By Alix Fuller
Cosmetics: What are some of the most popular cosmetic procedures to treat lines and wrinkles?
Dr. Lisa Kellett: Botox, fillers, laser and Intense Pulsed Light treatments.
Cosmetics: What is Botox, and how does it work?
Dr. Lisa Kellett: It’s an injectible that acts to relax the muscles that cause wrinkles and furrows like vertical frown lines between the eyes, squint lines, crows’ feet, upper lip lines, neck lines and forehead lines. So, you have less noticeable expression lines and no new wrinkles while the effects last which is about three to four months. There aren’t any permanent side effects. There aren’t any permanent side effects. The injectible wears off and as soon as it does, you can book another one. It takes about 15 minutes, costs approximately $120 and up, and you walk out of the doctor’s office immediately after the procedure.
Cosmetics: What about fillers?
Dr. Lisa Kellett: These are also injectibles, gel-like substances like collagen, hyaluronic acid and calcium hydroxyapetite used to fill in lines and wrinkles that don’t go away when you relax your face. We also use them to fill in cheeks that have become a bit hollow through age, augment a too-small chin and otherwise recontour the face. They’re also good for dark hollows under the eyes and lip augmentations. Results depend on various factors such as skin type, area to be injected, the duration of the product and if you have allergies. Some results last four to six months, some one to three years. The procedure takes about half an hour, depending on area, and there may be some short-term bruising and puffiness. Like Botox, as soon as the results wear off, you can have the procedure done again. Average cost? $350 and up.
Cosmetics: We’ve heard about two laser treatments. Can you explain how they differ?
Dr. Lisa Kellett: Non-ablative layers don’t break the skin’s surface so there’s no down time. But you do require multiple treatments, maybe six. Ablative lasers do break the skin’s surface and usually require about a week of downtime to allow the skin to heal. First you look like you have a bad sunburn and then you experience brown flaking of the skin. Finally the skin heals and you see the results. What are the criteria for laser treatments? It depends on how deep your wrinkles are, skin type, your overall health, pigmentation and if you can mange the downtime. Non-ablative laser treatments take about half an hour at about $400 per session; ablative about $2,000 and up. While both treatments deliver permanent results, ablative is more effective. Of course, you will continue to age. For most people, it will be a few years before they develop wrinkles again after an ablative laser procedure.
Cosmetics: Now, what’s the difference between a laser and Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) treatment?
Dr. Lisa Kellett: A laser pertains to one wave length of light; IPL is multiple waves of light. It’s not a laser, it’s a light source. Lasers are actually stronger, but people like IPL because there’s no downtime and it will treat red spots, brown spots, fine lines, all at the same time. You need six 20-30 minutes sessions that will cost you about $450 per session. The best news is that you can go right back to work after the session.