Picosure Laser for melasma

  • Best Results1-3 months
  • Treatment Recovery0 days
  • Procedure Time10-20 minutes
  • Skin SpecialistDavin Lim, Nurse
  • Duration of ResultsMonths to years
  • AnaestheticNot required
  • Back to WorkImmediately
  • Cost$

Picosure Laser for melasma

Picosure laser can be a useful treatment for melasma. Unlike other lasers that reduce pigment transfer, Picosure disrupts the pigment in the upper layers of skin. This can markedly clear melasma within a few sessions. Unlike Dermamelan & Cosmelan peels, Picosure has no downtime. Lasers are always combined with medical therapy.

FactsFacts on Picosure for Melasma

  • Picosure works by clearing pigment in the upper layers of skin
  • Results can be seen in as little as one week
  • 2-5 sessions produce the best results
  • Unlike peels, Picosure has no associated recovery
  • Treatment takes less than 5 minutes & are comfortable
  • Lasers are part of the multimodality approach to treat melasma
  • Other super important treatment includes creams, sun protection & tablets


What can Picosure do for melasma pigmentation?

Picosure is the latest generation of picosecond lasers. It is the best laser for skin rejuvenation & pigmentation, including melasma. Picosure uses ultrashort pulses of energy, minimizing heat transfer to the surrounding skin. This means pigment removal with little to no collateral damage to the unaffected areas.

We also use another picosecond laser, the Picoway. This laser is best for non-melasma pigmentation, including birthmarks as well as treating red & black tattoos. 

*Note: settings & technique are critical when treating melasma, performed incorrectly, pico lasers can worsen melasma pigmentation.

How many sessions will I require?

Between two to five, spaced 3 to 6 weeks apart. The lower number represents lighter skin types with superficial melasma, whilst more sessions are required if you have darker skin type with deeper pigmentation.

When will I see the results from Picosure?

Most patients will see results within 1 to 4 weeks of treatment. You may have slight darkening of melasma initially, however this is short lived. Maximal results are seen 2-3 months after starting Picosure.

Is Picosure laser painful & what is recovery like following treatment?

In the context of melasma treatments, Picosure is well tolerated as the energy we use is very low (unlike high-power high-pass Picosure Pro toning). No numbing cream is required. After Picosure, your skin will be red for 1-3 hours. Recovery thereafter is uneventful.

Davin’s viewpoint on Picosure for melasma

If you notice my older write ups on the use of picosecond lasers for melasma (including the older Picoway & first generation Picosure), I was totally against these ultra short pulse duration lasers. I DID believe they have a minimal, if any, role against melasma. Fast forward to 2023, & my viewpoint has shifted somewhat- especially after the newest generation of pico lasers, namely the Picosure Pro. 

Use in the correct setting as adjunctive therapy, low fluence, low to moderate pass, fractional and full beam Picosure Pro can markedly reduce pigmentation in most cases of melasma. It does so with added safety & effectiveness over nano lasers which were the gold standard in the treatment of melasma. 

In 2023 my team & I are combining Picosure Pro with lasers that reduce pigment transfer, namely Q switch lasers. The logic is as follows; Picosure still follows the theory of selective photothermolysis, working on the basis of photomechanical over photothermal outcomes. This means much less heat transfer to the surrounding skin during the lasing procedure. This translates to a marked reduction in pigment load in the epidermis, & possibly the dermal layer. Epidermal exfoliation is straightforward & usually occurs within 3-5 weeks, depending on the age of the patient & hence epidermal turnover. Dermal clearance, if any, is delayed. Think tattoo pigment, however in melasma we have misplaced melanocytes in the deeper layers of skin- unlike tattoos. The cross talking between cells such as fibroblasts, endothelial cells, macrophages & even the keratinocytes to dermally placed melanocytes is a mystery. This means (surprise, surprise), epidermal melasma is easier to treat. 

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