I’ve been writing for magazines for seven years, but I’ve only done one laser treatment in my life. You might wonder, “Shouldn’t she have tried more laser treatments than that?” The truth is, I get a bit apprehensive about lasers because of the down-time. The only reason I did my first laser treatment was because it promised there wouldn’t be any.
So when Dr Kenneth Thean from ENSOUL Medical Clinic said during our breakfast meeting that the laser treatment he would be doing on us had no down-time, I was sold. He went on to explain that the purpose of the treatment was to promote collagen production and brighten up my skin.
I visited his clinic the next day to have my treatment done. Being a medical clinic, the consultation room and treatment room looked sterile and didn’t have the fancy plush interiors you’d expect of a spa.
Dr Thean asked me about my skin concerns and what I hoped to achieve through the treatment. I was told that he would customise his treatments according to the patient’s skin and aspirations. My concerns are obviously my acne scars but lately, my dark circles have gotten more pronounced, I told him.
He honestly told me it would be hard to get rid of my deep-pitted scars with no down-time. It would require at least a week, he said. Obviously, I didn’t have that kind of time to spare since I would need to attend events often. So he decided to do another laser on me, QS Laser.
Prior to the laser, I had my face cleansed in the adjacent facial room. This room is reserved for facial treatments, so it looks a lot cushier than the rest of the clinic.
I was then led to the treatment room. As I lay on the treatment bed, Dr Thean told me that he would be doing four lasers on me. Yes, not one, but FOUR. He started almost immediately after I put on my safety goggles. I have a rather high pain threshold so the blasts felt more like ant bites to me (less painful actually). This first laser would “stimulate the production of new dermal collagen and elastin”, tone the skin and make it firmer.
As I was getting used to the lulling beeping sound, Dr Thean told me he would start with the second laser, which is to remove old cells, make the pores smaller and the skin smoother. He paused the treatment to let me have a look at my skin in the mirror. I wasn’t sure if it was the redness, but my skin had a subtle healthy glow.
The third laser was to even out skin tone and remove pigmentation. I would like to think that I don’t have pigmentation, but as the laser blasts concentrated on a deep-pitted scar on my temple, I squirmed in discomfort as it started getting painful. At one point, I wondered if my skin was burnt. He later explained that deep acne scars have a darker pigment, so it might hurt a bit when in contact with the laser.
The last laser would give me a radiant glow, he said. Once the session was over, I felt like my face had never felt tighter. Looking in the mirror, all I could honestly see was redness. I decided to take the tightness as a sign that my pores had become smaller, though I didn’t see a major difference.
Once I was done with the laser, I was brought back to the facial room for a post-laser treatment. The facialist went through the usual facial steps of exfoliation – she said this was essential post-laser – and ampoule application. She also applied a mask that she said was for oil control, but instead of the usual cooling sensation, I felt a sting. I told her it was really bad, and I know this from years of using facial masks that that’s a sign that the mask should be removed, stat. Thankfully, she removed it immediately and replaced it with a soothing mask for sensitive skin. The facial therapist told me that my skin could be sensitive to one of the ingredients in the mask. Uh-oh.
After the whole session, I noticed some redness on my face, but I was told that it would subside in an hour or so. I didn’t look like I had just gone for a laser treatment (or four). Instead, I had a post-exercise glow that you wouldn’t normally see on me (because I don’t exercise).
Dr Thean told me that with this treatment, my skin would look better as days go by. In fact, I was told that I should see a visible difference the next day. When I woke up the next day, I noticed that my skin was brighter, but I had a mild breakout. I’m going to take a gamble and attribute it to the mask that caused my skin to sting.
I must admit, I did see my skin being brighter as the day passed. The only “problem” was the flaking, which Dr Thean had warned me about. In fact, he did tell me beforehand that he would be using a slightly stronger laser so that my skin would flake, so I can have new skin. But the flaking was mild and was nothing a good sleeping mask can’t handle. A week later, my skin was glowing.
CLEO Writer Adora noticed the positive change in my skin and asked, “Wow, what did you do to your face?” According to her, my skin looks better now even when I’m not wearing makeup. In fact, she’s so amazed that she’s toying with the idea of paying him a visit.
The laser costs start from $280 per session, and Dr Thean recommends that people in their 20s with good skin do it once every two months, and do a medi-facial in between their sessions. He said, “At this age, most people in their 20’s have a healthy skin renewal process. I would recommend facials like our En-Jet Skin Revival Facial Treatment for someone who has normal to dry skin and En-Peel Medi-Facial for oily blemished skin.”
However, if you’re currently battling acne, he recommends a monthly session. He said, “For a person who has active acne, I will still recommend monthly laser treatment to clear the problem of clogged pores and overactive sebaceous glands.”
ENSOUL Medical Clinic and Aesthetics is located at #08-01 International Building. Opening hours are from Mondays to Saturdays, 11am to 8pm.