Blog

Special Event – Have Glowing Skin for the Holidays! November 12th, 2015

Wink_SkinPen_Microneedling

Wink Fun with the University of Texas Tennis Club!

WinkMed_Texas.Tennis.ClubWe had an amazing time at the University of Texas Tennis Club last night to kick of their Member/Guest Tournament!  Thank you all so much for inviting Wink!  Watching “Andre Agassi” and the others play some unbelievable tennis was so much fun!  Good luck to all the ladies today!

SKIN CARE FOR THE FABULOUS FORTIES!

In our 20s, we were busy figuring out “who am I?”. We were going to school, going out on the town, going on dates, selecting our chosen careers and deciding what direction our lives should take. There was a lot of uncertainty—and there should be at that age. It was our time to make mistakes, fall down and learn how to get back up.

Our 30s were spent with long, thankless hours at the office proving ourselves, raising kids, pediatrician visits, soccer games, work deadlines, ballet recitals, and sitting up all night when the kids had the flu—and I wouldn’t trade any of that for all the money in the world.
But I woke up on my 40th birthday feeling like a switch had flipped and a light had come on. The truth was that at 40, I had finally become comfortable with my own identity. It’s one of the most empowering and incredible feelings when one accepts and embraces themselves, their past and their future. I have never been happier in my life than I am in my 40s. I don’t question or base my worth on the perception of others. I feel really good: Liberated. Solid. Confident. Content.

Conversely, when I looked in the mirror, I didn’t recognize the person looking back at me. When did my lips start turning downward and these lines on my forehead begin to look so harsh? Suddenly, this newfound confidence 40 years in the making took a little hit.
The sad truth, my friends, is that aging happens to all of us. And while we don’t have to like it, we also don’t have to accept it; in fact, we can match what we feel on the inside to what appears on the outside. Together, we can help correct some of this aging nonsense with just a few simple modifications.

Each decade our hormones change, and this is probably the biggest factor in our skincare frustrations. There are, of course, both intrinsic (genetics) and external factors (UV exposure, lifestyle) that contribute to accelerated skin aging. And while no two people are the same, we all share commonality in the aging process.

Women in their 40s and 50s fall into the category of peri-menopausal, which refers to the timeframe (up to 10 years before actual menopause) when estrogen production slows down.
Estrogen production affects very key functions in the skin. It helps regulate the rate of skin cell turnover, or how quickly our skin produces new cells. When our bodies produce less estrogen, it signals to the skin to slow down its cellular turnover process.

This means that dead skin cells are collecting on the surface of the skin, making lines look deeper, brown spots darker and, generally, the skin appear duller, less plump and less youthful overall.

In addition, collagen loss starts to manifest during our 40s, causing wrinkles to appear more prominent. This loss of underlying structure prompts a thinning of the epidermis, which can cause skin to look crepey, and may lead to sagginess and neck wattles. We may also develop shadows, blotches and dark under-eye circles as a result of thinning skin and volume loss.
We’re also left with the tell-tale signs of accelerated photo-aging on our faces, arms, hands and legs as those once-darling freckles and brown spots that have accrued from years of sun exposure start to darken.

Now that we know the specific skin care issues we face in our 40s and beyond, let’s talk about the key ingredients that can help to correct them.

KEY INGREDIENT: ANTIOXIDANTS
Free radicals can be introduced in many different ways: via the environment in the form of UV radiation or pollutants, for example, or through lifestyle in the form of smoking. These scavenger particles of oxygen start to destroy organic substances (like proteins) in your body and skin. Once the proteins are damaged, the result is oxidation, which is similar to the process of metal rusting or apples browning after being cut. In the skin, free radicals lead to oxidative destruction characterized by loss of collagen, skin wrinkling, and darkening of pigment.
The only way to neutralize free radicals is to employ antioxidants (think vitamins C and E), which act as free radical scavengers. Regardless of how cleanly you eat or how healthy you are, only about 20 percent of antioxidants you take orally will make it to your skin; your body will disperse them elsewhere. Therefore, you need a strong topical antioxidant to deliver the benefits directly on top of the skin.

KEY INGREDIENTS: GROWTH FACTORS & PEPTIDES
Growth factors are the proteins responsible for rejuvenating skin. Topical growth factors are absorbed into the skin and then trigger a signal cascade to help support proteins in the extra cellular matrix: collagen and elastin. Peptides, too, help support collagen and elastin.

KEY INGREDIENT: RETINOL
Vitamin A, or retinol, is one of the only vitamins our bodies cannot produce naturally, and yet it is essential to maintaining the integrity of the skin. It plays a key role in the growth, elasticity, strength and renewal of skin tissue. Retinol stimulates cellular turnover, resulting in a refinement of texture as well as a reduction in the appearance of fine lines and pigmentation.

PRODUCT PICK: Retinol Complex
SkinMedica’s new Retinol Complex helps to renew the skin and improve its texture and tone without the irritation common with so many retinol products. It is available in three strengths: 0.25 (low), 0.5 (medium) and 1.0 (high). Your dermatologist or skin care specialist can determine which formula is best for your skin type.

KEY FEATURE: SPF
When committing to a healthy skin care routine, an SPF of 30 to 50 is a necessity. Broad-spectrum sunscreen protects against UVA damage, the primary cause of skin aging, as well as the UVB rays that lead to sunburn. And there’s no need to go beyond SPF 50: You won’t get more protection, just additional chemicals on the skin.

PRODUCT PICK: TOTAL DEFENSE + REPAIR Broad Spectrum Sunscreen SPF 34 For daily use
This Revolutionary superscreen goes beyond UV protection to defend against harmful infrared rays while supporting the skin’s ability to restore itself.

Work these ingredients into your daily skin care routine, and you’ll have all your bases covered with the best products on the market. And ask your skin care specialist about in-office treatments to help fight aging and keep skin looking its best.

Authored by Michelle Palcic; Posted by SkinMedica.

For Better Skin, Start with Sleep

Slide1Maintaining a healthy sleep schedule can be downright, well, exhausting. According to recent statistics, 30 percent of the nation’s adults get inadequate sleep on a regular basis. Proper sleep is vital for a healthy body and mind, and for weight stability, mental health, and improved immunity. Sufficient slumber also improves the skin’s overall appearance and helps give the skin a healthy, vibrant glow. And the effects of beauty sleep aren’t just skin-deep: Healthy skin acts as an external barometer of the body’s overall health.

One of the main functions of sleep is to allow the brain to rest. Much like a computer on standby mode, the brain cools down as we sleep. During the nighttime hours, the body’s focus shifts from basic functions, such as movement and digestion, to repair. Sleep is restorative on a global level for all organs, including the skin—and quality, uninterrupted sleep allows these reparative processes to work most efficiently.

During this period, several key internal processes aid in skin renewal and repair. The shunting of blood away from muscle tissue encourages increased blood flow to the skin, which helps to transport vital nutrients to its surface while aiding in the regeneration of skin cells. And with proper sleep, blood vessels constrict, helping to give the skin more even tone; on the contrary, after sleep deprivation, blood vessels dilate, causing redness, flushing and those persistent dark circles.Sleep is also a primary modulator of human growth hormone, which spikes within four hours of falling asleep. Growth hormone promotes collagen synthesis and contributes to the firmness and healthy appearance of the skin. In addition, getting ample sleep helps balance estrogen levels to support better moisture retention.

While a good night’s sleep plays a primary role in skin repair and the renewal of collagen, sleep deprivation can wreak havoc on the body’s global hormone levels. Aptly called the “stress hormone,” cortisol is released by the adrenal glands in response to stress and is shown to increase after sleep loss. In addition to having a negative impact on the immune system—and a direct link to weight gain—high cortisol levels ramp up hypersensitivity to various toxins and allergies, and may make the skin more susceptible to rashes, eczema, psoriasis, rosacea flare-ups, and autoimmune diseases.

Elevated cortisol also stimulates oil production, which can lead to an increase in acne breakouts. And while aging doesn’t occur overnight, a long-term increase in cortisol can accelerate the aging process, which over time can age the skin far beyond its chronological years.

In recent years, studies have illustrated the need for not only sufficient sleep, but quality sleep. A newly published clinical trial conducted at Cleveland’s University Hospitals Case Medical Center studied the connection between sleep and skin function. Researchers found that poor-quality sleepers were more susceptible to signs of intrinsic skin aging, including fine lines, uneven pigmentation and decreased elasticity, while good-quality sleepers were better able to recover from skin stressors, such as sunburn.

Simply put, merely being in bed each night does not a good night’s sleep make. To sleep more soundly, start by reversing bad habits.Slide1 Try to avoid the use of electronic devices immediately before bed, as they stimulate the visual cortex of the brain, preventing relaxation. A hot bath or shower before bedtime can help to relax the body while stimulating the production of growth hormone. It’s also important to choose a sleeping space wisely: A dark room encourages the release of melatonin, a powerful antioxidant that not only fights aging in the body, but also helps to promote restful sleep.

An evening skin care routine need not be complicated; in fact, the most effective way to get good skin is to let the skin’s inherent repair processes do what they do best. Simple steps, like drinking water before bed and using a topical moisturizer, will help to keep the skin hydrated. The use of proven ingredients like retinol and growth factors, such as those found in SkinMedica® TNS Essential Serum®, will help rejuvenate skin.

Ultimately, achieving healthy, beautiful skin comes down to consistency in lifestyle, skin care routine and yes, sleep habits. Aim for at least six to eight hours of sleep nightly to ensure that the body’s hormonal processes are at their most effective. When hormones are stable over the long-term, the skin will reflect this balance and will appear more youthful and vibrant over time.

Good Skin Health Starts With A Skin Care Professional

Your body’s natural healing and restructuring properties serve as the inspiration for all SkinMedica® products and no one understands how those properties work better than your physician or skin care professional. Just as your physician plays a key role in helping you maintain good overall health, he or she plays an important role in helping you maintain healthy skin.

All of our products are part of a medically supervised skin care regimen. For optimal results, consult your physician or skincare professional to:

* Help determine which treatment regimen is best for you based on your skin condition, previous procedures and lifestyle

* Analyze your skin care routine and help you understand what’s working

* Help determine what you can do to further enhance the health-and beauty-of your skin

Ultherapy… An Uplift, Not a Facelift!

Sample Blog Image

When patients initially come to see me, a common request I hear is, “I want to look younger, but not plastic”. My immediate response it “Ultherapy!”

Usually with an enticing look on their face, they say “what is that?”…

Well, to give you a brief summary, here’s what I usually say: “Ultherapy or Ulthera will tone loose or wrinkled skin by using the body’s own healing response. Ulthera will tighten the neck and jowls or lift a sagging brow, for example, which in turn reduces the excess eyelid skin, giving the eyes a more refreshed appearance. It requires no special preparation and results typically appear after one treatment. The ultimate lifting will take two to three months, as rejuvenated, stronger collagen replaces the existing tired collagen in your skin.”

To get a little bit more detailed, I’ve included a few frequently asked questions about Ultherapy:

What is Ultherapy?
Ultherapy is a non-surgical face treatment that uses ultrasound to actually lift and tone loose or sagging skin without any downtime by using the body’s own healing response.

What is so different about this procedure?
Ultherapy is the only non-invasive treatment that can specifically target the deep foundation below the skin that is addressed in cosmetic surgery without cutting or disrupting the surface of the skin. It is also the only procedure to use ultrasound imaging, which allows us to actually see the layers of tissue we target during treatment and ensure the energy is deposited precisely to where it will be most effective.

How does Ulthera work?
Ultherapy deposits focused ultrasound energy below the surface of the skin to stimulate the body’s creation of new collagen. As a result, skin will actually begin to lift and tone over time.

What does collagen do?
Collagen is a natural protein that gives skin its youthfulness by keeping it firmed, toned and elastic. As we age, collagen loses its elasticity and its ability to stand up to the effects of gravity that pull the skin downward. Ultherapy jump starts a repair process that produces fresh, new collagen.

Is Ultherapy surgery?
No. Unlike a face lift, Ultherapy is a non-invasive procedure that addresses the skin and support layers below it, but doesn’t entail cutting or disrupting the surface of the skin.

What does collagen do?
Collagen is a natural protein that gives skin its youthfulness by keeping it firmed, toned and elastic. As we age, collagen loses its elasticity and its ability to stand up to the effects of gravity that pull the skin downward. Ultherapy jump starts a repair process that produces fresh, new collagen.

Is Ultherapy surgery?
No. Unlike a face lift, Ultherapy is a non-invasive procedure that addresses the skin and support layers below it, but doesn’t entail cutting or disrupting the surface of the skin.

While Ultherapy is not a replacement for a surgical face lift, there are many people who want some lifting but are not ready for surgery, either mentally, financially or logistically. There are also younger people who want to “stay ahead of the game” as well as those looking to prolong the effects of cosmetic surgery.

How long does the ultrasound treatment take?
A full face treatment takes 45-60 minutes, and a partial face or brow lift treatment can take around 30 minutes–neither with any downtime. This is why it’s been nick-named “The lunch-time face-lift”.

What problem areas does Ultherapy target? What kind of results do you get?
Ultherapy addresses mild to moderate loose or sagging skin. Specifically, by reconditioning and renewing the skin from within, Ultherapy will lift the brow, which in turn reduces excess skin on the lids, opens up the eyes, and gives a more refreshed look overall.

How long until I see results?
Patients may enjoy some initial effect but the ultimate lifting and toning will take place over 2-3 months, as tired collagen is replaced with new, more elastic collagen. As this collagen-building process continues, further improvements can appear up to 6 months following a procedure.

How long do results last?
Patients treated with Ultherapy still have fresh young collagen after a year’s time following the procedure, but skin continues to age. Future touch-up treatments can help keep pace with the aging process, which varies by individual.

Will I need more than one treatment?
The majority of patients only need one treatment; however, some may benefit from more than one treatment (depending on how much laxity they have and their body’s own biological response to the ultrasound and collagen-building process).

Is there any downtime?
Ultherapy is an entirely non-invasive procedure and as such, there is no downtime. You are able to return to your normal activities right away, and there are no special measures you need to take.

Will I feel the ultrasound during the treatment?
Yes. What you are feeling during the treatment is actually tiny amounts of focused ultrasound energy being deposited below the surface of the skin.

What does it feel like?
Comfort thresholds vary from patient to patient, but there can be some discomfort while the ultrasound energy is being delivered. This is temporary and a positive signal that the collagen-building process has been initiated.

Your practitioner will consult with you prior to your skin treatment to make your experience as pleasant as possible. Patients typically leave comfortable and excited about the benefits to come!

Are there any side effects?
There may be slight redness for up to an hour or so following the treatment, and a small percentage of patients may have slight swelling, tingling or tenderness to touch, but these are mild and temporary in nature. There is always the possibility for other less common post-procedural effects, which your practitioner will review with you.

So… does it really work? Yes! I’ve seen the magnificent results and will be going in for my own treatment soon!.. Very excited!

The Buzz on Belotero

Sample Blog Image Have you heard about Belotero, the latest entry into the facial fillers line-up? It can get confusing with all the players in the hyaluronic acid fillers field, so we thought we might help clear up some of the confusion.

Much like Juvederm, Restylane and Perlane, Belotero is hyaluronic acid dermal filler for the superficial lines and moderate to severe wrinkles on the face and is designed to add subtle volume and plumpness to facial tissue. This hyaluronic acid-based gel offers natural looking results with little recovery time. Since the gel is softer than most other products on the market, it integrates into facial skin more easily and adapts to facial contours. Of the patients who have been treated with Belotero, many have stated that they see immediate results with reduction of wrinkles but the results are more natural and subtle when compared with other HA fillers.

Belotero, developed by Merz Aesthetics, has been in use in Europe for several years and has been recently approved by the FDA for cosmetic use in the United States. The side effects have been the typical ones for facial fillers; some temporary bruising, redness or swelling for certain patients.

As we see it, the main difference between Belotero and some of the other HA fillers, is that it is designed to treat superficial facial lines and moderate to severe wrinkles that are closer to the surface of the skin. At times, in inexperienced hands, facial fillers such as Juvederm leave a bluish hue under the skin called the Tyndall Effect, when it is injected too superficially, particularly under the eyes.

Another benefit of Belotero is that it claims to last longer than other HA fillers, which claim to last up to 12 months. This is rare as most people see results for about 3-6 months following treatment with typical HA products. Merz claims that Belotero lasts on the average of 12 months compared to 6-8 for Juvederm. We’ll have to wait and see on this one.

Belotero may find a special niche in the dermal facial filler industry by allowing physicians to treat superficial fine lines without the worry about the Tyndall Effect. The natural ability of the product to be absorbed into the skin will make it useful for treatments ranging from lines around the mouth, under the eyes where skin is the thinnest, and for the lines between the eyes.

To find out more about Belotero or other dermal fillers, contact the Center for Aesthetics and Plastic Surgery today.