Laser treatments comprise a range of skin treatments that remove, destroy or stimulate areas of the skin’s surface in order to improve blemishes, smooth wrinkles or plump up the skin. The London Clinic provides a variety of dermatological laser treatments.

Which skin conditions can be helped by laser treatments?

Laser treatments can be used to solve a wide variety of problems, including:

  • Rosacea and ‘port wine stains’
  • Thread and broken veins
  • Lines, wrinkles and loose skin
  • Acne scars
  • Uneven skin pigmentation and sun spots
  • Facial signs of ageing
  • Hirsutism (excessive hair growth)

How do laser treatments work?

Laser treatments work in one of three ways, depending on the condition they are being used to treat:

  • Ablative laser resurfacing: which removes the top layers of the skin and encourage new growth in the cells below. The dead skin will scab over for a few weeks, before falling away to reveal softer, smoother skin. Ablative resurfacing can be used across the whole of the face, or it can be specifically targeted at wrinkles or other imperfections.
  • Non-ablative laser resurfacing: these laser treatments do not remove skin, but stimulate collagen growth below the skin’s surface, creating a plumper, smoother surface of the skin.
  • Selective laser treatments: these use particular frequencies of light that are specifically absorbed by target pigments or blood cells. Over a number of sessions, the energy from the laser gradually destroys the unwanted pigment or thread vein.

Aftercare following laser treatments

Laser treatments can deliver wonderful results, but these are not immediate. Some lasers barely leave a mark but with others you may initially experience bruising, blistering and scabbing as the skin begins to repair itself.

Marks may last for up to 10 days and the scabs must be left alone to heal. Your dermatologist or laser practitioner will advise you on moisturisers to prevent the skin from drying out. You will need to avoid applying make-up until the blistering has healed and ensure that all other products that come into contact with your skin are as mild as possible.

The new layer of skin exposed by laser treatments is particularly susceptible to burning. Even after the initial reactions have subsided, you will need to avoid bright sunlight for at least 6 months by wearing a high factor sun lotion or a wide-brimmed hat.