When it comes to treating patients safely and effectively with a laser or device, understanding Fitzpatrick skin types and the effects of different laser technology is extremely critical.
The Fitzpatrick skin typing system was developed by a Harvard dermatologist in the 1970s. It is used as a measurement tool to determine or classify how different skin types react to ultraviolet light (UV). The Fitzpatrick system takes into account, genetic makeup and reaction to sun exposure (burning and tanning).
People with Skin Type I are usually pale, prone to freckles, have light coloured eyes, and blonde or red hair. They burn very easily, don’t tan, and have a high risk of skin cancer.
Studies have shown that this skin type's particular kind of melanin - a yellow-red form called pheomelanin - is more prone to developing skin cancer. This is in general, regardless of UV exposure. Thus, those with Skin Type I need to be extremely vigilant in protecting their skin from the sun. They're also more vulnerable to serious damage and premature ageing.
Skin Type I individuals are generally good candidates for most aesthetic treatments. They have a lower risk of adverse side effects such as hyperpigmentation. Aggressive ablative resurfacing treatments such as phenol peels and Erbium YAG laser (neither is performed at Skin Renewal), should be avoided as they can result in hypopigmentation. This is whitish skin that’s permanently lost its pigment.
Best skincare practices for Fitzpatrick Skin Type I
- Minimise sun damage
- Even out pigmentation
- Reverse age-related changes like wrinkles
- Check for skin cancers
All aesthetic skin treatments are safe for Skin Type I. They have a low risk of burning, scarring, and discolouration.
At Skin Renewal, each client is booked for a consultation with a doctor before any treatments are done. As every person has a unique set of needs, an individualized package is worked out for each client to ensure optimal results.