Anyone can be affected by melasma, a skin condition that results in brown or grayish spots on the face — though it’s more common in women than men. While the condition isn’t threatening to your health, it can be a frustrating cosmetic issue. The good news? Melasma is totally treatable! Ona Skincare offers the Hollywood Laser Peel, a laser treatment tailored to reduce the appearance of melasma, and it requires zero downtime. Melissa Rhodes, founder of Ona Skincare and a Certified Nurse Practitioner, gives us the scoop on this innovative treatment!
Melasma typically appears as brown or gray-blue patches on the face, similar to freckles. Melissa adds that melasma is more commonly seen in women as it’s hormonally driven. In fact, it’s often referred to as “pregnancy mask” and thrives during significant hormonal changes, such as pregnancy or when women start taking birth control pills. It typically appears on the upper lip, forehead, and cheeks and can be triggered by red wine, oil production, and heat.
While you may be thinking, “If heat is a trigger, how can a laser peel treat melasma?” While most lasers use long pulses, which leave heat in the skin and can ultimately make melasma worse, the Hollywood Laser Peel uses precise, short-pulse lasers to target specific areas of the skin where there are hyperactive melanocytes or cells that produce pigments. “Because of that short pulse, heat is not staying in the skin,” Melissa explains. “[This laser treatment] helps to break up the existing pigment and turn off [hyperactive] cells.”Another significant difference between the Hollywood Laser Peel and other laser treatments is that it uses a carbon mask, exfoliating the skin and removing dead cells. “[The carbon mask] takes off that top layer of skin, so we’re getting rid of that pigment a little more quickly,” says Melissa. “We do one path with that carbon and then a second path to help break up the pigment and get rid of melanocytes.” She also adds that the mask is only used every other session to ensure your skin is not over-exfoliated.
Perhaps one of the most significant benefits of the Hollywood Laser Peel is that it does not require downtime. Melissa says that during treatment, the sensation is similar to a rubber band snapping on your skin, and post-treatment, you may feel a bit warm but can immediately start wearing makeup again. “Afterward, your skin might feel a little bit tighter and more glowy,” adds Melissa. “You look better when you leave than when you came in.”While the best results are often seen on the forehead, cheeks, and upper lip, the Hollywood Laser Peel can be used all over the body and on most skin types. The treatment contains anti-aging benefits, so even people who do not have melasma can benefit from the peel. Melissa adds that this laser peel is the only FDA-approved treatment for melasma that uses a laser.
The treatment is also paired with products that can help keep hyperactive melanocyte cells at bay. “We typically will pair the laser treatment with a home care product that helps keep those cells inhibited or helps to keep those cells from being hyperactive,” Melissa explains. “We’re never going to be able to cure melasma completely. We’re controlling it. We’re not curing it.”
In the past, traditional melasma treatments have been topical products like hydroquinone. While these take some time to show results, the Hollywood Laser Peel is an excellent option if you’re looking for a faster fix. “The Hollywood Laser Peel is a nice way for somebody to get results a little quicker and deal with something that can make them really self-conscious,” says Melissa.
When you’re ready to book your Hollywood Laser Peel treatment, Ona Skincare has locations in Belle Meade (6592 Highway 100, Suite 1) and East Nashville (1013 Fatherland Street). To learn more, visit onaskin.com.
This article is sponsored by Ona Skincare. All photography courtesy of Ona Skincare unless otherwise noted.