Our Social Media Manager, Eithne talks about her first-hand experience with Lasers and her recent decision to have PicoSure Acne Scar treatment.
“When I hit my teens, like many others in my peer group I started to suffer from acne. The doctor described it as, ‘mild to moderate,’ although anyone who has had experience with this condition will probably tell you that whatever the scale, it can have a huge impact on your confidence. In social situations I became shy and introverted, convinced that everyone was staring at my skin and so my determination to find a solution began.
I established a strict skincare regime and was prescribed a course of medication which cleared up most of the active breakouts, unfortunately however, I was left with scarring and pitting, mainly on my cheeks. Undeterred, I scoured the internet for an answer and all arrows seemed to point towards laser treatment.
Ten years ago, the most popular laser was the Co2 laser. It’s an ‘ablative laser’ which means the upper layers of the skin are vaporized by applying a controlled laser beam. The procedure requires two weeks ‘downtime’ and is described as ‘invasive.’ Looking back, I don’t think I was prepared for how aggressive the Co2 laser was. It removed multiple layers of my skin and I looked and felt pretty hideous for weeks. After the treatment I was required to cleanse my face every few hours and slather it in a thick layer of Vaseline.
My skin was raw, swollen, red and oozing fluid which is why all of the cleansing was necessary. I was prescribed a cupboard full of antibiotics and painkillers on the strict instructions to take them all or risk infection, my skin was effectively raw flesh so this could be a real possibility.
Needless to say, I was expecting miracles, I thought that after this kind of ordeal my skin would as good as new and scar free. The reality was that my scarring had improved, but after weighing up the final results against my initial expectations, I felt that 2 weeks of being housebound and chained to vat of Vaseline and what seemed like a never ending stream of pills; was ultimately not worth the outcome. My scarring was still there, and I knew this wouldn’t be my last foray with Laser, although I deduced to find one that wasn’t quite so invasive.
Around two years later I discovered Fraxel and it appealed to me mainly because the downtime was only five days in comparison to a fortnight. Although I was told that the results wouldn’t be as dramatic as the Co2 laser and that I would require multiple treatments, I was prepared try it as I couldn’t face another round of the Co2 laser and all that it involved.
I had two treatments and I felt there was a marked improvement but again, I was required to take antibiotics and was confined to the house for five days at a time having to cleanse and slather my skin in Vaseline again, it was a bit like Groundhog Day.
My desire to continue with the process of Laser waned and I became an expert in camouflage make-up techniques. My scarring still bothered me but I resigned myself to the fact that I really didn’t have the time or the patience to go through another round of laser.
Fast forward to this year and having resigned myself to living with my acne scars, my curiosity was piqued when I began working for ProSkin and heard about the PicoSure laser. You see, I had just got engaged and those all-important Wedding photos were playing on my mind. After some investigation I discovered that there was absolutely no downtime whatsoever and that the results would be just as, if not more effective than the Fraxel laser.
I booked in for my first appointment and my Aesthetician told me that I would need around 5 sessions. After having numbing cream applied she began to treat my whole face with a focus on my cheeks where most of the scarring was. Initially my face was quite red but this disappeared after about 20 minutes and there was no pain, no medication and crucially no Vaseline involved!
As the days passed I started to see the improvement in my skin, the scarring looked smoother and my complexion looked much fresher and healthier.
I’ve just had my second treatment and I’m pleased to report that my skin continues to improve, the scars are disappearing with each session and my whole complexion looks much better. The experience is not traumatic in the least and I am able to wear make-up and carry on with life as normal as soon as the day after treatment.
I will need an additional three sessions to get my skin to the point where I am happy with it. My goal is to be able to leave the house without make up on- something I haven’t done for years and judging by the improvement so far, I’m pretty hopeful this will happen.
I cannot recommend this treatment enough, Lasers have come such a long way since I began researching them over a decade ago and I for one, couldn’t be happier.”
If you are interested in having PicoSure Acne Scarring treatment book in for a free consultation on 020 37 634703.