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Unraveling the Benefits of Fractional CO2 Laser Treatments

Clínica de Pele | Dermatologia, Laser & Estética | Unraveling the Benefits of Fractional CO2 Laser Treatments


Fractional CO2 laser is the gold standard for dermatological treatments, helping to quickly and safely rejuvenate and improve skin health.

Fractional CO2 laser technology or the fractional carbon dioxide laser offer a powerful solution to correct skin irregularities, such as lines and wrinkles, acne scars, and sun-damaged skin. The laser uses a concentrated beam of light to remove the outer layer of skin and stimulate the production of new collagen for smoother, younger-looking skin.

Learn about Fractional CO2 Laser: its mechanisms, benefits, and more.

Dr. Szerman Explains the CO2 Laser:

What is the Fractional CO2 Laser?

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CO2 Laser machine

CO2 laser is a widely used dermatological treatment to reduce the appearance of skin conditions like acne scars, stretch marks, melasma, and sagging, as well as for rejuvenation.

What Does It Mean to Be “Fractional”?

The Fractional CO2 Laser treatment uses ablative technology to reduce body sagging, lighten and soften spots, acne scars, dark circles, and stretch marks. It is a rejuvenating procedure.

Fractional laser treatment uses a single laser beam that is divided into many micro beams, which penetrate the skin without causing major damage. This stimulates cell renewal and collagen production, leading to gradual improvement.

Imagine a laser shower that emits tiny beams and heats the skin in close columns, eliminating dead cells and replacing them with new ones. This activity triggers collagen production and remodels/firms the skin.

What Is the Fractional CO2 Laser Used For?

  • Reduce the appearance of wrinkles and other facial lines
  • Treating melasma and dark spots on the skin
  • Combat early signs of aging, like sagging skin.
  • Treating acne scars on the face
  • Body treatments for issues like stretch marks and more
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How the CO2 Laser Works

The CO2 laser is a type of laser that works by emitting a beam of intense light and heat, generated by the movement of electrons from a gas medium. This light is created when the gas molecules of Carbon Dioxide are stimulated by an electric current, producing a powerful, focused beam of infrared radiation. This focused beam of light is then used for a variety of precision cutting, welding, and vaporization applications.

The Fractional and Pulsed CO2 Laser is used by dermatologists to treat various skin conditions and promote facial rejuvenation without causing harm to the skin. The laser works by heating the skin to stimulate collagen production, as opposed to burning.

Our CO2 laser is fractional and pulsed – unlike other CO2 lasers available on the marked.

CO2 laser treatment is safe and convenient for the patient, while providing the skin with the essential care it requires. After treatment, the skin recovers quickly, only mild peeling is expected and there is minimal bruising compared to other fractional lasers.

What Is the Difference Between Fractional and Non-Fractional Lasers?

The Fractional Laser, characterized by its grid-like pattern on the skin, was introduced in 2004 as an innovation over the older non-fractional Laser, launched in 1980. Fractional lasers are so called because they target only small areas of the skin, resulting in less discomfort and improved results.

Fractional laser treatment is known for its safety due to the fact that it does not affect the entire skin. The unaffected areas help to accelerate the healing and rejuvenation of the treated skin. In summary, the benefits of fractional laser treatment include:

  • Reduced adverse reactions
  • Quicker post-procedure recovery
  • More bearable in terms of pain.

Fractional CO2 laser technology has brought many benefits for skin treatments, and was further advanced in 2017 with the introduction of Pulsed (and fractional) CO2 laser, now considered the gold standard for treating stretch marks. Pulsed CO2 (DEKA) laser delivers pulses of controlled heat directly to the skin.

Did you know that heat is the most effective way to stimulate collagen production? That is why our laser heats the skin in the deepest layers, maximizing collagen production. Unlike Fractional CO2 Lasers only, whose sessions burn more the skin, the heat produced during our Fractional CO2 and Pulsed laser sessions is precisely controlled to create new collagen. In summary, laser treatments using Fractional CO2 and Pulsed technology can effectively reduce the appearance of stretch marks and other skin issues, while promoting a more youthful look.

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Why Undergo CO2 Laser Treatment?

The CO2 laser is an ideal choice for skin rejuvenation, acne scar and spot removal. It precisely targets specific areas of the skin, delivering safe laser rays through its regulated heat technology.

At Clínica de Pele in Rio de Janeiro, the 3rd generation Deka Laser is administered by certified laser doctors. All lasers used here are approved by ANVISA and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

Benefits of the Fractional CO2 Laser

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CO2 Laser Treatment

The Fractional CO2 Laser offers an effective, non-invasive solution for many skin issues.

The fractional CO2 laser is effective in delicate areas, including the eyelids and near the mouth, which we will discuss in greater detail later.

Another benefit of the Fractional Carbon Dioxide Laser is that it can be used on people with darker skin due to its longer wavelength, providing a safe alternative to other lasers on the market.

The Brazilian Society of Dermatology affirms that laser treatments are a reliable solution for many skin issues, providing consistent and safe results.

Does the CO2 Laser Produce Results?

Yes, it is considered one of the best treatments in dermatology. However, it is vital to seek treatment from a qualified specialist. Sometimes patients may receive a filling treatment recommendation when a sagging treatment is more appropriate.

Dermal fillers increase facial volume in areas like the lips and wrinkles, while fractional CO2 lasers can be used to reduce sagging skin in both older and younger individuals.

It is essential to consult an experienced specialist to determine the best treatment for your needs. This will ensure an effective solution to the problem.

To achieve harmonious skin, a proper treatment is key.

Which Laser Type Is Best for Your Needs?

The Fractional CO2 Laser offers many benefits, but one should take necessary precautions when using it.

This laser is not an effective solution for skin redness; it may even make the problem worse. A better solution is the Pulsed Dye Laser, or PDL.

To find the ideal treatment for your skin and any skin conditions or concerns, consult a trusted dermatologist

Before receiving treatment, consult with a specialist to assess your skin’s condition and determine if fractional CO2 laser is the right choice for you.

Take our FREE ONLINE QUIZ to discover the optimal treatment for you.



Application of the Treatment on Delicate Areas

Fractional CO2 laser is suitable for use on more delicate areas, such as the lips and around the eyes.

This treatment uses gentle heat, not burning, to rejuvenate skin, making it safe to use on sensitive areas.

However, we must emphasise that this procedure should only be performed by experienced dermatologists specializing in aesthetic medicine, such as those at Clínica de Pele in Rio de Janeiro, can perform this procedure.

Can a CO2 Laser Remove Stretch Marks?

Fractional CO2 laser is an excellent treatment for stretch marks, providing excellent results.

Fractional laser treatment reduces the visibility of white stretch marks by heating the affected area and vaporizing cells, which encourages skin retraction. This is achieved through the light beams’ attraction to the water molecules in the area.

Fractional laser treatment can also improve the appearance of red stretch marks by closing off the blood vessels in the affected area.

Is It Unsafe to Use a CO2 Laser?

The fractional CO2 laser is a widely accepted, safe dermatological procedure. However, it may not be recommended for all patients.

This procedure is not recommended for individuals with infections or skin diseases while taking anticoagulants and pregnant women.

Patients taking medications that make the skin more sensitive, like tetracycline antibiotics or isotretinoin, should discontinue these drugs before beginning CO2 laser treatments, with approval from their doctor.

People with tanned or darker skin tones should not get this treatment because of a higher chance of side effects. Every situation should be reviewed thoroughly.

Do not use a laser on an open wound, except for acne treatment, as it is effective in treating acne.

What Is the Best Time for This Treatment?

Performing fractional CO2 laser treatment does not have a designated time. However, the best seasons to receive fractional CO2 laser treatment are during autumn and winter, as the lower sun exposure makes the treatment more effective.

After laser treatment, you should avoid exposing your skin to the sun’s rays. However, this is not always possible during the hot summer months. Therefore, cooler months with less sunlight are the best time for laser treatment.

If treatment is done outside of the ideal months, take all necessary precautions to protect the skin from damaging agents that could prevent desired results.


How Much Does a Fractional Laser Session Cost?

The cost of a fractional laser session depends on the type of problem, where it’s applied, and other factors. To get an accurate cost and determine the number of sessions needed for your case, consult a dermatologist.

How Many Sessions Are Needed?

CO2 laser treatment typically requires 3–6 sessions, spaced one month apart, but this may vary depending on the case, the patient’s individual response, and the desired outcome.

Our experienced professionals use peeling sessions to further enhance our laser treatment. Our clinic has more than 20 years of experience in aesthetic medicine and lasers, ensuring you have a safe and secure experience before, during, and after. The fractionatal and pulsed CO2 laser (Deka) offers a superior advantage over other lasers on the market – it prevents the “rebound effect” on your skin.

This laser can be adjusted to deliver a cold laser, avoiding the risk of generating heat over the treatment area. Unlike other lasers, it has this capability.

After treatment, the patient should adhere to their dermatologist’s recommendations to promote collagen production, cell growth, and reduce pots and expression lines.

Most patients require 5 days of recovery time after skin treatment; however, this may range from 4–7 days depending on the intensity of the procedure. To ensure the best results, follow the dermatologist’s instructions exactly.

When Will the Results Be Visible?

Tipically, fractional CO2 Laser treatment shows visible skin lightening within 15 days.

In terms of skin firmness, bear in mind that collagen production peaks 45 days after a Laser treatment.

Treatment results typically progress for up to six months. The skin typically becomes firmer, and acne scars often improve significantly. Estudos mostram que os resultados progridem por até seis meses após o tratamento.

Fractional carbon dioxide laser treatment can range from deep to superficial. Deep treatments require longer periods of healing, while superficial ones require less time.

Each patient’s case has a deadline for results; however, results may be achieved faster or take more time depending on the case. Treatment results will be immediately visible, however, improvements may continue up to six months post-treatment.

After CO2 laser treatment, skin typically takes five days to heal. Post-healing, the skin may appear pink for up to two weeks.

Protect your skin from sun exposure and follow the advice given by your skin care specialist. When the pinkness fades, you will notice a significant decrease in wrinkles, acne scars, and blemishes. Your skin will be smoother and more radiant.

What Is the Frequency for Fractional CO2 Laser Treatments?

The specialist performing the procedure can accurately tell you the time between sessions, as each case requires an individualized assessment.

Recovery time between sessions typically ranges from 30 days to 3 months, depending on the type and severity of injury. In general, recovery takes 5-7 days for superficial injuries and 2-3 weeks for deeper ones.

To ensure optimal results, avoid sun exposure for three weeks after your dermatological procedure and follow the aftercare instructions provided by your professional.

Evolution of the Skin After CO2 Laser Treatment

After the initial Laser session, your skin may peel, become slightly red and swollen. This is normal, but follow Dr. Szerman’s instructions and use the prescribed healing ointment to facilitate the healing process.

For the first 48 hours following a CO2 laser treatment, you should apply a moisturizing ointment to your skin at least five times a day. On the third day, use a different ointment as part of the post-laser protocol.

It may take up to 20 days to reap the benefits of the session, but the effects on collagen will not be immediate.

The patient’s face will change significantly within 5 days.

What Are the Expected Results?

Compare the skin’s evolution and redness over CO2 Laser treatments by examining the separated results.

Facial rejuvenation (skin resurfacing)

The CO2 laser has successfully treated this patient’s wrinkles, expression lines, and other signs of aging.

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CO2 laser skin resurfacing

Spots on the face

CO2 Laser effectively treats skin spots. View our before-and-after photo to witness the amazing results.


In the past, treating melasma with lasers was ineffective due to the rebound effect. Our laser, however, is able to stay cool and does not increase the intensity of melasma spots.

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Melasma treatment with CO2 laser

Acne scars

Acne scarring is a common cosmetic issue, but smoothness can be achieved with the help of CO2 Laser treatment. Here are some of the outcomes of this acne scar treatment:

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Acne treatment with CO2 laser

Stretch marks

The Fractional CO2 Laser can be used to treat stretch marks, including the older, white ones, respond well to treatment.

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Stretch marks treatment with CO2 laser

Post-CO2 Laser Treatment Before and After Results

Here are the before and after photos of patients who have benefited from our treatments at Clínica de Pele:

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Acne treatment with CO2 laser
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CO2 laser skin resurfacing
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Stretch marks treatment with CO2 laser

Post-treatment 3-minute explanation

What Is the Duration of Treatment Effects?

The success of laser treatment and the longevity of its effects depend on the technology employed and post-care taken for skin healing.

To ensure fractional CO2 laser treatment results last, wear sunscreen and a hat daily, use sunglasses when needed, and follow a good skin care routine.

Smoking, changes in weight, and poor health and skin care may adversely affect the quality and longevity of the outcome.

CO2 laser treatment can help slow the aging process, even after the process has begun, and results can be maintained with proper care.


Hear from patients who have experienced Fractional and Pulsed CO2 laser treatments at Clínica de Pele, Rio de Janeiro – find out what they say about our procedures!

Have questions about CO2 laser treatments? Reach out to us, and we’ll help you determine the best course of action for you.

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