Blue Dot Certified Aesthetic Lasers for Sale: What You Need to Know Before You Buy

This is an overview of the full buying guide that we offer to aesthetic practitioners sifting through the many IPL, RF, and medical lasers for sale coming into the market.

For more information call our experts at (855) 819-3781 for information before deciding to purchase a RF, IPL, or medical laser for sale from another source.

There are a few very important things you should know before purchasing or leasing a new or Blue Dot Certified laser, IPL, or RF (LIPLRF)

This buying guide may not be reproduced without written permission of the author.

  1. Properly maintained and refurbished lasers can have high efficacy for well over ten years.
  2. Never buy something new, unless there is a very good business reason to buy it new.
  3. Never buy a system with an expensive consumable such as a tip or pad.
  4. Be sure to validate the device you are buying before making payment.
  5. Make sure that any devices requiring installation are properly installed.
  6. Always get trained by someone who has trained hundreds of buyers.
    • check out your trainer.
    • a good trainer will teach both clinically and academically.
    • Your trainer should be a resource long after training is complete.
  7. Know who you are doing business with.
    Ask yourself these questions:
  • How can a broker have the resources to properly prepare your device and all attachments for shipping?
  • Does the broker have the right type of crating and packaging?
  • Will they ensure that all of the accessories are obtained from the seller?
  • Does the party that you are doing business with have a dedicated engineering and tech staff that thoroughly tests all lasers before they are sent out?  Most brokers claim they do, but actually use the services of moonlighting techs.
  • Does the broker carry product liability insurance?
  • Many pre-owned systems are out of warranty, out of calibration, have had no preventative maintenance for months (or years), have not been inspected for safety or electrical issues, are not drained, and often do not function to specification. Does the broker you are working with have the resources to restore lasers to like-new condition?
  • Does the party you are doing business with have a dedicated trainer that will be a wonderful resource for your practice?
  • Buy the right solution for you – not the medical laser for sale the salesperson promises will do everything and treat everyone.
  • Do not fall for the “demo” medical laser for sale.
  • Know who your seller really is, not what their website claims to be. Have you toured the facility? If not, ask for a Skype or Facetime tour.  Do they have a long list of complaints online that have never been resolved?
  • When is a multi-parameter platform the right platform for you? Consider system failures, ability to treat multiple patients at the same time, and customer efficacy. You’re not actually saving money.
  • Think about service after the medical laser sale. The manufacturer is not your best option; finding a good field-based technician is a time consuming task; our repair depot is usually faster and less expensive.
  • Most lasers, IPLs, and their fibers and handpieces can be refurbished. Very few manufacturers make their own parts; we change worn out parts.
  • Be aware of the fallacy of the warranty that comes with a new system.
  • What do practioners who have been using cosmetic lasers, RF devices and IPLs for 20 years know that you don’t? Most opt to buy pre-owned.
As you head out into the market to look at medical lasers for sale, please keep in mind: There are no capital equipment emergencies. Put simply, when you are feeling pressure to buy here, do not. Take your time and do your homework. When it is right for you, you will know.

If we can be of service please don’t hesitate to call (855) 819-3781 for no obligation answers to your questions about aesthetic IPL, RF and medical lasers for sale. We create relationships with our buyers, and invite you to experience the Sentient Difference.

The First Questions To Ask When Buying A Laser

questions to ask when buying a laser

You need to buy a cosmetic laser. Perhaps you are adding/expanding aesthetic treatments to your services, or you need to replace an existing cosmetic laser. Before you make the investment, there are questions you should answer. Some questions are apparent, others perhaps not as obvious.

You know which treatments you want to offer. Now it’s time to select the right laser. Here are your first considerations.

New vs Used Aesthetic Laser?

The question of new or used frequently starts with cost. Simply, used aesthetic lasers cost less. Right out of the gate, there is an advantage to buying used.

There is also a tax advantage for buying used. If you are not familiar with the new tax rules, adding used equipment receives a better tax treatment than new. You can read more about the new tax rules here.

The not so obvious consideration when considering new vs used is objectivity. Suppliers for used aesthetic lasers are not tied to one or two brands. With used lasers, the supplier does not have a vested interest or bias, they can speak with you candidly about the pros and cons of each laser that meets your technical requirements.

Of course, when you buy a used laser, you also want it to come with a warranty. With programs like Blue Dot Certification, you can be confident your used laser is refurbished to factory specs and carries a strong warranty.

What Type of Laser Supplier?

When dealing with complex technology, the purchase of the equipment is only the first step. You can purchase from a broker or you can purchase from a company. Which is best for your business?

The broker can source different lasers from other sellers. But was sold, the typical broker is not in a position to support the equipment and may have limited knowledge of the actual technology. Additionally, brokers are not technicians and will be unable to attest to the condition.

You are better served dealing with a company that staffs industry trained technicians, experienced sales teams, and excellent customer support. Once you have the equipment installed, you will have questions. Over time, you will need maintenance. These things are better supported by a well-staffed company.

Which Cosmetic Laser

Your decision on which laser to buy is situationally specific. You can read quite a bit out each laser that meets your technical requirements. But, you are best served if you can speak to a person who is involved with lasers from manufacturers across the spectrum.

Experts with this experience can help you select between multiple lasers that meet your criteria. They have input from real-world users, not just spec sheets or the manufacturers sell sheets.  With the right input, you can select the laser the both meet your technical spec and the way you want to work.

The Business Decision

When you are in business, most transactions are as much about relationships as about equipment. Aesthetic lasers are no different.

The first questions to answer regarding your laser purchase are not about the equipment, they are about the business of your relationship.

 

Ablative & Non-Ablative Laser Treatment

For different reasons, whether age, scares, or sun damage, our skin’s appearance can change, and not always in the way we would like. When this happens, many people turn to cosmetic laser surgery to ‘fix’ or mitigate the issue.

Doctors have several treatment options for cosmetic laser procedures. Among them are ablative laser and non-ablative laser treatments.

Ablative Laser Treatment

Ablative lasers use intense light wavelengths to remove a thin layer of outer skin from the patient. Typically, CO2 lasers or erbium yag lasers are used to perform these procedures. This treatment causes the skin to regenerate, added a new, tighter layer. Thus, the skin is being “resurfaced” with ablative treatments.

Common applications for ablative laser treatments are:
Skin damage / uneven skin tone
Wrinkles
Age spots (liver spots)
Acne scars
Sun damaged skin

The outer layer of skin is removed and a new layer is generated, collagen under the skin also reacts. This helps tighten the appearance and reduce wrinkles or acne scars. The new skin will also be more uniform in appearance, making skin tones and scaring less prominent.

Depending on the application, technicians may use 100% ablative, or semi-ablative laser techniques. Semi-ablative is more targeted and better for scars or wrinkles. This technique allows for faster healing and less discomfort for the patient.

Ablative procedures are not painless. Typically, there are topical creams to help with the healing, make a patient more comfortable, and reduce the risk of infections. Some laser manufacturers have developed technology to simultaneously reduce the skin temperature as it treats the areas with the laser light. This assists in patient comfort during the procedures and may reduce discomfort after the procedures.

Nonablative Laser Treatment

Non-ablative laser treatment doesn’t resurface skin, though it does heat the skin. By heating it without damaging the skin, the non-ablative treatment stimulates collagen production, filing skin imperfections such as fine lines or wrinkles. These types of treatments are not as invasive and therefore won’t have the same impact as ablative. They may also require multiple treatments.

The following are the common treatments for nonablative treatments:

Infection
Skin color changes
Mild redness or swelling
Blisters or scars

When providing cosmetic laser services, doctors have options that they can offer patients that span speed and comfort levels.

Laser Spotlight: Alma Soprano ICE

Alma Soprano ICE Laser

There are a lot of reasons to like the Alma Soprano ICE laser. For laser hair removal practices that want to treat a wide range of patients, and offer the highest possible level of comfort during treatments, the Soprano ICE is an excellent cosmetic laser.

Alma is a trusted brand within the cosmetic laser industry. Their lasers and equipment helped aesthetic treatment practices provide profitable services to their patients with cutting edge and reliable technology.

The latest in a successful line of technology from Alma Lasers, the Soprano ICE hair removal laser is on the cutting edge of hair removal treatments. Combining the laser technology and the full range of handpieces in the Alma family, hair removal specialists can treat a wide range of patients.

The Alma Soprano ICE technology

Soprano ICE lasers use diode technology rather than flashlamp. Within the cosmetic laser industry, diode lasers have become the leading technology in laser hair removal for a variety of applications. The Soprano ICE uses a near-infrared laser platform with multiplex 755-nm, 810-nm and 1064-nm diode technology for laser hair removal.

Alma integrated contact cooling technology into the Soprano ICE to eliminate patient discomfort. While the laser maintains heat within the dermis, treating the hair follicles, the ICE cold sapphire tip dramatically reduces the risk of burns on the surface of the skin. The Contact Cooling technology is one of the best advances is laser hair removal designed to maximize patient comfort.

Effective approximate temperatures with the ICE technology

  • Epidermis temperature: 25 C
  • Dermis temperature: 45 C
  • Follicle temperature: 50 C

The Soprano ICE is approved for skin types Fitz I – VI (all skin types).

Soprano ICE Handpieces

The technology behind the Soprano ICE allows clinicians to treat all skin types. The range of laser handpieces from Alma provide the tools for them to apply that technology.

Diode Laser ALEX

As the name tells you, ALEX is based on an Alexandrite wavelength. The power of the Alexandrite wavelength provides effective hair removal treatments while the combined ICE technology provides patient comfort. The ALEX is an ideal handpiece for a broad range of hair types and color; this is particularly good for treating light-colored and thin hair.

Alma Speed

For hair removal from large areas, the Speed handpiece gets the job done quickly. The large spot size applicator provides quick treatments for larger areas and offers patients the effective hair removal on the market.

Alma Compact

For dark-skinned patients, the gradual heating process of the Alma Compact handpiece is well suited. The Alma SHR technology heats area slowly rather than hitting the area with fast, high heat applications. This reduces the potential damage and irritation to the skin.

Alma Diode Laser YAG

For technology specifically for darker skin types, the YAG uses a diode laser based on Nd: YAG wavelength has moderate energy absorption by the melanin chromophore. For darker skin, this process, combined with the Soprano ICE cooling technology, provides the most comfortable hair removal treatment option.

Buying an Alma Soprano ICE Laser

If you are starting a new cosmetic treatment practice, or adding services to your existing one, the Alma Soprano ICE laser is a great option to provide a wide range of treatments to virtually all skin types. There are great deals to be had with certified used Soprano ICE lasers. You can check out our online inventory, or give us a call.

So, you are thinking of starting a laser hair removal business

Every day, people are starting new businesses. Or, perhaps, adding new services to their existing business. While all new businesses or services have risks and require entrepreneurs to work with government regulations and licensing, the laser hair removal business has added layers of consideration. We look at the high-level considerations for starting or adding laser hair removal business and provide links to additional resources.

As you considered the possibility of starting a laser hair removal business, you will no doubt develop a business plan. There are many sources for general business plan development. You can download a pdf here. But, as we mentioned, there is an added layer of complexity when offering laser hair removal.

For instance, when you define your target market, this is more than a marketing exercise. It affects your capital outlay.

Your Market
Hair removal with lasers works on the principle of using heat to damage hair follicles. The heat comes from the absorption of concentrated light beams (the laser) pulsed onto the treatment area. To ensure that the laser is absorbed by the hair follicles and does not burn the skin, there must be a color contrast sufficient for the technology to distinguish between the two. We won’t delve int to detail (you can read more here), but the equipment you need for laser hair removal will depend on the services offered and clientele you have.

Most lasers work well with lighter skin tones or skin types. If your target market has a population with darker skin color or even tends to be more tan, then this affects the type of laser technology you need, which affects your capital requirements. Before you decide on the equipment and cost, you must be clear about your target audience.

Beyond the audience, you also need to determine the service. Facial hair removal vs large area hair removal (like the back), typically require different handsets. Again, this affects your capital requirements.

Creating your business plan involves defining your target audience. In most businesses, this is to help focus your marketing. But for laser hair removal, it also affects your initial investment requirements.

Local Licensing
Most states and towns require licenses for your business. But, laser hair removal has an added complexity of licensing since it is a medical procedure. The requirements vary by state and impact the type of facilities in which you can operate your business and the staff you must have on site.

In some state, a physician must be onsite and operate the lasers. Other states have levels of certifications and the scope of procedures one is allowed to perform depends on the certification. Yet, in others, there are few restrictions. Knowing the rules of your state is critical to being able to create a staffing plan for your new business.

For an idea of the span of requirements, you can check out: http://www.thelasertrader.com/how-to-pick.cfm. However, before you make any investments in locations or equipment, contact your own state’s regulatory body to be sure you have all the requirements nailed down.

Starting a new business is exciting. Ensuring you plan well and have the right laser equipment will keep that excitement going long after your doors first open. If you have any questions about cosmetic lasers, give us a call. We will be happy talk with you and ensure your laser equipment meets the needs of your new business.

Below are some additional links you might find helpful.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4271299/
http://smallbusiness.chron.com/start-business-laser-hair-removal-758.html
Detailed plan for an actual startup: https://www.bplans.com/hair_removal_business_plan/company_summary_fc.php

CO2 Laser Technology for Cosmetic Treatments

CO2 lasers have been used in cosmetic treatments for decades. While it is called a CO2 laser, there are other gasses involved, nitrogen and helium. Combining an electrical charge, a tube, and mirrors, are the elements in generating a laser light that can be used in aesthetic, or skin, treatments.

What are the elements of a CO2 laser

First, we start with a tube that has mirrors on each end. One mirror is a fully reflective mirror, the opposite mirror is partially reflective. This is the discharge tube.

Attached to this tube is a line for the gas mixture, electric contact, and an “exhaust” line.

The electric contacts send a current through the length of the tube. This electrical charge stimulates the nitrogen molecules, creating an “excited state”, which the nitrogen can hold for long periods of time. The vibrating nitrogen molecules then stimulate the CO2 molecules. As the number of molecules excited within the system increases above the non-excited, the state of population inversion is created.

You might think of the electric current through the nitrogen as shaking the soda can. It begins a reaction the build up energy that eventually needs to be released.

Once population inversion is achieved, the gas is ready to release the energy created by the active molecules in the form of photons. To cause this release, very cold helium molecules are released into the discharge tube. When the excited molecules come in contact with the cold helium molecules, the photons are released.

The photon light builds up in intensity as it reflects off the mirrors within the discharge tube, The photons will continue to be reflected or bounce between the two mirrors building up energy, until the light intensity is sufficient to “push through” the semi-reflected mirror in the form of a laser.

The CO2 laser can be one of the most powerful lasers. The strength of the laser output depends on the electric energy input. 20w – 100w lasers are used for machining metals, though the lasers can be 1000w or more.  Cosmetic lasers typically operate in the 30w-60w range.

Since CO2 lasers are in the invisible infrared waveband, an aiming beam is used to see where the laser will be applied.  

Why CO2 Lasers are good for cosmetic procedures

CO2 lasers operate at a10,600 nm wavelength which is easily absorbed by water. Since skin contains a high percentage of water,  the CO2 laser is great for precise, safe ablation.

The Newer cosmetic CO2 lasers use high pulse rates or scattered light beams which reduce heat damage to the skin. By reducing the potential skin damage with a pulsing laser, higher power lasers can be used and treatments are able to affect deeper tissue removal and for pronounced wrinkles and creases.

If you are looking for a CO2 laser for your cosmetic or dermatologic practice, one of the most popular on the market is the Lumenis UltraPulse Encore. If you have questions about how the CO2 lasers operate or which is best for you patients, please contact us.

End of Year Spending On Aesthetic Lasers

At the end of the year businesses may have money left to spend, and the mantra “use it or lose it” usually applies. There are many ways to use this leftover money to your advantage, but at Sentient, we think investing in quality resources that can enhance the value of your business is always the way to go.

An aesthetic laser can grow your practice in many ways. Getting the right laser for your patient population provides additional treatments, which means an additional source of revenue. That, coupled with the opportunity to market your practice with year-end specials means momentum rolling into the new year.

There’s no need to buy a brand new laser – buying refurbished lasers are a great way to get the product you’re looking for at a lower cost than direct from a manufacturer. We have many aesthetic lasers that have gone through our rigorous Blue Dot Certification program to ensure quality and safety. To learn more about this process, please click here.

Our inventory is constantly updated, check out our website for lasers that are available and in our warehouse right now including some special pricing for the end of the year!

 

 

The Growing Market for Spider Vein Treatments

Our population is aging and baby boomers are seeing the effects of time. Even healthy people see it. Among the outward signs of aging, spider veins (tiny varicose veins that do not protrude above the skin)  appearing anywhere from the legs to the face have people seeking cosmetic options.  With the active lifestyle many people lead, even into their senior years, simply covering up spider veins is not a solution.

As our population ages, the median age surpassed 37.5 this year, according to the U.S. Census.  Those over 65 make up 15% of the population in our country and its growing. If you’ve paid attention, you have noticed that even those over 65 are maintaining an active lifestyle. While the population grows older it creates a growing market for certain types of cosmetic laser treatment, including spider vein treatment.

As they grow older, people are staying in shape, engaging in outdoor activities, and want to wear shorts and go swimming without concern for cosmetic issues like spider veins. It is not just that the population is aging, it is also remaining active. This is a growing market for medical practices.

One of the older treatments for spider veins is Sclerotherapy. This treatment requires the injection of a solution into the veins which blanch and shrink the veins. It is a key treatment method for more severe vein problems and is very reliable. However, though minimally invasive, this treatment is more complicated than newer spider vein treatment options.

A more recent option is laser treatment

While laser treatment for spider veins cannot always be used, there are situations in which it is preferable. For smaller spider veins on the legs (usually appearing above the knee), or for the appearance of these veins on the face, laser procedures have been very effective. When veins are too small or present in too sensitive an area for Sclerotherapy, doctors find laser treatments to be efficacious.

Laser Treatment for Veins

As with other laser applications, the treatment of spider veins relies on the delivery of light pulses to heat the treated area. By applying a pulse to the affected areas, the heat coagulates the vein causing it to shrink and eventually be absorbed by the body.

Patients usually have 1 to 4 rounds of laser treatment spaced about 4 weeks apart. During this time, there can be skin irritation and redness. These side effect will fade, but topical treatment will ease the discomfort.

Laser Models for  Spider Vein Treatment

The Harmony XL PRO with a special 1064nm Long Pulsed Nd:YAG laser.

The Cutera lasers to treat spider veins include xeo, excel HR, and excel V.

Candela VBeam Perfecta and Gentle Pro models are good options for spider veins.

For more challenging vein issues, the minimally invasive Endovenous Laser Ablation, EVLA treatment is an option. We will cover this in later posts.

The 20 Point Blue Dot Certification Inspection

What makes “Buying Blue” a safe, simpler, and overall more beneficial experience?  Our Blue Dot Certification programs combines the benefits of buying used with the advantages of buying new. This rigorous 20-point inspection guarantees quality, longevity, safety,  and clinical efficacy for every aesthetic laser we sell.  Here’s how we do it:

  1. Clean all dust from interior of machine
  2. Clean or replace air filters
  3. Flush and refill coolant system
  4. Replace water filters and deionizing cartridges
  5. replace any damaged optics with OEM or equivalent parts
  6. Clean all laser and delivery system optics
  7. Rebuild laser cavity components as needed to meet manufacturer energy specifications
  8. Refurbish handpieces and reset pulse counters
  9. Test and calibrate all power supplies
  10. Align laser to articulated arm or fiber optic delivery system
  11. Calibrate output energy using OEM specific procedures and test equipment
  12. Documented Proof of Calibration for machine and handpieces
  13. Calibrate touch screens
  14. Ensure exterior of machine is in good mechanical and cosmetic condition
  15. Minimum of 24 hour run-time final testing after all refurbishment is complete
  16. Machine condition and operation is photo and video documented before being packaged
  17. All water drained from machine and handpieces to prevent freezing during shipping
  18. Coolant refill kit and phone support provided to ensure machine is refilled to proper level
  19. Professional crating or packaging of machine and all accessories
  20. Follow up support for setup and installation of equipment

 

 

 

 

Why Cutera Lasers Are On The Top Of Our List

No doubt you see that there are a lot of cosmetic laser manufacturers. While the field is still relatively young, Cutera has been a quality manufacturer for over 15 years. As a company that specialized in used aesthetic lasers, we get to see the range of equipment, how long it lasts and how well it performs. Cutera’s history has been one of reliability and quality.

Starting in 2000 with the CoolGlide CV, the first of their ND:Yag lasers .  What made this laser special was that it was not only a first for Cutera but demonstrated to the industry the wavelength technology was a viable method for permanent hair removal. The company was able to target the follicles while minimizing the impact on melanin in the epidermis. Along with the wavelength breakthrough, the original CoolGlide provided a level of control that was unmatched in the industry.

Cutera didn’t rest with the first generation of ND:Yag technology. The following year, they release the CoolGlide Excel. This enhanced the original laser with a broader range of treatment options that included vascular treatments, making it even more valuable to practices that offer cosmetic treatments. In addition to more treatment options, the new CoolGlide Excel offered the technicians greater control of the machine’s parameters as well.

By 2002, Cutera expanded the capabilities of the CoolGlide line with the introduction of the CoolGlide Vantage. The wide range of skin treatments offered by the Genesis technology incorporated in the Vantage laser added greater value to laser treatment practices.

2003 saw the introduction of the first Xeo Laser from Cutera. Providing the greatest variety of treatment options yet, the Xeo became a bedrock for many practices. Over the years, the introduction of technology like Titan®, LimeLight®, ProWave 770™, AcuTip™, ProWave LX™, and Laser Genesis™ have expanded the Xeo’s capabilities even further.

Cutera continues to expand the capabilities of the Excel and Xeo lines of cosmetic lasers.  The Excel HR for hair removal and the Excel V for vascular treatments set the standard for the industry.

The introduction of the ProWave LX allows providers to overcome the limits of other IPL technology for hair removal. Lighter and finer hair removal is not more easily possible with the better targeting capabilities. Of the ProWave line for xeo.

Whether you are in the market for an older Cutera laser or looking for more recent technology, the refurbished Cutera lasers have proven to be reliable and economical for practices that want to offer cosmetic services to their patients. Contact Sentient Laser and we will work with you to ensure you understand your options and select the best cosmetic laser for your needs.