Is it advisable to get skin laser treatments in summer?

After getting a laser treatment, especially ones like fractional lasers, it is common to experience some heat sensation and redness. Your face may feel hot and tingly after the procedure because the skin is regenerating. On top of that, environmental factors such as the hot weather in summer as well as wearing a mask might add to the heat you feel on your face.

Dr. Kim Jiseon from MH Clinic

We approached Dr. Kim Jiseon from MH Clinic in Seoul, Korea, and she revealed that every time summer comes around, she'll get this question from her patients. "Can I get laser treatments during summer?" Just five years ago, there were limited types of skin lasers, and the lasers that were effective were also irritating. Back then, exposure to the hot sun and its ultraviolet rays after a laser treatment might cause further irritation.

Today, laser treatments have advanced tremendously, it's possible to do even multiple laser treatments in one sitting. Skin lasers have become much gentler on the skin, and much less irritating, so most of them can be gotten in the summer. Let's discuss each type of skin laser in detail.

Lifting Lasers

There is no need to worry about lifting lasers because they are not affected by ultraviolet light exposure and the hot heat in summer will not cause any side effects.

The most typical lifting lasers are Ultherapy and Thermage. Tune Face, ReNOVA, Shurink, Tenor and Polygen are also lifting lasers. These lifting lasers do not irritate the surface of the skin, but rather stimulate the dermis or SMAS layer beneath the skin. This is because you need to lift tissue from under the skin and restore elasticity. Ultherapy does this by delivering intense ultrasonic energy to the SMAS layer, while Thermage, Tenor and Polygen deliver high frequency energy to the lower layers of the dermis. Most of the time, the laser does not irritate the surface of the skin directly. Therefore, the possibility of side effects from exposure to sunlight is slim, so you can get them regardless of the season.

Pigmentation Lasers


Generally referred to as laser toning, there are various pigmentation lasers on the market such as Nd:YAG, Alexandria, and Ruby. They differ on the length of the wavelength used. All of these pigmentation lasers work by selecting and destroying only melanin pigments in the skin layer, so if you take good care of your skin with sunscreen after the procedure, you should not have any problem in the summer.

However, if you do not follow the aftercare instructions that the gave you and expose yourself to ultraviolet light for long periods of time, you run the risk of pigmentation reoccurring. In particular, treatments such as IPL use very strong stimuli in order to achieve effects in a short period of time, so you should be extra careful when getting them in summer when the UV rays are the strongest.

Pore and Scarring Lasers

The CO2 laser treatment often used for shrinking pores and fading scars is one that works close to the skin, so extra care must be taken during the summer because of the risk of pigmentation. If you wish to get these lasers during summer, especially for those living in Southeast Asia where it is summer all year round, you should visit a trained dermatologist in order to ensure that you get the procedure in a safe manner.

As Dr. Kim mentioned, just five years ago, laser treatment in summer was highly avoided by the public. Over the years, however, we have developed better laser equipment, allowing skin lasers to become readily available regardless of the season and improving post-treatment care. The best skincare treatment, however, is still regular and consistent skincare, so many dermatologists are now paying attention to healthy and consistent levels of laser treatments rather than boosting the skin temporarily with strong lasers.

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