If you’re interested in professional skincare treatments involving lasers, ultrasound, skin needling or even just professional facials, there’s a good chance that your Dermal Clinician or Beauty Therapist recommended products for you to use at home.
While it may be tempting for skeptics to cry “upsell,” if you’re seeing a true professional, it probably isn’t an upsell at all. It’s your Dermal Clinician taking a holistic approach to get you the best result, protect your skin and provide better post-treatment care. When you understand how laser treatments work, you can better understand why skincare products can sometimes be necessary.
Get Better Results From Laser Treatments
“Professional treatments and skincare work together to improve and maintain results,” Senior Clinician Rachael says. When it comes to anti-ageing results, collagen is key; it maintains your skin’s youthful texture and elasticity, but as we get older, our collagen wanes and our bodies don’t replenish it as effectively, so the goal for most anti-ageing products and treatments is to boost your collagen.
Non-invasive skin tightening treatments work by delivering energy to the deeper layers of your skin to stimulate a collagen rebuilding response in the natural fibres. Skincare products with collagen peptides help provide your collagen fibres with amino acids they can use for rebuilding. Additionally, skincare products with Vitamin A contributes to collagen production, and products with Vitamin C are known to help your skin cells synthesise collagen.
Applying these products after a professional treatment will help support the collagen regeneration process that has been stimulated by the laser or ultrasound. It can help you boost your results and maintain them for longer.
Additionally, if you treat pigmentation and sun damage with lasers, a pigment inhibiting serum will also help you maintain your results. In basic terms, the laser breaks down the pigmentation that is trapped underneath the skin, and your natural immune system removes the broken-down pigment particles naturally. A pigment inhibiting serum will help prevent new pigment from building up while your body is processing the pigmentation you just treated.
It’s similar to visiting the dentist for a really good clean, and then brushing your teeth at home to keep them healthy and bright.
You should always go to a clinic that values training and development for staff so that the Clinicians are familiar with treating different skin types and always up to date with the latest protocols. In a safe, professional setting, side effects from laser, such as hyperpigmentation, are very unlikely to happen. As an extra precaution, though, you should prep your skin before certain treatments to further mitigate the potential for side effects.
“Before nearly all laser treatments, we recommend a pigment inhibiting serum,” says Ally, a Senior Clinician with Rejuvenation Clinics of Australia, “with any treatment involving heat, or any treatment that stimulates a healing response, the skin should be prepped with a pigment inhibiting serum.” It will help to further reduce your risk of side effects.
Some treatments (like Fraxel or Erbium) rely on gentle ablation of dead skin cells to promote cell turnover and reveal smoother, more youthful skin. Some treatments, such as RF Needling, create a micro wound healing response in the skin to promote collagen remodelling for more youthful, smoother texture. Some of these treatments may have some downtime associated, during which you need to protect your skin.
We normally recommend a silicone film forming gel like Stratamed or Stratederm for a few days after treatment. It acts like a clear bandage over the skin, and it will also help it to heal.
After most treatments, you’ll likely be advised to refrain from using active skincare for a few days, with the exception of Vitamin B. Vitamin B is a soothing anti-inflammatory that can really reduce any post-laser redness. You may also be recommended a light moisturizing serum or something with aloe gel, depending on your skin. Again, the idea is to protect your skin and bring out the best result possible.
After most treatments, you can become a little more sensitive to UV radiation from the sun, so sunscreen is an absolute must. Physical sunblocks with zinc and titanium are preferable to chemical sunscreens. Chemical sunscreens absorb and filter the harmful rays of the sun, but physical sunblocks sit on top of your skin and reflect UV radiation, so they’ll be less likely to cause irritation on your sensitive, post-treatment skin. Zinc also has anti-inflammatory properties.
Not to mention, so much ageing and pigmentation is caused by sun damage. There’s little use in all of these treatments and skincare products if you aren’t protecting your skin from the sun.
Now that you understand how products and treatments work in conjunction together, you can be more discerning about products that may be recommended to you. If you’re unsure about anything, just ask during your consultation. There may be a clinical reason that certain products are recommended to you.