Many of us have excitedly gone to get a facial treatment to pamper our skin, and then been perplexed by a menu more dizzying than Starbucks. This article will help you navigate facial treatments and define some of the terminology used so you can be an informed consumer at your next visit to a medical spa.
Facials typically are at the top of the menu as they are the most superficial treatment for the skin of the face or neck and are safe for most skin types. Facials often have creative names and provide a relaxing cleansing of our face, and sometimes also provide superficial exfoliation with or without deep cleansing of pores. They usually do not have any long-term effect on the deeper layers of skin. When we leave a facial, we have a clean face that is massaged with products and we look fresh for a day or so.
Chemical peels are a mixture of acids applied to the skin to provide a change to the skin. Mild chemical peels provide a superficial exfoliation and brightening of the skin. Mild chemical peels typically use a very low strength of one acid so there is no sloughing of skin after the procedure. Medium and deep chemical peels use higher strengths of one acid or a combination of acids to provide a mild injury to the skin which in turn stimulates brand new skin growth. This can mean an increase in collagen production, decreases in pigment and tightening of the skin which can lead to long-term improvements in the skin. Medium and deep chemical peels stimulate the skin to turnover new skin bringing old skin cells to the surface, which can cause mild sloughing of the skin for a few days after the treatment.
Microdermabrasion is an abrasive instrument used to provide superficial exfoliation with tiny crystals. It often feels like your skin is being sanded and then a vacuum system sucks the crystals back into the machine and your skin feels a bit like it’s being vacuumed. It is good for young healthy skin, but not ideal for aging skin or sensitive skin. It does not provide any long-term change to the skin.
Dermaplaning is a procedure done by a nurse or physician with the edge of a surgical scalpel. It provides a deeper superficial exfoliation than most procedures, because it not only takes off dead skin cells but also all the light fuzzy hairs on the face (vellus hairs). This procedure is usually done before a facial or a chemical peel to “open” the skin to enhance product absorption significantly.
Now there is also a new device available in some high-end medical spas called Hydrafacial TM to make your choice easier. Hydrafacial TM is a medical grade device which provides a combination of several of the above procedures to provide, not only short term glowing skin, but also long-term skin health. It is a three-step procedure with no discomfort and no downtime. It uses a patented process call “vortex fusion” which uses water at higher pressures to not only exfoliate the skin but also embed product deep into the skin. The first step of Hydrafacial TM is exfoliation and a mild chemical peel. The second is extraction of debris from pores and then hydration of the skin. The third step infuses peptides and antioxidants into the skin that maximize skin health and, therefore, skin glow. For more problematic skin, boosters can be infused for lines, wrinkles and discoloration of the skin. Hydrafacial TM is appropriate for all ages and all skin types including conditions such as acne, rosacea, enlarged congested pores, aging skin, pigmented skin, and skin laxity.
Dr. Nicole Norris at Nicole Norris MD Medical Spa in Peru, IL is very happy to have added Hydrafacial TM to their menu of services this spring. “Hydrafacial is truly a medical-grade procedure that I can offer to all of my patients to improve their skin appearance immediately, as well as positively affect their skin health long-term. I have found men and women of any age are great candidates, and for some of my teens with moderate to severe acne, it is a game-changer. We typically recommend a series of procedures ranging from 4-12 in a year pending the skin condition we are dealing,” remarks Dr. Norris.
Call Nicole Norris MD Medical Spa for your Hydrafacial to get the best skin of your life, 815-780-8264.