I am so fortunate to have so many beautiful female friends in my life. Most of them are approaching or are in their 40s now and with the exception of a few, almost every single one complains about the state of their facial skin. I wish that we could all just be happy with who we see in the mirror, but I too fall victim to being overly critical of myself when it comes to getting older.
There’s a lot of talk about cosmetic treatments today and which one might be most effective. I chat all the time to my friends about what they have tried and what has worked for them. Trying to select the right one for your skin needs while still staying within your budget is tough. Some treatments seem too harsh while others don’t seem to do much of anything. So what’s a gal to do?
Let’s talk about the money, money….
Keep in mind that costs for any treatments vary depending on all factors involved like which part of the body is being treated, what is involved in the procedure, where the procedure is performed and who performs it (eg. a medi-spa under Dr’s supervision or a day spa)
Botox Injections (Eek!)
This treatment injects Botox into the skin to reduce or eliminate wrinkles and lines in the facial area. Botox is a purified toxin that is used to block muscle contractions beneath the skins surface to temporarily reduce frown lines. The procedure and results last for several months but…. if not done well (or overdone) it might turn you into, well, Nicole Kidman?!
For those who fear needles, this might not be the right option. Treatments cost around $150 – $500 depending on how many “units” are used.
Chemical Peels (Ouch!)
This method applies a chemical to the skin which exfoliates the surface layer of skin. They come in varying strengths – light or superficial, medium, or deep peels. The chemical used varies according to which strength of peel is needed. Some of the commonly used agents are glycolic acid, salicylic acid, fruit enzymes, or malic acid. The chemical is applied to the skin where it causes the skin to peel in order to remove the old layer.
The skin may appear raw after treatment or mildly sensitive, depending on the strength of chemical used. Treatments removed mild to moderate wrinkles, skin imperfections, and boost collagen growth. Again, the strength of the chemical treatment determines the exact results. Costs vary significantly by which chemical is used. Treatments can cost between $150 – $600 and up. Many clinics offer discounted pricing when purchasing a series of treatments.
Collagen Injections (Does this make my face look fat?)
Vials of collagen are injected into the skin to plump and renew the skin’s appearance. While our bodies naturally produce this essential ingredient when we are youngsters, our bodies gradually stop producing it as we get older. The results are immediate and can last as long as a year.
There is minimal discomfort. This procedure costs $400 – $1,700 for a single vial. The price is dependent on the brand used. And please remember that friends don’t let friends overfill!
Laser Skin Resurfacing (no pain, no gain!)
This popular method uses a fractional laser device to focus light energy on skin cells. It stimulates the cells to produce collagen and elastins to renew the skin, removing spider veins or wrinkles while tightening sagging skin. Spas have used cosmetic lasers for decades now with a lot of success. Results can be seen as early as a week after the procedure and lasts for many months.
Treatment can be uncomfortable (like a hot elastic being snapped on your face over and over) so numbing cream is often used with the procedure. The cost varies by clinic. It ranges around $500-$800 or more.
This is my personal option of choice and I have been doing laser resurfacing for a few months now through a reputable medi-spa here in Langley, BC. The results thus far have been good! My pores are smaller and my sun spots are definitely fading. There is some swelling and redness after each procedure so don’t plan on going out on the town for at least a day after treatment!
This method uses a wand-shaped device to spray tiny crystals onto the skin which are rubbed against the skin’s surface. The process exfoliates the skin, removing the dead skin cells from the surface and smoothing any bumps. The process works well on all skin shades and types. This method works best on fine lines and wrinkles. It gives skin a refreshed look.
There is very little down time after a treatment. The skin may have a pink flush to it temporarily and is generally gone within 24 hours. Numbing cream is not needed prior to treatment. The cost varies, but is generally below $200. Hydrafacials are another great option in the same family!
So no matter what you choose make sure you do your research and go to a reputable spa or facility (aka – Groupons aren’t always your friend!) and remember to always wear a good SPF!!