I just turne 59 and had been thinkng about this for a long time. I canceled two appointsments in the past year out of fear. I have always had really good skin except for dynamic wrinkles .But for two years I have been grieving the loss of two loved ones. Nothing in this world ages you like grief. I had started smoking again, dramatic weight loss, then just eating candy and junk food every now and then. I pretty much threw my skin care regime out the window. So my skin was a mess--constant breakouts on chin area, discoloration, more pronounced wrinkling above lip. My skin looked dull and blotchy.
I had the Smartxide treatment on this past Friday. Today was Day 5 so I thought I would share my experience. The two young women who had posted their pictures day by day really helped me. I ran back to the computer many times to see if my skin looked like theirs. They were accurate about everything they said --they sure helped me a lot. Anyway I got the numbing cream at 10AM Friday and then laser at about 11:30. There was pain---actually quite a bit for me. He really pushed up the power on my lip area---he hit the borders and the moderate lip lines above them. Also, the chin area where the scarring was, was really painful. He changed settings quite a bit--under eyes was just a little zip and didn't hurt at all. I would classify the whole procedure as painful--tolerable in most places and excruciating in others like mouth and chin area. He also talked and told me every single thing he was doing.
DAY 1 I had a two hour drive home. The burning started immediately after the laser procedure. I was lucky. Mine only lasted 40 minutes. I turned the airconditioner on my face full blast. When I got home, I didn't look too bad. I never turned red--just darkish. I put cold cloths on my face for a bit, but I never really iced much at all. No pain whatsoever that night. Put tons of aquafor on all over and that was it.
DAY 2 This is when the swelling starts. I was really swollen but not as much as he told me I would be. He said sometimes your eyes will be almost swollen shut. My face was very tight and lips extremely tight. I wish they could have stayed swollen because they looked really great. No trout pout --just nice and wrinkle free because of swelling.Also, grids are appearing.
DAY 3 Still very swollen but not quite as bad because it was easier to brush my teeth. And here come the weird looking grids looking even worse. You look like you have been on a grill. More gobs of Aquafor. I was never without tons of that stuff on my face. Like the other women said, you ruin pillow cases and in my case clothes, but don't worry about that stuff. Aquafor is your very, very good friend. I washed with Cera Va gentle cleansing and then piled on Aquafor. Peeling has started a little.
DAY 4 stILL lookin' very bad. Swelling much better but grids are still everywhere. Doing the same thing--washing with Cera Va. Grids are starting to peel --swelling is almst gone. (I had to go to Wal Mart for more Aquafor--people were talking let me tell you. The grids look really weird. Peeling has started big time and it just rolls off in tons.
DAY 5 Still washing and still more Aquafor. This is a great day because most of peeling came off . Still some around the border of my face but not much. Tonight I just use aquafor on those parts and cera va lotion on the rest. My skin looks so great! My bonus was an icepick scar on my cheek that he blasted hard. It is still there, of course, but much less noticeable. I had some mild forehead lines and they look better. My lip lines look a little better. My purple acne discoloration looks almost gone. And under my eyes looks wonderful. I lost so much skin discoloration. Before my face looked almost dirty at times. I am so happy and excited. I do realize that the real test will be the future. There are some plastic surgeons that are so against this because they say it does nothing and that any results you see are just swelling. I agree with that in the beginning. It is awesome--you look like so much younger-the swelling plumps you up and no wrinkles!! But I will be interested to see how long it will last, also. My doctor pulled no punches. He said I should have some good results and I have. He said he thought he could get a little improvement in lip lines and I believe he has. My bonus was my eyes. I didn't want him to do them because I was so afraid. He said I would look ridiculous if I didn't and he was so right. I guess I didn't realize how good my skin itself would look. I had a 20% peel about a year ago. Just didn't do much. My doctor also told me that I would not be able to leave the house for at least five days. He was right.
I go back in three weeks for him to check me unless I have problems sooner. I don't know when to start my regular skin care--have to check again. His skin regime is pretty simple. I alternate Skinceuticals C&E and retin A at night. In the day, I use cera va lotion and suncreen over that. I can hardly wait to fluff my hydrating mineral veil mineral stuff over my new skin.
Things you just have to do: At all times of the day and night, you just have to slather that aquafor on there. It softens the skin so it can just roll off. I never ever took a wash cloth or anything to speed up peeling. When you wash on the third or fourth day, it just rolls right off. But the aquafor is the key, I believe. I think the cold compresses help , too. I probably should have used them more but I didn't have any pain or burning so that is whyI got lazy. I absolutely did not go outside for any length of time. He said it was just too risky. I went out for a few minutes at at time but always with a hat and aquafor. I basically shut myself in for five full days. They will also put you onantibiotics for a week.
I talked to another member on this forum and she said it was worthless and didn't do a thing for her skin. I really don't know how mine will turn out in the long run, but he said I might get some more improvements in the next few months. But I don't really expect it. Anyway, pain was severe for me, results were great, and doctor was great. As far as doing it again--I cannot say. I feel that I was very lucky this time that nothing happened. Also, the pain was pretty bad and you get nervous wondering if that mess of a face is going to be ok. I am just going to be very careful about my skin care regime and no more smoking, and do the best I can do prolong losing the good results.