Laser Skin Resurfacing

Hi, all.

I'm thinking of having fractionated (if I have the right word!) laser skin resurfacing, but I am a little bit concerned because of information I have read about the Hayflick Limit. If I have this treatment (which I know would need to be repeated every few years) could I actually be aging my skin? I find the information about the Hayflick Limit very confusing.

Thanks for any advice you can give.


  • Hi Tracey, 

    You don't need to worry about this at all because the Hayflick limit doesn’t apply to the type of cells that make new skin cells. So you can never run out of skin by exfoliating or by laser resurfacing. 

    The Hayflick limit only applies to fully differentiated cells. (In this case the keratinocytes.) Stem cells are NOT fully differentiated so they can continue to reproduce without any limit.

    Here’s common sense proof: If the Hayflick limit applied then…

    ANYTHING that scrapes of skin would use up your cells (not just exfoliating): Taking a bath, shaving your face – or your legs – or whatever you shave.
    Skin scratches and cuts would stop healing at some point.
    Criminals could just sand away their finger prints and they wouldn’t grow back.
    None of these things happen because the Hayflick limit doesn’t apply to epidermal stem cells.

  • Thank you for clarifying that for me, Randy. I was going round in circles trying to understand the copious amount of articles I found related to this. I am very grateful.


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