Table of Contents
What is fractional laser treatment?
A fractional laser treatment is a procedure where tiny laser beams are directed into targeted sections of the skin. The treatment leaves little dots all over the skin as it creates controlled damage to these fractions while leaving the surrounding skin untouched. By doing so, the surrounding skin that has not been treated can help speed up recovery time by signaling healing cells including stem cells for new tissue growth. The cells that have been treated (those that are unwanted like hyperpigmented cells) are damaged and naturally expelled by the body.
The two major types of fractional treatments are ablative meaning the laser breaks the surface of the skin, and non-ablative where the goal is just to create controlled damage and usually coagulate the tissue without breaking the skin.
What is a non-ablative laser and why should I use it?
A non-ablative fractional laser such as ResurFX does not break or damage the top layer of skin making it safe for all skin types with minimal downtime. It shoots laser beams just below the top layer of skin coagulating sections of the deeper tissue. A healing cascade is signaled and the old skin is removed by the body leaving room for new healthy tissue. This creates a tightening effect and a more even complexion. Read more information about Skin Tightening Treatments.
Additionally, because the treatment is fractional, the treatment zones will heal more quickly. However, it will take multiple treatments to get the desired results.
What does ResurFX treat?
ResurFX is an excellent treatment option with minimal downtime, it is able to treat:
- Wrinkles and fine-lines
- Stretch marks
- Loose skin
What are the benefits of ResurFX compared to other treatments?
ResurFX is one of the best non-ablative fractional lasers on the market. It has a proven safety record with excellent results. As above, this type of laser is wonderful for all skin types and has minimal down time. Read more about this skin treatment here.
How does the ResurFX fractional laser work?
ResurFX works by sending controlled laser beams (targeted by depth and energy) to varying levels of the skin. The targeted tissue is treated in fractions leaving the surrounding tissue intact. The intact skin is able to help heal the treated tissue faster meaning there is less down-time. Most people can go about their normal activities and even wear make-up within a few hours after treatment. Below is a photo of NP, Ali, performing ResurFX in office.
How much does ResurFX cost?
ResurFX varies in price due to the size of the area being treated. For smaller areas like scars it may only cost $250, larger areas like the face and neck could cost upwards of $1200.
Estimated cost breakdown by area:
- Small scars: $125 each
- Medium scars: $200 each
- Large scars: $275 each
- Under eye and crows feet: $350
- Forehead and glabella: $350
- Full face: $800
- Full face and neck: $1200
- Decolletage: $800
- Stretch marks: $400+
What is the ResurFX treatment like?
ResurFX is generally a 20-30 minute procedure depending on the size of the area being treated. At the office, the clinician will walk you through the procedure and ask if you have any questions. After this, they’ll prep the area with a topical anesthetic that will help ensure the procedure is less painful. Once the skin is prepped and clean the clinician will use the laser tool to begin treating the skin.
The first treatment is usually done conservatively to see how your skin responds and ensure there is no post inflammatory hyperpigmentation in those with darker skin tones. Sometimes a 1-2 month prep before treatment is needed for darker skin types or those prone to hyperpigmentation. After great results from the 1st treatment, each consecutive treatment can get more aggressive depending on the goals of treatment.
How should I take care of my skin after my fractional laser treatment?
Immediately after your appointment, the clinician will use a cooling gel or fan on the skin to reduce some of the discomfort. They’ll then apply a protective sunscreen on your sensitive skin. After this you should make sure to:
- First 24 hours: Avoid skin-irritating products like retinol creams, salicylic acid, and benzoyl peroxide. Also, avoid using a rough washcloth on your face. To reduce the sunburnt feeling you can apply a cool compress to your face in short intervals.
- 24-48 hours after: Wash skin with a mild cleanser and avoid makeup. Apply an SPF 30+ sunscreen and a moisturizer.
- 72 hours after: continue washing with a gentle cleanser. Make sure to continue applying an SPF 30+ sunscreen and a moisturizer.
- 5 days after: You can resume using products like retinol creams, salicylic acid, and benzoyl peroxide. The skin may be sensitive.
- Between days 4-7 you can also start exfoliating the skin as it may feel rough and gritty. Only exfoliate if the skin is completely intact and there is zero sensitivity.
Make-up can technically be applied immediately post treatment but we usually recommend waiting until the skin is no longer sensitive and is starting to exfoliate, usually around day 3.
How long until I see results from my ResurFX fractional laser treatments?
It is recommended that patients receive at least 3 ResurFX treatments with 4 weeks in between treatments. That means it can take upwards of 3 months to see the full results of your ResurFX treatment. You will also continue seeing skin improvements for up to 6 months following the completion of treatment. This makes a great treatment for upcoming events such as weddings, vacations, and important social events.
What are the side effects of ResurFX treatments?
Immediately after your treatment, you will feel like your skin has been sunburned. This hot feeling should dissipate after the first 1-2 hours. After this, most patients experience dry, pink, or bronzed skin for 2-4 days with peeling or flaking (most common) as the treatment works to remove damaged skin. In some patients, it may take up to a few weeks for redness and irritation to fully subside.
Potential rare, but serious side effects include:
- Severe swelling or blistering
- Skin hyperpigmentation
Most all of these side effects can be avoided by going to a trained medical professional, like our Nurse Practitioner Ali, that knows how to keep you safe for this treatment. Closely following pre and post treatment instructions are also crucial to great results. For instance, since the skin is not broken during the treatment, picking is the most common reason people might get an infection.
If any of these happen after your treatment, immediately contact the provider that did your treatment.
Are there any treatments I can have with ResurFX?
- IPL for a photofractional treatment to really target dark spots and discoloration
- Dermaplaning, light peels and enzymes can be done prior for a more intense treatment
- Injectables such as Botox or Xeomin can be done immediately after the treatment but we usually recommend against this because the skin is so sensitive to touch.
How many ResurFX fractional laser treatments will I need?
As mentioned above, the best results from ResurFX will take 3 sessions spaced a month apart. This ensures collagen stimulation and long-lasting improvement in the skin. Many providers will offer packaged deals if you book 3 or more appointments.
How long before I will need more ResurFX?
The results of your ResurFX treatment should last forever on the areas treated. That being said, as we age new spots, lines and scars will often appear naturally that will need to be treated as they develop.
Is ResurFX the same as Fraxel laser treatment?
Fraxel is simply another brand of non-ablative fractional laser. It has gotten a bad rap for severe side effects such as scarring, hyperpigmenation and severe pain. However, the company that makes this product has updated their machine (so we’re told). It should also be said that bad side effects are often created by technicians that don’t have proper training or experience so you can’t just blame the brand or company.
From our research ResurFX has a higher track record of safety, great results and patient satisfaction which is why Elite Medical and Aesthetics chose this brand over the many other competitors.
ResurFX Before and After
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