As its name suggests, an aesthetic laser is low-level medical laser that’s used to perform cosmetic procedures. Laser hair removal, laser breast augmentation, and laser liposuction are all common cosmetic procedures that apply a low-level or “cold” laser to produce an aesthetic result.
The therapeutic benefits of cold laser treatments have been known since 1967. Since then, lasers of varying intensities have been experimented with to determine which intensities are therapeutic and which levels are dangerous. All levels of laser radiation are classified by a rating of one to four, with one being the lowest intensity and four being the highest. A medical or surgical laser usually receives a class 2 designation.
How cold lasers work
Lasers emit focused beams of light. When these beams of light are focused on a target object, the object absorbs some of the laser light, raising the temperature of that object’s surface and/or interior, and creating the circumstances for tissue alteration.
Low-level lasers like class 2 lasers heat the targeted tissue to the point of beneficial alteration, while at higher levels, laser light can damage tissue. Cold lasers can kill unhealthy cells, stimulate growth of new cells, and melt unwanted fat. Here are a few examples.
Common aesthetic laser applications
- Laser breast augmentation refers to a procedure that uses only low-level laser energy to augment the breasts, not invasive surgery. During the procedure, the laser is moved across the chest. The laser energy helps to both tighten the breast tissue and enhance cell growth. Laser breast augmentation won’t give the same results in regard to size as traditional breast augmentation, but it is effective in improving the look and contour of the breasts. Lasers are also used in traditional breast surgeries to reduce pain and inflammation post surgery.
- Laser hair removal is a popular surgery for removing unwanted body hair painlessly and permanently. Laser beams are focused on individual hair follicles, damaging both the follicle and the shaft so that the hair falls out on its own and isn’t able to grow back.
Ironically, lasers are also used to promote hair growth just by focusing the same level of laser at a wider beam and lower intensity. The laser stimulates healing of damaged hair follicles and promotes healthy new growth.
- Laser liposuction is safer, faster alternative to traditional liposuction performed with a cannula. Lasers alter the fat cells just below the surface of the skin to the point of emulsification. The liquefied fat is reabsorbed by the body and eliminated through normal processes, often with the help of herbal cleansers and detox programs.