Skincare can be a frustrating journey from time to time. Depending on what stage you are in your journey results can vary. Remember this: skincare is healthcare and it should be an on-going commitment to achieve healthy, confident skin. If you are in a preventative stage of your skincare for age management and you receive facials regularly with a professional skin therapist but you are yearning more…let’s talk about some advanced options to incorporate at home.
Perhaps you’ve seen some interesting looking gadgets online meant to lift and tone. A tool for depuffing or even a light to increase collagen. The beauty industry is packed with machines and tools and gizmos to promise this and that. And companies do a great job marketing those promises, but buyer beware. I love machines and technology in skincare. I love science and methods of proven results. I don’t however like to be tricked into false promises. I am happy to see companies making devices that are available for home-use because it creates a convenient, no excuses reason to reach your skincare goals. Now that does not mean I recommend going out and buying every home device available – you will certainly become overwhelmed and discontinue using them and then be back to the drawing board.
Home-use LED lights can prove amazing results especially for the frequency required of this kind of therapy. In the clinic we use LED to promote cellular health, heal acne, stimulate collagen and even pain management. We recommend 2-3 treatments per week for a period of time, sometimes 3- 4 consecutive weeks. So you can see how it might benefit having a small handheld device or panel at home. However, a billion light devices are available to consumers on marketplaces like Amazon. A few reputable names I trust are: Lighstim, Celluma and My Skin Buddy. They all offer light frequencies that do not contain ultraviolet rays and are readily absorbed into the skin. While LED is safe and effective, I would still recommend consulting with a skin therapist before using one and to help create a home routine.
We all desire toned and lifted skin especially as signs of aging become more noticeable. Fortunately, it is possible to achieve some lifting and toning for the face without a face lift. Several modalities exist for this treatment, in combination with topical products and healthy lifestyle choices.
Microcurrent is one of my favorite technologies that provides a “workout” for the face. It is a non-invasive treatment that uses low level electrical impulses to signal to our muscles. It should be gentle and relaxing. I highly recommend microcurrent in-clinic when someone is concerned with aging. A great preventative and correction therapy. Consistency is key here just like working out at the gym therefore this type of home device can be beneficial here. A few brands I have used and trust are: 7e Wellness and NuFace. I’ve heard great things about ZIIP which costs a bit more but I have not personally tried it. I have also tried PureLift and did not love the feeling of this device as it can be uncomfortable and my research has led me to believe true microcurrent shouldn’t cause twitching.
High Frequency is another toning type of treatment that uses ultrasound waves that passes through a gas filled electrode of either neon or argon. An amazing non-invasive method that also treats skin conditions such as acne, wrinkles and hair loss. During high frequency treatment oxygen molecules are produced to create an anti-bacterial and thermal warming action. This action helps blood vessels to push away toxins, create volume, increase blood circulation that supports collagen and elastin levels. In the clinic I use high frequency to heal acne, after waxing, during an age-management facial and during scalp treatments. It’s very therapeutic but should only be used with complete understanding of the technology. Home devices are available but I would encourage trained services for this one.
Radio Frequency: Like high frequency this type of treatment uses energy or radio frequency waves to heat the skin’s deeper layers to stimulate collagen. While both HF and RF sound similar they actually do use different technologies to heat up the deep skin tissues. While I’m only scratching the surface here these treatments both help to deliver firmer, softer and luminous skin and should be done under a professional practice. You will find RF devices online and can sound appealing especially when trying to treat certain problem areas like cellulite but be cautious on your investment with these machines. This would be an area I’ll say you get what you pay for.
Skin Scrubbers: These can be anything from a blade-like handheld to rotating brushes to silicone cleansing devices. I will say this…they are fun. I don’t believe the will administer game changing results but they can enhance your products efficacy. They can support a deeper, more thorough cleanse and simply feel nice. Be more cautious with brushes as to not over stimulate your skin in a form of physical exfoliation, even when “sensitive” brush heads are used. Some blade-like devices can be packed with impressive technology and in the clinic I personally love using one that incorporates ultrasonic technology by Bio Therapeutic and they do offer a couple of fun handheld devices for retail. I’ve also tried and enjoyed My Skin Buddy which is a multi-function device using ultrasonic and led technology.
Tools: Beautiful and dainty tools like gua sha stones and rollers – steal, jade or other stones can also be fun and beneficial. Not only do they look pretty on your vanity but if kept in a refrigerator they feel amazing. Used with some facial oil you can provide yourself a relaxing lymphatic massage or help with undereye depuffing or jawline sculpting. Consistency is key to honestly see a result here otherwise these are simple therapeutic tools.
Some additional tools I absolutely love and are worth having at home are ice globes or a derma roller. I use ice globes in the clinic as a way to calm down reactive skin or over a mask, they truly feel amazing.
Devices are not meant to replace professional skin services but simply compliment them to enhance your results. Homecare is crucial and while I always recommend products and lifestyle changes to obtain goals, machines are an optional way to escalate your goals.
If devices are not quite your bag of tea then the following are 5 easy device-free and product-free ways to manage your skin and health too.
1.exercise: The benefits of exercise are endless. When we exercise we increase blood flow which carries oxygen and nutrients to our cells and skin. Releasing endorphins and detoxing is an excellent way to achieve a healthy appearance. However, working out can also trap dirt and debris, cause chaffing or rashing so be sure to cleanse and moisturize immediately after a sweat session. Go ahead and get that post-gym glow!
2. relax/sleep: Getting quality sleep is important to your organs – especially the skin. Proper rest aids in our nightly restoration of our skin. That includes repairing, rejuvenating and regulating. Ever wake up with dark, puffy under eye circles – it’s often due to sleeplessness. When you aren’t getting enough sleep stress begins to increase and we know that is a trigger for skin conditions including acne and pigmentation and aging. So go ahead and get some zzz’s!
3. water consumption: Yes drinking water helps your skin look smooth and healthy. It helps to not only keep our skin hydrated but flush out toxins that can otherwise disrupt a clear complexion. But what if you drink a ton of water and still feel dry? Enter skincare: sometimes our skin just has a higher rate of transepidermal water loss where water from the dermis passes through the epidermis and evaporates into the air. It’s a natural way our skin regulates water content. If you are losing a lot of moisture it could be a sign of skin barrier damage. But keep drinking your water!
4. limit sugar intake: While enjoying the occasion cookie or cake is not the worst thing in the world, excess helpings and hidden sugars is where we get into trouble and this does affect our skin. Sugar is linked to causing inflammation and glycation which have negative impacts on the skin including making your skin look older. So say goodbye to sugar, or at least reduce your consumption.
5. Limit sun exposure: It is not necessary to soak in the sun to get your vitamin D. While we need vitamin D to absorb calcium there are plenty of ways to get it including supplements and food sources. Yes our skin does have vitamin d receptor cells however the risk of unprotected sun exposure for a period of time is too risky for me. Sun exposure breaks down DNA causing cells to die, become damaged or even mutate into skin cancer. Prolonged and accumulated sun exposure also leads to skin looking prematurely aged causing wrinkles, dark spots and other skin issues that are a lot harder to treat than simply preventing them to begin with. So lather on your SPF everyday, grab your hat and stay out of direct sunlight.
I’m always happy to discuss a machine or skincare product or practice. What machines have you tried and loved or hated? If you live in the Phoenix, Az area schedule a complimentary consultation. Or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org