Life is busy and it seems like the daily grind is constant. Juggling work and family seems impossible. Insert a pandemic into the mix and many of us are searching for ways to rejuvenate ourselves with little to no downtime. Luckily, non-invasive cosmetic procedures have advanced, allowing us to look and feel our best without sacrificing our time.
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Here are the top 10 ways to look less tired and freshen up your image.
1. Facials, Peels, Dermaplaning, and Microneedling
These are wonderfully effective in exfoliating and detoxifying your skin. Daily pollutants, free radicals, and ultraviolet rays are tough on the skin. In addition, as we age, skin cells don’t turn over like they once did, and a layer of dead skin cells begin to block the youthful glow of our complexion.
Light peels, facials, and dermaplaning allow our skin to rid that layer of dead skin cells, freshen pigmentation, and help clear up acne. There is not much downtime and, in the right hands, lymphatic drainage during your procedure will help the cleansing and detoxification process to leave your skin glowing and refreshed. With dermaplaning, you get the added benefit of removing that “peach fuzz.” As women age, many of us experience additional facial hair, which is too light for laser hair reduction. Dermaplaning is the perfect solution.
Microneedling is a procedure that requires a few more days of downtime. Yet, since the procedure more effectively treats the second layer of skin where collagen resides, you see better wrinkle reduction. It is safe to do in the summer and is safe for all skin types. Plan to spend 2-4 days recovering, but you will see better softening of your wrinkles, pores, and acne scars.
The eyebrows truly frame the face, and with a loss of architecture, we look less youthful. Eyebrows thin and become more sparse as we age. Microblading has virtually no downtime — this semi-permanent secret gives you fuller eyebrows that are shaped to perfection.
Do you remember the old adage, you are what you eat? Well, to some extent this is true for your body, including your skin. When you think of your daily diet, are you eating the colors of the rainbow? No need for collagen supplements, they really don’t work. Fill your diet with fresh fruits and vegetables and lean white meats. They provide powerful anti-inflammatory vitamins and nutrients and allow you to age gracefully and minimize your risk of heart disease, stroke, and cancers.
Here is the skinny on daily skin care routines. At a bare minimum, you should use a gentle daily cleanser, antioxidant and an SPF 30 or higher sunscreen in the morning. Tinted sunscreens contain ferric oxide and better protect your skin from pigmentation. YES, everyday you need SPF! My favorite all-in-one antioxidant and growth factor product is the new and improved TNS advanced+ serum.
At night, turn to something that allows the skin to renew when you’re sleeping. Some of my favorites are retinols and melatonik from ISDN. Usually, I add my hydrating agent on top. Remember, if you are going to protect the investment you made with any in-office procedures a few simple daily skin care steps, sun protective clothing and hats will make a HUGE difference.
Skin care can be overwhelming –– we are bombarded with the latest ingredients promising the next big breakthrough. At our skin store Aura in Frederick Dermatology Associates, we do our best to educate patients and carry only literature-proven products that have shown to be effective.
5. Upneeq Eye Drops
Tired of sagging eyelids, now there are eye drops that are safe to use on a regular basis to lift your tired lids. Yes, if you are not ready for a blepharoplasty, and you want your eyes to be a fabulous central feature, these drops start working in minutes and last for 6-8 hours. There are no contraindications, and they are great for that special night out or big interview.
6. Kybella and Body Contouring
Kybella is an injected solution that dissolves fat permanently under the chin with no liposuction. Expect a few days of swelling and possibly bruising. It’s great for patients with good skin elasticity but who experience that stubborn extra fullness under their chin. Also, it has safely been used to contour jowls that accumulate more fat as we age.
Coolsculpting is still going strong as a no-downtime procedure that decreases bulges of fat on your body and under your chin that won’t budge with diet and exercise.
There are now FDA-approved devices that emit energy to build muscle mass and achieve definition. These devices are perfect for those patients who are lean yet want to improve muscle tone they can’t seem to tone at the gym.
7. Liquid Face Lift
With more dermal fillers (like Juvederm, Restylane, and RHA products) and neuromodulators (like Botox and Dysport) coming to the market, consumers have never had safer choices to restore volume and vitality to their faces. Yet, here is a secret, the injector is more important than the product itself. Board certified dermatologists and plastic surgeons understand the anatomy of your face and the safe placement of these products. Moreover, facial injection is an art just as much as a science.
When patients come to see me, they desire a natural look. They don’t want to look “done.” They want to look refreshed and well-rested. This is ALWAYS my goal.
Here is a tip: look at the staff at the facility. If they look fake, you may walk away with the same look. Also, make sure your provider has hyaluronidase in the clinic. It is highly uncommon, but injectables can block blood vessels, and the reversal agent allows the filler to be broken down if necessary. Also, ask your provider if they can use a cannula. This blunt ended object is the size of the needle, but when used to deliver filler, it traumatizes vessels less. This in turn allows for less bruising and keeps you safer during the procedure.
One last note, beware of threading. If you do go this route for non-surgical rejuvenation, be sure your clinician is highly skilled and trained. I have seen side effects like parotid gland sheering and skin dimpling from botched threading procedures.
8. Biostimulators like Sculptra
This product has been around for decades. Sculptra was used in the late 1990s to restore the facial volume of HIV patients thus destigmatizing the effects of HIV medications while building the self confidence and emotional well being of patients. It now provides an excellent choice for those who metabolize their dermal filler quickly. This injectable has little to no downtime, and over weeks, it will stimulate your own body’s collagen to fill and lift your face if placed in appropriate locations. Studies show it lasts at least two years. So, yes, you don’t see immediate results, but the building effects are impressive. They can be better for your budget, and because the skin starts stimulating collagen, you will see a glow and a natural effect the dermal fillers have a hard time replicating.
These devices emit specific wavelengths that rid targets like vessels and pigmentation. There are platforms like the new Derma V by Lutronic that have minimal to no downtime and have increased energy to clean up sun damage with less treatments, less pain and added safety with new built-in post cooling technologies.
Make sure to apply sunscreen avidly during the sunny months. If you are tan, you should not do laser treatments because of the increased risk of side effects. Just wait until the fall or winter when your tan has faded, it’s not worth the risk!
10. Ellacor-Microcoring: Are we slowly eliminating the need for face lifts?
LAST BUT NOT LEAST: This revolutionary non-invasive skin tightening device received FDA approval for the jowls in 2021. Dr. Rox Anderson from Harvard has been working on releasing this device for the last several years. He is the genius dermatologist that brought us fractional laser technology and coolsculpting.
As with many things during COVID times, there have been supply chain issues slowing the release of the device. It will come to Frederick Dermatology Associates later in 2022.
Ellacor by Cytrellis is unique in that it has Micro-Coring technology. This is a first-of-its-kind device for the treatment of wrinkles and sagging skin with natural-looking results and minimal downtime. It uses hollow needles to remove micro-cores of skin. When micro-portions of excess skin are removed, it provides superior results to traditional devices that stimulate collagen with laser, radiofrequency, and ultrasound energy.
It’s never been a more exciting time to look your best. Take your time in finding the right provider and clinic to meet your goals. Get educated first and spend the time during a consultation to find the best procedures to fit your expectations and budget. The goal at Frederick Dermatology Associates and Aura Skin Store is to always work with the individual patient to personalize a routine and plan. You deserve to look and feel your best!