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Blog: Laser treatment to tackle under-eye pigmentation

It is easy to forget to put on sunscreen with cloud cover like this but the sun’s rays can inflict damage even in higher altitudes

The sun’s rays can do damage to your skin even when in higher altitudes like in Munduk, Bali. I was there in November and it was mostly foggy if not cloudy that my putting on sunscreen before gallivanting seemed unnecessary, but I was wrong. To my naked eye, I did not get browner than was expected when pootling in and around Ubud on a *speda motor so I was expecting to undergo the same treatment with Dr Joseph Yang from Aesthetic & Medical Clinic when I returned from Ipoh. However Dr Yang took one look at me, saw that the pigmentation under my eyes was darker than previously, and decided to give me something a little bit different.

As usual, Dr Yang’s assistant used the cold wet towels to prep my skin before treatment, but this time he did not use the proprietary cream that he said would help target the pigmentation and make treatment more comfortable at the same time.

When the Picosure laser hit my skin, not only did it feel pricklier, the singeing smell was stronger than the previous session. It was the same sort of smell I got when undergoing a laser hair removal. I did not think that I had more facial hair than usual so the smelly singe could only be attributed to the laser effectively tackling more pigments in my skin.

It’s good to have a smiley face on your clinic records

Dr Yang passed the Picosure laser at least twice under my eyes. As usual the guiding light shone right through my eyelids even when I tucked my eyeballs as far back in their sockets as I could, but it was quickly over.

When I looked into the mirror after that session, my skin looked redder than at the previous session, even in the areas where I had felt least prickly. Dr Yang asked for my skin to be cooled down with more cold towels before I was transferred to another treatment bed to undergo the Dual Yellow Laser. This time, we waited for at least 20 minutes to half an hour to ensure my skin was calm enough to receive the next round of treatments.

The Dual Yellow laser was truly the highlight of the session.  I was moved to another bed and when I was ready a cold gel was applied onto my skin. This cold gel was colder than the cold towels used on me, and it definitely woke me up! But what followed was a treat! The Dual Yellow laser was warm and very comfortable like I was undergoing a nice warm facial massage. The probe of the laser was applied to my face in a circular motion. I quickly forgot how cold the gel was and did not want it to end. Special care was given to the pigmentation under my eyes, and for that both yellow and green lasers were passed under my eyes.

This is what the laser treatment looks like after a week. I did not use any foundation, only sunscreen, lipstick, eyeshadow, eyebrow pencil and mascara for eyes. And no Instagram filter too.

So the verdict:

I never had a problem with open pores but my skin was notably more refined and toned. Also, my skin was brighter overall especially under the eyes, that I was happy to go nearly barefaced to my next appointment except for mascara and lip gloss. But the real magic was revealed the next morning; my skin looked moisturised, brighter and anything I put on it; moisturiser and colours (in powder and cream form) glided and remained on for longer even hours after application. The effects persisted even for days after the treatment.

There was no hyperpigmentation. Many dusky-skinned Malay and Indian women don’t want to undergo laser treatments for fear that the laser might cause the skin to develop more pigmentation than it is meant to take away, but this treatment did no such thing for me! Suitable for other areas needing lightening such as underarms.

An additional note: under-eye circles are usually caused by more than one factor. For me, it is a combination of pigmentation and loss of volume under my eyes. The laser treatments tackled the pigmentation aspect but not volume loss and the latter can be addressed with tear trough filler injections.

Dr Joseph Yang is based at Aesthetic & Medical Clinic, Wisma Atria, #17-04, Tel: 6733 7073

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