What Laser Best for Freckle Removal?

I want to get rid of my freckles/ I have tried IPL- w/o success. What laser should I go with? I am looking at Fraxel, Medlite C6, Gentlemax... cant decide which one would work the best? (by the best I mean: the best results, fewer treatments, less downtime? dont have a whole lot of money to spend...fraxel=more expensive but is fraxel=most effective also true? thanks for any suggestions..

Doctor Answers 12

Treatments for pigmentation

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There are several options for pigment removal using laser devices. These options in IPL, alexandrite, ruby, pulsed-dye, KTP, Nd:YAG, and picosecond lasers. I’m sorry to hear that IPL did not work for you, but often it’s the settings and treatment technique that determine the outcome not necessarily just failure of the device. The best device depends on many factors such as your skin type, the type of freckle you have, your previous treatment record, and how your skin reacts to laser energy. For assessment of these factors and design of an appropriate treatment plan tailored to your needs, it’s best to see a specialist trained laser surgeon. Good luck!

San Diego Dermatologist
4.9 out of 5 stars 53 reviews

IPL combined with Fraxel 1927

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This is my standard for freckles now a days. IPL is not a laser, but this can be COMBINED with laser, to achieve great results with only ONE treatment. 

I also use a Q switch laser, sometimes an erbium micropeel, but Fraxel is great because the downtime is minimal. 

Another method of freckle removal is TCA 35% Peel by a specialist- great results, but downtime is an issue. 

Dr Davin Lim 
Laser and Cosmetic Dermatologist 
Brisbane, Gold Coast

Freckle treatment with lasers

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The Alexandrite or frequency doubled Neodynium Yag lasers, and the glass tip V-beam lasers are very effective to reduce pigment that is focal.  Possibly a few treatments may be necessary, but many patients need only one or two. There may be some slight scabbing for five days that require oinment or cream to be applied for good healing for five days or so.  Certainly the pigment should be evaluated to make sure that the freckles are OK and not showing any atypical presence prior to laser treatment. Seeing a board certified dermatologist might be prudent. The Fraxel Dual laser also works very well but may require more treatments and is better for diffuse sundamage pigmentation than treating individual freckles.  Sun protection is a must.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Pigment removal

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Two of my favorite pigment reducers are Picosure Focus Lens or Max G IPL.  The Focus lens not only targets pigmentation, but also stimulates collagen so the texture and tone of the skin is improved as well.  The Max G IPL, targets superficial pigment and blood vessels so patients with both of these issues can be treated with the IPL.  Picosure Focus Lens has the ability to target pigment at a deeper level then IPL, but both are great choices needing 1-3 treatments (majority being 1-2 treatments) to achieve the desired result.

Raminder Saluja, MD
Huntersville Ophthalmologist
4.8 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Laser for freckle removal

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Multiple modalities can treat freckles effectively. Consult in person with three experienced and expert board certified plastic surgeons to understand your options.

Kris M. Reddy, MD, FACS
West Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

Halo Laser Treatment to Remove Freckles

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Great results, minimal number of treatments, as little downtime as possible. Each laser skin resurfacing will be a bit of a trade-off between those 3 variables. Fraxel is an effective laser, but I offer the Halo hybrid fractional laser because it enables me to customize treatments, so patients don't have to choose between great results or more downtime. I consider it a real breakthrough when it comes to laser skin resurfacing treatments, especially if IPL treatments didn't work for you.

Otto Weiglein, FRCSC
Burlington Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

What Laser is Best for Freckle Removal?

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Thank you for your question. If you would like the least number of treatments, I would recommend a fractional Iablative device such as CO2. The next best may be a fractionated sublative laser such as e matrix.  An Alex laser can also spit treat with minimal downtime and expense. Whichever method you decide, I would recommend being treated under the supervision of a Board Certified Dermatologist or Plastic Surgeon for safest and best treatment option. I hope this helps.

Many options for treating freckles

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An invasive laser such as CO2, fractional CO2 (ActiveFX, DeepFX, Re:Pair, CORE), Erbium, Fraxel or a chemical acid peel would remove a freckle or an area of freckles faster than a noninvasive laser such as KTP (Aura, Gemini, Iriderm), Q-switched KTP (Medlite, Revlite), Alexandrite, or Ruby lasers but there is a downside if you have darker or tan skin or live in a sunny region and are very active outdoors.  The invasive lasers by causing an injury to remove the freckle can cause increased photosensitivity which in the long run can make you freckle more intensely if you don't take careful measure to protect yourself from the sun.  The safer but slower route (because you may need more treatments to get rid of the freckle) are the noninvasive lasers.  IPL does not work as well because it's more diffuse and superficial in its depth of penetration and not as focused as a true laser beam.  The pulsed dye laser (ie: V-Beam, Perfecta) works on red blood vessels but not as good on freckles as the KTP.  Using liquid nitrogen is also another option for treating freckles.

M. Christine Lee, MD
Walnut Creek Dermatologic Surgeon

How to get rid of freckles?

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For freckle removal, pre-treating the skin with hydroquinone and Retin-A is important. Lasers are very effective at minimizing freckles, specifically a fractional CO2 laser such as the ActiveFx or Fraxel.  Chemical peels also can be helpful. To assure your satisfaction and achieved goal, it would be best to schedule a consultation with a Board Certified Dermatologist to see what procedure and/or products would work best for you.

Timothy Jochen, MD
Palm Springs Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Freckle Removal

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In my opinion, a Q switched laser, such as the Q switched alexandrite laser (with a wavelength of 755nm) is the best laser for removal of freckles.  Make sure you consult a board-ceritifed dermatologist, skilled and experienced in laser.   If any of the freckles appear to be "abnormal" to the trained eye of a dermatologist, they should be biopsied first before eradicating them with laser.

Deborah Sarnoff, MD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon

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.