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How to Care for Your Skin After Fraxel Laser Treatment

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Dr. Hardik Soni

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Fraxel treatments are a miracle solution for anyone looking to improve their skin. However, the skin can become too delicate after a Fraxel treatment. Without a proper aftercare routine, the results of the procedure might not meet your expectations.

So how can you take care of the skin after a Fraxel laser procedure? It’s important to help the skin recover fast by soothing the swelling, moisturizing the face, and taking extra steps to protect it. There are also activities to avoid such as putting on makeup, applying exfoliants, wearing tight tops, staying under the sun for too long.

Bring the Best Out of Fraxel Treatment with Proper Aftercare

Laser Fraxel for face has a lot of benefits – natural-looking results, fewer risks, and quick treatment time. But one major downside to this procedure is that it produces extremely sensitive skin which can take weeks to fully recover. The patient will need to take extra care of it so that the treatment won’t be ruined.

How to Help the Skin Recover Post-Treatment

The journey towards a healthy and radiant skin doesn’t end after the procedure is completed. Remember that the recovery phase is almost as important as the treatment itself. Here are some steps to take which can help it heal quickly:

Soothe the Swelling

Swelling is a common after-effect of Fraxel treatment. It subsides after a few days, but there are ways to minimize the swelling quicker.

During the healing process, it’s important to keep an ice pack near you. Ice packs help the skin recover in two ways: it reduces the swelling and it cools down the skin. Since Fraxel utilizes heated lasers, the skin might be warm to the touch even after a few hours. Cold compresses and ice packs can lower the skin’s temperature and relieve discomfort.

Another method to try is keeping the head up. By doing this, the head drains more unnecessary fluids, reducing the swelling of the skin. It’s also helpful to prop the head on more pillows, so the body won’t have to lay flat on the bed.

Moisturize and Hydrate

While recovering from the procedure, it’s also crucial to keep your skin hydrated and moisturized. However, some moisturizers might contain harsh ingredients that may harm the skin. Opt for gentler moisturizers and skin care brands with mild ingredients until the doctor informs you that the usual products you apply are safe for the skin again.

But of course, it’s not enough to only wash your face and use moisturizers on the skin. Patients should also keep themselves hydrated by drinking plenty of water every day. Diuretics such as alcohol, coffee, and other caffeinated drinks can also result in moisture loss. It’s better to avoid consuming these beverages.

Protect the Skin

Protecting the skin means avoiding skin care products that can irritate it and cause inflammation. Aside from applying gentler moisturizers, patients should also use milder cleansers that don’t contain hydroxy acids or retinol.

Since the skin is sensitive and tender after the procedure, protection against the sun is also needed. When going out, make sure to apply sunscreens with SPF30 or higher. Try to shield as much skin as possible from the sun.

Take Oral Supplements

Fraxel treatment is effective when it comes to triggering the skin’s collagen production. Because of this, it is also helpful to ingest oral supplements – such as vitamin C – that can aid the collagen production. It’s also effective to add fruit and leafy vegetables to a balanced diet for faster recovery and lasting results.

If you are unsure whether your medication can be helpful for the recovery, consult a doctor first before taking anything.

What to Avoid After Laser Treatment

Since the skin is more delicate than usual after the Fraxel procedure, certain activities might be damaging. Here are activities to avoid as the skin recovers from the treatment:

Putting On Makeup

After the procedure, the skin is left with microscopic injuries. Since the skin is open, it is more susceptible to bacterial infection. Putting on makeup immediately after the treatment only adds to the risk of infection. Makeup can also block the micro punctures and leave unwanted debris.

Leaving the house without the tiniest bit of makeup on the face might sound challenging, but it’s a small sacrifice to make sure that the skin heals properly.

Applying Exfoliants

For the skin to properly heal, it’s crucial to stay away from exfoliants and other skin care products that contain harsh chemicals for a few weeks. These products can cause irritation and inflammation in the treated area.

Once the doctor has given the go signal, the patient can return to their old skin care products and treatment. But in the meantime, it’s important to stick to milder solutions.

Staying Under the Sun

After the procedure, it’s crucial to stay away from the sun and avoid tanning beds for a month or two. Sun exposure can damage the skin as it recovers from the treatment. It can result in textural changes and undue pigmentation.

Always cover the face and other treated areas whenever stepping outside. Applying sunscreen can also protect the skin against sun damage.

Wearing Tight Tops

Within the first few days after the laser treatment, it might be a challenge to pull the shirt over the head while avoiding contact with the face. This is why turtlenecks and other tight clothing are not recommended during the early stages of the recovery phase.

To avoid the cloth from brushing against the face, pick clothes that are loose or oversized. You can also opt for wrap dresses or button-down shirts.

What to Expect After Fraxel Treatments

The downtime for Fraxel lasers is usually one week. On the first two days, swelling, redness, and throbbing at the treated area can be experienced. In the first week, the skin will start to peel. But during this time, it’s better to leave it alone and let it recover by itself.


For tighter skin and reduced lines and wrinkles, Fraxel treatments typically need three to five sessions that are scheduled four weeks apart. On average, the results of a successful surgery, paired with excellent aftercare practices, can last up to a year.

Risks and Side Effects

Since a Fraxel laser for face is a non-invasive treatment, there are fewer risks that accompany this procedure. However, the patient may experience the following minor side effects, especially in the first week:

  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Hyperpigmentation or hypopigmentation
  • Infection

Finding the Right Doctor for Fraxel Treatments

When selecting the dermatologist or plastic surgeon who will perform the procedure, make sure that they have extensive experience with treating patients using a laser treatment. It would help to ask about their credentials, training, as well as the photos of their successful treatments in the past.

The right doctor will explain how different laser treatments work and how much they cost.

Get Rid of Different Skin Problems with Ethos Spa

Tired of seeing different facial problems every time you look at the mirror? Here at Ethos Spa, we offer a wide selection of skin care treatments that can effectively work, such as the laser Fraxel.

Over the years, we have helped hundreds of patients treat different dermal problems using the latest cosmetic solutions and state-of-the-art equipment. And we can do the same for you. So take the first step and contact us for a consultation now.

Dr. Hardik Soni

MD, Founder/Lead Physician

About Dr. Hardik Soni

Dr. Hardik Soni is the founder and Medical Director of Ethos Aesthetics + Wellness. His primary focus is on minimally invasive and non-invasive cosmetic procedures including botulinum injection (Botox and Dysport), dermal fillers (Juvederm, Restylane, Radiesse), laser hair removal, chemical peels, and laser skin rejuvenation. Dr. Soni believes in a more conservative approach and his first goal is education. Clients are able to determine the ideal treatments after discussion with Dr. Soni regarding the expected outcomes, cost, as well as risks.

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