Painless beauty: lasers, radiofrequency and a nonsurgical face lift

January 4, 2012

Can you achieve skin tightening and address thinning skin and volume loss with one treatment?
Can you achieve skin tightening and address thinning skin and volume loss with one treatment?

When it comes to beauty, the new technology boasts of “gain without pain.”  Buzz words like minimally invasive technology and no downtime have become the latest mantras. A New Jersey Medispa promises, “We can now deliver dramatic results without people missing a beat out of their busy lives.” Only time will reveal the truth of such promises, but if these technologies really work, who can resist?

The December 2011 issue of Bazaar describes three such technologies. If you’re still a “young’un” between 30 and 40, you may be looking for a holiday pick-me-up that is stronger than drugstore creams but milder than intense lasers. Your goal is to look smooth and glowing, but you don’t want to go into hiding while you’re red and swollen. “Clear + Brilliant” is a new laser that’s safe for all skin colors, costs $250 to $500 per treatment and requires six treatments spaced two weeks apart. Your skin will be pink immediately after treatment but fades within a day. The laser works by creating a wound-healing response under the skin that stimulates collagen.

For the soccer moms, age 35 to 45, Matrix is designed to improve early signs of aging and improve acne and chicken pox scars. To understand how Matrix works, imagine an inverted ice cream cone. A Nashville dermatologist says, “The tip of the cone represents the energy on the surface, and the scoop is the remainder, which spreads out under the skin.” To get eMatrix under your skin it will cost $750 to $1,200 a treatment. For lines and wrinkles, you will need two to three treatments and for scars, three to four treatments. Following treatment, you will look red, but only for a day or two.

Finally, here is the noninvasive big gun to take care of deep lines, wrinkles, acne scars and general sagging. ePrime is a nonsurgical facelift that promises to tighten skin and address thinning skin and volume loss. A clinical study co-authored by a dermatologist and assistant clinical professor at Yale quantifies the skin-tightening effects of ePrime as “37 percent of what you’d get with a facelift.” However, the Bazaar article does not indicate how the “37 percent” effectiveness comparison with a facelift was reached. Without knowing the parameters of this study it is difficult to evaluate its validity. Before undergoing such treatment the wise consumer should ask, “What is the scientific evidence that this treatment works?”

With this treatment, you will have superficial bruising, redness and swelling, lasting up to 48 hours. Claiming to boost not only collagen but also elastin and hyaluronic acid production, ePrime purports to restabilize the whole supporting structure of the skin at $2,500 to $4,500 per treatment; however, and Happy New Year, you need only one treatment!


The mission of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) includes medical education, public education and patient advocacy. Plastic Surgery News Briefs are summaries of current stories found through various news and magazine outlets that relate to or mention plastic surgery and cosmetic procedures. The views expressed in these news articles do not necessarily reflect the opinions of ASAPS, but are merely published as an educational service to our members and the general public. For additional information on these subjects and other plastic surgery related topics, please go to www.surgery.org

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About ASAPS
The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), is recognized as the world’s leading organization devoted entirely to aesthetic plastic surgery and cosmetic medicine of the face and body.  ASAPS is comprised of over 2,600 Plastic Surgeons; active members are certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (USA) or by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada and have extensive training in the complete spectrum of surgical and non-surgical aesthetic procedures. International active members are certified by equivalent boards of their respective countries. All members worldwide adhere to a strict Code of Ethics and must meet stringent membership requirements.

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