GentleLase treatments WITHOUT the cooling device!?

I used to be treated with Gentlelase on my back and shoulders and I remember that it had the Cryogenic cooling device that would spray after each pulse. This would cool the skin and protect it.

I was at a consultation at a different place (i live elsewhere now), and they have the GentleLase – but I noticed during my test that there was no cooling device. I checked the Candela website and apparantly it’s only an option on their machines.

Has anyone had these treatments without the cooling device? I am so worried that either I’ll be burned, or they will have to use lower settings (or both). I noticed right away that at less than 10 J there was some blood! (I never had any issues in the past at higher settings).

Thanks in advance.!

Hi Adam

The cryo can be turned off and is used this way when teating other problems - veins, pigmented lesions and veruccas for instance. However, it should NEVER be turned off when treating unwanted hair.

One possible explaination is that it had been turned off for a previous client or it had a service and the practitioner forgot to check it was on. I cannot think any responsible practitioner of a Gentlelase would operate it without the cooling switched on. The only other reason would be to save costs (the cryogen is very expensive)but, again, I dont believe anyone would do this. Please ask your practitioner to explain why it was not on. There maybe a very simple explaination


10 joules also seems extremley low, what is your skin type? What are you normally treated on with the GentleLASE or the other machine?



Benji is right - 10j is very low. Makes me a bit suspicious that the clinic is adopting a low j and no cryo policy to avoid complications ( and therefore results )in order to make a fast buck. I hope that I am wrong. Talk to your clinic


Yes, sounds suspicious. 10j even on the largest 18mm spot size is low and cooling should be used unless they’re so cheap as to turn it off. I would be wary of such a clinic. Maybe they used the vein treatment or another treatment type setting which this machine can be used for?

Thanks for your responses.

Are you sure it’s just a matter of turning it off? I remember in the old place I went to, there was actually a Cryogenic tank in the machine. I don’t think i saw one here and there was definitely no spray when they did the test on me (plus I didnt hear that loud thump noise that it usually causes). So I’m thinking they just bought the machine without it (the cooling device is listed as an “option” in candela’s website/brochures–it’s very expensive).

I hate asking these places questions because they get so mad when patients get into the whole “science” of the matter… I’ll let you guys know what I find out! since I know GentleLase is quit popular here…

Hmmm… Perhaps a business that gets MAD at their clients who ask relevant questions, should NOT be on your list of those who you select for services that can scar you for life if not performed correctly…

Yes, I believe it’s an option not to get cryogen and it is expensive. I’m just surprised that a clinic would do that. What it tells me is that they’re more interested in saving money than the comfort of their patients.

If a clinic gets mad because your asking about why theyr’e shooting one of the most pwerful lasers for hair removal into your skin without a cooling device, which is a choice on their part, whatever the reason may be - stuff them and go elsewhere.

If the GentleLASE machine is popular in your area, shop around. It’s always best to know what’s on offer so you can make an informed decision about where and who will be performing your treatment. If theyr’e offering a service like this they should comply to a level of care that is deemed acceptable, not what would be cheaper for them. It’s the same with everything else.

I hope this all goes well and good luck with all of this, come back and let us know how you get on.


Blood? Did you ask why you were bleeding? What was their response?

Since cryogen wasn’t used, did they use any cooling gels or ice packs?

I would keep looking…

so here is my update:

I went to the offices today and spoke with the consultation woman. I asked her why there was no cooling device on the Gentlase when I did my test, and she confirmed that they in fact DO NOT use the cryogen add-on. Instead, they have a separate machine (not made by Candela) that blows out cold air. (They hook the air tube onto the Gentlase machine). I went into one of the rooms to confirm this.

What do you guys think? Safe enough for me to do treatments? I do know that other machines use cold air (like Arion and Epitouch - both Alexandrites).

Her excuse for not using Candela’s cooling device is that it has a poor affect on the treatments (which is total bulls—). They obviously just want to save money. But in any case, no other practitioner in my area uses Gentlase.

decisions decisions… :slight_smile:

I told my laser technician, who also owns a Candela GentleLASE, about the cryogen gaz being switch off and she told me it would burn clients. I don’t know about this cool air device you are refering to, but I would call the Candela company head office and ask them.

I am wandering if this provider is insured. Also, what about her insurance, they allow her to operate a laser with this type of cooling system? Are you living in a country were laser tech.s or Dr.s have to be insured in order to provide their services?

I have heard of that separate device that blows cool air. I don’t know any specifics. I did have a treatment with a PolyLASE several years ago that blew chilled air, and it was more comfortable than than the GL w/cryogen.

How did you skin react? I’m still curious as to why there was blood?

I have treatment from the Cynosure Apogee Elite, which focuses a flow of cold air on the skin. I found that my skin reacted far more with laser than when being treated by the GentleLASE on 18 and 20 joules on 18mm’s.

When you say blood, did it look like the pictures on page 5 of my thread?

I find the cryogen blasts make my skin reaction a lot less during and after the treatment, this may mean that you have similar reactions to me when being treated by other lasers, but may just be me.


Did you get a test patch? How did it feel?

Benji - I saw your pictures…and I guess my test patch looked somewhat like that, maybe a little less. How long did it take for all those red dots to disappear? I used to get that reaction during the few treatments I did with Lightsheer. It’s terrible.

lagirl - I didnt get a test patch with the cold air machine.

Choice - the Cryogen I think increases the pain. But it really saves the skin from breaking out. I NEVER had any bad reaction with Gentlase. Just a few days of pinkish/red and some itching. that’s it. No burns.

Muci - i dont know about insurane. It’s a massive chain…feels like a factory. not really happy with it… the only plus side is that its dirt cheap.

The redness usually subsides in about 3-4 days, the majority of the scabbyish look goes by about 6-7, but overall it usually takes about 2-3 weeks to go away completley.

Looking at my upper arms now, 6 days ater treatment, all the redness hae gone and most of the scabs have fallen off. Just a couple left and it’s generally healing. Should be gone soon.



Just to finish up on this, I understand that Candela will be/maybe phasing out the cryo sometime in the future.I also have a feeling that this is to do with CFC’s and global warming - but please dont quote me on this!

When they bought out the mini Gentlelase it was capable of blasting the cryo out both milliseconds before AND AFTER the laser. This I understand was for the Japanese market.

I think it will be a shame as the cryo is the one thing that makes it different from all the other Alex’s around. However, I have had my trusty GL+ for over 8 years, so I think it is a long way off and everyone reading this now who is having treatment with a GL, will not be bothered by then!

Adam is right about other lasers using cold air and not cryo spry. The most important thing is that you get something - and it is used correctly


OK, time for facts.

All lasers use some sort of cooling. The purpose of cooling is to reduce the heat load on the epidermis (protect it). As to the various cooling methods, here they are in order of effectiveness. All temps in fahrenheit.

  1. Forced air cooling (especially with a Zimmer). Temperature reduction to 1 deg. Good because the air is on the skin for an extended period of time.

  2. Cryogen spray. Temp down to -30 or so. Very cold but very short. Cryogen spray can cause burns. And very expensive

  3. Contact cooling. Temp about 33 to 35 deg.

  4. Cold gel. Temp highly variable.

Now as far as Candela. Starting in 2004 they started selling lasers without cryogen spray. I take credit for that because I had been talking to them for about five years about getting away from Cryogen. Of course, they make money off of cryogen.

Any Candela laser can be used without cryogen but should be used only with forced air cooling. Cold gel isn’t a good option with the Alex.

Candela is moving away from cryogen because of two reasons. Because the people buying their lasers don’t want to pay for cryogen and more importantly, because the recognition that forced air cooling is far better.

sslr - I very much repect most of the things that you say. However on this point I have to disagree. Cryogen from the Gentlelase is measure, it is exact. The zimmer relies on the operator, with plenty of room for error. The distance it is from the skin, the setting, the force and of course (unless you have 2 operatives) the ability to have one hand controlling laser delivery and the other controlling the zimmer. Temperature reduction is to 1 degree, but if the zimmer is held too close or too far away, then this temperature can vary by anything up to +/-5 degrees. Very operator dependant and can induce a false sence of security.

As for the cryogen spray being short - isn’t this exactly what we want? Excessive cooling prior to laser can be a disavantage. Sure it is expensive, but that is no reason to dismissive it. Burning can only occur when the cryogen is used improperly and the skin type is not taken into account.