*Written By Michelle Pauli*
The skin on our face, neck and hands are the ultimate truth-tellers of our age, lifestyle and habits… which is a wee-bit worrisome if you have taken your skin for granted over the years. As Coco Chanel once famously said: “Nature gives you the face you have at 20. Life shapes the face you have at 30, but at 50, you get the face you deserve.”
Now, while this all may sound very ominous (particularly to those who are guilty sun-worshippers, smokers and all-round neglectful skin-carers), the good news is that it’s never too late to start taking action. Nor has it ever been easier – there are many aesthetic treatments on offer to help repair, restore and rejuvenate our skin, such as laser resurfacing, chemical peels and injectable products (to name but a few).
However, thanks to the advancements in technology and anti-ageing procedures, a new skin rejuvenation technique has recently been added to the mix: a treatment that harnesses thermal energy to reduce lines, wrinkles and scarring.
What did I review?
A skin rejuvenating treatment that uses thermo-mechanical ablative (TMA) technology. In layman’s terms, it employs the direct use of heat to produce the desirable effects of anti-ageing. It is effective in the treatment of active acne, wrinkles and scarring, aids skin tightening (particularly around the neck) and is also effective at reducing open pores.
Most notably, it is uniquely able to treat the delicate skin around the eye up to the lash line, while minimising crow’s feet and lifting the upper eyelid, commonly known as a non-surgical blepharoplasty, although safely and without the need for goggles or intra-ocular shields.
The machine also has an additional application whereby topical products can be delivered to the deeper skin layers, particularly effective for reducing and treating pigmentation (making it ideal for darker skin types.)
Where was it?
At the newly launched Skinderm Clinic, situated at the (also new) Sandton Surgical Centre in Morningside. See contact details at the end of this review.
The treatment process
1. First things first: While not necessary on lighter settings, an application of topical anaesthetic is applied to the face, paying particular attention around the eyes. The cream takes around 15 minutes to kick in.
2.Once numbed the actual treatment can begin, which involves a hand-piece being lightly pressed against the skin. This hand-piece contains a matrix of tiny pyramid-shaped pins made of biocompatible materials covering a treatment area of 1cm². The pins are heated to a temperature of 400°C, similar to the temperature generated by a CO₂ laser beam when it interacts with the skin.
3. During treatment, the pins are introduced at a precisely controlled speed to the surface of the skin, after which the thermal energy stored in the pins is rapidly transferred to the skin upon brief contact, lasting only a few milliseconds.
What was my experience?
Now, I must admit that I was a bit nervous about the procedure, since the treatment process involves pins and heat – which sounds painful indeed! However, I was pleasantly surprised as I felt no discomfort whatsoever – not even around the delicate eye area. What I did feel was warmth and a very slight stinging sensation every now and again… but that was it (obviously the numbing cream also helped).
Post-treatment care / do’s and don’ts / what to expect post-treatment?
Immediately after treatment the skin will appear red and feel very warm for the first few hours – much like a sunburnt sensation. Some redness may be visible for 2-3 days, but light make-up can cover this (which can be worn after 24 hours). Skin may also feel very dry for the first 2-5 days, with the skin appearing “normal” by day 5 or 7.
It’s super important to apply a good quality post-treatment cream during this time, as supplied by Joanne, to help with the healing process. In addition, the daily use of sunblock should always be used but is crucial in order to avoid hyperpigmentation of your newly rejuvenated skin.
While a significant difference may be visible after 1 treatment, 3 – 5 treatments are recommended depending on what is being treated.
Before and Two months after, with 2 treatments in-between
Anything else you should know?
It must be noted that while this treatment and traditional CO2 lasers work similarly; and have similar results, this process really has no downtime, has minimal to no discomfort, can treat all skin types and produces amazing rejuvenated skin.
Other treatment options
- Wrinkles and fine lines
- Sun discoloration
- Sun damaged skin
- Skin tone and texture
- Loose and lax skin on various areas
- Age spots
- Acne / surgical / accident scars
It is also ideal for treating darker skin types
What does it cost?
The price for one treatment starts from R1000, with a full face procedure costing R3500 per session (bear in mind that you may need to have 1-5 treatments).
Where can you get it?
I had my treatment at Skinderm, situated in the Sandton Surgical Centre, Suites 303 & 304, 3rd Floor, 200 Rivonia Road, Morningside. You can call them on 010 020 SKIN (7546).
For medical professionals and therapists who are interested in purchasing this device, you can contact Medi Aesthetic Solutions: 011 678 2109, or firstname.lastname@example.org