Many people book appointments for Botox, microdermabrasion and Restylane injections (fillers) in hopes of finding a quick fix to address fine lines, wrinkles, and tonal issues. While these options offer fast results, without seriously researching the treatment and long-term effects, the consumer is at risk for irreversible damage to the structures of the skin that protect (our DNA) and support the cellular matrix.
Botox, also known as botulinum toxin type a, is a prescription drug that can be injected into the face and other body parts. “This is the same toxin that causes a life-threatening type of food poisoning called botulism.” (MedlinePlus, Botox) The purpose of the procedure, however, is not to cause food poisoning but instead to paralyze certain muscles that cause fine lines and wrinkles in the face or body. This may not sound terrifying in itself, but repeated injections of botox can cause permanent paralysis in facial muscles. This will lead to skin separation from the muscle, also known as sagging. Other side effects of Botox can include:
- Severe underarm sweating ( from overly-relaxed sweat glands)
- Interference with Blood Glucose Monitoring Systems
- Only lasts 2-6 months
- Cervical Dystonia (neurological disorder that causes contractions in neck and shoulder muscle)
- Blepharospasm (Twitching of eyes)
- Misaligned eyes and facial imbalance
- Drooling (due to overly relaxed muscles)
- Eye dryness
- Chronic migraines
- Overactive bladder
- Serum Sickness (allergic reaction)
Further symptoms of Serum Sickness can include fever, rash, swollen glands, and muscles.
Microdermabrasion is the process of lightly sanding away your skin with tiny exfoliating crystals to reveal a new layer of skin underneath. Its purpose is to revitalize the skin and “get rid of dullness, brown spots, and age spots.” (WebMD, Derma.) The downside to this seemingly harmless procedure is the outer layer of the skin -Keratin is removed with our Melanin-the element that protects us from the harmful effects of radiation damage to our DNA. And the doctors who administer this procedure do not have to be licensed to do so. This opens up a highway of potential problems and health risks that have been documented including:
- Sun sensitivity
- Infections (if instruments are not sanitized properly)
- Skin flare ups
- Reactivation of cold sores
- Not suitable for teenagers and pregnant women
- Thin skin
- Stripping of the keratin layer (the layer that protects us from sun damage and infections)
One of the major downsides to this procedure is the fact that it only has a full effect on individuals with fair skin. Those with darker skin tones will find themselves more prone to permanent discoloration and scarring as it is harder for the doctor to determine when the treatment is over. Darker skin tones will require more treatments to see results, leading to thinner skin.
Restylane is a type of biodegradable dermal filler that adds volume to the face, in turn, reducing the appearance of wrinkles, folds, while adding definition to the cheekbone and chin area. The main ingredients are Hyaluronic acid, which retains water and vitamins in the skin, and NASHA complex, an ingredient that maintains skin firmness. While these ingredients are practically harmless they can migrate to other areas, such as the mouth, and may cause severe allergic reactions.
“The most common side effects of Restylane include a headache, nausea, flu-like symptoms, redness, and pain at the injection point.” (Plasticsergeryguide, Restylane) These usually disappear after 3-5 days after initial injection. Some people may experience severe symptoms such as these:
- Permanent lumpiness in injected area (especially lip injections)
- Urticaria (itching)
- Muscle Weakness
- Allergic reactions
- Hardness in injected area
- Migrating fillers
- Unexpected swelling months after procedure
Alternatives: Managing Stress, Diet, and Adopting A Natural Face Care Routine
Stress and smoking could cause a multiple of facial conditions and premature aging. Consider exercise, yoga and meditation to control stress throughout the body.
A Healing Touch At IPT located in Howell, NJ will be offering many classes through the upcoming Fall into Winter months that will teach each individual coping skills to minimize stress and promote a healthy mind and body. Please come back to visit us in September to see our monthly offering of classes!
Facial Masks and Peels
Facial masks can either be bought online or made at home. They can come in many forms such as powder, liquid, or in sheets. When shopping for a mask online make sure to check the ingredient list for harmful, and useful ingredients. One of the best ingredients to look for is keratin. Keratin is a protein that protects the skin from sun damage and infections.
In addition to keratin, another useful ingredient is vitamin C. Vitamin C helps brighten dullness and promotes collagen production in the skin. You can apply this ingredient either with vitamin C drops (in small amounts) or buy sheet masks that contain it. Of course, there are plenty of helpful ingredients that one may want to research to fully utilize their benefits.
When it comes to peels, it doesn’t have to be an abrasive chemical that could burn or inflame your skin. A simple and effective sugar scrub could be prepared fresh, at home by combining a fine-grained brown sugar to jojoba, primrose, grape seed or olive oils. You may also consider adding high-grade essential oils of Roman or German Chamomile, Lavender or Frankincense to aid skin exfoliation and renewal. This step is optional. Once a week, apply scrub gently to face with slow circles from the forehead -over fine lines and follow up with 20-30 pats of warm to cooler water to achieve a nourishing exfoliation that will safely remove dead skin and leave keratin layer intact.
5 Step Facial Care System
Most of the time we get lazy when it comes to skincare and think it’s enough to simply cleanse and moisturize. However, there are 5 basic steps to keep your skin healthy and youthful. These steps will save you lots of money in the long run as the skin will stay healthy and radiant. Botox, dermabrasions, and fillers will become a thing of the past.
The first step is to gently cleanse your face with a good pH balanced cleanser. Massaging the face for a few minutes will relax the facial muscles, open pores, and loosen any dirt on the surface of the skin. If heavy makeup is worn, it is best to first cleanse the face with an oil based cleanser as it will help break down the makeup.
Next, one would exfoliate with a gentle scrub containing a base of sugar or honey. Exfoliating removes all the dead skin cells and helps smooth out skin. This should only be done once a week as over-exfoliating can thin your skin.
After properly cleansing your skin and stripping it from all the dirt, your skin will need to be protected with a pH balancing toner that will maintain a slightly acidic environment to help the skin ward off bacteria and viruses.
After the toner has been absorbed, a light moisturizer should be applied to reintroduce moisture back into your skin.
The final step is to apply a moisturizing face cream. These creams are usually heavier and are meant to be applied at night for a more effective absorption to aid in cellar repair that occurs in the basement membrane of skin where fibroblasts stimulation promotes collagen and elastin production-the elements necessary for the maintenance of healthy, toned tissues.
The GIftsOfNatureorganics line of products offers natural and organic options free of any additives and chemicals. Balancing toners, moisturizers, and facial cleansers are made to order and offer different products for different skin types. Such as:
Vitamin C promotes the production of collagen in your body the same way as when it is applied to your face. When you eat foods rich in vitamin C -such as kale, strawberries, guava, grapefruits, and oranges- our bodies distribute the vitamins to every organ in our body, this includes our skin, the largest organ.
Opting for organic products guarantees the best nutritional makeup, with a higher vitamin and mineral content. As this can be expensive, finding a reputable supplement provider is the next best thing.
SmoothSculpt: A Safe & Effective Alternative to Injections
One of the leading, all natural, alternatives to botox and fillers is SmoothSculpt. SmoothSculpt is a non-surgical face treatment that reduces the signs of aging without using injections, chemicals, or surgery. Air is rhythmically pumped against the skin in a pulsating motion to help unclog and drain a stagnate lymphatic system while promoting the production of collagen and elastin. Over time, fine lines and wrinkles start to fade and skin becomes more firm and toned. Results are achievable in only 6-12 sessions, 1 per week, with one maintenance treatment per month after the results you seek have been achieved.
Our prices start at $120 for 1 treatment or $90 for each treatment if bought in a package of 6 or more.
Our licensed and trained personal spend an hour each session to perform an individualized program that extends into home care to achieve optimal results.
NYC Spas charge $205 for 1 treatment with a six-month wait list due to popularity. Call our office today, at (732) 223-5521 to set up a free consultation and trial.