What is laser facial resurfacing?
Laser facial resurfacing is a hardware procedure that involves deep peeling of the facial skin using a laser. “Cleansing” of the face with a laser is a process of controlled damage to the epidermis and dermis, which stimulates active regeneration and renewal of the skin, enhances the synthesis of its own collagen and elastin, and allows you to remove visible aesthetic defects.
Laser resurfacing of the face may be recommended in the following situations:
- the presence of scars, scars, stretch marks and other skin irregularities;
- acne (except for multiple acute inflammations) and post-acne scars, enlarged pores, hyperkeratosis;
- wrinkles, flabbiness and lethargy of the skin and other age-related changes;
- ptosis (sagging tissues), loss of facial clarity; hyperpigmentation and other signs of skin photoaging;
- small areas of vascular “networks”.
At the same time, contraindications for laser resurfacing include not only standard restrictions: chronic diseases, oncology, acute inflammatory processes, SARS, pregnancy and lactation. Particular care should be taken if the skin is prone to scarring as a result of any trauma to the integument.
Like any procedure, facial resurfacing has its pros and cons, features of implementation and rehabilitation. We will talk in detail about how to prepare for laser skin rejuvenation and skin resurfacing and how it goes.
Advantages and disadvantages of skin resurfacing
The list of advantages of laser resurfacing of the face is very wide:
- massive impact: visually noticeable skin rejuvenation and removal of many cosmetic problems;
- general lifting effect: comparable to some plastic surgery procedures;
- versatility: as a result of laser resurfacing of the face, you can both remove various aesthetic imperfections and improve the general condition of the skin, its youth and elasticity;
- safety: if all the rules of working with the device are observed, as well as competent skin support during and after the procedures, the risk of accidental damage, complications or side effects is quite low.
What can be dangerous laser skin correction? Conditional disadvantages of the procedure include:
- seasonality: perform laser resurfacing of the face (especially deep) preferably in the least sunny season, from October to April. This is due to increased photosensitivity of the skin after the procedure.
- soreness: laser resurfacing of the face is literally polishing the skin: complete or partial removal of its layers. Depending on the type of laser and the area being treated, this cosmetic procedure can be painful or require local anesthesia.
- rehabilitation: the deeper and larger was the impact of the laser on the skin, the longer the recovery period may be required. You can shorten and facilitate this stage by using integrated care products – we will talk about them below.
Types of laser resurfacing of the face
Facial skin resurfacing procedures can be divided depending on the area of the face being treated, or on the type of laser used.
According to the type of skin treatment, laser resurfacing can be:
- Traditional: the skin is heated by the laser and is completely damaged, “canvas”. All layers of the epidermis are affected, the entire area of the face (treated area) is affected. The procedure makes it possible to remove or correct serious skin defects, however, it is very painful and traumatic, and requires serious recovery. Swelling, large-scale reddening of the skin (erythema), the formation of itchy crusts are possible.
- Fractional: in this case, the laser beam is scattered, acts on the skin pointwise and leaves untouched areas (as if the sun’s rays pass through a sieve). This method also allows you to effectively work with various skin imperfections, but it is less traumatic and does not require long-term rehabilitation. It is currently the preferred method of exposure to the skin.
According to the type of laser used, facial skin resurfacing is divided into:
- Grinding with carbon dioxide (carboxy, CO2) laser: there is a strong heating of the skin, the effect is on the layers of the epidermis and dermis. The procedure is suitable for removing scars, scars, uneven relief, stimulates global skin renewal.
- Erbium laser resurfacing: implies a milder effect on the skin, applied in a course, suitable for more sensitive skin (including the skin of the neck and eyelids). This procedure gives a good lifting effect, helps with age spots, fine wrinkles and loss of skin tone.
How is laser resurfacing done?
Let’s take a look at the procedure in detail:
- Preliminary preparation: consultation with a cosmetologist, selection of the type of laser, determination of the number of sessions … During this period, it is necessary to refrain from warming the skin in a bath and sauna, drinking alcohol and, most importantly, from sunburn (any exposure to direct sunlight).
- On the day of the procedure, the cosmetologist prepares the skin for laser treatment: it cleanses, tones and applies an anesthetic gel to the face, or injects local anesthesia.
- The patient puts on special glasses to protect against laser beams, the specialist adjusts the laser device, setting the desired exposure parameters – and begins the treatment of the face.
- After the desired number of “passes”, the device is turned off and the patient can be offered various post-procedure skin care products that are designed to alleviate possible discomfort and reduce the number of side effects.
- For several weeks after the procedure, it is important to avoid exposure to direct sunlight and be sure to use SPF products every time you go outside.
Results of laser resurfacing
What does the face look like after laser resurfacing? As a rule, changes are visible to the naked eye:
- the severity of wrinkles and age spots decreases, the skin relief is leveled;
- scars, scars and other skin defects disappear or are noticeably smoothed out;
- the firmness, density and elasticity of the skin increases;
- pores narrow, traces of post-acne disappear;
- the skin looks noticeably more youthful, facial contours are tightened.
It is important to understand that a course of procedures may be required to achieve a pronounced result. The exact number of sessions is selected individually by a cosmetologist.