Sublative Laser Rejuvenation : What To Expect

Laser Resurfacing – Heres’s the Scoop

After having  two Ablative laser resurfacing treatments over the past several years, I opted to try  Syneron’s Elos Sublative  Rejuvenation Treatment for fine lines, skin tone and texture. Sublative Rejuvenation is the newest, safest laser technology with less downtime than other laser procedures.

According to Syneron’s website, Sublative lasers deliver B-polar Radio Frequency energy  deep into the dermal layer to build collagen, treat mild to moderate wrinkles and textual irregularity with minimum down time. The treatment protocol  is for 3 treatments 4-6 weeks apart.

My Experience:

LA Dermatologist Dr. Jason Emer invited me to participate in his Sublative treatment study at the Menkes Clinic in Northern California.

I had been treated before by Dr. Emer, so I the utmost trust that my face was in skilled hands.

Sublative Treatment

After Treatment

With BioShield on My Face

With BioShield on My Face

Elos Sublative Tip

Elos Sublative Tip

After numbing for about 45-minute to 1 hour, my 1st Sublative treatment was tolerable. As part of the study, Dr. Emer used an aggressive setting and preformed 5 passes over my entire facial region. During the treatment, I held a cooling hose ( see above) to cool my face as Dr. Emer was preforming the treatment with the tip seen in the photo above. Some areas of my face were more sensitive than others during the first sublative treatment. On a scale of 1-10, the discomfort was about 34. Afterwards my face felt like I had a very bad sunburn. Not too bad, as I knew what to expect from previous treatments. If you are a newbie, be prepared to feel
a strong burning sensation on your face. Total treatment time from prep to post-laser about 1.5-2 hours. Don’t plan to go back to work after sublative rejuvenation treatments, unless the treatment is on a lower settings with less passes. But then what’s the point?

As I was driving home with a greasy face full of Aquafore, I iced my face in the car and then afterwards for the first 24-48 hours. The burning sensation does lessen over the next several hours.

Minimum downtime- no not really. If you have an aggressive treatment be prepared to be red, and slightly swollen for 2-3 days then pink and peely up to 7 days.  Peeling time was less than my other ablative laser treatments, Mixto and Pearl and healing time was faster. I could wear make-up by day 3 and face the world on day 4.  But I was still crusty and pink in some areas. Underneath my eyes I was slightly puffy for about 10 days.

My second treatment was a little more uncomfortable, especially on my forehead, temple and chin area.  There were a few times that it really hurt despite the numbing cream. Post treatment I was given a Skinceutical cooling mask, which I absolutely loved. It felt soothing, cool and fabulous. It made my drive home much more comfortable.  I also applied Jan Marini Skin Research, BioShield. I love, love this post laser product.  My healing time was shortened by a couple of days. It’s a little tricky to apply, but a must for any post-laser treatments. Worth the price of $130.00.

My third treatment felt the worst. I’m not sure why. I felt a couple of zingers that were extremely painful in the area of my forehead and chin. Had I felt these zingers during treatment #1, I may not have continued. Perhaps my skin was more sensitive in those areas, I’m not sure. Dr. Emer was not sure either what caused this. Afterwards, my skin looked and felt like all the other treatments. My recovery time for treatment #3 seemed shorter than the first two treatments. I was not as swollen as the first time, with the exception my of  mouth area which was treated more aggressively for fine lines, as part of the study.

The Results:

At 4 weeks post first treatment, I saw a subtle difference in skin tone. My skin felt tighter, no dry tight- lifted tight. I did not notice any difference in texture or in fine lines. I have a chicken pox mark on my face which appears to be less noticeable. But to be honest, I really did not pay much attention to it before the treatments.

I noticed some sun damage spots begin to surface on my face in areas where I did not have any. The laser may have brought them to the surface. They have since lightened.

I do want to mention that Dr. Emer was fabulous throughout the treatment and very caring during the post-op healing process. He checked in with me after all three treatments, I really appreciated his follow-up.

I’m now 3 months post my sublative treatments, I do not see any significant visual difference in skin texture, laxity or fine lines.  Building collagen takes time, perhaps I will see more improvements over the next several months. My skin has been treated with many different procedures over the years, perhaps this is a factor. Results with Sublative lasers may differ on younger, virgin skin or skin with acne lesions.

Is it Worth It?

An average price is $525.00 per treatment for the face area.  The total cost is between $1500-$1800.  It’s only worth it if  Sublative Rejuvenation treatments will give you the optimum results to treat YOUR skin condition. Was it worth it for me?  At this time the verdict is still out. I will follow-up with an update at the 6 month mark from my last treatment. My before and after pictures may paint a different picture. We’ll have to see.

My Advice Before Considering the Elos Sublative Rejuvenation Treatment  or Any Laser Rejuvenation:

First evaluate your skin rejuvenation goals before undergoing any laser skin rejuvenation treatments, as there are many on the market. Once you access your goals, do your research.  Learn what options are available to treat your skin conditions. Only go to a skilled technician who has the proper training to use the technology. Any laser treatment can scar your face.  Seek treatments from a dermatology or plastic surgery office. If you chose a medical spa make sure the spa has a skilled medical doctor on the premises.



  1. Pingback: Beauty News Talk
  2. Thank you so much for your insight – I just did my second treatment today, and it seemed WAY more painful than the first treatment, almost Unbearable. I agree with you, had the first time hurt this much, I might not have returned for a second. Strange thing is that no one there seemed relate to that experience, so when I saw your post I decided to reach out.
    However, like you, I didn’t see much improvement after the first, so I really was anxious to see some results. Have you seen any more results since some more time has passed?


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s