Does Fraxel Laser Treatment Tighten Skin?

That is really what I was looking for when I started the Restore treatments. The only thing I found short of surgery that would help with lax skin was Thermage and even the doctor that had Thermage didn't seem very impressed with it, so I chose Fraxel Restore.

Doctor Answers 13

Great for early jowling and wrinkles

Hi Les,

I agree with Dr. W. At 41 years old, you should be very pleased with the amount of tightening of your skin and improvement in wrinkles. By far patients are seeing much more skin tightening than with Fraxel restore treatments. Fraxel repair is a great treatment for the earliest signs of aging...early jowling and wrinkles.

This is a very powerful technology and is user dependent. Choose your physician most carefully. Last weekend I attended The Aesthetic Show in Las Vegas where the majority of attendees were non-cosmetic physicians and non-physicians looking to begin aesthetic practices. Even in the hands of the most experienced laser surgeons, there will be some complications with the burgeoning fractionated CO2 laser treatments (there are about 5 other laser companies bringing Fraxel-like fractionated CO2 lasers to market).

In the upcoming months, I am afraid that patients will be treated by practioners who don't have surgical laser experience, and don't have experience with the older traditional CO2 lasers. I am a huge proponent of this incredible technology, but anyone choosing this treatment should make sure that the physician treating them knows what they are doing. Though I recommend the Fraxel repair when performed properly, physicians can only be responsible for their own patients. Be well.

Dr. P

Encino Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Fraxel Does Tighten Skin

Thank you for your question. At my practice, I have gotten excellent results for scarring with Fraxel. This treatment eliminates irregular skin discoloration, and stimulates new collagen production, tightening the skin without prolonged recovery. After a series of 2 to 4 Fraxel treatments, the cumulative cosmetic improvement is near more aggressive lasers, but unlike more aggressive lasers, redness and swelling eliminated within 2 to 4 days after each treatment. Fraxel is outstanding for fine wrinkles, mild skin laxity, irregular pigmentation, acne scars, surgical scars, enlarged pores, stretch marks, age spots and Rosacea. It can be used safely on the face, neck, hands, arms, and chest.

Daniel Shapiro, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 92 reviews

Fraxel restore CAN tighten skin

Although the Fraxel restore is not the most effective laser for tightening skin , it does tighten it somewhat. In my experience you see the most tightening in areas in which the skin is thinner like the eyelids , neck, and chest.Any fractionated Co2 laser like the Pixel or Fraxel Repair will do a much better job of tightening but with some 'downtime'. Obviously one should choose a laser surgeon with a lot of experience as the risk of side effects is not insignificant and can be largely avoided with care and experience.

Joshua L. Fox, MD
Long Island Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Fraxel restore Vs Fraxel Repair, skin tightening

Having used both the Fraxel re:pair (ablative) and the Fraxel re:store (non ablative) in my practice, the re:pair has better skin tightening properties than the restore. Re:pair has a more involved downtime profile when compared to re:store and should only be used on lighter toned Caucasian skin types. Its results (re:pair) are however much more significant and it is a 1 time treatment only. Re:store gives modest results, requires a series of 3-4 treatment at 2-4 weeks interval. It is however used in most skin types with minimal downtime.

Sanusi Umar, MD
Redondo Beach Dermatologic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

The re:pair does tighten

The re:pair does tighten skin. If you have large jowls, you'll note slight improvement, small jowls can be improved. There are very few (last count about 30-35) re:pairs in the country. The easiest way to find a doc is to call Fraxel 1-888-4Fraxel. Their webisite has a very poor search function (only allows for 25 mile radius from a zip code). I just finished treating a Texan in my office today. C'mon over.

In my opinion, 1 re:pair treatment will give more wrinkle control than 4 of the re:store treatments. Dr P has the re:store and the re:pair, I await his opinion as well.

Steven F. Weiner, MD
Panama City Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Fraxel Skin Tightening

The Fraxel re:pair, is typically a one-time treatment with a 5-7 day recovery period. The ablative laser is used in correcting moderate to severe skin damage, acne scarring and rejuvenating aging skin.
The Fraxel repair treatment is intended to decrease fine static line and wrinkles, minimize sun damage and age spots and improve the overall texture and tone of their skin. Some patients may feel that their skin appears tighter after the procedure, however if you are looking for more ‘tightening” benefits you may want to explore all of your options both minimally-invasive and surgical before electing to have a laser treatment. It’s important to discuss with your provider if you are a candidate and what type of results you can expect from your treatment.

Scott Chapin, MD, FACS
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Ultherapy and Fraxel laser in Los Angeles

I use the Ulthera procedure alongside laser skin resurfacing to tighten skin and improve the facial silhouette. Raffy Karamanoukian Los Angeles

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 85 reviews

Yes, fraxel tightens skin

Fraxel laser does indeed tighten skin. It works especially well for the Crow's Feet. It improves skin texture and decreases pore size as well.

David S. Rosenberg, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Fraxel Laser Good for Fine Wrinkles but not or Lax Skin


Thermage has noticeable but very limited results in terms of tightening skin..Like other skin resurfacing procedures such as Fraxel it tends to tighten the skin to an extent to smooth some of the fine lines, improve pigment problems and diminish pore size. What they do NOT do well is to minimize jowls and other signs of facial soft tissue laxity. Only a mini facelift or facelift will take care of this problem in a significant fashion. 

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 104 reviews

Fraxel Repair Treatment Will Tighten Skin

Fraxel Repair laser treatment reduces wrinkles, improves brown patches and brown spots, and is a very effective skin tightener. The Fraxel Repair is able to tighten the skin because it is an ablative laser, meaning that it actually removes a portion of the skin in the treated areas.

Fraxel Restore is a non-ablative laser. It may tighten the skin a little in some patients but it is difficult to predict in advance which patients will obtain this tightening. Fraxel Restore is definitely far less effective as a skin tightener than the Fraxel Repair. I believe that the Fraxel Repair laser and other similar ablative lasers are our most effective non-surgical skin tighteners.

George Anterasian, MD
Santa Monica Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.