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What is PicoWay

The PicoWay laser is a CE marked picosecond laser that treats acne scars, wrinkles, benign pigmented lesions (dark spots) and tattoo removal.1-5 The PicoWay laser first became known for its tattoo and pigment removal capabilities, but it is now growing in use for acne scars and wrinkles.9

The PicoWay laser uses different handpieces and laser wavelengths for treatment of these conditions. Your healthcare provider will know which treatment is right for your condition. The PicoWay laser has ultra-short pulse durations and has low to no downtime following treatment.1-5 Learn more about how PicoWay treatments can help you transform your skin.

How PicoWay Works

All PicoWay system treatments use a picosecond laser with high power and ultra-short laser pulses.1-5 A picosecond is a trillionth of a second! The ultra-short pulses with the PicoWay laser are important because they lead to a “photoacoustic” effect that minimizes risk of skin heating and damage to surrounding tissue.9 Because the PicoWay laser uses ultra-short laser pulses, the result is a laser that has low to no downtime after treatment.1-5,9 The PicoWay laser reaches under the skin for its impact, leaving the outer layer of the skin intact.

Icon illustrating ultra-short pulses from PicoWay®.


About PicoWay

The PicoWay® laser uses a high power laser beam with ultra-short pulses to transform your skin from the inside out! The PicoWay system treats acne scars, wrinkles, dark spots and removes unwanted tattoos - all with low to no downtime.1-5,9

What Can PicoWay Treat?

Acne Scars

Did you know that nearly 40% of those with acne have some degree of scarring?10
Acne scars can result from loss of collagen in the skin.11 PicoWay Resolve is an ultra-short, picosecond laser that reaches below the surface of the skin to stimulate production of collagen and elastin, without breaking the outermost layer of the skin.4,9 In clinical studies, 94% of treated scars were improved after 3 to 4 treatments (n=36: 39 treated areas).4,7


Millions of people each year seek treatment for their wrinkles.12 Wrinkles can be caused by a loss of collagen in the skin.8

PicoWay Resolve is a non-invasive, needle free treatment option for wrinkles. Resolve uses ultra-short laser pulses to reach under the skin, without breaking the outer layer of the skin.2-5 Picosecond lasers help build new collagen and elastin.2-6

Dark Spots

Skin discoloration is common, yet treatable. Dark spots, or benign pigmented lesions, such as freckles, liver spots (age spots), and café-au-lait (brown patches), appear in many people on different areas of the skin. Some spots are related to excessive sun exposure. Others, can be caused by hormone changes, often impacting women following pregnancy. Many of these skin discolorations can be distressing and affect quality of life.

Tattoo Removal

The PicoWay system is a high power laser with ultra-short pulses that shatters tattoo ink but leaves the outer layer of the skin intact. PicoWay treats a wide range of tattoo colors across a broad range of skin colors and types.1 Over a series of brief treatments, PicoWay can eliminate tattoos.1

PicoWay Handpieces

PicoWay laser handpieces come in either full beam or split beam types. Each handpiece is designed for a particular use or uses, some for tattoos and some for removal of pigment or treatment of wrinkles or acne scars.

All handpieces on the PicoWay laser target pigment in the skin. Pigment can be naturally formed, caused by too much melanin in the skin. This appears as dark spots on the skin that can either be seen at birth or form over time from sun damage (sometimes called sun spots), aging, or even be a result of medical conditions. Pigment can also be added to the skin, in the form of ink in a tattoo. In either case, the PicoWay laser targets the pigment and shatters it into tiny particles that are no longer seen through the skin.

Resolve by PicoWay®

PicoWay Resolve and Resolve Fusion

The laser beams in PicoWay Resolve and Resolve Fusion are split a central beam into 100 identical beams, or beamlets. Resolve Fusion has a wider coverage area than Resolve.9 These beamlets reach below the skin’s surface in areas that are spaced evenly apart. Because the laser is so fast and powerful, creates a non-thermal effect, called a “photoacoustic” effect.9 Tiny open spaces are created under the skin that are then filled in over time with the growth of new collagen and elastin.8,9

The PicoWay laser literally works from the inside out. The treatment does not cause the outer layers of the skin to break, so patients enjoy low to no downtime after treatment.9

Contact a Provider

Learn more or schedule a visit.

What is the PicoWay laser?

The PicoWay laser is an ultra-fast picosecond laser that treats acne scars, wrinkles, benign pigmented lesions and tattoo removal.1-5

PicoWay Resolve is a treatment on the PicoWay laser system, using a laser handpiece that splits the full beam into tiny microbeams. This allows treatment of conditions like acne scars, wrinkles and dark spots.2-5

PicoWay laser treatments are typically brief (15-20 minutes) and are done over a series of treatment sessions spaced weeks apart.1-5 Your doctor will recommend a treatment plan that works best for you.

Is the PicoWay laser right for me?

If you are looking for a laser treatment that acts below the surface of the skin and offers low to no downtime, PicoWay may be the right laser for you. Ask your doctor if the PicoWay laser can help minimize your acne scars or wrinkles, of if it can remove bothersome dark spots or tattoos that you no longer want.

Who is this procedure not right for?

The PicoWay system is CE marked for certain uses: acne scars, wrinkles, benign pigmented lesions (dark spots), and tattoo removal. If you are looking for other laser treatment, such as hair removal, then the PicoWay laser is not the treatment for you. Candela offers hair removal devices, such as the Gentle Max Pro laser. Ask your treatment provider for the treatment alternative for your skin and condition.

While the PicoWay laser works across a broad range of skin types, depending on the wavelength needed for your treatment, a PicoWay treatment may not be the best treatment for your skin type.

The PicoWay laser involves treatment over a series of sessions, so that is an important consideration in your treatment decision. A PicoWay laser treatment provider can walk you through your treatment needs and will be the best source for determining whether the PicoWay laser is right for you.

Is the PicoWay laser safe?

Side effects with the PicoWay laser are typically mild and temporary and expected as part of the laser treatment. Patients experience low to no downtime. In some cases, patients may use a topical anesthetic to enhance comfort during the treatment. More common side effects include mild redness, swelling, and pinpoint bleeding.1-5,9 These effects will differ, however, depending on the treatment you receive.

Are the PicoWay laser treatments painful?

How the PicoWay laser feels will be dependent on the treatment you receive. Those undergoing tattoo removal are likely to experience some pain and discomfort with treatment.

With PicoWay Resolve treatment, most patients reported low levels of pain during treatment for wrinkles and mild discomfort for acne scar or dark spot treatment.

How soon can I expect to see results?

Depending on the condition treated, you may be able to see initial improvement as early as after the first treatment. Typically, multiple treatment sessions are needed. As an example, a clinical study of benign pigmented lesions found that after 2 treatments, 87% of lesions had a least good response (>50% had a good response or better).2

With PicoWay Resolve treatment, most patients reported low levels of pain during treatment for wrinkles and mild discomfort for acne scar treatment.

Can I return to normal activities after treatment?

Yes, the PicoWay laser has low to no downtime. Most people can return to their activities of daily living shortly after treatment. You may need a bandage to keep the treatment area dry for a few days following tattoo removal.

What makes the PicoWay laser different from other treatments?

The PicoWay laser is a picosecond laser with high peak power and ultra-short pulse durations for a photoacoustic, rather than a photothermal effect that heats the skin. PicoWay patients report high patient satisfaction and low to no downtime.2-5

How much does the PicoWay treatment cost?

PicoWay laser cost varies by treatment type and provider. Only your treatment provider can provide you with the expected cost depending on your condition. In general, it can be assumed that treating a larger area, such as a large tattoo, is a higher cost than treating a small tattoo or dark spot.

How do I choose a PicoWay laser provider?

PicoWay laser providers can be found on the PicoWay Physician Finder.

1. PicoWay CE mark for tattoos.
2. PicoWay CE mark for benign pigmented lesions.
3. PicoWay CE mark for tattoos with 785 nm handpiece.
4. PicoWay CE mark for acne scars.
5. PicoWay CE mark for wrinkles.
6. Brauer JA, Kazlouskaya V, Alabdulrazzaq H, et al. Use of a picosecond pulse duration laser with specialized optic for treatment of facial acne scarring, JAMA Dermatol. 2015;151(3):278-284.
7. Kauvar A, Bernstein E, Garden J. Multicenter study on the efficacy and safety of PicoWay Resolve for acne scars. 2017. Candela, data on file.
8. Ganceviciene R, Liakou AI, Theodoridis A, Makrantonaki E, Zouboulis CC. Skin anti-aging strategies. Dermatoendocrinol. 2012;4(3):308-319.
9. Data on file, Candela, 2021.
10. Brauer JA, Kazlouskaya V, Alabdulrazzaq H, et al. Use of a picosecond pulse duration laser with specialized optic for treatment of facial acne scarring. JAMA Dermatol. 2015;151(3):278-284.
11. Kravvas G, Al-Niaimi F. A systematic review of treatments for acne scarring. Part I: Non-energy-based techniques. Scars Burns Healing. 2017;3:1-17.
12. American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. 2016 Cosmetic Surgery National Data Bank Statistics.

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