The Right Laser for Every Skin-Problem Scenario

There’s a lot of high-tech language when it comes to lasers, but for most of us, it's the results—and how much time it’s going to take to get them—that tops the list of must-achieves. New York and Houston dermatologist Paul Friedman, MD, shares his picks for what kind of laser treatment to get when you have some specific skin care goals.

If you want to get rid of broken blood vessels: Vbeam
“This laser works by emitting wavelengths of light which targets blood vessels, just under the skin, by heating the blood vessels and causing them to collapse. The blood vessels may refill and an additional treatment or two maybe necessary to close the vessels.”

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If you have brown spots: Q-switched Nd:YAG or Q-switched Ruby
“This laser works by breaking down pigment molecules, leaving the surrounding skin undamaged.”

If you only have an hour: CoolSculpting
Dr. Friedman’s pick is actually not a laser, but still the best 60-minute treatment available, in his opinion: CoolSculpting. “The treatment requires exactly 60 minutes and targets unwanted fat, by utilizing controlled cooling. The company just launched a new applicator that requires only 35 minutes, reducing treatment time nearly in half.”

If you are an absolute beginner: Clear + Brilliant Permea by Solta
This is also the doctor’s pick for when you have to go right back to work and/or if you have an event the next day. “This device has a low, medium and high setting, and topical numbing is typically not necessary at the lower settings. Outer layers of sun-damaged skin will give way to the healthier layers underneath, rejuvenating the appearance of the skin. The device is safe in all skin types and downtime is minimal.”

If you are have your 20th high school reunion coming up: Fraxel DUAL 
“This laser uses tiny columns of fractionated light energy that penetrate to the middle layer of skin, stimulating collagen production and improving sun-damaged skin. Treated areas are typically red and swollen for a few days.”

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