Posts for: March, 2017
We are excited to announce that the Juvederm family of fillers contains a new product: Juvederm Vollure. Juvederm Vollure was approved by the FDA on March 20, 2017 for the correction of moderate to severe facial wrinkles and folds. These include the nasolabial folds, also known as the laugh lines or smile lines that go from the sides of the nose to the corners of the mouth. Sometimes the fold continues to the jawline as what we call the marionette lines.
Previously Juvederm and Restylane were the most popular hyaluronic acid fillers for this area. Most people enjoy the results of these products for six to 12 months. However, Juvederm Vollure has been shown to last up to 18 months. This is because it uses Vycross technology. Vycross technology is also used in Juvederm Vollure, Voluma, and Volbella. The cross-linking of the hyaluronic acid in products with Vycross technology is higher, allowing them to last longer.
Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring sugar found in the skin that binds 1,000 times its weight in water. Hyaluronic acid draws water into the skin, restoring volume and improving fine lines and wrinkles. The active ingredient in many fillers such as Juvederm, Voluma, Volbella, Vollure, and Restylane is hyaluronic acid. The great thing about hyaluronic acid fillers is the safety profile. In the event of a side effect or if desired results are not achieved hyaluronic acid fillers can be dissolved.
Hyaluronic acid is also the active ingredient in the A E Skin Hydrating Serum. The A E Skin Hydrating Serum is a topical product applied twice daily which allows for hydration from the outside. When the A E Skin Hydrating Serum is combined with fillers such as Juvederm, Voluma, Volbella, Vollure, and Restylane the results are enhanced and the skin looks even better. The A E Skin Hydrating Serum also works well to complement Botox treatments.
Juvederm Vollure will be available in the near future and we will have more information soon. Dr. Alex has performed over 10,000 cosmetic treatments with many satisfied patients. Contact us for a free consultation with Dr. Alex in our Encino, CA office.
We are excited to announce that we will be offering fractional CO2 laser resurfacing beginning next month in our Encino, CA office.
What is fractional CO2 laser resurfacing?
Fractional CO2 laser resurfacing is a laser that can be used to address multiple aspects of aging in a single treatment. It can address sun damage such as fine lines, wrinkles, and dark spots. It can also improve stretch marks, acne scars, and surgical scars.
How does fractional CO2 laser resurfacing work?
Fractional CO2 laser resurfacing works by creating thousands of microscopic holes in the skin while generating heat. This stimulates collagen to improve fines lines, wrinkles, and loose skin. It also helps with acne scars, surgical scars, and stretch marks. The holes also allow for the removal of deep pigment in the skin which may be difficult to treat with superficial treatments such as topical products, chemical peels, and IPL photofacial treatments.
What happens during the fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment?
Before your fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment we will provide you with the Alastin Skin Nectar to use twice daily starting two weeks prior to the treatment and continuing for two weeks after the treatment. The Alastin Skin Nectar uses a proprietary TriHex peptide technology. This stimulates collagen and elastin and clears the skin matrix. This will help improve the results and reduce your recovery time. Since the fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment is aggressive we will provide you with medications to take by mouth to prevent infection; your safety is our top priority. These are taken once daily starting one day prior to your fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment and continuing for a total of seven days. On the day of your fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment we will apply numbing cream for one hour. We will also provide you with medications to take by mouth to keep you comfortable during the fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment. These medications make you sleepy so you will want someone to drive you home. Immediately before the fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment we will clean your skin with water and cleansing solutions and provide you with eye protection. The fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment takes less than 15 minutes per area. Most people describe it as a hot feeling or pins and needles. Although this sounds scary, most people rate it anywhere from one to five on a scale of 0-10 where 0 is no pain and 10 is intolerable.
What is the recovery like after a fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment?
After your fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment your skin will be red and swollen for several days. Full recovery takes about one week on the face and two weeks from the neck down. The first few days are most significant. Redness that persists longer can be treated with an IPL photofacial treatment four weeks after the treatment. We will provide you with an aftercare kit to use every day to speed up the recovery time. Strict sun avoidance is imperative for the first one to two weeks after the treatment.
How many fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatments will I need?
Most patients see significant results with a single fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment. However, depending on their concerns some people choose to have a second or even third fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment approximately three months after previous fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment.
When will I see results after a fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment?
Initial results are seen four weeks after the fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment. Full results are seen three to six months after the fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment. And most people see continued improvement six to 12 months after the fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment.
How long do the results of the fractional CO2 laser resurfacing last?
The great thing about the fractional CO2 laser resurfacing is that the results are long-lasting. However, since we are constantly aging Dr. Alex recommends a maintenance fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment every one to two years.
What is the difference between fractional CO2 laser resurfacing and Pro Fractional Therapy?
Both of these laser resurfacing treatments are fractional, meaning they do not treat the entire skin. Instead only a fraction of the skin is treated. This is why you see tiny holes. The untreated areas around these holes allow for faster recovery. The Pro Fractional Therapy resurfacing treatment uses a different laser called erbium. The fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment generates more heat than the erbium laser. The heat is useful for stimulating collagen formation so results are seen faster and with fewer treatments. At the same time the recovery time is longer for the fractional CO2 laser resurfacing treatment. Those with darker skin are more sensitive to the heat as it can lead to side effects such as discolorations. Dr. Alex will adjust the settings depending on your skin type and concerns for maximum benefit and safety.
Through the end of March we are happy to offer up to $140 off Botox treatments for new patients or for existing patients treating an additional area. Botox is one of the most popular cosmetic treatments around the world and is used to address wrinkles associated with facial expression. The most common areas treated with Botox are the horizontal lines on the upper forehead seen when we raise our brows, the vertical lines between the brows seen when we frown, and the crow’s feet around the eyes seen when we smile or squint. The results of a Botox treatment are seen within two week of the Botox treatment and most people enjoy the results of their Botox treatment for three to four months.
We participate in the Brilliant Distinctions Program, a rewards program where you get points for treatments and purchasing certain products which can be used toward discounts on subsequent treatments. You can get points for a number of treatments including Botox, Juvederm, Voluma, Volbella, and Kybella as well as purchasing Latisse. Juvederm, Voluma, and Volbella are fillers used to restore lost volume in the face. Kybella is the first and thus-far only FDA-approved, non-surgical, injectable treatment for the double chin. Latisse is a product used to enhance the appearance of eyelashes. For each Botox treatment you receive 200 points, which equates to a $20 discount on your next treatment.
For the rest of the month we have a limited number of additional coupons where new patients receiving Botox or returning patients having a Botox treatment on a new area receive a $50 instant rebate, in addition to any previous Brilliant Distinctions points. Also, you will receive another $50 credit towards the next Botox treatment in addition to the $20 you already receive. This gives up to $140 in savings for Botox treatments. We only have a limited number of Botox rebates available.
One of the most common concerns people have is a loss of their jawline definition. Instead of being sharp and defined, over time the jawline can become softer or even invisible. We now have a number of treatment options to help improve jawline definition.
What causes loss of jawline definition?
The jawline is seen be the protrusion of the jaw bone, or mandible. Over time there are many changes that affect the appearance of the jawline. These occur from both above and below the jawline.
Above the jawline, the fat pads in the mid-face get smaller. At the same time the bony structure of the face changes; the cheekbones move downward and inward. These fat pads and bony structures normally hold up the face and, as a result, the face moves downward. Over time we also naturally lose collagen, the protein in the skin that keeps it firm, tight, and youthful in appearance. As collagen is lost the skin becomes loose and saggy and with gravity the skin of the mid-face and lower face goes down. All of these changes make the jawline less defined.
Below the jawline other changes occur. One is the increase of submental fat. This is the fat under the chin commonly called the double chin. A double chin can be due to age, weight gain, or genetics and is very common. When this gets larger the protrusion of the jaw bone is not as evident and we lose the definition of the jawline. Simultaneously the muscle in the neck just under the skin called the platysma becomes stronger with more use over time. This muscle pulls down on the lower face and when contracted it can also distort the jawline.
How can jawline definition be treated?
To improve your jawline definition all of these factors can be addressed. First it is important to apply sunscreen daily to minimize the effects of sun damage. The sun destroys the collagen in the skin, causing looseness and sagging of the skin.
Voluma is a filler used in the mid-face to restore lost volume. By placing fillers such as Voluma high on the cheek bone, the entire lower face becomes lifted, improving the visibility of the jawline. It also restores the youthful apple of the cheek that is naturally lost over time. By pulling up on the face Voluma also addresses other concerns such as laugh lines (nasolabial folds) and marionette lines.
Fractional CO2 laser resurfacing stimulates your body to naturally produce new, fresh, and healthy collagen. Doing this will tighten the skin, providing a youthful appearance while pulling up on the jawline. Fractional CO2 laser resurfacing has other benefits including treating fine lines, wrinkles, discolorations, and acne scars. Fractional CO2 laser resurfacing can also be used to treat surgical scars and stretch marks. Results are seen slowly with this treatment so patience is important.
Kybella is the first and thus-far only FDA-approved non-surgical injectable treatment for the double chin. The active ingredient in Kybella is a naturally occurring substance produced in the body. When injected into the double chin Kybella will dissolve the fat and it is eliminated naturally by your body over time. A series of Kybella treatments is required over several months. Unlike other treatments such as Botox and fillers, with Kybella maintenance treatments are not required. When the fat in the double chin is removed, the jawline appears more visible and defined.
Botox is a purified protein used to address muscles associated with facial expression. In the neck, Botox can be placed in the platysma muscle, a thin muscle just beneath the skin that pulls the lower face downward. When it becomes very strong sometimes vertical neck can be seen. Botox can be placed in this area to relax the muscle, softening the bands and preventing the muscle from pulling down on the lower face. When this happens the lower face and mid-face are lifted thus improving the jawline definition.