STOP THE CLOCK

We’d all like to look younger than our age and now, thanks to ad­vances in sci­ence and tech­nol­ogy, you re­ally can roll back the years with­out go­ing un­der the sur­geon’s knife. Elise Wil­son ex­plores the best non­sur­gi­cal anti-age­ing treat­ments and the prod­uct

Simply You Style - - Contents -

– non-sur­gi­cal anti-age­ing treat­ments that re­ally work

Age­ing is a sim­ple and un­avoid­able fact of life. From the age of 25 the col­la­gen that gives our skin its plump, youth­ful ap­pear­ance be­gins to de­plete, lead­ing to an in­crease in fine lines, wrin­kles and a loss of firm­ness. Our ob­ses­sion with cheat­ing this ge­netic fate has spawned a mul­ti­mil­lion dol­lar in­dus­try ded­i­cated to de­vel­op­ing new ways to turn back the hands of time, from skin­care in­no­va­tions and in-sa­lon treat­ments all the way to cut­ting-edge sur­gi­cal tech­niques. The happy fact is that to­day we have more con­trol than ever over how fast we age, or per­haps more cru­cially, how fast we ap­pear to age.

“The very rapid ad­vances in tech­nol­ogy and vast im­prove­ment in tech­niques of non-sur­gi­cal pro­ce­dures over the past 20 years means there are in­creas­ingly more op­tions for both prac­ti­tion­ers and pa­tients to choose from,” says Dr Joanna Ro­manowska, from Clinic 42 in Auck­land. Add to this the fact that non-sur­gi­cal pro­ce­dures are lower cost, less in­va­sive and of­ten pro­vide in­stant re­sults and it’s easy to see why they are ris­ing in pop­u­lar­ity.

So, with a mul­ti­tude of op­tions avail­able, what is the best way to achieve a nat­u­rally youth­ful look and avoid the wind-tun­nel ef­fect of a 1980s facelift or the frozen fore­heads and over­stuffed ‘pil­low faces’ of to­day? The first step is to ad­dress the ob­vi­ous life­style fac­tors that speed up the age­ing process, such as smok­ing, drink­ing, sun dam­age and poor diet. But be­yond this, it might be time to re­assess what makes us look older in the first place, says Dr Cather­ine Stone from Auck­land’s The Face Place, who sug­gests that fa­cial shape and con­tours are the first thing our sub­con­scious brain picks up – not, in fact, our lines and wrin­kles.

“An eye-track­ing study has shown that we first look at an­other per­son’s eyes and lips, and then their fa­cial shape, which helps us de­ter­mine their age,” she says. “This process hap­pens sub­con­sciously in a mat­ter of mil­lisec­onds, and so im­prov­ing fa­cial shape plays a sig­nif­i­cant role in help­ing you look fresher and more youth­ful.”

The good news is that im­prov­ing the con­tours of your face no longer re­quires risky surgery as much less in­va­sive treat­ments to­day of­fer equally good, if not bet­ter re­sults. “Now with non­sur­gi­cal cos­metic op­tions, we can not only pre­vent some peo­ple from in­ves­ti­gat­ing sur­gi­cal op­tions, but we can also treat some of the con­cerns that surgery doesn’t treat well, like skin tex­ture,” says Dr Stone.

Best of all, no one need know you’ve had any­thing done, says Dr Ro­manowska. “The im­prove­ment in tech­niques means that the pa­tient does not need to look ‘done’ or pe­cu­liar fol­low­ing a pro­ce­dure, as long as it has been per­formed by a well-trained and ex­pe­ri­enced prac­ti­tioner.”

With all this in mind, we take a closer look at five non-sur­gi­cal treat­ments that prom­ise im­pres­sive re­sults, from tight­en­ing jowls and ton­ing fa­cial mus­cles to cre­at­ing a smooth, ele­gant neck.

THE SKIN TIGHTENER

Thanks to the likes of Kim Kar­dashian, the Vam­pire Fa­cial is a pop­u­lar treat­ment world­wide – and now Auck­land’s The Face Place has gone a step fur­ther to of­fer the Vam­pire Fa­cial Plus. The treat­ment com­bines e-der­mas­tamp needling with a hy­drat­ing hyaluronic acid so­lu­tion and platelet-rich plasma (PRP) from your own blood cells to in­duce skin re­ju­ve­na­tion and col­la­gen re­pair, ex­plains Dr Stone.

The Vam­pire Fa­cial Plus treats one ‘fa­cial unit’ per ses­sion, but it can also be ap­plied to the neck and chest to im­prove the skin thick­ness, taut­ness and tex­ture in these ar­eas. “Mid-face to mid-neck would be one fa­cial unit,” says Dr Stone. “There’s usu­ally left­over PRP, which can be used to treat spe­cific ar­eas of con­cern, such as the fine crepey skin un­der the eyes, up­per lip lines or scar tis­sue.”

COST: From $850 per treat­ment. Most peo­ple need a course of three treat­ments then a top-up ev­ery six to 12 months.

The down-turn­ing of the mouth with age gives a ‘down frown’ that can make us look sad or bit­ter.

THE FAUX FACE LIFT

Did you know that your body has nat­u­rally oc­cur­ring bio-elec­tric cur­rents which can be en­hanced to turn back the years? At Caci clin­ics the Non-sur­gi­cal Facelift treat­ment uses these tiny mi­cro-cur­rents to stim­u­late mus­cle tone and en­hance skin tis­sue, es­pe­cially in the face and neck, says Taryn John­stone, Caci’s na­tional trainer.

Dur­ing treat­ment, the skin is first cleansed and toned, then stim­u­lated with two metal hand­pieces. “Next, we do the ‘re­minder stage’ of the treat­ment – this keeps the mus­cles in po­si­tion,” says John­stone. “The fi­nal stage in­cludes a mask to deeply in­fuse a tai­lored serum into the skin.”

For op­ti­mum re­sults, it’s best to un­dergo a course of treat­ments. “Just as if you were us­ing weights to strengthen your mus­cles at the gym, it doesn’t hap­pen in one ses­sion,” says John­stone. A course typ­i­cally in­volves two ses­sions per week for the first few weeks, then a main­te­nance ses­sion ev­ery four to six weeks.

COST: Prices start at $128 for a one-off treat­ment but re­duce when com­bined with a skin-treat­ment plan.

THE SUPER HYDRATOR

If dry­ness and the lack­lus­tre ap­pear­ance of the skin on your face, neck and chest is your pri­mary con­cern, con­sider Clinic 42’s Photo Fin­ish Treat­ment. “It acts on the tex­ture of the skin rather than chang­ing the con­tour, mak­ing skin feel and look softer, brighter, smoother and more youth­ful,” says Dr Ro­manowska.

Dur­ing the treat­ment, a com­bi­na­tion of mois­tur­is­ing hyaluronic acid and Bo­tox is in­jected into the skin via a spe­cial needling de­vice called the Vi­tal Gun. “This al­lows very ac­cu­rate mi­cro-doses to be in­jected at a very pre­cise su­per­fi­cial depth, dif­fus­ing into large ar­eas of the skin,” says Dr Ro­manowska.

Dis­com­fort is min­i­mal and usu­ally well man­aged by a top­i­cal anaes­thetic cream which is ap­plied 45 min­utes prior to the treat­ment. Af­ter­wards, some red­ness, skin ir­ri­ta­tion and lumpi­ness is to be ex­pected for a cou­ple of days, but this can be cam­ou­flaged with min­eral make-up. “In younger pa­tients, one treat­ment is suf­fi­cient,” says Dr Ro­manowska. “In some­one with sun-dam­aged, leath­ery skin, or very thin, pa­pery skin, sev­eral treat­ments are likely to be re­quired to achieve an op­ti­mum re­sult.”

Ex­pect to see re­sults within five days to two weeks, in­clud­ing softer, glow­ing skin, and an im­prove­ment in the ap­pear­ance of fine lines and pores.

COST: $1,100 per treat­ment, which will cover ei­ther your whole face, or neck and dé­col­letage. Re­sults last ap­prox­i­mately six months.

THE JOWL MELTER

A smooth, ele­gant neck has al­ways been a cov­eted feature – think of the swan-like beauty of Au­drey Hep­burn and El­iz­a­beth Tay­lor – so if min­imis­ing the ap­pear­ance of bands around your neck and ton­ing a sag­ging jaw­line are your aim, look no fur­ther than the Ne­fer­titi Lift, avail­able at The Cos­metic Clinic in Auck­land. “The name ac­tu­ally refers to the Egyp­tian princess Ne­fer­titi who was renowned for her long, ele­gant neck,” say Rosa Guthrie, head of op­er­a­tions and part-owner of The Cos­metic Clinic.

Ei­ther Bo­tox or Dys­port are in­jected into mul­ti­ple sites along the platysma mus­cles, which run from the lower chin and jaw down the sides of the neck and can be ma­jor de­pres­sors of the lower face. “The in­jec­tions are su­per­fi­cial and rel­a­tively pain­less and the prod­uct quickly kicks in be­tween three and seven days, re­lax­ing the mus­cles,” says Guthrie. “Un­like tra­di­tional treat­ments to the frown, fore­head or crow’s feet that re­duce wrin­kles, this treat­ment fo­cuses on chang­ing fa­cial con­tour­ing.”

COST: Prices for the Ne­fer­titi Lift start from $325 and, depend­ing on the dose, you can ex­pect the re­sults to last for three to five months.

THE FILLER UP

Most peo­ple as­so­ciate fillers with tack­ling deep-set wrin­kles, but thanks to new ex­pert tech­niques, filler can also help to lift and firm the face and jaw­line. At The Face Place, Dr Stone of­fers a pro­ce­dure called The 8 Point Lift – a tech­nique for restor­ing vol­ume in eight strate­gic ar­eas, giv­ing max­i­mum lift and sup­port while us­ing a rel­a­tively small amount of der­mal filler for a nat­u­ral look. “This tech­nique is ideal for any­one who is start­ing to no­tice some skin lax­ity,” she says. “This could in­clude skin sag­ging or face ‘drop­ping’, a tired­look­ing un­der-eye area, or jowls form­ing along the jaw­line.”

The pro­ce­dure in­volves filler be­ing in­jected into eight ar­eas, in­clud­ing the cheek bones to sub­tly plump them up, the mid­face to re­duce the ap­pear­ance of hol­lows un­der the eyes, the na­solabial folds, and the cor­ners of the mouth. “The down­turn­ing of the mouth with age gives a ‘down frown’ that can make us look sad or bit­ter,” says Dr Stone. “Cre­at­ing some sup­port with der­mal filler not only lifts the face, but it makes you look hap­pier too.”

As we age, we lose the square­ness or an­gle of the jaw, which helps to lift and sup­port the lower face, so the lower face starts to fall for­ward, con­tribut­ing to jowls and sag­ging. “Re­plac­ing vol­ume in the hol­low along the jaw­line can help to re­duce or im­prove jowls,” says Dr Stone. Fi­nally, treat­ing the buc­cal area be­low the cheek bones helps im­prove the nat­u­ral curve and struc­ture of the cheek and avoid a gaunt look.

COST: Prices vary depend­ing on how much lift­ing you need, but ex­pect to pay be­tween $950 and $2,400. Re­sults are in­stant with min­i­mal dis­com­fort and down­time and can last up to two years.

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