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I Nixed My Acne Scars for Good with Fractional CO2 Laser Resurfacing

I Nixed My Acne Scars for Good with Fractional CO2 Laser Resurfacing

Some of us are less lucky than others when it comes to breakouts. I’m Brooke and I’ve dealt with consistent acne growing up. If the pain and hassle of breakouts aren’t enough, I was also left with a parting gift: acne scars well into adulthood.


Like many of us, I’ve tried conservative treatments in the past: a whole host of skincare lines, natural remedies, and even microdermabrasion, but none of these fully resolved my acne scars.

After some investigating, I came across a relatively new technology to streamline skin cell turnover: fractional CO2 laser therapy. I read testimonies from people who’d used CO2 laser therapy to address deep wrinkles, sun damage, blotchy discoloration, and—you guessed it—acne scars. The images looked convincing and I grew increasingly curious about this treatment until I finally pulled the trigger and decided to call Ogden Clinic Dermatology for a consultation.

Price-wise, laser therapy is on the higher end of aesthetic treatments, so I wanted to be absolutely sure this was something that could help me. During my consultation, Dr. Hadley in Bountiful examined my skin and determined that I was a candidate for this procedure. He assured me that I would see tone and texture improvements and reduced acne scars if I chose to undergo fractional CO2 laser therapy. Just like that, I was sold.

Goin’ In

I arrived for my appointment with a clean face. Dr. Hadley had his estheticians prep my skin before this treatment with a series of numbing injections. I hate needles as much as the next person, but it’s not as scary as it sounds. The numbing agent kicks in immediately, so the most you feel is a little poke, then nothing!

When my face was all numbed up, Dr. Hadley arrived to start treatment. I sat back as he applied the CO2 laser in small sections throughout my face.

The Feels

While my face was numbed, I couldn’t feel a thing! I had a little sensation near the outer edges of my face where the laser felt similar to a snapping rubber band. But for the most part, I only felt the pressure.

Immediately After Treatment

I’m not going to lie, it didn’t look pretty. This is an aggressive but controlled skin treatment that wounds the outer layer of skin to destroy the top layers.

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Day 1

As painful as it looks, it wasn’t! I could feel the heat on my face but not pain, not even after the numbing wore off later in the day.


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Day 2

Recovery looks uncomfortable but it doesn’t feel too bad. What’s most important is following my dermatologist’s instructions to a T. My skin was tender and delicate after the procedure and I was advised to stay indoors for a week—even sitting near a window was not a good idea. Along with staying out of sunlight, I was instructed to keep my skin very moisturized while it heals.

The first week I experienced occasional bleeding and sloughing of skin. I applied gauze pads soaked in a vinegar solution to my face as instructed and kept it moisturized every day. The vinegar application helped dry skin slough off and soothed my skin a bit.

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Day 3

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Day 5

Swelling is common while the skin heals, as you can see in my day two and three photos. After the swelling subsided, my red skin became gradually pinker and less tender. Gentle cleansing and consistent moisturizing are the names of the game when it comes to recovery.

In the Pink

Day 6
Day 6

My skin is still not all-the-way back to its natural hue in this image but the pinkness is subsiding. Walking around with a blush pink face was annoying at times, but Dr. Hadley reassured me that pink is good! It means my skin is turning over new cells and recovering as it should.

Day 7
Day 7

My New Skin

I put on some makeup for my boy’s piano recital and I’m already feeling confident and excited about my skin. It’s buttery smooth and the texture has dramatically improved. This treatment has targeted those stubborn acne scars like nothing I’ve tried in the past.

Day 9
Day 9

The Verdict

Without a doubt, I would recommend this procedure to anyone in a similar situation as me. Whether you live with acne scars, discoloration, or other stubborn blemishes, the CO2 laser is a game-changer for aesthetic dermatology. Because my acne scars are very deep, I’ve decided to undergo this treatment one more time to remove the last few residual scars. But depending on your skincare goals, it’s very possible that one treatment is all you need for that clear, smooth skin we all dream about.

The staff at Ogden Clinic dermatology is kind and welcoming and I can’t say enough good things about Dr. Jason Hadley. His passion for skincare is so apparent and I felt well informed going into this treatment and understanding my follow-up care. I trust Dr. Hadley and I’m up for anything he or his estheticians suggest in the future!


Ogden Clinic Dermatology serves Weber and Davis Counties. Drs. Michael and Jason Hadley perform fractional CO2 laser resurfacing and a number of other cosmetic treatments at Ogden Clinic Bountiful. Dr. Chad Tingey and staff also offer these services in Ogden. Visit our Info and Location Page to learn more or schedule a consultation.