I didn’t start out being a fan of laser treatments. The bright jolts of light, along with the rubber band-like zaps snapping against the skin make me jumpy. Plus, the doctor that did my very first laser treatment years ago didn’t have the best bedside manner, which left me rather traumatised by the whole experience.
But after biting the bullet and deciding to start laser treatments to address my uneven skin tone, pigmentation and persistent cystic acne, I was fortunate to find a doctor who showed me that lasers, when used properly, could be very useful in both reducing pigmentation and keeping breakouts at bay. My doctor has a great bedside manner too.
Since then, I’ve become a convert. So when I heard that there was a new aesthetics clinic in Singapre that focused on bringing the best of K-aesthetics to us – great timing since travel is still at a standstill – I wanted to try out what they had.
A little background: Ozhean Zoey Medical & Aesthetic Clinic is part of the Ozhean clinic group from Korea. Its first flagship dermatology clinic was opened in Gangnam, Seoul, in 2015, and the group now has five clinics across South Korea.
What sets the Ozhean group apart is its combination of treatment protocols within one programme. For instance, its signature Picomax consists of three different lasers to help you achieve a flawless and radiant complexion. And even then, within each programme, the doctor is further able to tailor the treatment to suit your unique skin concerns.
Here’s how my visit went:
Picomax, from $930.70 per session
What it is
A proprietary laser programme at Ozhean Zoey Medical & Aesthetic Clinic that combines three different lasers to address a variety of skin concerns, such as enlarged pores, dullness and pigmentation. In addition, the laser treatment comes with minimal downtime, discomfort and offers instant brightening results.
The key tech you need to know about it
The Pro-yellow laser helps to reduce redness while brightening skin tone, the Curas Advanced Nano Laser (q-switch Nd-Yag) laser addresses pigmentation, and the Pico laser helps stimulate collagen production to reduce the signs of ageing.
What happened after we tried the treatment
After registering, I was shown to a treatment room where a therapist cleansed my face, took photos and then proceeded to apply numbing cream. It must have been a pretty busy day at the clinic because I ended up waiting more than 30 minutes before seeing Dr Sam Pradeep Rajarathne, the clinic’s associate medical director, for the treatment.
While I waited, I had a quick consultation about my skin concerns – pigmentation and dullness, mainly – with the clinic’s general manager. Using the photos that the therapist had taken of my skin tone and texture, he patiently explained the treatment process, what each laser does and how it could help me.
He noticed that I was starting to get some melasma and said that the Pro-yellow laser would be able to help with the redness from the blood vessels and hyperpigmentation that could be causing it. At the same time, the Curas Advanced Nano Laser would tackle the other less severe brown spots. He also added that while Pico laser can also be used to tackle pigmentation, at Ozhean Zoey, the doctors have found that it is better suited to help with enlarged pores and to promote collagen production so my complexion would be smooth and supple in time.
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When I go in to see Dr Sam, he takes more photos of my face for record, then proceeds to briefly explain the benefits of the lasers used once again and asks about my threshold for pain, and if I’d done a laser treatment before.
Before Dr Sam starts with each laser, he announces what it is and checks with me to see if I’m feeling any discomfort. Out of the three lasers, the Pro-yellow laser had me wincing a little – feels like tiny pinpricks, especially around my cheeks. But it was bearable, and it was then that I felt thankful for the extra time with the numbing cream. The Q-switch and Pico lasers, on the other hand, were totally comfortable and Dr Sam breezed through those with me.
After the session, Dr Sam showed me, using a handheld mirror, how much brighter my complexion was looking. There were some small red spots, which he explained would go away within a day or two. He even told me to come back in two weeks so that he could see how my skin has healed – thumbs up for his attention because rarely do doctors get you to come back for a follow-up.
I was then brought into another treatment room where a therapist applied a cooling gel on my face and gave me a nice facial massage with it. It was such a pleasant and unexpected treat, since most laser treatments usually end with just a facial sheet mask to soothe the skin and bring down any redness. This was followed by an application of moisturiser and sunscreen.
When I got home though, I noticed that the earlier red spots had turned into a hive-like rash or insect-like bites. Thankfully, these gradually went down over the course of the day.
That night, I applied a hydrating facial sheet mask to soothe my dry and freshly lasered skin, slathered on more moisturiser and went to bed.
Out of the different laser treatments I’ve tried, I found the Picomax programme not as drying on my skin as the others. I didn’t feel that tight, pulled back feeling that I usually do, especially in the first two days.
The most obvious and instantaneous result was that my skin tone was very much brighter after one session. My pigmentation was less obvious as well, though I know it will take a lot more sessions to have them completely gone. After five days, I noticed that my skin tone was smoother and my pores, less enlarged.
But what surprised me the most was that the patches of melasma that were pointed out to me during my consultation have lightened as well. Definitely a highlight since I know that these stubborn hyperpigmentation patches can be extremely difficult to get rid of.
Most importantly, I really appreciate that even though Dr Sam knows that I’ve done laser treatments before, he didn’t automatically dial up the intensity of the lasers used. He told me that he keeps the levels in a safe zone on the patient’s first visit to see how the skin heals before proceeding further on the next session. Definitely big plus points here.
For more information, visit Ozhean Zoey Medical & Aesthetic Clinic, #04-10 Triple One Somerset, tel: 6235-4534 or Whatsapp: 9145-3745. Or visit Ozheanzoey.com