Earlier this year, I treated myself to a series of facials. My intention was to see if regular facials would make an impact on my skin. Overall, I would say that it was a good move. Since I chose a hydrating facial series, I was walking around with a constant glow. The first part of the year was pretty busy, so I kinda neglected my skin. But the facials helped to right all of my wrongs.
While there, I got a chance to ask some of the facialists about what I should do to address my deep acne scarring. A couple of times I was recommended to consider a laser treatment. Specifically, Fraxel.
The first time I heard of Fraxel was when Kim Kardashian revealed it as a her skin care secret on Oprah. She's meticulous about her appearance so I figured this had to be an effective treatment.
So I ask the facialist why Fraxel would work well for me. She tries to explain the process but thought it would be more convincing to offer up images instead. So she grabs her phone and flips through her pictures before revealing her screen to me. What I saw were very up close images of her very troubled skin. There were a few cystic acne and lots of obvious scarring. The scarring was much more severe than mine. When she revealed that these were her pics, I was shocked. Then she went on to explain how recently the pics were taken and I was even more floored.
The woman I was looking at had skin that was nothing like what was portrayed in pictures. That's because she took drastic measure to create remarkable results. Laser treatments cause micro trauma to the skin. When this happens, our skin works over time to rebuild and repair by stimulating new collagen production to smooth out lines and wrinkles. The final results could be compared to having a "real life Instagram filter." I was seeing the proof of it right before my very eyes.
The only thing is.....the jury's still out on whether laser treatments are suited for darker skin tones. One unwanted side effect of laser treatments on dark skin is post inflammatory hyper pigmentation Although the facialist I was seeing was a woman of color, she had very fair skin. It appears that we're making progress towards treating diverse skin with lasers. Because there's a new alternative that representents the evolution of lasers. The Halo treatment combines the mighty powers of Fraxel and C02 lasers. As a hybrid laser, the amount of post procedure down time is minimal. Just a few days compared to a week or more with other treatments. Halo also requires fewer sessions to be effective. And because Halo gives the option of modifying the strength of the laser, it can be adjusted to suit darker skin tones.
I qualify this treatment as a bucket list item because one treatment is quite an investment. This isn't for everybody but if you have seriously troubled skin, or if you want perfected skin that makes wearing makeup optional, the investment might be worth it.
My ultimate goal is having "make up optional" skin. This means I need to focus more on resurfacing activities. Mild, daily exfoliation helps, but it's time to take this thing a little more seriously. I'm on the look out for alternative resurfacing treatments that are lower cost or can be done at home. Will share what I find in a future post.
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