Skin Care and Med Spa

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Top 5 Nonsurgical Skin Treatments for Women 

Skin Treatment No. 4: Microdermabrasion

Microdermabrasion, the “power peel”, works on all skin types and colors. It produces subtle changes, causing no skin color change or scarring. It improves or eliminates very superficial skin problems like fine lines, dull skin, brown spots, and acne. However, it is not effective for deeper problems like scars, stretch marks, keloids, or deep acne scars.

With microdermabrasion, there is less down time than with dermabrasion; skin fully recovers within 24 hours. It’s ideal for people who cannot afford to take time off from work or social activities for healing.

There are two types of microdermabrasion treatments.

The regular crystal micro dermabrasion technology involves the use of a special, hand-held device that propels a high-speed flow of aluminum oxide crystals onto the skin. At the same time, the machine’s vacuum system sucks away dirt, dead cells and used crystals.

The diamond derm abrasion system, on the other hand, replaces the micro-crystal flow with a disposable or reusable diamond tip wand. Areas closer to the eyes and mouth can be abraded more accurately with diamond abrasion (no risk of stray crystals causing damage or being ingested). Other than that, crystal-free microdermabration works in the same way traditional microabrasion does.

Diamond microderm machines usually come with tipped wands of varied size and coarseness for different skin types and depths of resurfacing. The wand tip is made of natural diamond chips which polish the skin and remove dead cells, which are then vacuumed back into a waste filter. Many professionals prefer natural diamond tips because they are easier to control and don’t irritate the skin.

Microdermabrasion Crystals

Aluminum oxide crystals have been the most commonly used abrasive agent for the last 20 years. Aluminum oxide is the second hardest mineral. Personally, I prefer to avoid aluminum. I prefer to have vitamin C crystals or sodium bicarbonate crystals.

The irregular crystal shape makes them a more effective abrader. Aluminum oxide is also an inert material and it causes no allergic or adverse reactions. It is not toxic when ingested and is non-carcinogenic.

Sodium bicarbonate crystals are an organic alternative to aluminum oxide crystals but they are a lot softer and less effective in microdermabrasion. They are used on patients with hyper pigmentation and can be easily washed off after treatment because sodium bicarbonate is water-soluble.

Diamond Microdermabrasion (Crystal-Free)

Crystal-free tips and natural diamond tips are easier to use and unlikely to leave tiny particles in the eyes, nose or mouth. But a crystal-free micro dermabrasion machine isn’t completely safe.

Bacteria from exfoliated skin stay on the tip and can be unknowingly spread to other areas of the face or body. Diamond tip microdermabrasion is also not as effective on irregular surfaces because there are no crystals to fit the exact irregularities of the skin.

What It Is: In this procedure, doctors use a vacuum suction device, in tandem with mild micro crystals, to remove the top layer of skin cells. It has been compared to sandblasting. This brings new, more evenly-textured skin to the surface. Best to do in a series, most patients have microdermabrasion treatments once a week for a period of four to twelve weeks. Age spots and fine lines can be erased, creating softer, smoother skin that has a younger feel to the touch.

Precise and pain-free, microdermabrasion is best for ultra-fine lines; rejuvenating the complexion, increasing skin tone and color, and helping topical products penetrate more deeply and work better.

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, microdermabrasion is frequently used as an adjunct to other antiaging therapies.

How Long It Takes: Although the process takes just 30 minutes, it does require multiple treatments and several weeks to see full results.

Cost: The cost runs between $150 and $300 per treatment.

Negatives: There are virtually no complications. In rare cases, a few crystals may get into unprotected eyes causing irritation for 24 hours.

Common Side Effects: Redness of skin, dry and tight like “sunburn” or “windburn” for about 24 hours.

Skin Treatment No. 5: Laser Hair Removal

What It Is: While it might not make you look younger, it can make you look better and even feel more confident. That’s what experts report women say about the fifth most common nonsurgical cosmetic treatment — laser hair removal.

Laser Hair RemovalThe lasers on the market today come in all shapes and sizes. Different lasers use different wavelengths of light; some utilize a cooling device and some do not. All laser systems emit a gentle beam of light that passes through the skin to the hair follicle where it is absorbed by the hair. The laser energy is then transformed into heat which disables the follicle. Today, individuals with white or dark/tan skin can utilize lasers to remove their unwanted hair with positive results. Lasers that utilize a cooling device will help provide the patient with increased comfort and protection by cooling the upper layers of skin. This cooling selectivity helps to protect the skin while effectively treating the unwanted hair.

According to the American Academy of Dermatology, the most requested areas for laser hair removal include face, upper lip, neck, cheeks, breasts, underarms, back, stomach, bikini line, and legs.

Because hair grows in cycles, every individual will need at least 3-6 laser treatments, but some might need up to 8 in order to maximize results. Skin tone, hair coloring and coarseness of hair are all contributing factors to how many treatments will be needed

How Long It Takes: Treatments can be as short as 10 minutes or as long as a few hours, depending on how much hair you want removed.

Cost: The cost of laser hair removal is about $400-$500 per treatment.

The procedure is safe when performed properly. After the procedure, patients may experience slight pink or red skin in the treated area. The color will most likely fade within a few minutes to a few hours, and in rare cases, a few days. When cold packs are used, the skin will return to normal much more quickly. The lasers utilize energy wavelengths of light that pass directly through the skin into the hair follicles. Lasers that do not pass through the skin leave residuals. For example, X-rays taken at the hospital leave a residual in the body. If too many are taken in a certain time period, the residuals can become a health risk. The lasers used for laser hair removal are passive, they leave no residuals; therefore, they are completely safe.

Face and Skin