How do I avoid factors that age my skin?
We all know the various factors that affect skin health, however the criticality of each factor is specific to each person. Certain foods that consist of sugars and starches can be pro-inflammatory. Eating these types of foods excessively can show up on the skin as a loss of radiance, dark circles under the eyes, the loss of tone, puffiness and an increase in fine lines and wrinkles. Exposure to the suns UVA/UVB rays causes the skin to age significantly and the more time that you have spent in the sun in the past without having adequate protection directly relates to the amount of skin damage/sun damage and ageing your skin suffers in later years. Use a moisturising medical grade skin care product with SPF year round both indoors and outdoors to protect your skin. Smoking speeds up skin ageing causing wrinkles and poor complexion.
Not eating enough protein negatively effects your skin. When a supply of protein is depleted, the body is forced to feed upon itself. This causes both tissue and muscle to breakdown, which can have a direct effect on our skin. Reduce the amount of fat in your diet. Healthy fats, especially Omega 3 fatty acids and mono-unsaturated fat, have powerful anti-inflammatory effects improving the moistness, texture, suppleness and smoothness of our skin. Consuming excess alcohol causes small blood vessels in the skin to widen, allowing more blood to flow close to the skins surface. This produces a flushed skin colour and a feeling of warmth, which can lead to broken capillaries on the face. The alcohol-induced dehydration also makes the skin more prone to fine lines and wrinkles.
Our Skin Health service will assess and identify the factors most critical to you and help you addressing them with small lifestyle changes that will make the biggest difference. Our medical aestheticians will recommend the correct products which are proven to work and suit your skin type and lifestyle, whilst our nutritional therapists may also create a bespoke diet plan to maximize your skin health and diminish the effects of ageing.
What is acne and what treatments are available?
Acne is caused by hormonal changes, for example, as children reach puberty the levels of androgens or male hormones increase. This in turn may cause the sebaceous glands, present in the hair follicle, to secrete an oil that forms a solid white substance called sebum. During puberty, skin cells in the follicle shed and mix with the sebum causing a blockage in the follicle. As more sebum is produced the follicle swells up. A bacteria normally present in the skin, called P.acnes, multiplies in the clogged follicle and results in an inflammation. This inflammation can cause acne lesions such as blackheads, pimples, nodules and cysts. It is an inflammatory skin disease which affects the tiny pores which cover the face, arms, back and chest and the oil glands attached to them. It is an abnormal response in the skin to normal levels of the male hormone, testosterone, in the blood.
Both men and women have testosterone circulating in the blood, but in the acne sufferer, this hormone has a profound effect on the skin. This abnormal response is self-limiting and eventually acne does get better without treatment, but there is no way of predicting how long this can take, and it may take years or even decades! Acne can also leave scars which are permanent and are easier to prevent than to treat. In the skin, the disease attacks two structures:
- The pore through which the hairs emerge from the skin – here dead skin cells become more “sticky” and partially block the pore.
- The oil or sebaceous gland – more oil is produced, which gives rise to a generally oily complexion. The partial blockage in the pore restricts the flow of oil onto the skin surface. This results in solidification of the oil which fills the hair channel forming a blackhead. The black of the blackhead is not due to dirt, but a change in pigment in the blockage in the pore.
If the partial blockage becomes complete, the oil builds up around the hair and hair root and becomes infected with bacteria normally present on the skin. The bacteria break down the oil to very inflammatory chemicals which cause redness, pus formation and a painful spot. If the inflammation is deep and severe, or if the spot is manipulated or squeezed, the pus can burst deep into the skin rather than onto the surface. This deep-rooted inflammation and infection results in scarring and cyst formation.
At ethos our experienced dermatologists and medical aestheticians will offer a range of treatment options including skin care regimes, medical grade skin care products, topical or oral medication and Regenlite laser treatment that can have profound results in as little as 1 – 3 treatments with no side effects and significant long term results. 3 Regenlite laser treatments are recommended, one every 2 weeks. Results are normally seen within a few days.
What is Regenlite laser?
Regenlite laser by Chromogenex is a pulsed dye laser (also known as Nlite) which was the first such system to receive full FDA clearance for the treatment of inflammatory acne. Following a clinical study by Professor Chu published in the Lancet, Regenlite is proven to be comparable if not superior to existing medication for the treatment of acne with no side effects and long term results. In this study, 87% of patients achieved significant improvement.
Regenlite laser delivers a specific wavelength of laser light into the skin which both targets the bacteria which causes infection and at the same time stimulates the skin’s natural immune systems to reduce inflammation and repair the damage caused by infection. Regenlite also promotes the production of collagen so can also improve the skin structure and texture and smooth the scarring often associated with acne and Regenlite is used to rejuvenate the skin by reducing the appearance if lines and wrinkles. Using the Regenlite’s vascular settings the laser is used to selectively target and shrink small blood vessels in the skin painlessly clearing the skin of thread veins and other vascular lesions and blemishes. Regenlite is used in this way to successfully and painlessly treat warts and verrucae. Because Regenlite uses low-level laser energy it is painless and you may only feel a mild warming of the skin. Regenlite is completely safe and treatments are administered by fully trained practitioners.
What are skin peels?
Chemical and facial peels are popular because they offer nearly immediate results and can be performed as an outpatient procedure. If you want to reduce or eliminate the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles, acne scarring, and uneven pigmentation, or if you simply want to rejuvenate your skin. A chemical peel is a treatment where an acid solution is used to remove the damaged outer layers of the skin. Typically administered as a facial peel, a chemical peel enhances and smoothes the texture of the skin. It is an effective treatment for facial blemishes, wrinkles, and uneven skin pigmentation. You can usually expect some relatively common chemical peel side effects, such as mild irritation, redness, and peeling. These side effects will usually last for only a few days.
The majority of patients who undergo a chemical peel suffer no serious side effects as a result of the procedure. It is important to then use a recommended skin care product with SPF that will help the results of the peel last for months or even years. You will usually need 5 to 8 treatments for optimal results. Your practitioner will customise the formula of the peel for each client and determine the number and frequency of treatments based on individual needs.
What are fillers and how do they work?
Dermal fillers are injectable non-surgical cosmetic treatments used to bring a more youthful appearance by restoring lost volume or fullness to the face and lips. They work by reducing or plumping out lines, wrinkles and folds in the skin and the effect is seen immediately after treatment. As skin ages, both naturally and because of other factors such as sun damage, smoking, and poor diet, we lose collagen, fat and other natural moisturising substances from our skin. These can be thought of as the natural ‘scaffolding’ that keeps it looking young and feeling firm. With less of these, our skin becomes thinner and we start to see lines, wrinkles and folds developing. This is usually more noticeable on our faces.
What is microdermabrasion?
Microdermabrasion is a treatment for the removal of dead skin cells and stimulation of cell regrowth. Home based exfoliation methods can manually remove some of these dead skin cells but it is the professional exfoliation available in clinics, by microdermabrasion or chemical peels, that best prepares the surface of the skin for continual care at home, increasing new skin cell production and stimulating the flow of oxygen and nutrients to the entire tissue thickness.
At ethos we use the abrasive action of diamond tipped instruments to remove dead skin cells exposing the fresh cells beneath. The exfoliating action stimulates micro-capillary blood flow to oxygenate the skin and provide fresh nutrients. The exfoliation is effective in reducing pigmented lesions, blemishes and uneven skin surfaces. A typical course of treatment lasts 4 – 6 treatments depending on the client’s treatment goals. Microdermabrasion only involves the outer layers of the skin and their removal is not associated with any pain. Because your skin has a constant turnover of cells migrating from lower layers to the surface occasional maintenance treatments are advisable as part of your skin care regime.
What is a Fusion SLR Facelift?
The Fusion SLR by Chromogenex is used to provide Soundwave Laser Rejuvenation treatments creating a noninvasive facelift. Over time the skin’s collagen and elastin levels diminish causing the appearance of lines, wrinkles and sagging skin. The Fusion Facelift resurfaces the skin, replenishes collagen and lifts the skin without the need for surgery or injectables. During the treatment, the surface layer of the skin is exfoliated with microdermabrasion to smooth the surface, improve texture and promote new cell growth. Hyaluronic acid is then infused into the skin using ultrasound technology. Hyaluronic is naturally occurring in the skin but becomes depleted over time, replenishing the hyaluronic levels in the mid-levels of the skin plump the skin out reducing the appearance of lines and wrinkles.
Finally, infrared laser technology is used to gently warm the deeper layers of the skin to tighten it and promote collagen production which firms and lifts the skin. Results are immediate and improve with every treatment. Short term results are smoother skin and the smoothing out of lines and wrinkles. Later in the course of treatment as the skin produces collagen the skin lifts and tightens for more long term results which can be maintained with periodic treatments. An initial course of 6 treatments is recommended with 1 treatment per week then 1 per month for maintenance. Fusion is a real alternative to surgical facelift and injections. The technology used in Fusion is proven and safe; the treatments painless and have no downtime.
What is i-Lipo Xcell- Laser Lypolysis?
I-Lipo Xcell is the most advanced non-surgical fat reduction and body shaping system, it incorporates four technologies for intelligent body fat analysis and measurement, laser diode fat reduction, IR Vacuum massage and Radiofrequency skin tightening. I-Lioncel is clinically proven, safe and treatment is comfortable, backed by leading physicians and clinically proven in worldwide multi-centre studies. I-Lipo incorporates technology to instantly measure body fat and provide detailed analysis including Basal Metabolic rate, body fat percentage and will record in a database during a course of treatment reduction in body fat and overall improvement in health. It works by using low-level lasers to trigger a chemical signal in the fat cells that breaks down stored triglycerides into free fatty acids and glycerol, which are released through the cell membranes. The fat content is then transported around the body to tissues where it will “burn off” during a period of post-treatment exercise that has been carefully tailored to you by our exercise specialist.
Infrared laser vacuum massage is then performed to enhance lymphatic drainage, mobilising the released fat from the target area. This also enhances circulation in the area, promotes collagen growth and assists in the breakdown of fibrous cellulite tissue to make your skin slimmer, firmer and smoother. Radiofrequency (RF) is then used to emit high frequency radio-electric waves deep into the skin’s dermis which results in thermal energy being produced in the tissues to cause collagen to contract and tone and tighten the skin, synthesis of new connective tissue fibres to improve skin condition, reducing scars and stretch marks. The thermal stimulation of cellar functions and improved blood supply supports the cell lipolysis. At ethos your practitioners will carry out a full medical history and determine a structured course of treatment based on your needs. Treatment courses are usually structured into courses of 8 carried out twice a week for 4 weeks. Treatments last approximately 1 hour, including body analysis, laser treatment, laser vacuum massage and radiofrequency. This is followed by a period of post-treatment lasting 20 minutes which can be carried out in or out of clinic. The treatment is painless and you will only feel a gentle warming of the skin.