKL with the one recently derived by Chirilli and Kovchegov in the Wilson-line operator expansion scheme. We perform a detailed numerical analysis, combining different, but equivalent in nextto-leading accuracy, representations of the cross section with various optimization methods of the perturbative series. We compare our results with previous determinations in the literature and with the LEP2 experimental data. We find that the account of Balitsky and Chirilli expression for the photon impact factor reduces the BFKL contribution to the cross section to very small values, making it impossible to describe LEP2 data as the sum of BFKL and leading-order QED quark box contributions.