New Year, New Skin

New Year, New Skin

January is a time for renewal! We allknow that injectables such as Botox® and Juvederm® are a go-to for reducing lines and rejuvenating the skin, however, they alone are not enough to maintain a youthful, healthy glow. The skin integrity changes over time, becoming thinner and more translucent. The tone of the skin changes, as well as its elasticity. Brown spots and broken blood vessels begin to appear. Luckily, we can build collagen, smooth the surface, reduce redness and brown spots, and firm the skin. We will discuss some of the procedures that can improve the health and glow of your skin—so that you can start this year afresh!

RESURFACE
Texture changes and increased visibility of the pores are things patients complain about daily. A popular and effective treatment that smooths the skin and builds collagen is Fraxel Resore®. The laser energy from this device goes deep, and yet the fractionated technology allows for the skin to heal quickly, within two days. A series of 4–6 Fraxel® treatments stimulates collagen regeneration for thicker, smoother, more youthful-appearing skin. Another way to resurface is deep microneedling. In fact, the concept is the same except microneedling does not use thermal energy. Microneedling is an older technique that has become new again. Its benefits are stimulation of collagen and smoothing of fine lines.

PEEL
Peels are lovely for the skin—allowing that glow to shine through. I, myself, do a Jessner’s peel monthly, and it keeps brown spots and fine lines at bay. This peel is very mild, with minimal to no visible flaking, but with excellent results. Deeper peels, such as TCA (trichloroacetic acid), can provide even more results, particularly in the under-eye area, but with about seven days of downtime.

CLARIFY
Brown spots, growths, and broken blood vessels mar the complexion. The VBeam laser is the gold standard for reducing redness and broken blood vessels. It also stimulates collagen and can be performed in conjunction with a Jessner’s peel. In addition, the Perfecta device can be used to remove specific individual brown spots. IPL (intense pulsed light) is a device that rejuvenates the skin by removing unwanted freckling from sun damage and is used to rejuvenate the face, neck, chest, hands, and legs with minimal downtime. Small growths that appear, such as benign keratoses and enlarged oil glands, can be very simply removed with liquid nitrogen treatment or electrocautery, depending on the type of growth. Many people don’t realize how simple and quick it is to remove unwanted moles and growths. On the face in particular, these procedures heal beautifully, leaving minimal to no trace.

REJUVENATE
The skin has it five layers on the surface that regenerate naturally about every 48 days. The dermis is the “hide” of the skin, where collagen lives. There is one injectable that more specifically targets collagen stimulation in this area. Sculptra® is a suspension of particles that induces a healing response and collagen genesis in the dermis. This results in volume restoration to the face and a thicker, more robust dermis. Another procedure that stimulates collagen from the underside is platelet-rich plasma, or PRP. This procedure employs your own platelet-derived growth factors to stimulate collagen production in the dermis. Both procedures are often combined with resurfacing (Fraxel® or microneedling).

TIGHTEN
Skin tightening is great for restoring a rested, youthful appearance. Sagging in the lower face, as well as crepiness of neck skin appear shortly after changes in the eyelid skin. For the eyelids, Thermage® is a great firming option that has no downtime and lasts up to two years. For the neck and lower face, Ultherapy® is the strongest skin-tightening device known to us at this time. Skin tightening with either device is a great option for those who want a nonsurgical pick-me-up.

The New Year is here, and there is no doubt that getting in shape is on all of our minds. Why not get our skin in shape as well? I saw a quote once that said: “If I could firm my face with exercise, I would.” The procedures discussed above address the most common skin texture, tone, and color concerns. We are fortunate to live in a time when technology can help us be our best selves. When it comes to your face, choose a board-certified dermatologist and only trust your skin to the best. Happy New Year!

The statements in this article are for general
informational purposes only and do not
substitute for individual medical advice.

By Anna D Guanche MD FAAD
Board-Certified Dermatologist
Founder, Bella Skin Institute