Lasers in Skin Care

By: Jason Begley


The desire for healthy and youthful skin is nothing new. From Cleopatra to the modern day working woman or housewife, people want to look good. People want to look younger. According to the 2002 US Census Survey, a little over $12 Billion was spent on hair, nail, and skin care services nationwide. In that same year there were more than 400,000 people employed as cosmetology professionals.

Needless to say, the demand is evident, and it is most certainly not slowing down. One of the primary reasons that Americas quest for eternal youth will continue to expand is the advent of new skin care tools and, consequently, new services that have become available. At the forefront of the fight against aging are lasers. Lasers provide a variety of solutions to many common ailments that have plagued us for centuries.

Lasers produce light, and a bi-product of light is heat. Most often, a laser is used to deliver heat in order to cause a change in human tissue. What kind of change, you ask? Lasers can be used for a myriad of applications that include the permanent removal of unwanted hair, the reduction of the appearance in wrinkles, the removal of spider veins, and much more. So how does a laser remove hair? There are lasers that are specifically designed to deliver light in order to produce heat that targets and subsequently disables the hair follicles ability to grow.

Wrinkle reduction is accomplished by employing a similar process. There are specialized laser systems that produce a specific form of light energy that irradiates heat that is absorbed by the water found in the collagen in our skin. Collagen is part of what makes skin soft, supple, and elastic. When our skin is at its peak, which is typically in our late twenties, it appears youthful and healthy. As we age the collagen becomes far less dense, which results in thin or lax skin.

When laser energy is absorbed by the water found in the collagen, it aids in heating the collagen in order to damage it. When the body observes through its natural reaction that the collagen has been damaged, it works hard to repair and rebuild these structures. The net result is an increase in collagen production and, eventually, collagen density. Physiologically speaking, the appearance of the skin can return to what it was perhaps five or even ten years earlier by resetting its anatomical clock.

Yet another example of the use of lasers in skin care is the reduction of vascular lesions, which are most commonly defined as spider veins or broken capillaries. If your skin care specialist is going to incorporate the use of a laser when approaching a skin care problem of this type, they are doing so to, again, deliver heat to that tissue in an effort to damage the structure and encourage the body to repair and eliminate its non-functioning components.

These and many other similar skin care solutions are available at most of the more than two thousand medical spas located across the country. These providers of advanced aesthetic services are often medical or cosmetology professionals with specialized training in the efficient and safe uses of these kinds of technologies. With each passing year, laser procedures are becoming a common part of modern skin care. Perhaps Twenty years ago it would have been difficult to imagine visiting your local mall on a lunch break to have a service of this kind performed, but today it is difficult to identify a large shopping center in which a medical spa is not available.

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Jason Begley is one of the original founders of the Institute for Medical Aesthetics - IMAj, which is the largest and most experienced medical aesthetics and laser hair removal training school in North America. For more information, please visit www.imajschool.org

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