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Best face forward

We’ve found the most up-to-date skin solutions for all your dermis dilemmas…

Not too long ago, if you were unhappy with how the ageing process was affecting your face you either had to accept it and watch mournfully as your once plump skin meandered slowly south, or else opt for an unnatural-looking facelift which could leave you looking tighter than an Olympic gymnast’s leotard. Luckily, new developments in dermatology have ushered in an era of high-tech ‘lunchtime’ treatments that promise to give you an all-natural, fresher look. “Clients want results from a less invasive procedure without much downtime,” says Dr Vimi, Specialist Dermatologist at Medstar Healthcare. “In this fast-moving world, they cannot afford many days of downtime resulting from invasive surgical procedures. They want to look good with minimal downtime. Looking good naturally makes people more confident and this confidence goes a long way in improving one’s quality of life.” So whether you decry the excess baggage under your eyes, or have been left wondering where the rounded apples of your cheeks have gone, we reveal the best treatments to request the next time you visit your skin doctor.

The Problem: Under-eye bags
The Solution: Laser

With the peri-orbital skin (the skin under your eyes) the first place to show age due to the thinness of the skin, there are a few non-medical things you can do to take care of that area. Use a super-hydrating eye cream, stopping smoking and lowering your salt intake can all have a positive effect. However, if all else fails, ask your dermatologist about laser treatments, such as Erbium, CO2 and Fraxel, which tighten the skin and improve wrinkles. If your bag are caused by fatty deposits, opt for blepharoplasty, whereby a small incision is made and excess fat removed.

The Problem: Thread veins
The Solution: Pulsed dye laser

Also known as ‘broken veins’ – although the vein isn’t actually broken, just slightly enlarged – the appearance of thread veins on the face can make those affected feel self-conscious. Developing more as we age and skin and blood vessels lose elasticity, thread veins can also be caused by pregnancy and hormonal changes, making women more prone to them than men. Laser therapy has emerged as a great way to tackle them, using brief pulses of laser light to destroy smaller blood vessels. A pulsed dye laser is best for the thinner red veins that are close to the skin’s surface. The Problem: Fine lines around the eyes The Solution: Botox and laser One of the major signs of ageing, fine lines around the eyes can be drastically reduced with a three-pronged attack. First, by investing in an eye cream that contains retinol to stimulate collagen. Next up, dermatologists recommend laser treatments which work by poking  microscopic holes into the skin using carbon dioxide lasers, which then stimulate new collagen and elastin production. The body’s natural healing process then kicks, eliminating older, damaged tissue, replacing it with fresh collagen. Thirdly, a course of Botox injections work as a preventative measure against wrinkles developing.

The Problem: Sagging jawline/jowls
The Solution: The Nefertiti Thread Lift

One of the main betrayers of age is the jowls and jawline, which loses its firmness as we grow older. And one treatment for the lower face proving popular in the UAE is the ‘Nefertiti thread lift’. “In my opinion, the first thing that our mind assesses when it comes to judging the age of a person is the shape of their face,” says Dr Vimi, Specialist Dermatologist at Medstar Healthcare. “If you have noticeable sagging of muscles and loose skin, you’ll need a surgical facelift, but a less invasive alternative is the Nefertiti thread lift, whereby threads made of absorbable suture material (poly dioxanone) are put in place underneath the skin and gentle traction causes an instant mechanical lift. After 12 weeks the threads start to break down and stimulate the production of collagen to tighten the skin. The procedure doesn’t carry the same downtime or complications that surgery does and can be carried out as a lunchtime procedure.”

The Problem: Thin lips
The Solution: Injectable fillers

Whether you’re looking to go the full Kylie Jenner, or want a bit of a boost for thinning lips, the best options are to go with injectables. The most popular brands worldwide are Juvederm and Restylane, both of which contain hyaluronic acid and which give instant enhancement you’ll need to maintain between two to three times a year. Dermatologists recommend starting small when it comes to plumping your pout, then building up as desired to achieve a more natural look.

The Problem: Hollow cheeks
The Solution: Liquid injectables

If you’ve noticed that you’re losing the rounded plumpness of your cheeks, rest assured there are methods on the market to correct the hollowing out of faces that comes with age. Sculptra has emerged as a firm (pun intended!) favourite – an injectable liquid that offers a natural look when plumping out cheeks, and works to stimulate your body’s natural collagen production. Other options include Juvederm Ultra Plus and Perlane, both hyaluronic fillers, or a fat transfer, by which fat is taken from the buttocks or thigh and injected into the cheek. However, this option is a lot more invasive and usually results in time off needed for recovery, whilst injectables can be done in your lunch hour.

The Problem: Frown lines
The Solution: Laser

f deep trenches have taken up residence between your eyes or on your forehead, you can start to combat them by making healthy lifestyle changes, including drinking plenty of water, cutting back on alcohol intake and stopping smoking. Gently exfoliating the skin around the area is also recommended, and while over-the-counter creams won’t banish the lines, they can work to soften them. However, if you want to get rid of them, you’ll need to book in for filler injections. Look for options containing hyaluronic acid, collagen, polylactic acid and calcium hydroxylapatite. Laser is another option, which can be used along with Botox to relax the muscles causing the creasing.

The Problem: Sagging Neck
The Solution: Microneedling

Women may start to notice changes in their neck skin in their late thirties, when it may start becoming prone to drying or crispness, and fine lines start to appear. While sunscreen and moisturising is a must, there are plenty of non-surgical options available from your dermatologist. Lasers are frequently used to tighten the area, with Fraxel Dual and V-Beam standouts, while you’ll also see an instant effect with microneedling, whereby neck lines are treated with a fine-line filler, for results that can last a couple of years. Finally, there’s ultrasound therapy and radio frequency, which tighten the skin by delivering heat to the deep layers of the skin to promote collagen production.

The Problem: Acne scars
The Solution: Laser resurfacing

Whilst not only being unsightly, acne scars can make those who suffer from them feel incredibly self-conscious. And while you may have left your acne-plagued teenage years behind, the scars can often remain. The good news is that developments in treating scarring have been perfected over the years, and while topical creams can work to smooth scars a little, new technology can almost erase the dimpling left behind by your acne. Microneedling is an option, but insiders have converted to Sublative Laser Resurfacing, which requires minimal downtime and almost immediate results.