Recent technological advancements in aesthetic skincare and body contouring using lasers, radio waves, magnetic pulses and other technologies are amazing for skin and body rejuvenation. You can firm, tighten, smooth, and brighten your face or any area of your body with a pleasant in-office experience and very little or no downtime. It’s completely non-invasive!
The plethora of cool tools and technologies being used is pretty exciting, but also crazy confusing. How do you keep track of what each technology is good for or whether certain procedures or tools might work for you? Do you want a Hydrafacial or Photofacial? Is there a difference between SculpSure and Laser Lipo? There’s a lot to learn.
Obviously a consultation with an aesthetic dermatology provider is the way to go, but I always think it’s helpful to do some research before meeting with the doctor. This guide is a starter’s cheat-sheet to some of the most popular and most effective FDA-approved beauty and anti-aging technologies that are currently available in US dermatology clinics. Learn about your options, and when you're ready to book call 866.471.8874 to set up a consultation with a trusted dermatologist near you!
Facial Rejuvenation Procedures
Use it for: Treat wrinkles and sagging skin on the face and stretch marks, cellulite and localized fat deposits on the body.
Replaces: Lifting surgery such as facelifts and brow lifts, liposuction
How it works: Multi-polar radio frequency and pulsed magnetic fields create a heating thermal reaction under the skin which stimulates a healing response, increases blood circulation and induces skin contraction. The key to its success is the formation of lots of new collagen.
Treatments: Typical treatments last 30-40 minutes and are relaxing and painless; many patients actually nap during the procedure! Best results obtained with 6-10 treatments and there is no downtime.
Results: Patients will typically begin to see results within a few days of treatment, though final results are visible after 3 months.
Use it for: Good candidates are those with sun damage, dry skin, dull complexion, acne, dark spots, or fine lines that they wish to reduce. Good for all skin types. Can be a quick skin fix for a big event.
Replaces: Mechanical dermabrasion, manual extractions, or chemical peels
How it works: This hydradermabrasion procedure features a vortex-fusion delivery system. The tool used provides a steady stream of water with suction to create a vortex for exfoliating skin cells and then infuses serums deep into skin. The vortex effectively removes dead skin cells, damaged outer skin layers, and pore blockages. The procedure can be customized for specific skin needs.
Treatments: Treatments can be 30, 45 or 60 minutes long and are relaxing, and you’ll have no downtime.
Results: Immediate results can be seen including improved skin texture, clearer tone, and brighter skin. Results typically last for 7 days.
Photofacial (IPL) - Intense pulsed light
Use it for: This procedure is used to treat sun damage, fine lines, vascular lesions, pigmentation issues and spider veins on the face or other areas of the body.
Replaces: Lasers, mechanical dermabrasion, sclerotherapy
How it works: Intense pulsed light is directed at the skin area to be treated using a technique called photothermolysis. It targets specific cells based on color and heats them until they are destroyed. It causes minimal damage to surrounding tissue, but provides best results when there is more color contrast between the problem area and healthy skin.
Treatments: Treatment durations vary depending on areas treated. The bright pulsed light will feel like a gentle elastic sensation snapping the skin.
Recovery: 24-48 hours after treatment pigmented spots may darken and become more obvious then flake off within a week.
Results: Final results of younger-looking, clearer skin are visible in 1-2 weeks. Multiple sessions will improve the results.
Venus Viva Resurfacing
Use it for: Treat all signs of aging as well as stretch marks, acne scars, wrinkles, hyperpigmentation, texture problems and large pores.
Replaces: Lasers, dermabrasion, chemical peels, surgery
How it works: Ultra-fine pins are used to create microscopic openings in the skin and deliver nanofractional radiofrequency energy beneath the skin’s surface to heat the deep dermal layers. This process removes damaged skin cells and promotes new collagen production within the skin. A big benefit is the way it triggers remodeling of the skin from within, requiring less damage to visible, outer layers, and offering great results with less downtime.
Treatments: Treatments are 15-30 minutes long and feel like little “zings” on the skin with a warm sensation. Patients usually require 3-4 treatments for optimal results. Practitioners may recommend maintenance treatments every 6-12 months.
Recovery: After treatment skin may feel warm and appear sunburned with possible mild swelling for 1-3 days. Skin will slough off for a few days as the new, healthier skin is revealed.
Results: Skin will have a younger-looking appearance with improvements in all types of imperfections. Results are permanent until new damage or aging occurs.
Body Contouring Procedures
Low-level Laser Lipo
Use it for: This type of treatment is good for those needing fat reduction in targeted areas for precise body contouring.
Replaces: Invasive Liposuction
How it works: Low-level (low-power) lasers are used on the target area to activate a response that reduces the size of existing fat cells by breaking down stored triglycerides in the fat cells. This content from the fat cells is transported around the body to be burned as energy and the fat cells are left shrunken.
Treatments: Sessions typically last 20-60 minutes and a minimum of 6 treatments is usually required for good results. Treatment sessions are enhanced when followed by post-treatment exercise. There is no downtime.
Results: Results are natural-looking with inches of fat removed from targeted areas. The best results will be achieved when treatment is combined with diet and exercise, since the fat cells remain and can be replumped if more fat is stored by the body.
Use it for: This procedure is recommended for reducing stubborn fat deposits on the belly, love handles, back, thighs, and under the chin to help with neck and body contouring.
Replaces: Surgery, invasive liposuction
How it works: This light-based treatment is performed with lasers that cycle on and off raising the temperature of fat cells in a targeted way that collapses and destroys them. The cells are then removed in the normal waste removal processes of the body’s lymphatic system.
Treatments: Treatments last 25 minutes and are described as pleasant overall. Patients initially feel a cooling sensation, followed by a deep warmth and/or tingling in cycles with the laser. Usually a series of treatments is required for best results, and there is no downtime post-treatment.
Results: Results are a natural, long-lasting reduction of fat pockets on treated areas for desired contouring. Each session can remove up to 24% of treated fat cells. Results are seen after one session and build. Treated fat cells are gone forever, but new ones could replace them so diet and exercise will help maintain the results.
Costs of all of these procedures vary across the country, but due to their non-invasive nature they are much more affordable than the surgical or invasive treatments they often replace. Let us know if you’ve tried any of these treatments by sharing your experiences in the comments!
And if you're interested in scheduling a consultation, call 866.471.8874 to set an appointment with a trusted aesthetic dermatology provider in your area.