Superficial skin concerns such as sun damage, minor acne scars, and pigmentation concerns don’t always fade with time. In fact, sometimes these skin concerns can be more difficult to treat as we age. Several treatment options can help resolve these skin concerns, such as BBL treatments. However, at Franklin Skin and Laser in Franklin, TN, we believe that some laser treatments may be more effective than BB treatments.
BBL Versus Laser: Why Lasers Are Better
BBL treatments are broadband light treatments that expose the skin to light wavelengths, which can correct a variety of pigment concerns, including some types of sun damage. However, while BBL treatments are certainly good for addressing mild skin concerns, light energy treatments can’t address all skin concerns and may not be helpful for textural skin issues.
Laser treatments, on the other hand, have more depth and are generally more versatile. These treatments work by using a thermal type of light energy that will physically remove the damaged skin cells on the surface of the skin that are contributing to your skin concerns. For this reason, these energy-based treatments are largely considered superficial and are ideal choices for patients with moderate to severe concerns, as well as those who have age-related concerns.
Lasers Have More Depth
The first thing you will need to know about these treatments is that lasers can penetrate the skin more deeply, which means that more skin cells can be treated at one time. Powerful energy-based treatments can effectively exfoliate several layers of skin to completely resurface and perfect the appearance of the skin. Although these treatments are more aggressive than light-based treatments, the depth of the energy penetration also means that these treatments are considered more effective for certain skin conditions.
Lasers Are More Versatile
While light-based treatments are mainly used on the face, treatments that use lasers can be used on virtually all areas of the body. This level of versatility means that any skin concern on any area of the skin can be effectively treated. In a practical sense, the versatility of these treatments makes it easy to correct pigment concerns that may appear on the shoulders, chest, arms, or other areas. More versatility from your treatment can also be a money saver in the long run.
Laser Results Last Longer
Another reason why lasers are better than light treatments is the longevity of the results. For a broadband light treatment, you can expect results to last a few months at a time. However, for resurfacing treatments with lasers, you can expect results to last for three to five years at a time. Depending on factors such as the exact treatment used and how well you take care of your skin, sometimes the results of these treatments can even be permanent, such as for the treatment for scars.
Lasers Are Ideal for Advanced Concerns
Perhaps the most important reason that lasers are better than BBL treatments is the skin conditions that can be addressed. Lasers are ideal for advanced skin concerns, which include severe skin laxity, deep wrinkles, pronounced sun damage, and texturized scarring. Advanced concerns can be difficult to effectively address with superficial treatments since advanced skin concerns tend to be several skin layers deep.
A resurfacing treatment with lasers can be deep enough to correct a variety of issues, including:
- Dark spots
- Acne scars and other scars
- Sun damage
- Skin laxity
- Smoker’s lines and smile lines
- Crow’s feet
- Fine lines and wrinkles
- Drooping eyelids and eyebrows
- Dull and dry skin
What Can You Expect From Laser Treatment?
This treatment is overall very straightforward. The mechanics of this treatment are performed with a device that emits laser energy to the skin, which then softens skin cells and stimulates the body’s natural regenerative properties. In fact, while the removal of dead skin cells from the skin surface is part of the reason why this treatment is so effective, the other part is because of the way the energy works with your body to reverse the effects of the natural aging process.
For age-related concerns, the production of collagen and elastin in the sub-dermal layers of your skin is essential to smooth the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, and skin laxity. Since natural collagen production slows down as we age, the stimulation of new collagen can do wonders to restore the appearance of your skin.
Preparing for energy-based treatments typically means making a few changes about one to two weeks before your appointment. Because this type of treatment can trigger melanin production in the skin, it’s important to avoid direct sunlight, tanning beds, and at-home tanning products; avoiding sun exposure will also ensure that your skin is healthy for your treatment.
Ideally, patients should arrive at their appointment with clean skin and loose, comfortable clothing. Please do not wear make-up, lotion, or perfume on any of the designated treatment areas. It’s also a good idea for patients to drink plenty of water in preparation for this treatment.
After your treatment, you should do your best to protect your skin from environmental pollutants and sunlight exposure. You should aim to wear SPF 30 or higher for the first two weeks after your appointment, even if you plan on staying indoors during the daytime. You should not use hot water or acidic cleansers for the first 24 to 48 hours.
Please avoid hot showers, saunas, hot tubs, or extreme heat and sweating during the first few days after your treatment. You will need to temporarily discontinue certain skincare products, such as retinol or acid serums, for at least 24 to 48 hours. We will give you more detailed aftercare instructions after your appointment.
Although the downtime for this treatment will only be a few days, it may take some time before you will see the results of your treatment. The first few days after your treatment, you can expect some skin shedding as old skin cells fall off to reveal new, undamaged skin cells. You may not see your optimal results for one to two weeks or more, depending on the treatment used.
Number of Treatments Needed
Sometimes, only one treatment is powerful enough to resurface the appearance of the skin. Other times, one to two treatments or more may be necessary to achieve your ideal results. We will make a recommendation on the number of treatments needed for your unique skin needs.
Maintaining the results of your treatment is very easy, particularly when you can avoid any factors that may damage the skin or increase skin aging. For example, wearing SPF during the day can protect your skin from UV rays that cause your skin cells to age more quickly. Avoiding unprotected sun exposure will also prevent dark spots, broken vessels, and other types of sun damage.
Another thing you can do to maintain your results is using the proper skincare products and routine. It’s important to cleanse your skin twice a day and wear a moisturizer that supports skin health. You should also use skincare products that will support collagen production in the skin. Products such as Retinol or moisturizers that contain hyaluronic acid are good options.
Is This Treatment Safe?
Yes, this treatment is safe. Although this treatment uses the power of lasers to resurface the skin, it does not cause any damage to the skin, such as scarring. This treatment may also be compatible with those who have medium to dark complexions. A consultation will confirm whether this treatment is good for your unique skin needs.
Why Else Should You Choose This Treatment?
There are plenty of reasons why you may want to choose this treatment. For example, the treatment is non-invasive and will not have a long downtime, which makes it a much better alternative to invasive surgery. Additionally, the aggressiveness of this treatment means that you will not need to have very frequent treatments, so you will be able to save time and money to maintain your results.
Will This Treatment Tighten Skin?
Although most treatments with lasers are marketed for skin resurfacing, there is actually a lot of overlap between skin resurfacing and skin tightening treatments. The very mechanics that allow this treatment to reduce the appearance of scars and fine lines will also enable this treatment to correct skin laxity, not only on the face but also on the body.
Who Are Good Candidates?
Adults who have aging concerns related to the texture and appearance of the skin are likely good candidates for this treatment. You will need to attend a consultation appointment to assess whether this treatment is an ideal fit for your aesthetic goals. Women who are pregnant and people who have active skin conditions, such as eczema, are not good candidates for this treatment.
Let Lasers Perfect Your Skin
While BBL treatments are a good match for some superficial skin concerns, advanced concerns like deep wrinkles, scarring, and pronounced sun damage tend to have better results with laser skin resurfacing treatments. Treatments with lasers are more effective, produce longer-lasting results, and have more versatile for the face and body.