The best aesthetic treatments for all ages from your 20s to 60s

What you can do to keep looking your best, regardless of your age.

In your 20’s

This is the time to start a skincare regimen with effective results. Look for products that contain high antioxidants, peptides, retinol, and use them with a daily sunscreen of at least SPF 30 to prevent further sun damage.

Gentle laser treatments, like Clear + Brilliant, are great for young skin.

Lasers can address pigmentation and increase skin porosity, so you get the most from your products.

Collagen-boosting treatments like microneedling will also make a long term difference making the skin healthier and more resilient and looking extra plump and glowy.

It’s likely that you won’t need any structural filler in your 20’s however you may want to add some volume to your lips with dermal fillers.


Clear + Brilliant / $350 per session including Healite II Tretament
SkinPen® Microneedling / $350 per session
Plump Lips / $199 0.5 ml Premium Dermal Filler

 

In your 30’s

The first signs of ageing will appear unexpectedly and often around the eyes, forehead, and mouth/lip area.

To maintain your look we may recommend treatments such as:

Microneedling – to improve the overall tone, minimise sunspots, and promote collagen production for healthy, bright and smooth skin.

Chemical peels – to brighten skintone, increase skin tightening and improve the overall skin tone and texture.

Wrinkle Relaxers – to treat fine lines and proactively prevent the formation of deeper lines by limiting the muscle movements that cause wrinkles.

Treatments like laser resurfacing can effectively combat the early signs of skin sagging and laxity.


SkinPen® Microneedling / $350 per session
Mesoestetic Chemical peels / $110 each
Wrinkle Relaxers / from $130 per area
Laser Resurfacing / $350 per session

 

In your 40’s

Due to a decrease in collagen production and other natural structural elements, you may notice a loss of volume and reduced elasticity in the face.

Since cell turnover also slows down in your 40’s, your skin may also begin to lose some of its natural glow, resulting in a duller complexion.

Treatments to look for:

Wrinkle Relaxers, to reduce lines and give a smoother look.

Dermal fillers can minimise the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, and counteract the visible signs of volume loss by adding contour to the face to recreate the fuller look of younger skin.

Radio Frequency to counteract the loss of skin’s natural structure and stimulates the skin’s production of collagen and elastin, and can be administered on the face and body.

While gentle lasers are still effective, more aggressive laser treatments like laser resurfacing may produce better results in your 40’s for improving the tone of skin and reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.


Wrinkle Relaxers / from $130 per area
Dermal Fillers / from $650
INFINI Radio Frequency + Microneedling / $600 per session
Laser Resurfacing / $350 per session

 

In your 50’s

When we reach our 50’s we continue to see loss of volume in the face and skin laxity becomes more pronounced.

As the face begins to sag overall, jowls can appear with the falling of the jawline and cheeks.

Lines can start to appear around the lips and we tend to lose lip volume.

Sun exposure and smoking can speed up the development of lines so make sure you are wearing high factor sunscreen.

Treatments to consider in your 50’s:

Volumising dermal fillers, especially in the mid-face/cheek area to correct volume loss and lift the jowls.

Wrinkle Relaxers for the treatment of lines and wrinkles in the face and neck.

Collagen stimulators not only corrects wrinkles and folds but also stimulates your own collagen production to really treat the underlying causes of facial ageing. The effects are gradual and longer-lasting giving you a natural youthful appearance.

Thread lifting, a ‘non-surgical’ face and neck lift treatment using sutures such as Silhouette Soft to lift and tighten the skin by stimulating new collagen production, reducing wrinkles, tightening pores and creating volume.

Erbium resurfacing lasers: These more aggressive lasers can combat the increasing signs of sun damage and improve overall skin texture.

Radio Frequency, a non-invasive procedure to tighten and lift the skin on the face and neck, making it a good alternative to a traditional facelift. It relies on Radio Frquency to deliver its collagen-boosting treatment resulting in tighter, smoother and more lifted skin.


Wrinkle Relaxers / from $130 per area
Dermal Fillers / from $650
Collagen stimulators / from $800
Sillhouette Soft Thread Lift / from $990
INFINI Radio Frequency + Microneedling / $600 per session
Laser Resurfacing / $350 per session

 

In your 60’s

Some women select surgical options (blepharoplasty, facelift, necklift) to address age-related concerns and bring more youthful contours back to the face, but you can also restore volume to your face with a variety of nonsurgical treatments.

Wrinkle Relaxers. The aim is to soften the lines helping look fresher and rested. Anti-wrinkle injections can be also used to treat upper lip lines and to prevent the mouth corners from downturning.

Dermal fillers to replace the volume that has been lost. Volume loss causes marionette lines to form, the cheeks to flatten and for you to develop nasolabialfolds.

We aim to correct this volume loss and revert the shape of the face towards the inverted triangle that was present in your younger years.

Collagen stimulators to stimulate the formation of your own collagen for subtle, but noticeable results. They are injected deep in the dermal layer to reinforce your skin’s structure and to restore fullness and face contours.

The Silhouette Soft Thread lift (non-surgical facelift) is a minimally invasive treatment to redefine facial contours and combat sagging skin with immediate results.

If you aren’t a candidate for a facelift, you can still undergo a facial rejuvenation procedure using a skin resurfacing treatment that can smooth out lines and wrinkles, and also improve the texture and tone of your skin.


Wrinkle Relaxers / from $130 per area
Dermal Fillers / from $650
Collagen stimulators / from $800
Sillhouette Soft Thread Lift / from $990
Laser Resurfacing / $350 per session

 

How can I get started?

Every clients’ facial muscles and facial anatomy are different and therefore require a unique approach, so each service is completely customised. Our highly skilled and experienced Talent will address your skin concerns with specially tailored treatment programs, designed just for you. We are all about education, budget and making sure clients are fully aligned with the treatment plan.

To achieve the perfect result our Doctors analyse the entire face and consider your facial proportions ensuring a natural result.

Get started today by booking a complimentary consultation with our  talent / BOOK NOW.

Ready to get started?

For a complimentary consultation, or to book in for a treatment, call SKYN 08 9389 9022 or request an appointment online.

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Laser Facial Bar

Our laser and light facials use cutting-edge technology to safely resurface, rejuvenate and refresh your skin in under 30 minutes.

Get ready to achieve amazing results with no pain, no downtime and no needles required with our Laser Facial Bar at SKYN Subiaco.

The treatment:

The Hollywood Laser Peel (or Carbon Spectra Peel) is known as the go-to treatment in L.A. It’s a no-downtime treatment that rejuvenates the appearance of dull, damaged skin. This gentle treatment is safe on most skin types and is a great way to get a quick skin refresher without the downtime associated with other laser procedures.

The Carbon Spectra Peel evens skin tone and reduces the appearance of pigment, fine lines and acne scars. Your skin will feel and look smoother, brighter and refreshed. Several treatments are beneficial, but the great thing is that results can be seen from just one treatment, and it’s an excellent option for a refresher before a big event.

The benefits:

  • Reduces or eliminates the appearance of pigment, fine lines and acne scarring
  • Long-term results
  • No downtime
  • Safe for most skin types
  • Evens out skin tone
  • Quick and comfortable procedure
  • No daily messy creams

 


Duration: 45 minutes

Price: $250 (was $495)

The treatment:

Laser toning is a unique treatment for Melasma and Post Inflammatory Hyperpigmentation as it uses the laser energy to reduce visible pigmentation by breaking down melanin molecules naturally, allowing your immune system to remove them. Laser toning is a gentler alternative to ablative laser treatments and has additional benefits in terms of improved skin tone and texture with a low risk of complications for all skin types and no downtime.

The Laser Toning treatment involves the application of specialised laser energy to reduce visible skin pigmentation, even out skin tone and improve your skin texture.

The benefits:

Laser toning has other key benefits, in addition to helping manage your melasma. The treatment can provide glowing, youthful skin, reduce acne scars, improve skin texture, reduce fine wrinkles, and more. These are long-lasting, ensuring you can get maximum enjoyment from your rejuvenated face.

This treatment offers many benefits over traditional resurfacing methods. The 1064 nm infrared wavelength of the Spectra laser is becoming the method of choice for all skin types with very low risk of pigmentary changes, burns, or scarring.

  • Treats Melasma, Post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation
  • Lighten freckles
  • Brighter Complexion
  • Even skin tone & improved texture
  • Reduced Fine Lines & Wrinkles

 


Duration: 45 minutes

Price: $250 (was $495)

The treatment:

Laser resurfacing uses ablative lasers to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and scars, even pigmentation, tighten skin and remove lesions. Erbium laser skin resurfacing with Lutronic’s Action II is the treatment of choice for clients who want to achieve dramatic improvement in the appearance of their skin. This treatment successfully removes superficial lines to moderately deep wrinkles with less pain, fewer side-effects, and a more rapid recovery than more aggressive treatments.

The laser precisely ablates the outermost layer of the skin to reveal the underlying skin that is smoother and younger looking. The procedure also activates collagen to promote further tightening of the skin. Our Talent will precisely remove the necessary layers of skin to eliminate or reduce superficial to moderately deep lines and wrinkles.

The benefits :

  • Resurfacing with ablative lasers is considered one of the gold standard methods for facial rejuvenation.
  • It can promote the improvement of facial wrinkles, skin pigmentation, and skin texture.
  • The usual treatment delivers short downtime and few side effects.
  • It is possible to have significant improvement of the facial photodamaged skin after just one session.
  • Erbium laser skin resurfacing has been shown to stimulate the production of collagen, which further smoothens and tightens the skin.

Erbium laser skin resurfacing has been found safe and effective for the treatment of fine lines and moderate wrinkles. Clients who have previously had laser skin resurfacing can also enhance their look and improve their self-confidence now find themselves with greatly improved, smoother, and younger-looking skin.

 


Duration: 45 minutes

Price: $350 (was $585)

Ready to get started?

For a complimentary consultation, or to book in for a treatment, call SKYN 08 9389 9022 or request an appointment online.

More Information

Using Spectra Laser Toning to Manage Melasma

Melasma is a skin condition that primarily affects women and is characterised by dense freckling, odd swaths of tan, or blotches that are caused by a local overabundance of melanocyte – a type of pigmentation cell. Although it can arise spontaneously, melasma can also be brought on by pregnancy or sun exposure.

Regardless of why it emerges, however, melasma can be a source of discomfort, anxiety, and self-consciousness. Consequently, many affected individuals look to find ways to manage their melasma. This is easier said than done since melanocytes live on multiple layers of skin. Surface-level treatments like microdermabrasion can’t reach them and some laser treatments can actually make melasma worse by provoking the melanocytes into producing excess pigmentation.

This is where the Spectra Laser Toning comes in. Laser toning is a unique treatment for melasma and post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation as it uses the laser energy to reduce visible pigmentation by breaking down melanin molecules naturally, allowing your immune system to remove them.

Face with melasma before and after

Melasma Management

1. Avoid triggers

Sun exposure can trigger melasma because melanocytes (pigment-producing cells) in the skin are responsible for producing melanin (pigment) and are stimulated by UV rays from the sun. Darker skin individuals have more active melanocytes and so produce more pigment than people with light skin. Melanin production increases when stimulated by sun exposure. The main reason for melasma returning after it has faded is sun exposure; even small amounts can trigger melasma. For this reason it is very important to use a broad spectrum (protects from UVA and UVB rays) and has a SPF (sun protection factor) of 15 or more.

2. Melasma treatments

Melasma sometimes resolves or fades on its own, especially after pregnancy or discontinuing birth control pills. If, however, you have persistent melasma we offer various treatments to manage it:

  • Skin Care Products (take home & in-clinic treatments)
  • Chemical Peels
  • Spectra Laser Toning

It may take several months for improvement to occur so it is important to follow up with our skin care staff and to follow their recommendations in order to maximize the benefit from melasma treatment. SKYN® offer a wide range of melasma treatments to help with this condition. In addition, our experienced Talent can recommend quality cosmetics that will not trigger melasma.

The Benefits of Laser Toning

The key to Spectra laser toning lies in a carbon facial mask. The mask allows the carbon to seep into your pores and the laser heats it up, resulting in a tiny explosion that dislodges debris and dead skin. Don’t worry, though, it’s not a painful treatment. In fact, not only is the Spectra laser toning painless, it’s downtime-free. You can come in for your session, go home after, and enjoy your skin to its fullest without any follow-up medication, downtime, or recovery period.

The reason that this treatment can affect melasma is that the darkened patches are due to clusters of melanocytes. When it comes to cells, few things are better at breaking up clumps than precise laser application combined with concussive force. As the carbon “pops” and the laser passes over, the melanocytes loosen and drift apart to become more evenly spaced and naturally disposed of.

Laser Toning for Radiant Skin

Laser toning has other key benefits, in addition to helping manage your melasma. The treatment can provide glowing, youthful skin, reduce acne scars, improve skin texture, reduce fine wrinkles, and more. These are long-lasting, ensuring you can get maximum enjoyment from your rejuvenated face.

SKYN® is a pioneer in the latest technology and practices for treating various skin conditions. Our Spectra Peel toning laser is just one tool dedicated to helping you get the clear, beautiful skin you deserve. Contact us to book a complimentary consultation today, our skin experts are more than happy to answer any queries you may have.

Ready to get started?

For a complimentary consultation, or to book in for a treatment, call SKYN 08 9389 9022 or request an appointment online.

More about Spectra XT

Spectra XT by Lutronic is a revolutionary laser device that we use at SKYN®, here in Perth. It uses a well-known laser medium called Nd:YAG and uses it in diverse ways to treat both brown and red discolouration in the skin. The energy of the laser can be delivered quickly to address tattoos, pigmentation, sun spots, or melasma, or the energy slowed to treat shrink pores, tone skin, and fight acne in a procedure called “laser toning.” The Spectra is also used for our famous Hollywood Laser Peel and can help with both acne and skin tone, allowing for pore reduction and collagen formation.

THREAD LIFT, FILLERS or PRP. What’s best for you?

With an extensive menu of rejuvenation treatments now available, many are uncertain about the most suitable aesthetic treatment for their face. The issues facing those looking for non-surgical rejuvenation enhancement techniques are:

  1. what can be accomplished  
  2. the downtime
  3. how long the results can last

Some of our most requested face-enhancing, youth-reviving treatments are Dermal Fillers, the Thread Lift and PRP Therapy (Platelet Rich Plasma). Their benefits in terms of reducing lines and wrinkles, lifting and rejuvenating the skin have different suitabilities, depending on what the client desires.

The treatments are often use in combination or with complimentary treatments like INFINI RF + Microneedling, Laser Peels or Laser Resurfacing

 

Dermal Fillers

How Dermal Fillers work under your skin

 

Here is a quick rundown of what each of these aesthetic frontrunners do. Dermal Fillers are so called because they are made to fill the spaces in our skin which have lost volume with age, hereby showing signs of hollowness, lines and wrinkles. Most dermal fillers used nowadays are natural fillers, owing to their high safety profile and reversibility with a simple enzyme hyaluronidase. Owing to the advancements in dermal filler technology, fillers of different key strengths have emerged, each suited to deliver distinctive outcomes.

 

Dermal Fillers have a filling and sculpting capacity and can create enviable cheeks while restoring facial volume, while Skinboosters are targeted at replenishing the collagen stores of the superficial dermis, boosting their water content, immediately improving skin complexion.

 

Thread Lift

How Threadlifts work under your skin

Threadlifts have undergone several positive revolutions; previous threads used were poorly made and not absorbable.

 

Latest innovations such as Silhouette Soft Thread Lift use 100% bio-absorbable threads that stimulate the formation of a supporting collagen matrix that will anchor the lift as the threads disappear in the upcoming months.

 

Silhouette Soft Thread Lift is famed for superb lifting capacity and utilises anchoring cones cleverly sited along lengthy Poly L-lactic acid threads and is known is the “Queen of all threadlifts”. If your aim is to have the maximal lift, then Silhouette would be the one for you.

 

Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP)

How PRP work under your skin

 

As we age our complexion can start to look tired and dull, one of the reasons is the reduction of platelets in the blood. The Angel PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) boosts the platelets to rejuvenate the skin, improving tone and texture. Extensive research has established a direct correlation between platelets and tissue growth.

 

PRP therapy draws on a patient’s own blood, using it to generate thicker, smoother and more supple skin in areas such as the face and neck, décolletage and hands, resulting in fewer lines and wrinkles. During the procedure, blood is taken from the patient, spun in a centrifuge to extract the platelets, before being reinjected into the treatment area. There, the activated platelets release growth factors, which facilitate cell growth, the formation of blood capillaries and, most importantly, the building of new collagen.

 

While the above treatments may have their fair share of loyal followers, we have scientifically broken them down to their pros and cons. Bearing in mind that your aesthetic goal may be different from another person, the same goes for capacity for downtime, discomfort etc. While this may serve as a guide, nothing will replace a good heart-to-heart talk with your trusted aesthetic doctor. It helps to visit a clinic that offers all treatments, so you can be assured that their recommendation will not be biased but rather be impartial.

 

DERMAL FILLERS THREAD LIFT ANGEL PRP
In a nutshell Biodegradable gel fillers Latest options use bio-absorbable threads Platelets are extracted from patients own blood
Invasiveness

Involves Injections

Non-surgical

Involves Injections

Non-surgical

Involves Injections

Non-surgical

Benefits

Depends on type of filler and technique used:

Replaces Loss Volume

Sculpting

Mild Lifting capacity

Depends on type of threads used:

Can Shape face (V-Lift)

Moderate to Max Lift

Depends on technique used:

Rejuvenation & Collagen Stimulating.

Key Difference

Targeted areas

Can be done over many smaller sessions

Targeted areas Targeted areas
Downtime Bruising and swelling is possible Bruising and swelling is possible Bruising and swelling is possible
Who is this most suitable for?

Sunken, skinny faces.

People with short or receding chins can create a more enhanced chin using Chin Fillers.

Dull, lifeless skin can also undergo superficial complexion fillers.

People who have sagging skin, jowls, double chin.

People who have

Sagging, dull or tired skin

Wrinkles and fine lines

Rosacea, acne scars or sun damage.

Duration of actual procedure (not including photography or numbing time) 15 – 30 min 30 – 45 min 45 – 60 min
Longevity of Effects

Depends of type and volume of fillers used.

8-18 months

Depends on type and number of threads used.

12-24 months

Depends on number of treatments.

12-24 months

Ready to get started?

For a complimentary consultation, or to book in for a treatment, call SKYN 08 9389 9022 or request an appointment online.

Article ref: http://www.skinmagonline.com/sg/2018/05/which-is-the-best-threadlift-filler-or-ultherapy/#.W0gPG9gzbOQ

7 Top Plastic Surgery Trends for 2019

The 7 Biggest Plastic Surgery Trends for 2019, According to Experts

Plastic surgeons break down the cutting-edge procedures expected to make it big in the new year.

For our selfie-obsessed culture, the desire to look perfectly filtered — in photos and IRL — has never been stronger. In fact, according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the number of minimally invasive cosmetic procedures has grown nearly 200 percent since 2000, with no indication of slowing down. Advances in technology and research are on track with consumer demand, and the Food and Drug Administration is set to approve at least three new, cutting-edge cosmetic procedures in 2019. Below, we ask renowned plastic surgeons and cosmetic dermatologists to weigh in on the trends and procedures they think will be the most popular this year to zap, inject, and restore our bodies.

Injectables Are More Accessible Than Ever

“It’s really the era of minimally invasive medical aesthetic procedures,” says Lara Devgan, a board-certified plastic surgeon in New York City. “I think that is not only because of low downtime, lower cost, and lower invasiveness, but also because there’s lower stigma and lower barrier to entry.”

Injectables, lasers, and skin resurfacing can be quick, lunchtime procedures, often with immediately visible effects and limited downtime, qualities that contribute to their inclusivity as well as confidentiality. Injectables, like Botox and fillers, have become so mainstream that, according to the AAFPRS’s annual survey, 80% of all treatments performed by facial plastic surgeons in 2018 were cosmetic, non-surgical procedures, thanks to the subtle but noticeable results and relatively reasonable cost.

Cosmetic Treatments Will Be More Inclusive

The quick bounce back into a normal routine post-procedure has caught the attention of those who are reluctant to admit they had a procedure or don’t want to deal with the downtime. Devgan estimates 15 percent of her patients are men, with that number increasing annually. She attributes the rise to the resurgence of classically masculine features and the decline of the social stigma attached to elected cosmetic procedures.

“A lot of the procedures that I’m doing enhance features to look more masculine,” says Devgan. “Men have historically been interested in the lower third of the face, meaning the chin, neck, and jawline.”

Radio frequency technology, like FaceTite, to address neck and jawline sagging and heft is a procedure New York City-based, board-certified plastic surgeon Adam Kolker, anticipates to skyrocket in 2019, especially among men. “It’s a real revolution in what we’ve been doing to date,” he says. Depending on the patient, it can be done “in conjunction with other procedures, like liposuction or microneedling.

Welcome to the World of the “Tweak-Ment”

Disproportionate breast enhancements, overfilled lips, and exaggerated cosmetic procedures, are all trends that are on their way out. Now a successful plastic surgery or cosmetic procedure should no longer be obvious. Patients increasingly want to maintain their general face structure, inherited family traits, and just generally want to look like themselves, but with a few refined tweaks.

“We are definitely seeing the rise of ‘tweak-ment.’ It’s definitely not like 10 years ago when people were coming in with the cover of a magazine wanting to look more like a supermodel that had nothing to do with their lives,” says Devgan. “Now, people want to look more like their own filtered photos or a Photoshop version of themselves. And recently, people are super into the tiny little micro-optimizations that make them feel a little bit more confident but are not completely obvious.”

Board-certified plastic surgeon David Shafer has noticed that his patients are in favor of a more “natural” look. “I think breast augmentation will continue to be popular, but with smaller, more naturally shaped, or positioned implants. Fat-grafting will continue to be popular into next year, but more for contouring and fine-tuning, rather than just plumping.”

Niche Treatments Are on the Rise

Small, hyper-specific procedures to resolve minor but irksome facial and body quirks are increasing in popularity. These “micro-optimizations,” as categorized by Devgan, include the unorthodox use of filler in locations other than the traditional cheekbone, like the earlobe to tighten a stretched piercing from heavy earrings, or the bridge of the nose during a noninvasive rhinoplasty.

Ready to get started?

For a complimentary consultation, or to book in for a treatment, call SKYN 08 9389 9022 or request an appointment online.

3 Beauty Hacks to Get Gorgeous in 2017

Wrinkle Relaxers + Dermal Fillers

For a V-shaped Jawline & to Smooth out Lines

When we talk about appearance, the face is certainly the most astonishing body part that people notice first. Unfortunately, just like many women, some are cursed with a masculine square jaw. Bigger is not always better in this case.

Wrinkle Relaxers allow you to further pare unflattering pounds off your face for a soft, streamlined feminine jawline. The red carpet secret behind many mysteriously slim and fabulous V-shaped jawlines, this micro-injection allows you to shape up safely and discretely without surgery or downtime.

You can end off with a non-surgical chin enhancement with Dermal Fillers for the perfect focal point in your V-zone. A small step from you could mean a big step towards gorgeousness. Try this and you may never look back.  We dumped our entire stash of face slimming cream!

Clear + Brilliant Laser skin enhancement

Rejuvenate tired lacklustre skin at any age

Ready to take control of the aging process? Aging skin is a fact of life. The good news is the earlier you start taking care of your skin, the more you can prevent the signs of aging and maintain a younger look. What you do in your 20s and 30s will affect how you look in your 40s, 50s and beyond. Adding Clear + Brilliant to your collection of skin care tricks – at any age – will help you recover the glow, luminosity and smoothness your skin, and you, deserve.

This procedure expands skin care to not only address unwanted signs of aging, but gives you the power to help prevent them:

  • Visibly illuminated skin tone
  • Renewed, ultra-soft and smoother texture
  • Naturally radiant and glowing skin
  • Improved tone, texture and radiance
  • Reduction in the appearance of pores

You are now ready to flaunt your statement brows and fluttery lashes – and look naturally mesmerising with minimal makeup.

IPL Laser Hair Reduction

Putting an end to routine shaving

Keeping your private hair out of public eyes is basic etiquette, which makes hair removal a pit-primping must for any lady intending to bare arms. If you have had enough of unsightly stubble and irksome ingrowns, well, this is the thing for you – IPL permanent hair reduction. Whether it’s unwanted fuzz on your face, underarms, forearms, trunk, or legs and everything”between”, trust me everything can be zapped away. The laser utilizes deeply penetrating light wavelengths to zone in on the hair follicles for gentle yet rapid and effective long-lasting hair reduction. This leaves you with the smooth silky skin you always dreamed of, and puts an end to routine shaving and messy waxing. How convenient!

A Guide to Lasers and What’s Right For Your Skin

A board-certified dermatologist and clinical assistant professor of dermatology at the NYU School of Medicine, Dr. Robert Anolik is a prominent cosmetic dermatologist and researcher in New York whose knowledge of and experience with the newest skin-improving technologies in multiple areas of dermatology—from lasers to radiofrequency to Wrinkle Relaxers  and fillers—is enormous. Beyond being a goop favorite, he’s a recipient of Elle Magazine’s Genius Award (they dubbed him “The Techie”), and a Rising Star in the New York Times Magazine “New York Super Doctors” feature, he’s quoted often in the consumer press, the author of numerous academic articles, and lectures frequently on the subject of laser surgery, cosmetic dermatology, and Mohs surgery. Here, he explains which laser does what, along with how best to address common skin issues, from aging to rosacea:

A Q&A with Robert Anolik, M.D.

Q

Are there anti-wrinkle lasers, per se? Which are best for for skin texture issues? Do you believe that lasers are the best approach for crepe-iness?

A

In general, lasers that remodel collagen and stimulate collagen production throughout the dermis of the skin improve the appearance of wrinkles, texture, and crepe-iness. This is because the first two relate to weakening or irregular conformations of the dermal collagen, while the latter is a result of thinning of the dermal collagen. Remodeled and new collagen normalizes this layer so that it is more organized, more even in distribution, and deeper in depth.

There is a surprising misconception that lasers take off the top layers of skin, leaving it white, and/or shiny/thinned. This is not the case. I suspect this mistaken patient belief relates to older methods of rejuvenation like dermabrasion, deep chemical peels, and old-fashioned lasers, all of which did remove surface layers of skin and carried a risk of removing all normal pigment cells called melanocytes. (Today, I still see patients in the office who were treated in the 80s, 90s, and early 2000s with these older methods, and some do have these unusual signs of treatment.)

Fortunately, rejuvenating lasers today generally penetrate the surface skin, stimulating the collagen from within and below and triggering its production, rather than simply shearing off the surface. This is because resurfacing lasers today are fractional—meaning that the laser beam is delivered in a pixelated manner, touching the skin in tiny dots, separated by areas of untreated skin. This leaves behind healthy pigment producing cells (melanocytes) and other normal skin cells unaffected by the treatment that rapidly heal the skin and markedly diminish the risk of abnormal pigmentation.

“There is a surprising misconception that lasers take off the top layers of skin, leaving it white, and/or shiny/thinned. This is not the case.”

The most commonly used lasers for these strategies are fractional resurfacing lasers. The most popular ones are those with limited downtime (generally from a few hours of pink and dryness to 4-5 days of pink and dryness). My currently used strategies include the non-ablative (non-wounding) Clear and Brilliant lasers and Fraxel Restore dual lasers. Not only do these lasers stimulate the collagen, they also allow for a surface exfoliation of the skin, which sheds abnormal browning and dullness to the skin. Consequently, the skin looks brighter.

The stronger lasers are ablative (meaning they superficially wound the skin), leaving the skin with redness and scabs for about a week, followed by 3-4 weeks of pink skin. The later 3-4 weeks can generally be masked with makeup, since the skin has healed. These stronger versions are usually reserved for more substantial signs of aging, uneven texture, deep wrinkling, or scars—often acne scars. My preferred ablative fractional laser is Fraxel Repair.

More good news about these therapies: I was part of a clinical trial published in 2012 that demonstrated the likelihood that these newer fractional laser treatments promote not just more beautiful skin, but healthier skin as well, by supporting the elimination of pre-cancerous skin changes known as actinic keratoses. These precancers have the potential to turn into squamous cell carcinomas.

“I was part of a clinical trial published in 2012 that demonstrated the likelihood that these newer fractional laser treatments promote not just more beautiful skin, but healthier skin as well, by supporting the elimination of pre-cancerous skin changes known as actinic keratoses.”

Finally, there is a very new method of collagen stimulation that benefits wrinkles, texture, and crepe-iness. It’s so new I imagine most people are not yet familiar with it: picosecond laser technology. It first appeared after the FDA approval for picosecond laser treatment of pigment, most notably tattoos. (It is called the Cynosure PicoSure laser, and the one I use in my office.) When I say picosecond technology, what I’m referring to is the rate at which laser energy is delivered to the skin. In this case, a beam of light at a certain energy is delivered within a picosecond, an extraordinarily rapid rate. I participated in clinical trials that studied the effects of these picosecond lasers when passing through a specialized diffractive lens. The lens ultimately delivered areas of peak energy and low energy, almost like a fractional laser, but there was always some low level of energy touching the surface of the skin. There are a number of theories as to why this laser technology helps remodel and produce collagen. One of the most interesting to me is that the rapid delivery of laser light might stimulate a vibration throughout the surface of the skin, triggering the collagen response. I have since been a part of publications and lectures describing the clinical trials we performed. What makes this science all the more interesting—and desirable for our patients—is the limited downtime. Usually the skin is just a bit pink for a few hours after treatment.

Q

Which lasers fight redness and promote skin evenness?

A

Redness on the skin is caused by a number of things, including sun damage, genetics, hormones, and rosacea. Topical treatments include prescription drugs that are able to limit some underlying inflammation, like metronidazole creams and azeleic acids gels and sulfacetamide lotions. But the most effective method of reducing facial redness is laser therapy. The underlying concept is that specific laser wavelengths can be delivered to the skin in order to heat and eliminate blood vessels while leaving the surrounding skin structures (hair, collagen, pigment, etc.) untouched. These blood vessels are simply cosmetic nuisances—we are not eliminating medically important structures.

The gold standard of redness reduction for years has been the pulsed dye laser (example: VBeam laser). It’s so effective that we can use it to eliminate port wine stain birthmarks (like the one on Gorbachev’s forehead). I most often use it for redness reduction stemming from the common causes mentioned earlier but also port wine stains as well as the redness of scars (sometimes acne-related, or surgical or traumatic). Each condition should be treated differently; an expert cosmetic dermatologist will know which parameters and strategies are best used to treat different targets.

“It’s so effective that we can use it to eliminate port wine stain birthmarks (like the one on Gorbachev’s forehead).”

Newer lasers have emerged that complement these treatments—and can sometimes be the primary laser choice. These include KTP lasers (example: ExcelV laser). These lasers give us two different wavelengths of light that are distinct from pulsed dye lasers. These newer wavelengths can often better target the larger blood vessels that look like red lines/squiggles or blue paths on the face (google “telangiectasia” and “periorbital vein” to see examples of what I mean).

When I treat a patient’s redness, I look for both diffuse redness as well as more pronounced red/blue capillaries. Patients with redness usually have both. For these patients, I use both a pulsed dye laser and a KTP laser on the same day to achieve optimal redness reduction. It’s a very tolerable treatment, and feels like rubber band snaps over the face. Unpleasant but not painful. It usually only lasts a few seconds and the downtime is usually just a few hours of looking blotchy pink. Many of my patients don’t bother with makeup to hide the appearance, but patients can put makeup on afterwards if they feel it’s very obvious.

Q

Which are best for tightening and fighting sagging?

A

The sciences that allow cosmetic dermatologists to tighten (i.e. fight sagging) skin is one of the fastest growing areas in our field. I am involved in a number of clinical trials using these technologies, and there are several very interesting strategies that seem to be improving daily.

It’s important to understand that not all technologies are lasers. Lasers are beams of light that are simply one wavelength. Other forms of energy can be used on the field of cosmetic dermatology, including radiofrequency and ultrasound.

Radiofrequency was one of the first technologies to help tighten skin. A popular system is Thermage. With this science, we can safely deliver radiofrequency energy into the skin to produce a heat throughout the underlying collagen fibers. This can stimulate remodeling of existing collagen and the production of new collagen. The result is a tightening/firming to the skin. This used to be a painful treatment, but innovations in delivery make it very comfortable. These strategies include vibration in the handpiece that touches the skin as well as cooling methods to comfort the surface skin.

“It allows me to safely deliver sound waves under the skin that focus to points at very specific depths. Think of the way a magnifying lens can take sunlight, focus that light onto a leaf, and leave a burn.”

Ultrasound is one of the newer technologies used in skin tightening and lifting. One of the popular systems in Ulthera. It allows me to safely deliver sound waves under the skin that focus to points at very specific depths. Think of the way a magnifying lens can take sunlight, focus that light onto a leaf, and leave a burn. With Ultherapy, ultrasound can pass right through the skin surface painlessly, but be focused to meet at a specific point at a specific depth under the skin. At this meeting point, the temperature goes up, stimulating collagen remodeling and collagen production. This procedure tends to be uncomfortable, but like the Thermage science, has become more comfortable with strategies that include lower energy delivery with more passes of the sound waves.

Finally, it’s important to realize that cosmetic injections of Wrinkle Relaxers and filler also allow me to lift skin. With Wrinkle Relaxers , I am able to strategically place it into muscles that have a downward pull. These muscles include those immediately below the forehead and above the eye. Ideal placement here gives people a noticeable brow lift. (Don’t worry about spock eyebrows— these are prevented by delicate placement of Wrinkle Relaxers  in the forehead!) Wrinkle Relaxers  can also be used in the chin to lift the corners of the mouth. And it can be injected into the neck to allow a lift to the jowls and neck bands.

“In the hands of someone other than an expert doctor, filler results in a full face—which is not the goal of filler.”

Filler injections also give the face a lift. In the hands of someone other than an expert doctor, filler results in a full face—which is not the goal of filler. True appreciation for the placement of filler allows contour and lift. Injections underneath facial muscles and in areas where the young face once had more significant, supportive bone and fat pads, give a natural-looking lift. No one will know you were treated, but the face is re-contoured and lifted to prevent the appearance of sagging skin and jowls.

While these techniques are very exciting and becoming more popular, I cannot say that we can achieve the lifting outcomes of surgery. But it also doesn’t carry the risks, scars, or permanency of surgery. Also, I theorize that remodeling and production of new collagen in the skin will slow the rate at which your skin sags over time, since the architecture of the skin is newer and healthier with these treatments.

Please note some of what is described above is off-label by the FDA but used routinely.

Q

What’s best treatment for dark spots?

A

The best treatment for dark spots is, without question, laser treatment once the spots appear. Topical products are helpful, but most helpful in eliminating the development of brown spots. Consistent use of sunscreen and retinoids helps maintain even, bright tone, while hydroquinone specifically diminishes pigment in any area you are treating. It is reasonable to use a hydroquinone to select areas once you start to see an area of unevenness developing; I review exhaustively with my patients that if they elect to use hydroquinone, that they need to be careful with the application. If it goes outside of the area of extra pigment, there may be a whitening at the rim of the normal skin.

The best laser treatments for dark spots fall into two major categories: pigment specific lasers and fractional resurfacing lasers. Pigment specific lasers are spot treatment therapies. They are used on one spot at a time and work by selectively heating the extra pigment particles in the target area. The names of these lasers are variable, but most commonly include Ruby lasers, Yag lasers, and Alexandrite lasers. Typically, the treated areas on the face appear as tiny surface scabs for several days to a week. So planning the right time for these treatments is important, since you may have several days of looking treated, even with makeup.

“The best treatment for dark spots is, without question, laser treatment once the spots appear.”

The other category, namely fractional resurfacing lasers, primarily build collagen in the skin, but also exfoliate the surface. There are many intensities of these lasers, from ones that leave the skin pink and dry for a few hours, to one that leaves it looking superficially wounded for a week and pink for another 3-4 weeks. The stronger lasers are usually used only for patients with dramatically spotty or wrinkled skin; most patients do great with options that leave them pink and dry for a few hours and pink and dry for a few days.

The best treatment overall here is combination therapy. To achieve the optimal outcomes, I encourage all of my patients to protect their skin daily with sunscreen—even in winter and rainy days—and if their skin can tolerate it, retinol or prescription retinoids on a nightly basis. I say if they can tolerate it because the use of retinoids can make the skin irritated, but usually the skin becomes used to it, especially if the patient is moisturizing well. I use it nightly without any trouble. I then bring in the use of Ruby, Yag, and Alexandrite lasers for concentrated sun spots and fractional resurfacing lasers to diffusely exfoliate and brighten skin tone.

When my patients do this combination routinely, they are the ones people look at and say, “Wow, your skin is beautiful.”

Q

What are the best to treat acne?

A

We can use blue and red lights to assist with anti-inflammatory processes of acne. But what I find more effective is integrating light and vacuum benefits in a process called photopneumatic therapy. The system brand name I use is called Isolaz. The procedure involves steaming the skin followed by a handpiece applied to the skin that can pull excess oils out of the pores. Then the system delivers an intense pulsed light that can kill acne causing bacteria as well as assist in normalizing the pink and brown acne discoloration on the skin.

(Via goop)

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