Laser treatments have come a long way in recent years. Today’s laser options include non-ablative treatments such as Fraxel. Fraxel does not destroy the top layer of skin, or create a painful open wound, as with the past generations of laser procedures.
Although Fraxel is considerably more gentle than older laser treatments, it’s still equally effective. People choose the Fraxel to minimize lines and wrinkles, erase dark spots, and improving the look of pores. It is important to note, however, that while you might not have the lengthy recovery period after a Fraxel treatment, like with an ablative laser, you still want to make sure you carefully care for your skin after treatment. This can both reduce side effects of treatment, and help along the healing process.
Cool the Skin
The Fraxel treatment it is not considered particularly painful. A numbing gel will be applied to your skin about an hour before the laser treatment, so that the most you will feel is just a bit of warmth.
After your Fraxel treatment, you can expect your skin to feel like it has a mild sunburn. For this reason, it’s usually recommended that you apply ice packs to your face for up to 10 minutes, every hour for the first five hours or so after treatment. A bag of frozen vegetables makes a great ice pack. Simply wrap the bag in a clean towel, drape it over your face, and relax for several minutes.
Moisturize the Skin
A simple, non-clogging moisturizer will be your best friend, after receiving the Fraxel treatment. There are two things to look for when picking out a lotion or moisturizing product after your laser treatment. One is the word “non-comedogenic,” which means that the product won’t clog your pores or lead to a breakout. You also want to pick a moisturizer that does not contain any harsh ingredients. Give products that contain alpha hydroxy or beta hydroxy acids, retinol, or alcohol a wide berth during the first week or so after your Fraxel treatment.
Protect the Skin
After the Fraxel procedure, your skin will be delicate and more prone to damage from sun exposure. Although the goal of the treatment is to fade or reduce dark spots, sun exposure afterwards can actually make hyperpigmentation worse. That’s just one reasons why you want to make sure you protect your skin after a laser treatment. Avoiding or limiting sun exposure also helps to prolong your Fraxel results.
To protect your skin after the Fraxel, limit the amount of time you spend outdoors during those first few days. You will also want to invest in a sunscreen that has a high SPF of at least 30. Reapply the sunscreen every few hours for the best protection; wear it even on cloudy days and when you don’t plan on going outdoors. Keep a wide-brimmed hat and a pair of sunglasses on hand, and wear them anytime you are outdoors.
Cleansing the Skin
Washing your face with a gentle cleanser is recommended during the first week after Fraxel. Look for a cleanser with the word “gentle” in its description. This tells you that it doesn’t contain any strong ingredients. You can also talk to your surgeon for his/her cleanser recommnedations.
It’s not uncommon for people to experience breakouts after a Fraxel procedure. Although this can be upsetting, you want to stick with using a gentle cleanser, and not switch to one with an acne-fighting ingredient. Your skin is still delicate, and strong ingredients can lead to irritation. While a cluster of pimples on your face is bothersome, keep in mind that they will clear up with time.
What Your Skin May Look Like
Although Fraxel is less aggressive and damaging than other laser treatments, it still leads to some temporary skin changes. It is common for the skin to become red and mildy swollen during the first days after treatment.
It is also normal for the skin to develop a rough texture, and to take on a bronze or brown color, as the outer layers slough off and are exfoliated. Although it might be tempting to pick or rub away the skin during this stage, but leave it alone. The exfoliating skin will fall away on its own, and when it does, you will be left with a refreshed, youthful look.
Mirror Mirror Beauty Boutique offers patients expertly performed Fraxel treatments. To learn more about laser treatments, and to find out if one is right for you, call (281) 810-9083 to schedule a consultation at Mirror Mirror today.