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What Is Involved in Using a Laser for Freckles?

By Angela Farrer
Updated: Feb 04, 2024

Using a laser for freckles involves applying a concentrated beam of light designed to remove excess skin pigmentation. A dermatologist or skin laser technician normally performs freckle laser treatments only after completing specific training in the safe use of these tools. Using a laser for freckles often entails several treatment sessions, depending on the number and pigmentation of the freckles to be removed. A mild scab may form over the treated area after the first freckle laser treatment, but this is common and normally heals on its own in a short amount of time. An advantage to removing freckles with this method is that the lasers are usually milder and less painful than those used in some other treatments such as tattoo removal.

Before receiving your first laser treatment, you will probably have an initial consultation with your dermatologist. You will typically discuss your current skin condition, the areas of freckles to be removed, and the likely outcomes from using a laser to treat freckling. People with light freckles often need fewer treatments than those with darker-colored freckles. The amount of pigmentation can also affect the specific type of laser to be used. Many experienced dermatologists recommend a certain laser concentration for freckles on light Caucasian skin and a different one for darker skin on people of other ethnic backgrounds.

Skin-care professionals applying a laser for freckles will usually give their clients specific instructions prior to the freckle laser treatments. You will normally be advised not to apply self-tanning lotions and to avoid sun exposure as much as possible for at least a few days before a laser session. The pigment added to tanned skin usually makes a laser for freckles less effective.

The average laser treatment for freckles carries some degree of discomfort that may be more intense for some people based on their overall pain tolerance. A laser technician normally applies a topical anesthetic cream to the freckled area being treated. Some clients may alternately receive a local anesthetic injection. Many people who have received a laser treatment for freckles report that the sensation is similar to a series of pinches on the skin.

After each application of a laser for freckles, the treated area temporarily becomes darker in color. The freckles then usually form scabs after approximately one week. Dermatologists often advise laser clients to keep these areas clean and covered to avoid possible infections. Once the scabs completely heal, many people report more even skin tones with diminished freckling.

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Discussion Comments
By fify — On Apr 22, 2014

@bear78-- I had laser removal done for my freckles as well. My recovery actually took several weeks because I have many freckles. It took a while for all of them to scab over and fall off. I looked very bad during that process and tried not to go out too much. I didn't want to wear makeup to prevent infection. So I don't agree that laser treatment doesn't require recovery. It might not be a big deal for someone with few freckles, but it's not the case for everyone.

Also, laser treatment is not a permanent solution. More than one session may be required or the treatment may have to be repeated periodically. If skin is not protected from the sun, the freckles can return very quickly.

By bear78 — On Apr 21, 2014

@serenesurface-- My sister had laser removal for her freckles last year and she was very happy with it. She didn't have many freckles and they were not very dark and laser removal got rid of them altogether. Moreover, the procedure is painless and doesn't require recovery. Some other freckle removal methods like chemical peels require several weeks for recovery and can be painful.

If you are certain that you want to have freckles removed, then you should definitely consider laser removal. Speak to a professional about it.

By serenesurface — On Apr 20, 2014

So has anyone here actually had laser treatment for freckles? Did it work and would you recommend it?

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