About a month ago, I had the chance to give FRAXEL® a try and to experience this high-tech non-invasive fractional laser therapy.
I didn’t hesitate to undergo this treatment at all, given how despicable and horrific I felt my acne scars were.
It has to go – all of it, or at least some of it!
Before I share my story, let me first impart some background knowledge regarding what FRAXEL® is all about and what it can do (thus saving all of you the paranoia and the time from doing extensive research on your own, yes, you’re welcome 😛 )
No you won’t. Now, let me begin.
FRAXEL® is a proven laser technology by Solta Medical, a global leader in the aesthetics. It helps with skin resurfacing, and correcting and refining effects which make it especially popular amongst people with acne-scarred skin (like mine!).
My face all wrapped up in the midst of the FRAXEL procedure!
Here are its main uses:
For fine lines and wrinkles – reduces crow’s feet, brow lines and visible signs of aging
For surface scarring – erasing effects of acne and other scarring
For pigmentation – minimizing the appearance of age spots
For sun damage – helping heal dangerous skin damage
For Actinic Keratosis (AK) – a common pre-cancerous skin condition
If you do have one or more of the above, you’re probably wondering –
is FRAXEL® suitable for me?
FRAXEL® is non-invasive (this means no undergoing the knife or any form of incision!) for people who want to improve their skin condition – and want real results – but don’t want the drastic change or the extended downtimes that comes with plastic/cosmetic surgery.
This treatment fits into any lifestyle and your current beauty regimen. I would know, as I went out for dinner with my buddies immediately after my FRAXEL® session, followed by some coffee and shopping thereafter.
Hardly anyone noticed; they merely thought I had either a lazy or a long day and decided to skip the make-up altogether LOL.
I stepped into Dr. Karen Po’s office in Beverly Wilshire Medical Centre KL and we had an amicable chat before we began with the day’s procedures.
Beverly Wilshire Medical Centre is an integrated beauty medical centre licensed by the Ministry of Health Malaysia that prides itself in Cosmetic Surgery, Aesthetic Medicine (non-surgical and laser treatments) and Healthy Aging.
They boast a wide range of cosmetic procedures, aesthetic treatments,and health services for customers to attain their desired perfection, be it in beauty, health, and wellness.
The nurses there were extremely accommodating and hospitable!
Also, having previously met, Dr. Karen and I got along rather quickly!
If I remember from earlier conversations, Dr Karen graduated from New Zealand with a Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery. She also holds a Master in Advanced Botulinum Toxin and Filler Techniques, and a Diploma in Aesthetic Medicine from the American Academy of Aesthetic Medicine.
If that doesn't knock your socks off yet, she is also well-trained in aesthetic procedures such as lasers, botox and filler injections and has a special interest in pigmentation disorders, regenerative and anti-aging medicine
Looks like my face (and yours) is definitely in good hands, eh?
Here’s a photo of her showing me how the skin’s scarring and healing process works.
She first explained to me what exactly my skin problem was and how she can use FRAXEL® to help. Yes, I am fully aware that I have a relatively serious bout of post-acne scars.
Say no more but I know you’re probably wondering, “Really? But your skin looks fine in photos!” Well, my dear, make-up, lighting and a little post-editing/photo-smoothening effects do help.
But I don’t want my skin to look fine only in photographs. What about real life? Ergo, I was excited to see the effects of FRAXEL® on my acne-scarred skin.
She then went on to examine my face and thus began our consultation session.
Dr. Karen made some quick mental notes and ushered me to the treatment room. My face was then gently cleansed, to allow a fresh, clean surface area for her to work on.
Hello from the treatment bed!
I was then ushered to the skin analysis room where my skin was scanned and scrutinized digitally via a machine from all aspects.
This is where I got my ‘Before’ photo taken for the Before & After shot!
I peered inside the machine to have close-ups photographs of my skin taken.
This was what I saw.
And here I am back on the treatment bed again. Ta-daa!
The nurse began to apply the leave-on numbing cream all over my face and wrapped it in.
I took a short nap while my skin absorbed its numbing effects.
The time has finally come. Pretty sure you could tell I was initially nervous.
It was time for the FRAXEL® laser therapy to take place.
And I recall asking the doctor whether or not it will hurt.
I think I have a relatively high threshold when it comes to pain – or at least I sure hope I do!
She gave me these eye-protectors to wear.
This prevents your eyes from direct contact with the laser beams.
I really appreciated the cold air blowing onto my skin and Dr. Karen’s frequent light tapping on my face with her finger.
Both of which, aided me very well in enduring the discomfort, making the procedure less nerve-wrecking and heaps more pleasant!
The cold air, needless to say, helps in cooling down the heated area while the frequent tapping, psychologically helped distract me from the pain by creating another sensation stimuli.
During the FRAXEL® treatment!
So… how does this work?
I asked the same question too. Here’s what’s happening when the laser beams come into contact with your skin.
Basically, FRAXEL®’s light energy will stimulate your skin’s natural collagen and rejuvenate skin cells below the surface to help smooth the creases and pockets that cause wrinkles and scars.
The treatment only treats targeted problem areas – so the results are focused and effective. Believe it or not, the entire session lasted for only 30 minutes!
Hi! All wrapped up and getting prepped for the mask.
When I was done, they applied a cooling mask on my face for half an hour.
I was then placed underneath an LED light for healing purposes.
Before I knew it, the entire session was over and done with.
It was quick and not in any way torturing/suffering at all!
Applying moisturizer and sunblock onto my face.
In all seriousness however, you might experience a light, prickly ‘sunburn’ sensation on your skin but trust me, nothing you can’t handle.
I can definitely vouch for that!
Leaving Beverly Wilshire Medical Centre.
Thank you very much Solta Medical and Dr. Karen Po
I had a pleasant time and a very enlightening & informative morning, no less!
As I mentioned before, everything happened as per normal right after the session.
It is advisable not to wear make-up for the next few weeks and a good sun-block ought to be used to protect yourself from harmful rays of the sun, as your skin will be prone to sensitivity during the healing stage.
So clearly, I did as I was told and didn’t wear any make-up and slapped on lots of sun-block. During my daily activities, although I felt as if the whole world was staring at me but in the end, I realized that I was just being self-conscious.
Shot taken immediately after FRAXEL® treatment.
Zero make up (obviously)
Throughout the weeks of healing, my bare-naked face was pinkish and slightly swollen for the first 4 days and then started to become brown and felt like sandpaper to touch for the next 5 days, but that’s about it.
Always remember – moisturizer and sun-block is your best friend!
After a month plus, I returned for a skin analysis, as I know many of you have been asking for a Before & After! Patience, pet.
I placed my head into the handy VISIA complexion analysis system machine again to finally have my skin analyzed and for the ‘After’ photographs to be taken.
This is to be compared with my 'Before' shots by the same machine.
This session was useful in helping me understand my skin better; an added service not offered by most of the other clinics.
This is a Before & After result of my 1st session:
The texture of my skin has improved! Less congestion of blue and yellow dots.
Spots on my skin has also improved! Check out the nose area and my cheeks.
Amount of open pores have reduced too. It's difficult to see the difference here because my damaged pores are very old scars
Haha. Gosh, wrinkles improved the most. Not that I have much (phew!) but wow look!
Not bad at all, after only ONE session! Most patients see visible results in 1 – 5 sessions.
This all depends on how serious/old/deep your acne scars are.
Mine are pretty old (more than 10 years ago!) as I’ve had acne all my life; the worst bout was in junior high school and sometime during my freshman year at college.
Really keen to experience further results on my next few sessions!
Don’t wait as long as I did; the sooner the better as newer scars heal better than older, more permanent scars.
P/S: It took a lot of guts for me to write this post. In this post, I dared to bare the worst that I've been hiding and concealing from – my horrible complexion. There is not one day I do not feel ugly or self-conscious about it. I hope I've somehow connected to the ones that has been enduring flawed skin too.
You're not alone. I'm here. Feel free to speak to me, whenever!
For more information on FRAXEL® laser technology or to make an appointment,
Beverly Wilshire Medical Centre, Level 6, 8, & 9, Dijaya Plaza,
No. 237 Jalan Tun Razak, 50400 Kuala Lumpur.
Phone: 1800 88 8802
Business hours: Mon – Fri 8am – 8pm / Sat 8am – 3pm
Also, while you’re at it, you might want to take a look at Solta Medical’s other brands such as the Liposonix® which I blogged about last year.
For more information on FRAXEL® laser technology, log on to their official website at www.fraxel.com
Check out www.solta.com/brands for more info