Grooming: Barenaked Lads Skin and hair treatments – for the boys
Time to man up, gentlemen. The Zoom boom has given a boost to tech treatments suited for guys
“I HAVE A PERSONAL connection to men who are bald,” Dr. John Arlette says over the phone from his home in Calgary. “I’m one of them, and I’ve noted how it gives them a sense of themselves. Men tend to begin to look for changes in others that may reflect changes that are coming up in their own appearance, rather than in their own mirror.” The dermatologist and medical director at Dermapure Calgary (dermapure.com) adds that men over 50 are recognizing the importance of taking care of their appearance. “Coming up behind them are these smart young guys that are looking good. Men in their 60s are having facials and chemical peels and then Botox.” It’s a desire, he observes, to reclaim what’s been lost, whether it’s hair or a youthful look. A clinical professor at the University of Calgary’s Cumming School of Medicine, he is also a national consultant on filler complications for Allergan, the pharmaceutical company that makes Juvéderm.
The skin on the scalp is thinner than the face and more easily damaged by exposure to the elements. “The forehead is not the end of the face, so how do we enhance that extension of the face? We want the skin to look smooth where the forehead meets the scalp, for a start,” says Arlette. The usual prescription is a combination of Botox, to soften wrinkles, and a skin-care regimen that includes a product with SPF.
Maggie Melrose, an education trainer for Wella Canada in Toronto, suggests exfoliating the scalp as “step zero.” Products like Nioxin’s Scalp Recovery Purifying Exfoliator help remove dead skin cells, support healthy hair follicles and reduce dry flakes or dandruff. They also prepare the scalp to maximize benefits from other products, she notes. The skin is prepped, whether you’re massaging in hair-growth serums or using a moisturizer with SPF after cleansing.
In Vancouver, Dr. Robert Morrell of the Medical Rejuvenation Centre (mrcbc.com), has male patients asking for Botox. “Their typical areas of concern would be their forehead lines and crow’s feet,” says the dermatologist, but he’s also getting more requests for his midfacelift. “The procedure addresses the signs of fatigue, stress, sadness and accelerated aging with the use of dermal fillers.” The cheeks are injected to lift the midface, which is an anchor for eye wrinkles, sagging cheeks and nasolabial folds. The procedure takes about 15 minutes and, according to Morrell, provides patients with an instant refreshed look that can last six to 12 months. Morrell says men want healthier-looking skin, so
beyond enhancements, he recommends incorporating skin-care products with active ingredients: vitamin C, a potent and protective antioxidant can help brighten, smooth and promote collagen production; while retinol, a retinoid derived from vitamin A, encourages skin cell turnover, which can even out skin tone and diminish fine lines. Both can be found in the Di Morelli Vitamin C Serum for Face and Eye, and Retinol Serum (dimorelli. com), from Morrell’s medical-grade skin-care line.
Dr. Charlene Linzon, the chief dermatologist at Forest Hill Dermatology (foresthilldermatology.com) in Toronto, has seen an increase in Botox, but also Belkyra, a non-surgical injectable product that helps reduce fat deposits under the chin. While dermal fillers are composed of formulations of hyaluronic acid – a substance naturally found in our bodies that helps plump the skin – Belkyra contains a man-made version of deoxycholic acid, which is also found in the body and helps break down and absorb fat cells. Belkyra has only been approved for use on the double chin – so that new silk tie you spent a small fortune on will look all the better.
Dr. Cory Torgerson, who opened the Toronto Facial Plastic Surgery & Laser Centre (drtorgerson.com) more than a decade ago, is seeing more requests for hair restoration treatments. “At our clinic, Follicular Unit Extraction Hair Transplant for men has seen a 30 per cent increase in bookings during the pandemic,” he says. The day surgery “does not use the former strip graft method that left an unsightly scar at the back of the head.” More importantly, “the transplanted hairs each have more than a 94 per cent growth success rate.”
The doctor uses a small rotary extractor to remove tiny units of healthy hair follicles and supportive tissue from denser growth areas at the back and sides of the scalp, and transplant them to bald or thinning areas. The little grafts are carefully selected to ensure there’s still plenty of healthy follicles left behind. Because it is more precise and less invasive, recovery is “days, rather than weeks,” says Torgerson.
There’s been a bit of buzz in the past few years around platelet-rich plasma (PRP), or the “vampire facial,” and now scalps are getting the same treatment. The not-sogory details: Blood is drawn from the patient and popped into a centrifuge, which separates the platelet-rich plasma from all the other stuff. The plasma contains active growth factors, says Morrell, who performs the procedure at his Vancouver clinic. The serum is then injected with a precision needle into hair follicles. “PRP for hair restoration is well requested by male patients, since it works to stimulate hair growth using the patient’s own platelets, especially for those experiencing early signs of thinning hair,” he says.