Here’s the thing: you know how celebrities love to talk about their “minimalist” skin care routines and low effort beauty?
Fuck all of that.
I’ve finally figured it out.
See, earlier this year, my face decided to be a bitch and mess up my otherwise uneventful life. My face was red, raw, and sensitive to just about everything under (and maybe above, I don’t know) the sun.
It was a disaster.
I know I sound dramatic, but I swear, my face was just absolutely on fire all the damn time. Everything set it off. My cheeks were red and inflamed with huge pustules pulsing underneath the surface. It hurt to smile, physically and emotionally.
Nothing I used was working. I even went to see my regular dermatologist and used prescribed topical medicine, but it only made things worse.
Eventually, I got tired and just figured I’d ride the entire horrendous journey out and see where it took me. I held off on all potential irritants and later on found great skin care that helped heal my face.
But then here’s the problem: I simply couldn’t get rid of the acne marks. Months after the evil breakout, I still had red and brown spots all over my cheeks. So much that it looked like I was still breaking out, even though my skin was back to its usual healthy self.
Initially I tried to seek topical remedies, but eventually I figured out that a more drastic solution might be necessary. Enter Wink Laser Studio.
I’ve seen them around town, with most branches located in upscale districts of the city, but I just never felt like I needed their services. That is, before I discovered their laser facial.
What is it?
It’s a completely non-invasive treatment that uses actual lasers directly on your face.
(Quick note: Wink Laser Studio uses Revlite and QX Max. I’ve had the treatment done 4 times and I think they used QX Max on me each time. I am unfortunately not a laser expert so I don’t know anything about these machines. Just thought I’d mention it in case it’s helpful to anyone else.)
The laser facial takes about 20 minutes, though you do get a quick 5 to 10 minutes of consultation if it’s your first time.
It’s not painful, though you’ll feel flicks (like getting hit in the face repeatedly with a rubber band) everywhere the laser touches you. I don’t think it hurts. It’s just a little annoying and itchy, but nothing major. Besides, the feeling subsides the minute the treatment is over.
The nurse will repeat the process three times:
- First pass all over the face with relatively mild strength
- Second pass again all over the face but quite stronger and more tingly now
- Third pass on targeted areas, specifically for minimizing pore size and eliminating pigmentation
Word of warning: the laser will burn off your peach fuzz. I personally don’t mind the smell, but just a heads up in case you start to panic and freak out when you get a whiff of eau de burnt hair.
What does it do?
The laser facial treats a number of skin issues:
- Fine lines/wrinkles
It also helps boost collagen production, improve skin texture over all, and can even help reduce pore size. Not bad for something that takes 20 minutes.
What else do I need to know?
This is a non-invasive treatment, yes, but there are still a few guidelines to follow before and after treatment to make sure nothing goes awry.
- No retinol, peels, chemical exfoliants at least a week before treatment
- Avoid tanning or spending long hours unprotected under the sun
- No serums or toners the night before
- Be like TLC, because no scrubs
- If you have eczema, you’ll have to sign a waiver before proceeding
- Don’t wash your face for at least four hours
- Stick to cold showers for at least 24 hours
- No excessive sweating for 48 hours
- Moisturize regularly
- Wear sunblock!
Does it work?
This part is entirely anecdotal, so take my experience with a grain of salt.
I have had the treatment done four times so far. I have dry and sensitive skin, but I have not experienced redness, dryness, or irritation after each one. Sure, there’s a bit of redness immediately after the treatment, but it subsides in about fifteen minutes.
The acne marks on my cheeks are significantly less prominent. How do I put this? It looks like my blemishes are blurred and though you can sort of see that there’s a hint of pigmentation on my cheeks, they aren’t as obvious as they were before. I can now go out without makeup on lazy weekends without feeling very self-conscious of my acne marks.
I had a slight “purge” after the first treatment, which is common with laser facials. I didn’t really mind though, because these were the annoying bumps I had under the surface finally coming up for air. The purge for me was just a bunch of whiteheads and they were gone in a couple of days.
One of the most significant changes for me is that my skin feels a lot healthier and less dry. I used to have dry, dehydrated, and irritated skin that would flake and crack regularly. Now it just, well, feels like skin.
(I still have a super oily nose, though.)
How much is it?
It’s pretty spendy.
Celebrities like to talk about their minimalist skin care routines. When asked about their ultimate beauty secret, they always have this to say:
Just drink more water!
When you have money to burn on regular facial treatments, your skin care routine would end up pretty minimal and low effort, too.
I started the laser facials a couple of months ago and have pretty much pared down my daily regimen to just cleanser, moisturizer, and sunscreen. Who needs toners and serums and potions when a laser can give you better results in just 20 minutes?
To be honest, I never would have considered getting laser facials if I didn’t have a bit of extra cash. Imagine just how beautiful your skin could be if you had all the cash to burn and various skin care treatments to undergo every week?
Just goes to show how celebrity beauty is unrealistic, but I digress.
Wink Laser Studio is a bit more high-end, because there are other places that will offer laser facials for less. However! I do think they’re worth the money because they employ actual nurses, they have top-of-the-line machines, their locations are beautiful and spotless, plus they have excellent customer service.
Wink nurses message you the day after the treatment just to make sure everything is fine. It’s a small thing, but I really like the attention to detail. (And the attention, in general. I am shameless.)
I still have 6 sessions left in my package, and given how my face has turned out so far, I figure I might just keep this going.
Besides, how cool is it to have actual lasers on your face?