Today’s booming beauty industry has seen a number of treatments and procedures available to rejuvenate your appearance, but which one is best for you? Here is the lowdown on just a few….
Botox is a natural, purified protein that relaxes wrinkle-causing muscles, creating a smoother appearance. The active ingredient is Botulinum Toxin Type A which is derived from bacteria in a similar way that penicillin is derived from mould. Botulinum Toxin Type A is made in laboratories under strict guidelines.
Treatments are used to relax specific facial muscles that cause expression lines. Once the muscles are relaxed, you cannot contract them and continue to make the undesirable facial expressions. Thus, the lines gradually smooth and new lines are prevented from forming.
Treatment involves a small amount of Botox being injected into selected facial muscles using a very fine needle. Generally taking around 10 minutes. Discomfort is typically minimal and brief, and no anaesthetic is required. The injection may sting for a few seconds. After the injection, it takes 2-3 days for the treatment to take effect and about 7 days to see the full effect.
Dermal fillers are injectable gels made from naturally-occurring substances, including collagen and hyaluronic acid. The majority of dermal fillers contain hyaluronic acid as their main active ingredient. Hyaluronic acid based dermal fillers include Restylane and Juvederm. Hyaluronic acid is a natural component of the skin.
Dermal fillers are used to plump thin lips, enhance shallow contours, soften facial creases and wrinkles, or improve the appearance of recessed scars.
Treatment involves the dermal filler gel being applied under the skin in tiny amounts using a very fine needle. Some clinics and most patients prefer to numb the face with a topical anesthetic cream. In the case of a lip augmentation procedure, anesthetic injections can be used. The procedure can take up to an hour if larger areas are treated. However, most smaller treatments only take 5 to 10 minutes.
Results can be seen straight away and improve a few hours after treatment. The Results obtained with dermal fillers typically last 6 to 9 months. The results may last up to a year in some people. How long results last varies from person to person
Chemical peels use a chemical solution to improve and smooth the texture of the facial skin by removing its damaged outer layers. It is helpful for those individuals with facial blemishes, wrinkles and uneven skin pigmentation.
There are a number of different chemical peels available. Alphahydroxy acids (AHAs), such as glycolic, lactic, or fruit acids are the mildest of the peel formulas and produce light peels. These types of peels can provide smoother, brighter-looking skin. AHA peels may be used to treat fine wrinkling, areas of dryness, uneven pigmentation and acne.
Another type, Trichloroacetic acid (TCA) is most commonly used for medium-depth peeling. Fine surface wrinkles, superficial blemishes and pigmentation problems are commonly treated with TCA. Treatment generally takes 10-15 min. Healing is usually quick although patients are advised to avoid sun exposure for a couple of months after treatment to protect the newly formed layers of skin.
Phenol is the strongest of the chemical solutions and produces a deep peel. It is used mainly to treat patients with coarse facial wrinkles, areas of blotchy or damaged skin caused by sun exposure, or pre-cancerous growths. Full face treatment may take up to an hour. Recovery may be slow with complete healing may taking up to several months. The results are dramatic and long lasting.
Microdermabrasion is a skin-freshening technique that has been shown to temporarily improve many skin conditions such as uneven pigmentation, fine lines and skin texture irregularities. Treatment involves a device like a fine sandblaster to spray tiny crystals across the face, mixing gentle abrasion with suction to remove the dead, outer layer of skin.
Microdermabrasion is generally not painful although some may feel some discomfort in some areas. Anaesthesia is generally not used. The skin is slightly pink afterwards but usually feels very smooth immediately afterwards and demonstrates a healthy “glow”.
Just remember, with any of the above treatments you must always consult with a professional first!