Thursday afternoon, I will be submitting myself (my face) to a little procedure called Fraxel. If interested in what THAT’s all about from a purely medical point of view you can check it out here: OUCH.

I titled that link ouch, because I have done this before and I know what’s going to happen.  You go in to the office for the treatment and they have you wash your face, then they smear numbing cream all over it. The numbing cream takes about 45-60 minutes to really kick in, which results in your skin feeling about an inch thick. Sounds weird. Feels weirder. Kinda’ like your face is made of this:

Somewhere along the way, if you are really freaking out, they have you take a little pill to help you relax a bit.  (Doesn’t this sound awesome so far? What could possibly go wrong?)

Years ago, after learning my lesson during my first session, I took a couple of those little mini wine bottles in and I’d drink them while reading and numbing. One of my special gifts is the ability to self-medicate.

After you’re numb, (from the cream, not the wine) they have you lie on your back on a table. Then, they hand you a hose. “What’s this?” 

“It’s a cooling device,” the nice nurse tells you. “As the laser wand is slowly rolled around your face, you’re going to want to follow it closely with this hose that blows cold air.”

Well, sure I am. Actually, at the time, I thought I would not be using that little hose. I was wrong. That hose became my very best friend. BEST FRIEND. Why? Because this laser treatment, this Fraxel thing, feels like…

…feels like…

…it feels like that nice nurse who was so sweet a little while ago is now taking scalding hot bits of broken glass and raking them over your face. Slowly.

I am not kidding.

This procedure takes about 45 minutes or so, then you are free to go home, whine and hold ice bags on your red, swollen face.

Let me just say that by definition, a swollen face has very few lines or wrinkles, so the effect is somewhat immediate, if not terribly attractive. Over the next few days, the skin starts to dry and flake, but after THAT, you are left with a smooth, healthy, glowing complexion.

I signed up for 3 sessions, one every three or four weeks. Because I’m obviously insane.

The last time I did this (5-6 years ago), it greatly reduced acne scarring I’d had since my teens. Scars that every dermatologist my whole life told me I could not get rid of without basically scraping my face off. But that’s not all. After having my face scraped off, I would need to remain in seclusion for 2 weeks to avoid any nasty facial infections resulting from having my face scraped off. It sounded like a terrible, terrible plan. Even to me. Two weeks in isolation is not exactly on my to-do list, unless it’s on an island in Hawaii with an excellent wine cellar and a box of puppies.

Thus, I lived with my scars until finally, FINALLY, they came up with the Fraxel laser. The only downside is that I managed to schedule the first appointment for three days before Mother’s Day. Genius.

The good news is – the boys can satisfy any Mother’s Day gifting with ice packs and some mini wines. And by telling me I look ten years younger. And well rested.

Happy Mother’s Day weekend to all!

You look FABULOUS!

4 thoughts on “FRAXEL THURSDAY

  1. Ann, you are very brave! I feel the need for self-medication just after reading what you’re about to go through! I’d never even heard of this process. Have a happy and very relaxing Mother’s Day!

    • What is the difference beetewn this laser, which has a steady light, and lasers I’ve seen in other videos which is very noisy (clack clack clack) and has a flashing light? I want the most aggressive one. Can this help with baggy skin not just wrinkles. I had a fat deposit on one side of my face and I got it suctioned out. The doctors said he had done it too much and so the skin is now loose. Can fractional laser help with that?

      • Not sure what the difference is, but I don’t think this one really does anything for loose skin. It is more for acne scarring and lines. I pulled this from a website: Fraxel works below the skin’s surface from the top down, addressing imperfections like fine lines, visible photo aging, wrinkles, scarring and age spots. Fraxel light energy stimulates your skin’s natural collagen, rejuvenating skin cells below the surface to help smooth the creases and pockets that cause wrinkles and scars.

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