Thursday, February 2, 2012

When it comes to the perfect pout, what do your lips say?

How do you get those lips that say “I’m young, I’m fertile,” not quack quack, I just got my lips done? Truth be told, according to Dr. Few, until recently that natural fullness was hard to achieve with existing FDA-approved products for the lips, leaving many women—literally—with a permanent pout. But in April 2011 an FDA panel formally recommended Restylane for use in lip injections, which was formally approved in October 2011. And who was there to advise said panel on this lip indication? Dr. Few, naturally.

He says that Restylane works with his less-is-more approach because this kiss amplifier creates natural-looking lips and it’s safe in all skin types—perfect for his practice, which emphasizes a balanced approach to cosmetic surgery. (No sausage lips here.)

And as much as none of us want to look like we’re getting older, we’re definitely not fooling anyone by wiping all signs of it away. Dr. Few says getting older is a good thing (on many levels), and it can be even better with natural, less invasive enhancements, such as Restylane for the lips.

But how to get those natural-looking lips? Here are a few tips from the doc himself:

  1. The upper lip shouldn’t be larger than the lower lip.
    “Although Julia Roberts has a larger upper lip [and pulls it off!], it’s generally an unnatural proportion and will result in an unnatural looking lip,” says Dr. Few.
  2. Enhance your natural lip definition.
    “Don’t just make your lips bigger. This is a common mistake that creates those unnaturally protruding ‘duck lips’.”
  3. Don’t expect to erase all your lip and mouth ridges and folds.
    “If you inject too much filler, the skin will stretch and create what we call ‘sausage lips’.”
  4. Maintain your filler. (Restylane lasts approximately 6 months.)
    “Regular maintenance of your lips will create a more natural look, so don’t wait until it disappears to get a refill.”
  5. Avoid permanent fillers in the lips.
    “While the idea of a permanent filler is appealing, if you don’t like your result, you’ll have to have it surgically removed. As we like to say in the industry, permanent fillers, permanent problems.”

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

What IPL can do for you

If you’ve got skin damage caused by aging, sun exposure or other environmental factors, non-invasive skin rejuvenation with Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) may be just what the doctor orders!

What it is:

IPL is a laser procedure that uses specific wavelengths of light to diminish discolorations (age spots, freckles) and restore the smooth texture your skin had before it was damaged by the sun and other environmental factors. (Goodbye fine lines and wrinkles!)

Who it’s for:

The IPL procedure is safe, effective and gentle on all skin types and conditions and is performed as an in-office treatment in about 20 minutes. Pain is minimal (you may experience a slight stinging sensation).

No downtime:

Your skin may be red or blotchy after treatment, but usually disappears in around an hour. (No downtime required!) As for those age spots, they may become darker initially, but they will fade or flake off in the near term.

Maximum results:

For the best results, multiple treatments are required (3 to 5) every 4 weeks. This allows for gradual treatment, and improvement, that is gentle on the skin.

Importantly, you must take special measures to protect your skin from the sun's damaging rays after treatment. Not only will your skin be more sensitive while it is healing, but protecting it is the only way to maintain your rejuvenation results.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Lasers: No Pain, No Gain?

Lasers have earned the status of "miracle treatment" for many skin concerns: rosacea, age spots, wrinkles, hair removal, scar treatments and more. But the idea of having a laser zap your skin directly, possibly in multiple succession? That would make even the toughest of us squirm a little.

Truth be told, in the land of lasers there is a common misperception that you have to grit your teeth and bare it. It's time to toss this idea. No matter what laser procedure on your calendar, you shouldn’t have to be gearing yourself up mentally for it by chanting the mantra “no pain, no gain.”

The key? It's simple: pain management. Pain killers, numbing creams and advancements in laser technology are all ways to minimize—even eliminate—laser-related pain. Your doctor should advise you on your best options based on his or her knowledge of the lasers in the practice and also be the one who provides those solutions. Laser companies also know that if they can minimize pain and enhance comfort, they’ll keep both patients and practices happy. For example, one way newer laser technologies can achieve this is with an attachment that literally cools the skin during treatment.

At the end of the day, you shouldn't find your laser treatments painful and uncomfortable. If you do, it's time to request a different laser or move on to a different practice!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Get Your Winter Glow On

Feeling pasty and pale this winter? Ditch the idea of turning to the damaging effects of indoor tanning, and save your money on those expensive (and very temporary) spray tans! Turns out, you can eat your way to golden skin—Whether it’s carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkins or squash, if it’s got a high levels of carotenoids (and these yellow and orange vegetables do!), it’s great for your skin color!

Dr. Ian Stephen and colleagues at The University of Nottingham conducted research earlier this year that showed that eating a healthy diet rich in fruit and vegetables gives you a healthy glow that mimics that of the sun. But even better, they claim that eating lots of fruit and vegetables is actually more effective. Their paper was published in the Journal Evolution and Human Behaviour.

Here’s what they found...

Those who eat more portions of high-level carotenoid fruit and vegetables each day have a more of a naturally golden skin color. Carotenoids are antioxidants, which are important for our immune systems, combatting those damaging compounds produced by the stress, strain, and disease. How do you know if what you’re eating has carotenoids? Color. If it’s red, orange or yellow, it’s just the glow-getter you’re looking for!

The researchers report that when test subjects compared suntanned skin and carotenoid-colored skin, they preferred the natural glow of the carotenoid-colored skin. Their conclusion? “... if you want a healthier and more attractive skin colour, you are better off eating a healthy diet with plenty of fruit and vegetables than lying in the sun."

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Your Botox Best

Getting the best out of Botox? It’s simple. The general guideline is to go in to your doctor’s office every 3 to 4 months for re-treatment. But whether you’re cost conscious or simply have trouble committing to appointment dates months out, you may want to wait until you know it’s time for a Botox brush up. The question is, how do you know?

Without a doubt, the easiest way to maintain your wrinkle-free results, is to follow the standard guidelines and plan to schedule your appointment on a regular basis. However, according to Dr. Few, there are a couple of tell-tale signs that signal a green light for your next treatment.

First, you may notice that you involuntarily find your eyebrows lifting along with your entire brow. This is a case of your elevator muscles (the ones that pull the brow up) coming back to life before the depressors do (the muscles that pull the brow down and work with the elevators to maintain balance).

Second, you may experience a slight twitch around the eye.

In either case, Dr. Few explains these as “signs of your muscles waking up after being asleep for awhile.”

And even if you are the type who commit to a regular schedule, knowing when it’s time to re-treat will come in helpful if and when an adjustment in your schedule may be needed. Consider this: Recent research has shown that over time, that you may need fewer treatments per year to maintain your results.

A study published in the medical, peer-reviewed journal Dermatologic Surgery this June treated fifty women between the ages of 30 and 50 for two years. They found that if patients receive Botox every 4 months for 2 years, treatment can be reduced to as little as every 6 months.

In this case, knowing whether it’s 2 or 3 treatments you need could mean having an extra $500 in your pocket. And that, ladies, you can take to the bank!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Your Best Winter Skin Yet

Ladies, it’s time to leave dehydration to fruit snacks. This winter get your skin fix by knowing the facts.

Winter brings with it a double skin drying whammy: cooler temperatures and artificial heat. Add some unprotected sun exposure to the mix and you’ve got the perfect recipe for parched winter skin. But you don't have to accept these unwanted seasonal skin symptoms. With three simple points, you can NO to dehydrated winter skin and YES to your best winter skin yet.

1. Recognize it. You know your skin is dehydrated when it feels dry and tight. Severely dry skin often looks scaly and flaky. But beyond discomfort and lack of aesthetic appeal, skin in this condition is also more susceptible to premature aging and wrinkles.

2. Understand it. In the winter months, dehydration can cause an imbalance in your skin’s pH levels, compromising the skin’s ability to produce sebum and retain moisture. The skin becomes dry and accumulates dead cells, yet another barrier to the products you apply topically for moisture.

3. Prepare it. Whether it's your favorite over-the-counter facial scrub or glycolic acid treatment or a lunchtime peel at your cosmetic surgeon's office, preparing your skin is the first step in preparing your skin for optimal condition. The second step? Using the right products, of course! Consider a physician-developed line such as JF Aesthetic, which is formulated to balance the skin and retain or restore the skin's natural moisture barrier.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Making of the 'Mommy Makeover'

It’s a fact: Multiple pregnancies can leave your formerly perky girls hanging out to dry—literally. And unless you’ve got great genes and a naturally slim physique (which is no guarantee either!), that formerly trim tummy is wrinkled, protrudes, sags—maybe all of the above. Ladies, after you’ve given it all up for your kids, it’s no wonder you’ve made the breast augmentation-tummy tuck combination procedure, otherwise known as the “mommy makeover,” a growing trend!

But what was initially just a trend, today, nearly a decade after the phrase was first coined, it’s certainly earned status as a tried-and-true combination of procedures that restores (perhaps even improves) the original contours of your body.

So while technologies may evolve and products come and go, one thing’s for sure: As sure as we’ll continue to procreate, the mommy makeover is here to stay.