What is the Difference between a Photofacial and Fractionated Laser Skin Resurfacing?

We live in an amazing time for beauty buffs because there seem to be infinite options for cosmetic treatments and products that can target nearly any aesthetic woe. At Laser Lights Cosmetic Laser Center, we offer a wide range of services, but we’ve also seen patients’ excitement turn to stress when they try to figure out which option is right for them. This is precisely why we provide free cosmetic consultations – so our licensed medical aestheticians can evaluate your concerns and recommend the ideal procedures for you. Still, we know you want to feel informed about your choices, so today we’re breaking down the differences between two procedures that patients often mix up: photofacial and fractionated laser skin resurfacing.

What is the Difference between a Photofacial and Fractionated Laser Skin Resurfacing

The Basics

While both photo rejuvenation and fractional laser skin resurfacing are both light-based treatments to improve the appearance of the skin, they work in two different ways and they address different types of problems. Photofacial procedures use scattered, varied types of light to treat unwanted pigments and redness from the surface. It’s non-ablative, which means that it doesn’t disrupt the surface of the skin. Fractionated laser resurfacing, on the other hand, uses narrow beams of concentrated light and heat to penetrate into the skin. This allows it to address a wider array of cosmetic issues.

What Each Procedure Treats

Because they use very different methods, photo rejuvenation and fractionated laser skin resurfacing have different sets of issues they can remedy. Photo rejuvenation primarily works for brown pigment (like age spots and freckles), though it can also be effective for tiny blood vessels or excess redness in the skin and some fine lines. Fractional laser resurfacing, on the other hand, can treat these issues while also improving the appearance of acne scars (as well as other scars like those from surgery or previous injury), wrinkles, textural issues, and even skin laxity. This is because the procedure helps your body clear away damaged surface skin, and by extending warmth into the skin it can also stimulate collagen production, which smooths and tightens the skin. While they have their differences, keep in mind that both photo rejuvenation and fractional laser resurfacing can be used to treat nearly any area of the body, including the face, neck, chest, hands, and more.

The Treatment Process

Photo rejuvenation treatments are quite gentle, requiring little or no downtime and typically only produce some skin redness as a post-procedure side effect. For most patients, a brief series of 4-6 sessions will leave most people with the results they’re aiming for. Fractionated laser skin resurfacing, however, usually produces exceptional results with just one session because it has a more extensive impact on the skin. The downside to this is that it does require some recovery time, usually 5-10 days. If you want the advantages of fractional laser skin resurfacing but prefer less recovery time, we also offer a micro laser peel – a less extensive version of the typical fractionated laser resurfacing procedure.

Everyone wants to feel confident and empowered by their appearance, but the path toward this goal looks different for everyone. Whether you’re bothered by fine lines and wrinkles, brown spots, body or facial hair, or even a little unwanted fat, our skilled and caring medical staff is here to help you find the perfect treatment and achieve your goals. To get started, call Laser Lights Cosmetic Laser Center to schedule a free skin care consultation. For more cosmetic tips, skin treatment discounts, and more, join us on Facebook, Twitter, and Google+.