Skin texture, tone, color, wrinkles, aging, and sagging – Many internal and external factors affect skin condition and influence how it looks.
With age (and unhealthy habits!), sagging happens as collagen, a protein that provides structure and support to your skin, diminishes over time, resulting in loss of elasticity.
These changes may be surprising if they happen earlier than expected, but what if we say that you could prevent them?
From surgical procedures to far less invasive clinical treatments, there are plenty of skin tightening treatments that can give you the most dramatic result you would ever wish for.
Here we break down everything you need to know about skin tightening treatments, types, procedures, and common misconceptions you may have come across.
WHAT IS SKIN TIGHTENING AT FIRST PLACE?
Skin tightening treatment improves skin tone and texture using good old-fashioned heat as simple as it sounds. Simultaneously, some of these treatments can also smooth cellulite.
Want to know more about these treatments? Read ahead.
Why Choose Skin Tightening?
Skin tightening treatments have become popular in recent years because they provide a non-surgical alternative to more invasive procedures for improving skin quality.
It typically targets drooping skin under the chin or along the jawline, worry lines on the forehead, and laugh lines around the mouth.
Today you can choose among several different processes that provide non-invasive skin tightening solutions.
HOW DO THEY WORK?
All skin-tightening treatments vary in intensity of results. The most commonly known treatments are Laser Skin Tightening, Radiofrequency, High-Intensity Ultrasound, and Intense Pulsed Light (IPL).
Even though all four of these treatments are non-invasive skin tightening treatments that do not require much aftercare or preparation, the procedure itself has many similarities.
4 Types of Skin Tightening Treatments
Laser Skin Tightening
Laser Skin Tightening targets areas that develop aging, such as the face, stomach, and neck, where the skin often becomes loose. If you’re worried about the pain or burning heat it may have, the laser uses the same temperature as a hot stone massage.
The results of the procedure are quite immediate and get better with every other session. There is no recovery time needed as it doesn’t require any surgical incisions; however, minor swelling or redness may occur for a few days.
It is best recommended for people between the ages of 30 and 65 as a preventive treatment to ensure the sagging does not happen or to fix up that has already begun sagging.
Radiofrequency Skin Tightening
It is being used since 2001 to help fight against sagging skin and any signs of aging. There are four most common radiofrequency forms: Exilis, Profound RF, Thermage, and Thermi. Each of these works the same way and only varies based on the result you are looking for.
It offers skin tightening by slimming the face, contouring the body, fighting sun damage, and eliminating wrinkles/fine lines. The procedure is painless and nearly takes an hour to complete.
BONUS POINT – it needs zero recovery time as it is a clinical treatment.
It is best for the face, chin, neck, and chest area to treat any early aging signs.
Depending on the area to cover, the procedure can take anywhere from 30 to 90 minutes. It does not hurt but can be slightly uncomfortable. So be prepared! Added benefits for HIUS are wrinkle reductions, facial lift, enhancement of jawline, and smoothing of the skin.
Intense Pulsed Light (IPL)
It works with the combination of radiofrequency treatment—a hybrid treatment meant to treat the deeper layers of skin causing gradual results with zero discomforts. However, the medicine can cause post-inflammatory pigmentation for people with deeper skin tones.
BONUS POINT: Apart from treating wrinkles, red/blue veins that appear in the thinner-skinned region of the face can remove unwanted hair from the face/body.
LETS BUST SOME COMMON MISCONCEPTIONS ABOUT SKIN TIGHTENING TREATMENT
Don’t let myths stop you from getting what you want. Here are some myths busted
MYTH 1: The results are minimal and require constant touch-ups
False! The treatments chosen for skin tightening will take some time to show results as they can’t be immediate, but the effects become evident as these results grow.
Moreover, the optimal results grow about three to four months after the last treatment session, and the results can last up to several years depending on how you care for your skin after.
MYTH 2: Skin Tightening Treatments are for older people
No! Your skin can sag for many reasons other than aging, such as genes, poor skincare habits, too much tugging and pulling of the skin, or merely premature aging.
The direct aim of a skin tightening treatment may be to work on skin laxity, but it also prevents/eliminates fine lines and wrinkles to make your skin more youthful. It’s good to use skin tightening treatments earlier to maintain elasticity and firmness over the years.
MYTH 3: Using products at home can provide the same results
Oh, how much our heartaches to even read that.
While creams and serums are an excellent preventive measure to avoid wrinkles, fine lines, sagging, and weaker water barriers, our skins require something much more robust to delay the process. The clinical treatments are professionally developed treatments that target these concerns with extra power.
However, serums and creams will help maintain the results AFTER the treatment.
MYTH 4: The recovery period will require you to miss work
As we mentioned above, all these methods are non-surgical, which means there is no downtime. You can get the procedure done on your lunch break, before going to work, or even right after the office. You might have temporary redness and swelling immediately after the process, but nothing will prevent you from resuming your daily activities.
THE BOTTOM LINE
For the most optimal results, look for a clinic with certified machines and experienced staff specializing in providing the service.
Dr. Asra Ali is a board-certified dermatologist practicing both medical and cosmetic dermatology. Dr. Ali graduated from the McGovern Medical School at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston where she also completed her dermatology residency training.