Sunday, December 30, 2012

Downtime After Photofacials

One of the most common questions I am asked is "How much downtime is there after a photofacial treatment?" Downtime, or social downtime, is the time where the face may be red and you may want to stay home instead of going to work or other events. A photofacial, or IPL, is a light-based treatment that works well to improve dark discolorations and redness including generalized redness and broken capillaries. An example of an IPL photofacial is the Broad Band Light treatment, now available at A E Skin. It also helps improve the luminosity or glow of the skin as well as close enlarged pores. At the same time it can  stimulate collagen production to improve fine lines and laxity. After the procedure the skin may be red for 24 to 48 hours; this is normal. Also dark discolorations may get darker before flaking off and getting lighter; this can take anywhere from a few days up to two weeks. After the procedure avoid heat, alcohol, and exercise for 24 hours. Heat refers to both going out in the hot sun and hot indoor environments like a hot bath, sauna, or steam room. Also avoid hot or spicy foods or drinks such as soup, hot coffee, or hot tea. All of these things will bring blood to the skin and may cause side effects such as redness, blisters, discoloration, and scarring. Be sure to use a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 such as the Elta MD UV Clear sunscreen every day and avoid extended sun exposure for one week after a treatment. Women who are pregnant or breast feeding should not be treated.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

A E Skin Ultimate Rejuvenation

The A E Skin Ultimate Rejuvenation is a new and exciting combination laser therapy designed by Dr. Alex to provide improvement for many different aspects of aging all performed in one session. The treatment is customized for each person. It starts with an IPL Photofacial using Broad Band Light which primarily targets dark discolorations as well as  rosacea and generalized redness, but is also useful for closing enlarged pores, improving the radiance of the skin, and stimulating collagen production. The second step, which is done with lighter skin types, is the Skin Tightening. A different laser is used at low settings but with a rapid repetition rate to heat up the skin. This stimulates collagen production to improve fine lines, wrinkles, and laxity. The next step is a Micro Laser Peel. Using a third laser, this step removes a thin layer of dead skin cells from the surface of the skin to provide a smooth texture and replaces dull skin with glowing skin. The fourth step is the Pro Fractional Therapy, which uses the same principle as the Micro Laser Peel but with significantly greater depth and without treating the entire surface. Only a small fraction of the skin surface is treated and the surrounding untreated areas allow for rapid healing with minimal down time. The depth of this step is customized for each person and it is outstanding for deeper wrinkles and acne scars. The final step is optional and useful for dark discoloration; this is a hydroquinone treatment. This liquid brightening agent is applied to the skin just like a chemical peel but is more potent than a topical Brightening Cream because it penetrates to a greater depth after the Pro Fractional Treatment. Women who are pregnant or breast feeding should not be treated. The Ultimate Rejuvenation treatment is now available at A E Skin. Contact us for a free consultation to determine what is best for you.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

A E Skin Holiday Party 2012

A E Skin's third annual Holiday Party was held on Tuesday December 11, 2012 in the Encino office. A big thanks goes out to our patients for making it a tremendous success. More and more people attend each event. We had refreshments served by Nuts N Berries Cafe and warm holiday music and festive decorations set the mood. Also, photo opportunities were available on the Red Carpet. Each attendee received a gift bag filled with skin care products and a voucher for $ 50 off a chemical peel. Many people took advantage of our one-night-only exclusive specials on skin care products, Botox, Juvederm, and chemical peels. We also had specials on various laser procedures including Photofacials, Microlaser Peel, Skin Tightening, Pro Fractional resurfacing, leg vein treatments, and laser toenail fungus treatment. Everyone is excited that the laser services are now available at the Encino office. The highlight of the night was the raffle, where everyone won a prize; prizes included various skin care products, makeup, and various procedures. Additionally, the new chiropractor Dr. Chris Tsai was available for free consultations. We thank our friends at Alliance Dental, Nuts N Berries Cafe, Specialty Compounding Pharmacy, Allergan, Elta MD, and Neocutis for their support. We wish everyone a happy holiday season and look forward to future events.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Photofacials Maintain Healthy Skin

A new study by the Department of Dermatology at Stanford University demonstrates that regular photofacial treatments can maintain youthful and healthy appearing skin. Eleven patients underwent treatments one to four times per year for a period of at least ten years. Baseline photographs were taken as well as after photographs. Fifty-one blinded evaluators estimated the ages of the patients both before and after. The average estimate for the before photographs was within one year of the actual age. But the average estimate for the after photographs was nine years younger than their actual age, even though they aged at least ten years. A parellel study looked at the skin from the cellular level and found that photofacial treatments functionally rejuvenate genes in aged skin cells over time. There are not many procedures that can make someone look better than they did ten years prior. For this reason, the procedure has been renamed the Forever Young Broad Band Light (BBL) treatment. The Forever Young BBL treatment is now available at A E Skin. Dr. Alex recommends combining a good skin care regimen with an initial series of three treatments done at four to six week intervals followed by maintenance treatments every three to six months for best results. Those who are pregnant, breast feeding, or trying to become pregnant should not have treatment, nor should those who have taken Accutane in the previous 12 months.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Laser Coming to Encino Office

We are excited to announce that within the next week the laser from A E Skin's Van Nuys office will be moved to the Encino office. This is a Sciton laser, a system with multiple lasers and numerous capabilities. The procedures that are offered with this laser include hair removal, Broad Band Light photofacials, leg vein treatment, resurfacing procedures including Micro Laser Peel and Pro Fractional, skin tightening, toenail fungus treatment, and more. The results we have been getting are outstanding. The benefit to our patients is that it will no longer be necessary to go to the Van Nuys office for laser treatments; all laser treatments will be performed at the Encino office. More importantly, our availability for laser treatments will be increased from two days per week to seven days per week, allowing our patients to be seen faster and more conveniently. Be sure to contact us to schedule an appointment while we are currently offering promotions through Tuesday December 11, 2012 at out third annual Holiday Party.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Elta MD UV Physical Tinted Sunscreen

The Elta MD UV Physical Tinted Sunscreen is a product now available at A E Skin. It has become very popular for many reasons. First of all it has an SPF of 41 (the American Academy of Dermatology recommends sunscreens with SPF of at least 30). It is chemical-free and water resistant. It rubs onto the skin easily and is absorbed quickly. It is ideal for both sensitive skin and for children. But perhaps the most popular aspect of the sunscreen is that it is lightly tinted so it does not leave a thick white residue that it seen with many sunscreens; and because of the tint, many women do not need to use foundation after applying it. This sunscreen is one of many Elta MD skin care products now avaialble at A E Skin.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Laser Skin Tightening

What is Laser Skin Tightening?

Laser skin tightening utilizes pulsed light technology to deeply heat your skin while cooling and protecting the entire treated surface. The treatment is provided quickly and comfortably with no downtime. The end result is a more youthful appearance.

How does Laser Skin Tightening work?

Model (Courtesy of Dr. Gloria Lopez, MD)

The procedure utilizes infrared energy to deeply heat dermal collagen. This process promotes partial denaturation and contraction of collagen. The heat also initiates the body’s natural healing process, which creates a renewed collagen foundation leading to increased skin firmness. Powerful cooling maintains the outer surface of your skin at a cool temperature before, during, and after each pulse providing the patient a comfortable and safe procedure.

What is the treatment like?

The light energy is delivered in a sequence of rapid, gentle pulses. There is no need for a topical anesthetic. A series of pulses will be repeated over the treatment area to ensure best results. While the face and neck can typically be treated within 30 minutes, the actual time will depend on the area treated.

What should I expect after treatment?

You may experience some mild redness in the treated area immediately after treatment and this should return to normal within minutes. Since the procedure is noninvasive there is no downtime so you can resume regular activities immediately following treatment. You can also apply sunscreen after each session.

What results should I expect?

Model (Courtesy of Dr. Jody Levine, MD)
Laser Skin Tightening results may vary from patient to patient. The procedure is recommended for patients who desire moderate, noticeable skin improvement without having to undergo surgery. Full results often take up to six months as the collagen foundation of your skin is rebuilt and strengthened.

What areas can be treated?

Treatments are safe for all skin colors and can be performed on any area of the body where an improvement in your skin firmness is desired. Popular areas include the face, neck, abdomen and arms. Consult with Dr. Alex regarding the treatment options that are best for you.

How many treatments will I need?

The number of treatments needed will vary from patient to patient and Dr. Alex can personalize a treatment plan based on the level of improvement you desire. Most people undergo an initial series of three treatments at three to six week intervals. Dr. Alex may also combine laser skin tightening with other popular aesthetic procedures to further personalize your treatment.

What aftercare do I need?

It is important to carefully follow the aftercare instructions. No special skin care regimen is required following treatment. However, you should always protect your skin from direct sun exposure and use a sunscreen with SPF at least 30 with broad spectrum coverage every day. Dr. Alex can also recommend an at home skin care regimen if desired.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Solutions to Dry Skin in the Fall and Winter Months

As the Fall progresses and the Winter approaches, the weather begins to change. There are a number of effects of this change on the skin; the most common is dryness, which can be difficult to manage. The solution to dryness begins with a healthy lifestyle including eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, and getting adequate sleep. These serve to reduce the stress on the skin which can lead to redness, itchiness, and dry skin. The next step is to make sure there is enough moisture in the skin. There are two aspects to this: getting water into the skin and preventing it from leaving the skin. To get an appropriate amount of water in the skin, it is important to first be well hydrated by drinking at least eight cups of water daily. If there is not enough water in the body, it can not get into the skin. Thirst is an indication of dehydration and you should drink plenty of water to avoid getting thirsty. To get the water into the skin, I recommend using hydrating serums, such as those containing hyaluronic acid. Hyaluronic acid binds one thousand times its weight in water and draws the water into the skin from the blood supply, providing a tremendous amount of hydration to the skin. To prevent water from evaporating from the skin surface, use plenty of moisturizers. Moisturizers are best applied on a wet face so that the moisture on the skin is retained. Be sure to use moisturizer twice daily, or even more if necessary. Lighter moisturizers are more comfortable during the day while thicker moisturizers work well at night. Follow these steps to avoid having dry skin as the seasons change.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

What is Xeomin?

Xeomin (also known as incobotulinum toxin A) is a neuromodulator like Botox and Dysport made by Merz Aesthetics, the same company that makes Radiesse. It has been used in Europe for several years under the name Bocouture and now is FDA approved for treatment of frown lines just like Botox. It is currently used in the United States to treat certain neurological conditions and it is expected to be commercially available for cosmetic use in the United States in 2013. The active component in Xeomin is identical to that in Botox and Dysport, but it lacks what are called accessory proteins. For patients, this means there is a decreased theoretical risk for resistance, but this has not been shown in studies. The results are similar to that of Botox and Dysport: the onset is less than one week and duration of effect is three to four months. The most significant difference is likely to be the cost of the product. The cost has not been released yet, but is likely to be more competitive than that of Botox. This competition will likely drive down the cost of Botox and Dysport, making it more affordable for patients.