Those of you who know me are probably very aware of my love for microneedling.

Not the $40 microneedling treatments I have seen advertised around town lately (I honestly can’t imagine what that even is), but the really good medical grade treatment that puts millions of deeeeeep holes in your face making you look like that dude from Hellraiser on day 1 and JLo on day 10 (okay maybe not millions of holes but JLo is big skin goals, and do we still call her that?).

So yes, microneedling will always be my first love, however lately I have become enamored by a more classic skin resurfacing treatment, the Fraxel re:store. While lasers in the movies are cool as shit, I have generally been a bit trepidatious (word of the day: means scared I think) about using them on my face.

But for not the first time in my life (just ask my ex husbands… and kids…and sister… and Shelly With The Perfect Skin) I believe I may have been incorrect in my initial judgement on this subject of which I had zero experience. Weird, how that works.

So, please let me tell you exactly why I think Fraxel is so cool it’s hot (see what I did there) and why you should get one right now, today.

What Fraxel Is and Why It Is Amazing

Think of Fraxel as a supercharged microneedling, and replace the needles with laser beams.

Both resurface the skin, meaning if you have acne scarring or sun damage or wrinkles or textury (I think that is a word) skin both of these treatments will get rid of that nonsense and leave you with fresh, new, happy baby skin in just 10-14 days.

Listen, maybe not quite baby skin but you will see noticeable differences after just one treatment and obviously – like with almost everything – the more you do the better your results…

…well except maybe not with gambling or organ donation or exfoliating

…definitely not with exfoliating – 2/3x per week tops for that please.

How does this happen, you ask?

Well my lovely friend, it’s kind of a weird explanation so get ready:

the needles and/or laser beams create millions (again, maybe not quite millions) of boo boos (aka injuries) on your skin literally tricking your body into thinking:

“holy shit, we need to kick it into gear and give this chick (or dude) some help because something just messed their skin up so come on collagen lets get to work and start building and repairing stuff.”

But Shannon, if you love microneedling so much and they do the same thing why are you now claiming Fraxel is better, you ask…

Better is such a strong word, let’s say different (but yes better depending upon skin issues and goals).

The Fraxel laser goes deeper than microneedling because, well, it’s a laser and that is what lasers do. Deeper allows for more dramatic changes to the skin and better collagen building, and since there are no needles there is less surface damage to the skin (see pictures below).

 

Fraxel

This client received a Fraxel to address his acne scarring. Immediately after a Fraxel treatment there will be redness and swelling, both of which will go away after a day or two.

microneedling camas medspa

This client received a Microneedling because she wanted smoother tone and texture to her skin and to build collagen. This redness will be gone within a day or two, and we provide take-home products specifically designed for this treatment including a sunscreen with primer to use a cover up for the first 4 days.

So if you: 

  • have acne scarring
  • or spent the 80s and 90s or any decade in tanning booths (and if you are still doing that STOP IT RIGHT NOW)
  • or have lots of brown spots
  • or those little tiny veins around your nose (so annoying)
  • or have deep wrinkles
  • or work out a lot and get that hollow, sunken look and need some serious collagen building

then Fraxel is your jam.

Also, what is really cool is that dermatologists say Fraxel is good at preventing skin cancer.

Wait WHAT??!!

It’s true, Fraxel™  technology sends microscopic columns of laser energy into the skin’s dermis to destroy old unhealthy cells, including pre-cancers, and early skin cancers causing them to be replaced with healthy new cells.

And while I kind of knew all this Fraxel stuff before because I read brochures, it has been in the last month that has really opened my eyes to the magic that is Fraxel. In addition to The Russian (ask me next time you are in if you don’t know the reference) getting one and seeing those results, it has been a busy Fall for Fraxel at Camas Medspa and it really is super magical!

What To Expect when You Get A Fraxel Treatment

Getting Ready

Prior to treatment if you have been on any kind of retinoid (like retinol or tretinoin) you need to stop that about a week before your treatment.

The Fall and Winter months are the perfect time to get a Fraxel treatment as it needs to be done on skin that has not been heavily exposed to the sun beforehand and it is also best to stay out of the sun for 2 weeks after treatment. A medical grade sunscreen, such as ZOs Sunscreen and Primer can be used afterwards to help protect your skin. At Camas Medspa we will provide you with samples of this as well as a cleansing and moisturizer to use after treatment. Full-sized ZO Skin Health products are also available for purchase on site.

 

The Day Of Your Fraxel Treatment

When you arrive for treatment you will fill out appropriate paperwork and before pictures will be taken.

Your face will then be cleansed and a numbing creme will be applied. This process will take up to an hour in order to achieve full numbing effects.

The numbing creme will be wiped off and additional cleansing will be made.

Your Fraxel treatment will last about 20-30 minutes and during the procedure the doctor will speak with you and adjust settings based upon your comfort level.

When the procedure is finished, after pictures will taken and after care instructions with product will be given to you.

 

What Happens During the next week or two

When you leave the office you will be red and swollen and you will still be numb. As the numbing wears off you may feel a bit of itching or uncomfortableness that ant-imflammatories will help with.

Some people are a bit more tired or just don’t feel 💯 the rest of the day, but this is primarily from the stress of the treatment. Everyone is different, so it depends upon your personal level of reactions to stress (do you clench your teeth or tense your body, etc).

 

Fraxel day 4

Day 2-6ish

Day 2 and 3 the swelling will lessen along with any redness you may have had. This is when your skin will start to feel rougher, even a little scaly and may be itchy. Similar to if you have had a sunburn that then browns and starts to flake and peel.

As you move into days 4 and 5 and 6 your skin will appear rough and peely and will be peppered with small, tiny dark spots similar looking to coffee grounds. You may lightly exfoliate during this time however it is important to make sure that you do not rub off the skin until the baby skin below is ready to be exposed to the elements.

The resurfacing of new skin through sloughing and peeling continues and as you get closer to the 10 day and even 2 week mark you will see the final results of your Fraxel treatment. 

Onward

Depending upon the severity of your skin issues, you may want to think about getting a second Fraxel treatment or a complimentary treatment to address just specific issues. Ex: Slight remaining browns could be fixed with an IPL treatment or if there are any mild acne scars left you may consider a microneedling. Your esthetician can go over this at your 2 week followup where after pictures will be taken. 

Also, be aware that collagen building is something that continues to happen long after your Fraxel treatment is over, so you should continue to see improvement in laxity and fullness through the months following the treatment.  

This client below had one treatment of Fraxel for her deep acne scarring. After pictures are at Day 7 so her skin is still a bit pink and flaky although she already sees results – improvement will continue for the next week.

FRAXEL before and after picturesFRAXEL before and after pictures

If you are interested in Fraxel, but would like to talk more before taking the plunge, schedule a FREE consultation! 

If you know already you want to get a Fraxel (hint, hint check here to see if there is a special on this treatment) call 360-335-4951 or schedule your appointment today!

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