The Fraxel laser system smoothes wrinkled and weathered skin through a series of treatments that spurs the growth of collagen, which helps give skin a tighter, more youthful look. Triple board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Richard Chaffoo offers these comfortable laser treatments to ensure you get excellent results. It typically takes 4 – 8 sessions spaced about a month apart for optimal results. San Diego residents trust La Jolla Plastic Surgery for treatments that get maximum results with minimum downtime. The Fraxel DUAL laser is an extremely popular and effective technology that corrects sun damage, uneven skin coloring, fine wrinkles, and rough texture — without significant discomfort or downtime. Fraxel treatments can help you to have skin that looks radiant and feels like new.
"I truly had the best experience with La Jolla Skin! I was referred here by a friend who received micro needling and raved about how amazing her skin looked and felt after. This friend of mine recently moved to La Jolla from Beverly Hills and is definitely picky when it comes to all things beauty, so I completely trusted her recommendation. I had been wanting to do something more than just your standard facial to help the texture and appearance of my skin... acne scarring, pigmentation from the sun, large pores. I called to schedule my appointment and spoke with Jennifer who was SO sweet and helpful. When I went in for my appointment I have to admit I was a little nervous, but after consulting with Tracy I felt much more at ease. Nancy was the RN that preformed the micro needling and she too was amazing! She calmed my nerves and was just so so great. After having numbing cream on 30 mins prior to the micro needling I literally felt no pain or discomfort during the service. The machine is loud which sounds scary, but honestly it's nothing. My experience here was so wonderful and I look forward to continuing treatments with them. Highly recommend!!"- S.B. / Yelp / Sep 26, 2016
"Dr. Chaffoo is a great surgeon and is kind, gentle, experienced and has a great bedside manner. His staff (Nancy and Tracy) are equally as attentive and thorough. I felt safe and confident. I had my breast implants removed and a lift and a fat transfer to balance them. He did a great job. I am very happy with the results. I would recommend him to anyone."- S.E. / Yelp / Jul 25, 2017
"I just love coming here! Everyone that works here is not only extremely talented, but also very kind and welcoming. I've had microneedling, cool sculpting, vbeam, and a hydrafacial....I'm beyond happy with the results from each of these procedures! This whole team really takes time to listen to all of your questions and concerns, and patiently responds to each and every one. I've never felt like I was left feeling confused about anything, or that I had wasted my money on a service. I'm a client for life! Thank you all for being so awesome, I'd give you 6 stars if I could!"- N.R. / Yelp / Jul 17, 2017
"Very Natural Breast Augmentation, Wonderful Experience - Dr. Chaffoo is the utmost professional. I had a great experience with him from the start to finish of my surgery process, and continue to have a good experience. He is very attentive and caring, and I ended up with fabulous results from my surgery. I also appreciate that Dr. Chaffoo has me come in once per year for a check up, which gives me added peace of mind."- K. / RealSelf / Jul 11, 2017
"Great new experience - I went to La Jolla Plastic Surgery for Coolsculpting. It was a new experience for me but Dr. Chaffoo and his assistant Robert walked me through it and made sure I was comfortable through it all. I have already recommended them to several friends and I'm sure I'll be back soon. Thanks!"- S. / RealSelf / Jun 22, 2017
Before the Procedure
The Fraxel DUAL is actually a 2-in-1 laser:
- For radiant, uniform skin coloring, the 1927 wavelength treats the outermost layers of the skin to target excess pigment, fine lines, uneven texture, enlarged pores, and even pre-cancerous skin cells (actinic keratosis).
- For smoother, firmer, and thicker skin, the 1550 wavelength penetrates deeper to renew collagen production, reducing the appearance of wrinkles and acne scars, smoothing the skin's surface, and enhancing the skin's thickness.
Because it is easy to switch between wavelengths, we can treat both the surface of the skin and deeper layers in a single session. In either mode, the Fraxel laser provides non-ablative fractional resurfacing, which means the surface of the skin is not removed.
Dr. Chaffoo and his team perform Fraxel treatments at our La Jolla and San Diego, CA offices. The entire process takes about 1 – 2 hours to complete. First, your skin will be cleansed and dried, followed by a topical numbing cream. Once the skin is numb, which usually takes an hour, the Fraxel handpiece is glided over the skin until all target areas are covered. As the laser energy is emitted, you may feel heat or tingling on your skin, but you shouldn't feel pain. While traditional lasers have a solid beam of laser energy that treats the entire surface of the skin, the Fraxel laser emits thousands of pinpoint columns of laser energy. This fractional approach means that a fine grid of skin is treated while surrounding pinpoint dots of skin are untreated. Because the entire surface of the skin is not ablated, downtime is reduced since the skin repairs and renews itself more quickly.
After your treatment, your skin will feel warm to the touch and look pink or red, similar to a sunburn. Some patients return to their daily activities; others choose to go home and rest for the remainder of the day. Tips for the first weeks after treatment include:
- Apply cool compresses or ice packs as directed, especially for the first day
- Drink plenty of water
- Use a non-cosmogenic moisturizer
- Resist squeezing or picking any bumps or pimples that form
- Do not pull off peeling skin
- You may apply concealer to reduce redness beginning the day after treatment if desired. Your skin will gradually turn a bronze color and then peel and flake (like a sunburn). Expect your skin to feel tight, dry, and itchy as it heals. Gradually the treated skin will peel off and your fresh, new skin will be revealed.
- Avoid direct sun exposure for at least 3 months after your treatments, and consistently apply sunscreen of at least 30 SPF, as the new skin is highly sensitive.
It is likely you will notice improvement after your first Fraxel treatment. As collagen rebuilds in the skin, you will look and feel even better. We recommend a series of 4 – 8 sessions spaced 2 – 4 weeks apart for optimal results.
Plan Your Procedure
- Recovery Time
- 1 - 2 Days
- Average Procedure Time
- 1 - 2 Hours
- Post-op Follow-up
- 2 - 4 Weeks
- Procedure Recovery Location
Laser Skin Resurfacing FAQs
Fraxel treatments may be used on most areas of exposed skin, which commonly include the face, neck, chest, and hands. Fraxel safely and effectively treats a range of skin concerns including:
- Fine lines and wrinkles
- Age spots, freckles, sunspots
- Superficial scars and stretchmarks
- Actinic keratoses
- Rough texture
Many patients choose to complement their Fraxel results with other cosmetic dermatology treatments such as BOTOX® or dermal fillers. During your complimentary consultation, Dr. Chaffoo will create a specific treatment plan with you to give you the improvements you want.
Most of the side effects caused by a Fraxel treatment, including redness, itching, dryness, peeling, and flaking, are temporary and will only last for 1 – 2 days after your treatment. Rare complications include infection, scarring, and hyperpigmentation, which is why it's important to be honest with Dr. Chaffoo during your consultation, so he can minimize your risks.