Helix Laser at NM Aesthetics

All About Lasers at NM Aesthetics

At NM Aesthetics, the top laser center in Arlington, VA, we use the latest and most advanced laser technologies  to help our clients achieve their desired results, whether that's smoother, tighter skin, reduced pigmentation, fewer sunspots and age spots, or an overall rejuvenated appearance. With so many laser options available, it can be confusing to understand the differences between them and which might be right for you.

In this blog post, we'll break down four of the top lasers we use - CoolPeel, Deka Pulse, IPL, EVO and Helix - and explain what each one does, how they work, and what skin concerns they can address. By the end, you'll have a better understanding of your laser treatment options so you can decide which direction to go.

Ablative vs Non Ablative Lasers 

The main difference between ablative and non-ablative lasers lies in how they interact with the skin's surface.

Ablative lasers remove the top layer of skin, providing more dramatic results, but including more down time.

How They Work:

  • Use high heat energy to vaporize and remove the outermost layers of damaged skin
  • Create a controlled injury that prompts the body's wound healing response
  • Stimulate new collagen production as the skin heals

Typical downtime with an ablative laser can range from a few days to a few  weeks with possible swelling, oozing, crusting and peeling.

Non-ablative lasers work by heating up the underlying skin tissue (without harming the surface) so that your body will produce new collagen.

How They Work:

  • Use heat energy that penetrates deeply into the skin without removing surface layers
  • Heat up and remodel existing collagen to tighten skin
  • Stimulate gradual new collagen growth 

Non-ablative lasers have little to no downtime since the skin's surface remains intact. But results appear more gradually over 3-6 months as collagen rebuilds.


The CoolPeel laser is a unique CO2 ablative laser that provides excellent results with minimal downtime. It's ideal for mild to moderate wrinkles, sun damage, age spots, acne scars, texture, and other pigmentation issues.

How it Works:  The CoolPeel delivers a fully-ablative treatment without causing thermal damage to surrounding tissue. Without thermal damage, downtime is drastically minimized. At the same time, the system delivers impressive superficial, skin-resurfacing results. CoolPeel has been recognized as the Best CO2 Laser Treatment in 2023 & 2024 by NewBeauty.

What to Expect: You may experience some minor swelling and redness for a couple days after the treatment, but otherwise downtime is very minimal compared to traditional CO2 laser resurfacing. 3-4 treatments spaced about a month apart are recommended for optimal results.

Ideal For: Fine lines and wrinkles, sun damage, age spots, acne scars, texture, pigmentation, enlarged pores

CoolPeel Laser Treatment from NM Aesthetics on Vimeo.


Deka Pulse 

Deka Pulse  is an ablative laser that provides dramatic anti-aging results for the face, neck, chest, arms, legs, and more.

How it Works: It precisely removes layers of damaged skin while heating the skin to stimulate collagen production and tightening.

What to Expect: Deka Pulse  is more intense CO2 laser treatment, so you can expect around 5-7 days of downtime with swelling, peeling, and redness. Numbing cream is applied beforehand to maximize comfort. While the downtime is more substantial, so are the results - you'll see dramatically smoother, tighter, more youthful skin.

Ideal For: Moderate to severe wrinkles, age spots, acne scars, skin laxity (loose, crepey skin), uneven tone/texture

IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) 

IPL is a popular, non-invasive, non-ablative treatment that uses intense pulsed light to improve discoloration, rosacea, hyperpigmentation, and sun damage. It's gentler than many laser treatments with little to no downtime.

How it Works: IPL light pulses penetrate deep into the skin without damaging the surface. This light energy is absorbed by pigmented areas and helps break up sunspots, freckles, and redness caused by broken capillaries, and other pigmentation irregularities.

What to Expect: You may notice a slight darkening of pigmented spots for 3-4 days before they begin to flake off and fade. Aside from that, there is no real downtime and you can return to normal activities immediately after an IPL treatment. 4-6 treatments spaced 3-4 weeks apart are usually recommended.

Ideal For: Sunspots, age spots, freckles, redness, broken capillaries, rosacea, uneven skin tone, dullness


The Helix is an advanced high-energy laser that combines non-ablative fractional and ablative technologies that  delivers dramatic skin tightening and lifting results with minimal downtime, making it a great alternative to surgery.

How it Works: Only HELIX offers the benefits of the most advanced fractional CO2 technology and non-ablative resurfacing to be used alone or together for superior results and healing time. Powered by 70 watts of energy, HELIX combines a 1570nm fiber laser with the advanced 10,600nm CO2 technology that DEKA is known for.

What to Expect: Most clients experience 2-3 days of swelling, pinkness or redness after a Helix treatment. You may also experience 5-7 days of sandpaper-like texture to the skin.  However, these effects resolve quickly with minimal social downtime.  Most patients start to see the glow of their new skin after a week or two. Additionally, your skin may continue to improve over the course of the next six months to a year.

Ideal For: Sagging skin, jowls, skin laxity on the face and body, double chin, crepey skin


The Light EVO Series is a sophisticated platform with the versatility to customize pulse-laser specifications to target your concerns

How it Works: EVO is able to target specific treatment options like hair removal, vascular lesions, and skin resurfacing across different skin types. 

What to Expect: Depending on your skin concern, you may notice darkening of hyperpigmentation, darkening of vascular lesions, “graying” of areas, minor swelling or cat scratch like texture.

Ideal For: Pigmented lesions, sun spots, cherry angiomas, broken capillaries, spider veins, permanent hair reduction, wrinkle treatments

Finding The Best Laser for You 

While all of these laser treatments work in slightly different ways and treat different skin concerns, they all utilize laser or light energy to trigger the skin's natural rejuvenation processes and promote healing. Over time, this stimulates collagen growth, elastin production, and cell turnover, ultimately leading to fresher, smoother, more youthful-looking skin.

The best laser for you will depend on your individual skin concerns and goals. During your consultation at NM Aesthetics, we'll evaluate your skin and talk through what you'd like to achieve before recommending one of these laser treatments or even combining a couple for maximum results. Pre treatment prior to your laser session may be required for best results.

No matter which option you choose, you can feel confident that you're receiving the highest standard of laser skin treatments from our experienced providers. We'll work closely with you before, during and after your laser sessions to ensure you get the incredible, rejuvenated results you're after with maximum safety and comfort.

Book your free laser consultation in Arlington, VA with us today and let's get started on your personalized laser treatment plan!

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