If you’re looking through the myriad anti-aging treatments out there – think Botox and dermal fillers, to name a few – but you’re worried that people will notice, fear not. There are ways to discreetly work with your dermatology specialist to help fight signs of aging without looking plastic. Here are some tips for choosing the right treatment and the right provider.
Injectables have been increasingly popular for many years. These types of wrinkle reducing treatments provide the best in effectiveness and are quick and easy. While injectables used to be available only to the very wealthy or famous, they’re now much more accessible and moderately priced, making them a more widespread cosmetic treatment option.
Botox works by targeting the muscles around the wrinkles rather than the wrinkle itself. Using an active ingredient of clostridium botulinum, a neurotoxin that causes muscle paralysis, Botox “relaxes” the muscles around the facial crease. The ingredient is injected with one to several needles, blocking the nerve impulses that cause muscle contraction. Over time – typically one to two weeks post-treatment – there is no muscle contraction during smiling, squinting, or frowning. Eventually, the wrinkle smoothes out. Botox isn’t permanent though; it requires touch-ups every three to six months.
Other injectables are considered dermal fillers and work differently from Botox. Filler brands like Restylane and Juvederm don’t use a toxin to cause paralysis, but rather use an active ingredient of hyaluronic acid, which occurs naturally in the body but decreases with age. Adding hyaluronic acid by way of a needle hydrates and plumps skin cells, as well as helping stimulate more of its production in the body. This results in fuller skin cells, which makes for smoother skin and a reduction of the targeted wrinkle. Dermal fillers like Restylane and Juvederm can be used on their own or in conjunction with a treatment like Botox. Like Botox, they require touch-ups every three to six months.
Another popular injectable is called Sculptra. It helps promote collagen production in the skin in order to improve skin’s firmness. Collagen is another naturally occurring substance in the body that decreases in production over time. Sculptra works a little differently from other dermal fillers in that it actually targets the foundation of the face, beneath the top layer of the skin. The treatment uses an active ingredient of poly-L-lactic acid. And instead of needing touch-up treatments every three to six months, results can last up to two years.
There are two primary steps for keeping anyone from knowing you’ve had help with wrinkle reducing treatments: first, choose the correct treatment for your specific concern and target area. Next, choose the right provider to work with.
Botox is usually used to treat the glabellar lines – the furrows that look like “ones” or “elevens” found in the area between the eyebrows. But Botox isn’t ideal for filling in hollow cheekbones or plumping lips. By the same token, injectable dermal fillers are especially popular for volumizing lips and smoothing out nasolabial folds or marionette lines, but they may not work as effectively for smoothing and preventing deep creases in the forehead.
Working with the right dermatology specialist will ensure you receive the appropriate treatment for your concern. Your provider should be knowledgeable about which options are best for you and should have proof of successful administration of these treatments.
If you’re located in the greater New York City area and want to try injectables while keeping things discreet, contact Vanguard Dermatology today for an appointment with one of our board-certified specialists.