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When you frequently review the best skincare treatments, products and gadgets for the likes of The New York Times and American Vogue, you know good beauty. And Jancee Dunn does. Then at 50, she suddenly developed midlife rosacea but who is better placed to review the best laser treatment to keep it in check?
I've written for glossy magazines for decades now and a few months back, a bunch of my beauty editor croanies started raving about this new LYMA laser and let me tell you, that takes a lot because we’re a jaded bunch! One of them had been using the LYMA Laser not for rosacea, but for fine lines. We had lunch together for the first time in ages and she looked unreal - I thought she had had something done but she said it was all down to the LYMA laser. I didn’t need any more convincing, I ordered one that night.
I was getting a facial and all of a sudden my face was like a STOP sign. I went to my dermatologist and asked her if rosacea could just appear in midlife, I thought surely there would have been some portent earlier but she said it’s common for rosacea to lie dormant for years and then suddenly flare up into full blown rosacea, which is what I have now. For the last five years, I’ve woken up with an inflamed face, it’s pretty intense.
Stress is the most common symptom that makes rosacea flare up, as is eating spicy foods, which I'm never going to give up, so I just take my chances. Heat exacerbates rosacea too. I never did hot yoga but now thankfully I have a genuine reason not to! Sun exposure is a nightmare for people with rosacea across the board, so I am extremely careful. I always use sunblock, even in the wintertime and I wear a hat when I'm gardening, even though I feel very self-conscious in hats and am very aware that I’m not a hat person!
My dermatologist prescribed me Rhofade rosacea cream and I use only rosacea skincare products. Dr Jart makes really nice anti-redness skincare products; I use anything from their Cicapair Tiger Grass line. The Avene Antirougeurs products are great, very calming and reasonably priced.
For every skincare gadget I get sent, few of them work as promised and that includes all those LED laser masks. Only a couple times a year do I find something that I truly like and I have to be very careful with what I say because of the titles that I write for. I would never say this is million years if it wasn’t one hundred percent true, but I tried the LYMA laser for my rosacea and I was floored by it. It was truly fantastic.
I started noticing a difference in my rosacea at around the three-week mark. Some days my skin looks so calm I don’t bother putting the Rhofade on, I just apply it on an ‘as needed’ basis, Rhofade is an exceedingly pricey prescription topical rosacea treatment and if you don’t have prescriptions covered on your health insurance, a prescription like Rhofade can cost hundreds of dollars every few months. So, if I get to the point where I‘m only using the LYMA laser, my savings in Rhofade will balance out within two years.
I’m all for people having any kind of cosmetic procedure, but it’s important to know the grizzly stuff. I once had fifteen cosmetic procedures in one year for a Vogue article so I’m well-acquainted with the pain and trauma of in-clinic laser treatments. I had fillers, muscle relaxant injectables and IPL Laser on my face which were so painful, I had tears leaking out of my eyes. Then there’s the blinding white light and that crazy clicking sound they make and not to forget the smell of your actual flesh burning! With in-clinic procedures it’s not over when you exit your doctor’s office either, you can be off the grid for a week. For me it was ice packs on rotation and a thick layers of Aquaphor healing balm all the next day. Also, I was told I couldn’t take the subway anywhere because it’s so dirty and might infect my face, so I had to take cars.
In contrast, the lukewarm glow of the LYMA laser made me think, “Oh here we go again, another bogus gizmo!” but after three weeks I saw the change in my skin. Look I’m 55, I’m not a kid and now I can go around without make-up on. These results are strictly from the LYMA laser, I'm not doing anything else and my rosacea has been dialled down by about 30%. That’s not a small number for just something that you can use at home. It even got rid of the fine lines and crow’s feet that I have around my eyes.
(See below some before and after photos of another case study of rosacea treated with the LYMA laser)
I can’t even put together an IKEA chair so I very much appreciated that the LYMA laser could not be more simple to assemble and I love that the batteries are rechargeable, everything is there for you. I find using the LYMA laser to be a very soothing ritual, like self-massage and maybe there's a little lymphatic drainage going on there too. A couple of pumps of the gel and a little couple of sprays and then you just sit and zone out. I’m very careful to do all of my face and I concentrate on my cheeks because this is exactly where the Ronald Reagan redness lies. I've been using the LYMA laser for an hour a night whilst watching Netflix - apparently, I watch a lot of television! I know some beauty regimes are hard to fit into everyday life but this really isn’t. I just sit on the couch and start rolling it all around my face. It couldn’t be any easier.
Everyone has that one person in their life who’ll give it to them straight and for me, that’s my mom. She’s former Alabama beauty queen and let me tell you, she knows her beauty products. She's also very blunt and if she if she hasn't seen anything, she’ll outright tell you. She inspected my face and said the improvement in my rosacea was dramatic, so I knew I wasn’t kidding myself that the LYMA laser treatment had worked.
After two and a half months, I’m still using my LYMA laser six nights a week and I don't know if I'm going to downshift to the three nights a week maintenance mode - maybe this says something about my personality! Sometimes there’s a dollop of hyperbole with beauty gadgets but honestly with the LYMA laser, I couldn’t be more pleased. If you have friends scared of pain, tell them about the LYMA laser, it’s just kind!