Facial Rejuventation Today

The Latest Skinny on Probiotics and Skincare

September 22nd, 2017

Probiotics are a staple at most health and natural food stores. These strains of so-called “good” bacteria are available as supplements or in foods such as yogurt, kefir, sauerkraut, tempeh, kimchi and others; and now they’re starting to pop up in skin care lines with experts suggesting they may be a solution to a variety of common skin problems including acne, rosacea and eczema.

How do Probiotics Work?

Probiotics reset the balance of good and bad bacteria within the gut. When this balance is out of whack, your body doesn’t function as it should. Some people may report diarrhea, gas, bloating and/or stomach pain. Eventually the gut lining becomes leaky and toxins are released into the bloodstream causing inflammation throughout the body. This inflammation may manifest on the skin as acne, itching, blemishes or other symptoms.

When it comes application, probiotics are often delivered to the skin via masks, creams or cleansers (as opposed to pills). It is well known that certain types of ‘bad’ bacteria aggravate or cause eczema and acne, for example, but adding protective bacteria to the mix may restore the balance and curb symptoms.

One study out of Korea found that people with acne who drank a Lactobacillus-fermented dairy beverage daily for 12 weeks reduced their total acne lesion count and decreased oil production. These findings appear in the Journal Nutrition. The most common probiotic bacteria belong to groups called Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium.

That said, it’s important to note that this research is still in its early days. The FDA has not approved any probiotics for preventing or treating any health problems.

Common Sense Advice

“We spend so much time scrubbing and cleansing the heck out of everything, killing microbes indiscriminately and then we’re surprised when these systems (our skin) fail to be able to balance themselves naturally,”  says Alex Lewin, author of
 (Fair Winds Press; September 2017). “Stop cleansing and disinfecting so much. Wash your hands when appropriate, of course, especially if you are cooking for other people,” he stresses.

“Once you’ve done all of the above, then adding probiotics to your skin care mix might be worth considering,” he suggests. Take an ad hoc approach with things like yogurt and kefir masks, kombucha and so on.


Blue’s Clues – Is exposure to blue light from smart phones causing wrinkles and brown spots?

September 8th, 2017

You’ve likely gotten the message that it’s essential to wear your sunscreen when you hit the beach, the slopes or even the highway, but should you also be slathering it on when you check your emails, shop on Amazon, or scan Facebook or Instagram?

Surprisingly enough, the answer is maybe.

New research suggests that the blue light emitted from our digital devices does more than affect our vision and sleep patterns, it may also wreak havoc on our complexions, causing (or worsening) pigment problems and/or fine lines and wrinkles.

The good news is that one risk not associated with blue light exposure is skin cancer, because unlike the sun’s ultraviolet A and B rays, blue light doesn’t appear to cause the genetic changes that lead to skin cancer, nor does it cause reddening or swelling of the skin.

Instead, a small yet growing body of evidence suggests that exposure to blue light (A.K.A high-energy visible light or HEV) weakens our skin’s barrier function, accelerating aging. It tends to go deep, striking our collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid supply. These are the all-important substances that give our skin the elasticity and supple properties associated with youth. (If the name hyaluronic acid sounds familiar, it’s because many of today’s top-selling wrinkle-filling injectables are composed of this molecule.)

Blue light also targets the formation of melanin (the pigment that gives skin, hair and eyes color.) One study in Pigment Cell & Melanoma Research showed that blue-violet light induced a significantly more pronounced hyperpigmentation that lasted up to three months compared with ultraviolet light.

What to do?

To stave off the effects of blue light on our skin, many sunscreens, foundations and other cosmetics now boast HEV blockers. There’s even an ingredient (Liposhield) that, when added to moisturizing creams and lotions, sunscreens and the like, will protect the skin from damaging HEV light.


If you are noticing brown spots or other skin discoloration and tend to spend a lot of time in front of your devices, check out one of the many products designed to block blue light and/or talk to your dermatologist about what else could be causing the pigment problems, and what you can do to address them.

Certain physical blockers in sunscreens such as titanium dioxide and zinc oxide can also protect against HEV light, so if you’re already using them, you are ahead of the curve. Just make sure they offer broad-spectrum (UVA and UVB) protection, have an SPF of 30 or higher, and are water resistant.

Follow this advice and you should be good to go… online.

PRP: Is it Hope or Hype in a Syringe?

August 17th, 2017

Platelet rich plasma (PRP) is generating a lot of buzz lately. It’s been widely used to treat joint, tendon, and tissue injuries among pro athletes and weekend warriors. But a new application is gaining steam.

It’s being touted as a possible cure-all for baldness, and an all-natural alternative to facial recontouring, lip enhancement and even vaginal rejuvenation. Growing numbers of cosmetic doctors are offering PRP for its aesthetic benefits and many a celebrity has professed their undying love for it, including Kim Kardashian, Bar Rafaeli, Tiger Woods and Angelina Jolie.

But what exactly is PRP and can it possibly live up to all the hype?

PRPBlood (a.k.a. plasma) contains platelets that are rich in growth factors. These platelets are separated from other blood cells and their concentration is amplified via centrifugation. The PRP is then combined with the remaining blood and re-injected into the body to work its magic.

PRP injections can be used in place of Botox or fillers — and possibly some types of energy-based skin rejuvenation to fill in lines and folds, and stimulate collagen. It’s collagen that gives our skin the supple, elastic properties of youth, and we know that our natural supply dips with age. PRP can supplement this dip to help sustain those youthful aesthetics we all want to cling to.

For hair loss, PRP serves as something of a fertilizer in the sense that it’s helping to spur hair growth. It can be used alone or with other hair restoration treatments such as transplants or topicals.

Some doctors are using PRP with another red-hot treatment called microneedling. During microneedling, your doctor makes tiny pinpricks on your face using a pen-like device. These “wounds” help to kick start the body’s own natural healing process which in turn spurs collagen production. Microneedling creates small channels and PRP is then slathered on the face so it can go where it’s needed most to further amp up collagen production from within.

Some people may be gravitating to the “natural aspect” of PRP because the idea of injecting a foreign substance into their body is not appealing. With PRP injections, there is no risk of allergic reaction because it is created from your own blood. In general, results appear gradually over time and can last as long as 18 months. Although keep in mind that several treatments may be needed. The cost of PRP is comparable to off-the-shelf injectables like Botox and Juvederm.

Many studies assessing PRP and its potential cosmetic uses are now underway. Until these studies are completed, the jury is still out, but it looks like it will be a unanimous vote in favor of its aesthetic applications.

If you are interested in PRP, consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon or dermatologist who has experience with this innovative procedure.


Selfies May Improve Healing After Cosmetic Surgery

August 2nd, 2017

Our obsession with snapping selfies led to an uptick in facial plastic surgery procedures — a fact that has been well documented in consumer surveys and anecdotal evidence alike. It also gave rise to a cottage industry hawking selfie sticks and other apparatus that aim to make taking selfies simpler.

Fully 87 percent of U.S. adults aged 18 to 34 have taken a photograph of themselves and uploaded it to a social media website, according to Statista. On top of that, the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery reports that one in three facial plastic surgeons report an increase in requests for procedures due to “selfie” awareness. So the selfie craze clearly is have some surprising effects.

Case in point, there’s a new selfie study published in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal that is getting a bit of attention in the world of plastic surgery. A potentially life-saving use for selfies tied to improved post-op care.

Approximately 96 percent of people who sent selfies of themselves to their surgeons in the first few days following their plastic surgery procedure reported a better post-op experience. And in three cases, doctors detected early complications thanks to the images.

Selfies may show the early signs of dangerous post-surgery infections, including redness, swelling and pus. Sending a selfie to the doctor can also reassure nervous nellies who are concerned that their swelling or bruising is out of the ordinary or taking too long to subside.

This sort of telemedicine will never take the place of in-person post-op care, but it does have a role to play — especially during the post-op period.

In an interview with Cleveland Clinic’s Consult QD, lead study author James Zins, MD, Chairman of the Department of Plastic Surgery at Cleveland Clinic, points out that “research suggests patients do not like to use telemedicine if it replaces an office visit, but this was an adjunct interaction that was able to allay worries until the regularly scheduled postsurgical visit. This is a very important issue and points to an opportunity to bring patients and physicians closer together and improve the quality of care.”

Speak with your surgeon about whether or not a selfie or two might be incorporated into your treatment plan as a supplement to your post-op care.

Is Sushi Face Really A Thing?

June 22nd, 2017

Ever look in the mirror the morning after an indulgent sushi dinner only to realize that you look like a blow fish? It turns out there’s a name for this affliction: Sushi face! At least that is what actress Julianne Moore called it during an interview with New York Magazine.

To get the scoop on sushi face, we reached out to Nigma Talib, ND, a naturopathic practitioner in London, to find out the real deal with sushi face; specifically and how we can enjoy our favorite rolls and sashimi without waking up to the bloating and under-eye bags. Dr. Talib is the author of Younger Skin Starts in the Gut: 4-Week Program to Identify and Eliminate Your Skin-Aging Triggers – Gluten, Wine, Dairy, and Sugar, and has coined such terms as “wine face” and “sugar face.” So who better to ask about sushi face?

Most people might immediately pin the blame on the soy sauce (which is packed with sodium), but you might be surprised to learn that fish and rice also contain some salt. The reality is there are a number of elements in the sushi feast work together to make you retain fluid, says Dr. Talib. “Post-sushi, we all get an inflamed face because the sodium is causing water retention and even the rice plays a role,” she says. “Rice gets broken down into sugar by the digestive enzyme amylase which is found in our saliva.” This feeds bad bacteria in the gut and increases bloating.

So the bad news is that sushi face is really is a thing. But the good news is that it only lasts less than 24 hours.

Now before you go throwing in the towel on your favorite food altogether, here are some tips from Dr. Talib to help you avoid the extreme post-sushi bloat:

1. Choosing another cuisine the night before / day of a big event. (Save the sushi for a meal before a lazy weekend.)

2. Consuming more potassium to balance out all the sodium. Avocado — a popular ingredient in many rolls — is potassium-rich. Other good sources of potassium include nuts, bananas, oranges, broccoli, greens, potatoes and tomatoes.

3. Asking for low-sodium soy sauce. Many restaurants do carry low-sodium varieties, and if enough people ask for them, others will start too as well. If you are feeling adventurous, skip the soy sauce altogether and savor the natural taste of the sushi. See if this makes a noticeable improvement in your appearance the following day.

Fillers R Us
With about 30 to choose from, do we really need any more?

June 2nd, 2017

It seems as though a new anti-wrinkle treatment is approved or launched on a weekly basis, which begs the question: do we really need more fillers to help soften fine lines or add volume back to deeper folds?

And the answer is a resounding YES, according to top facial aesthetic doctors.

For a time, all doctors had in their wrinkle-filling-toolbox was collagen — and it was good (depending on who you ask). The greatest risk was allergic reaction, though the cosmetic results tended to vary as well.Fillers

The newer options are safer and the effects last longer. As it stands there are about 30 fillers with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s stamp of approval — and far more available outside the U.S., as well as in the pipeline. Many are hyaluronic acid-based (HA) fillers. HA is found naturally in all cells of the body, but our supply dwindles with age. There is no risk of allergic reaction with HA.

In some instances, the differences between HA filler A and HA filler B may be marginal, but it other cases, they can be much more significant. For instance, Juvederm (an HA filler) may be great for smoothing marionette lines around the mouth, while Juvederm Voluma actually recreates cheeks — and the results last much longer than regular juvederm. Juvederm Volbella and Restylane Silk are exclusively for the lips. Future HA fillers may improve skin quality by adding moisture back. (Think of it as an internal moisturizer with external effects). Some are premixed with pain-killing lidocaine to reduce the “ouch” factor. Results may last from 3 to 18 months depending on the specific filler. And all HA injections can be reversed if you are unhappy with the results.

Other types fill in lines and folds from the inside out and the outside in by plumping lines and boosting our natural supply of collagen, the protein that gives skin its supple and elastic properties.

The development of all these different fillers has allowed for an a la carte approach to facial rejuvenation. While liquid facelift is a misnomer, mixing and matching fillers can achieve results that are closer to what was once seen with a surgical facelift.

Thanks to all of these filler choices, we have evolved from chasing lines and filling folds to recontouring faces for a more complete facial rejuvenation using an entire palate. It’s no longer one-size fits all. More choices often means better results. Choose a facial plastic surgeon or dermatologist who has experience with all the different types of fillers and filler families so he or she can make the best choices based on your anatomy and goals.


April 19th, 2013

KYI_AlmondOil_GroupMany of us can barely even pronounce the names of some of the chemicals listed on labels of the creams and lotions we slather on our bodies and those of our children!

But corporate-lawyer-turned-savvy-“mompreneur” Samantha Addonizio is doing something about it.

Her brainchild is KYI, a whole foods skincare line. KYI stands for Know Your Ingredients. Addonizio’s main go-to ingredients are argan oil, shea butter masks and sweet almond oil.

So how does a lawyer morph into a skin care afficionado?

“About 8 years ago, when I first became a mom, I became more aware of eating healthy and being healthy for myself and my first son,” she says. “It was easy to find and feed my son nutritious foods — healthy foods were everywhere — and it was easy to find unprocessed, or minimally processed, whole foods. But he had bad eczema and after a few trips to the dermatologist, nothing she recommended worked, and some products made him scream.”

Even products that said that they were all natural or organic were not.

So she made her own. At first, Addonizio just shared the products with her friends, but demand grew, and that’s when she knew she was on to something bigger.

And so far, so good.

Today, KYI is more than a growing skin care company, it’s a mission. Addonizio is is dedicated to raising consumer awareness regarding the health benefits of selecting and using skincare products that are good for you.

Check them out!

Icy-Hot Topics from #ASAPS13

April 15th, 2013

iStock_000007065550XSmallFrom the great wrinkle race to stem cell facelifts, nothing was off limits at the hot topics session of The Aesthetic Meeting 2013, the annual meeting of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) in New York City. During this “don’t-miss” event, leading plastic surgeons from the U.S. and abroad discuss the latest and potentially greatest innovations in cosmetic surgery.

Benjamin Ascher, MD, a Parisian plastic surgeon, is hot for focused cold therapy, namely iovera by Myoscience. This is a toxin-free way to treat wrinkles by tapping into the body’s natural response to cold.

Will it give Botox, Dysport and Xeomin a run for their money or get a chilly reception from patients?

The jury is out on that, says Dallas, Texas-based plastic surgeon William Adams, MD, who chaired the hot topics panel. “It may be a good alternative for certain patients, but it needs more study and data,” he says.

As far as stem cell facelifts and stem cell breast augmentation go, there is still not enough evidence to say they make an aesthetic difference, says Dr. Adams. “We are still learning a lot about stem cells, and they may one day be a viable option for plastic surgeons, but we don’t know when that will be,” Adams says.

Revealed: Gwyneth Paltrow’s Anti-Aging Secret!

April 12th, 2013

Helga Esteb / Shutterstock.comGwyneth Paltrow may be 40, but she looks close to 25 on the cover of May’s Harper’s Bazaar.

How does she do it? The actress-turned-mother-turned-wellness-guru is not a fan of Botox, but she does dabble in laser skin resurfacing, according to media reports.

“I won’t do Botox again, because I looked crazy. I looked like Joan Rivers,” Paltrow told the magazine. When it comes to lasers, it’s no pain, no gain for Paltrow. “It’s quite painful. It feels like someone’s smacking your face with a rubberband that has an electric shock in it. But I would do it again, because I feel like it took five years off my face.”

She is not alone, says Joshua Zeichner, MD, the Director of Cosmetic and Clinical Research at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York City. He doesn’t treat Paltrow, but he does do a lot of laser skin resurfacing on his patients. And with good reason — it works. “Laser skin resurfacing helps even skin tone, texture, appearance of pores, and can even combat sun-damaged skin susceptible to skin cancer,” he says. “The newest lasers use fractionated technology, which minimizes downtime while providing great results. While we can’t turn back time to avoid the sun we’ve been exposed to in the past, laser resurfacing can help undo that damage.”

Chew on This: 3 Surprising Beauty Benefits from Bubble Gum

April 10th, 2013

Young Woman Blowing a Chewing Gum BubbleNo-one likes it when their co-worker or friend chomps gum in their ears, but this oh-so-annoying habit may have some surprising beauty benefits.

Gum chewing can actually help you:

Win the Battle of the Bulge

It’s true, chewing gum burns about 11 calories an hour, and it also satisfies that oral fixation and keeps you from chowing down. Yes, you may be able to walk and chew gum at the same time, but eating while chewing gum is not as easy. Choose sugar-free gum, and try chewing a piece before you reach for that sugary afternoon snack. (American Idol judge Randy Jackson says it is one of his secret weapons when he is tempted by a buffet at a party or on set. Jackson had weight loss surgery in 2003.)

Get Rid of Your Double Chin

Chewing gum can entail hundreds or thousands of muscle movements using some of the same muscles used in facial exercises. It stands to reason that all this gum smacking may help tighten sagging neck muscles and reduce the appearance of a double chin. Is it as effective as neck liposuction or a neck lift? Likely not, but it’s less expensive and less invasive, and tastes good too.

Brighten Your Smile

Some chewing gums such as Orbit White and Trident White actually help whiten and brighten teeth. If you are going to chew gum, why not choose a variety that recharges your smile and your breath. It’s no substitute for good oral care or other whitening options, but it may help out in a clutch.

As with any habit, chewing gum in excess has its downsides. For example, most chewing gum contains sorbitol, which has laxative properties, so chewing gum all day might not be a good idea. But used in moderation, gum might just help you improve your look. So instead of asking your co-worker to please chew quietly, maybe you should ask if you can have a piece. How’s that for something to chew on?