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Skin boosters are injectable treatments, administered by needle usually into the very superficial top layer of skin for very very superficial skin remodelling & hydration. Think of this as injectable moisturiser for the skin, it can hold up to 20 times its weight in water effectively improving the skins' texture. This can be used for very fine, superficial, line treatment. I describe it as the "quilt cover starch." Those of you who have heard my "bed" analogy will know what this means.
WHAT ARE SKIN BOOSTERS?
Skin boosters used in Skin 1st clinic all have the majority of the ingredient as hyaluronic acid. You may have already heard of hyaluronic acid as it is often in skin creams, dermal filler is hyaluronic acid too. It is a naturally occuring product that is already in the skin but over time as we age are skin becomes depleted of hyaluronic acid. Some skin boosters also have other or additional ingredients such as amino acids, found in Sunekos, an Italian product. The majority of skin boosters either have one grade of hyaluronic acid and some have two, such as Profhilo, a German product. Some other skin boosters formulate their hyaluronic acid ingredients so that it is "chained" together making it last a little longer in the skin, such as RHA 1, a Swiss product.
WHAT IS HYALURONIC ACID?
Hyaluronic acid, also known as hyaluronan, is a clear, gooey substance that is naturally produced by your body.
The largest amounts of it are found in your skin, connective tissue and eyes.
Its main function is to retain water to keep your tissues well lubricated and moist. Hyaluronic acid can hold up to 1000 times its' weight in water providing much needed hydration and cushioning to skin and other parts of the body.
Hyaluronic acid has a variety of uses. Many people take it as a supplement, but it’s also used in topical serums, eye drops and injections.
The average body has approximately 15 grams of hyaluronic acid, the majority being within the skin. The body naturally "metabolises" some hyaluronic acid every day and produces new hyaluronic acid to replace it. As we age this process slows down and our joints and skin become more depleted of it.
In dermal fillers and skin boosters the concentration of hyaluronic acid varies depending upon where the product is required. For example filler used for cheek enhancement has the most dense hyaluronic acid as it needs to mimic bone and provide support and superficial skin hyaluronic acid being the "thinnest" density to improve fine lines and provide hydration to the skin.
WHAT ARE AMINO ACIDS?
The first amino acid was found in asparagus in 1806 by french chemists. There are many types of amino acids that are essential and in many of our foods to create proteins which strengthen and repair and nourish. Sunekos is a skin booster, which like dermal fillers contains hyaluronic acid. But, what makes Sunekos special is the patented formula of amino acids, which is added alongside the hyaluronic acid to create the injected product. This potent mix of amino acids which includes glycine, L-proline, L-leucine, L-lysine HCI, L-valine and L-alanine help to regenerate the Extra Cellular Matrix (ECM) – the building blocks which help to make the wall – by stimulating fibroblasts, or skin cells, to produce new collagen and elastin, repairing and rebuilding skin. This process is referred to as a dermal biogenesis, literally skin regeneration.
CAN SKIN BOOSTERS BE USED IN OTHER WAYS?
Yes skin boosters can be combined with skin needling devices either rolled before or after needling or injected directly into the skin mixed into a stamping device. Skin boosters can also be mixed with toxin and needled over areas of rosacea to significantly improve rosacea. There are also nutritional skin booster drinks and supplements that claim to be able to improve and plump the skin from ingesting those supplements.
WHEN SHOULD I START SKIN BOOSTERS?
The natural ageing of the body begins at around age 30. The vitamins, antioxidants hydration, collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid all begin to slowly decline from age 30 with significant deterioration around menopause. Knowing this it would be appropriate to begin the prevention of signs of ageing from age 30 for best results.
WHICH SKIN BOOSTER SHOULD I BOOK?
That is entirely your choice. Profhilo is injected as 0.2ml bolus points in specific areas that spread over a few hours. Sunekos has a specific treatment massage to aid the amino acids and RHA 1 can be easily injected to target specific identifiable fine lines and wrinkles. You could also try them all out over time and choose your favourite! RHA 1 has the added benefit of having lidocaine included in the syringe to enable the treatment to be more comfortable. Otherwise Andrea will apply a topical numbing cream to reduce any discomfort.
WHAT HAPPENS AT MY APPOINTMENT?
At your first appointment you will complete a medical questionnaire which will be sent via email, to make sure you are suitable to have this treatment, it is very important to complete this truthfully and comprehensively to ensure your safety and to obtain the best results. This information is held confidentially in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1990. At follow up appointments you must inform us if any of your medical history or medication has changed. If you are pregnant or breast feeding you will not be able to have this treatment as we do not know if it will harm your baby.
If you are wearing makeup this MUST be removed prior to your treatment to avoid the risk of infection and causing side effects to the treatment-NO EXCEPTIONS! We have removal products available for your use complimentary.
You may also have pictures taken of the treatment areas, which helps to assess your response to the treatment.
Preventative plan, these are clients with no visible lines when the face is at rest, only lines when expression is made. These clients are easier to treat, get longer results and need the treatment less frequently, generally or,
Maintenance plan, these clients have achieved the look they desire, and generally, only need to maintain the results over time often only needing treatments every 6 months or so and only need additional treatments as the natural ageing process occurs, or
Repair plan, these clients are the most difficult to treat. The lines are visible when no facial expressions are made and the face is at rest, they have either smoked for many years, have sun damage to the skin and still expose their skin to sunbeds, have tooth loss or gum disease, are generally older and need repeated treatments very close together to achieve the best results. These clients need cosmetic treatments close together every 3-4 months, and various other treatments to help too, skin peels and dermal fillers for example. However, don’t despair if you fall into this category as you will still see results but you will need to be patient and have realistic expectations. Andrea will advise you if you are in this category.
Depending on which plan you are put on informs you of expected results and likely gap between treatments required to get the results you require. If skin boosters will not give you the results you require on its own, we will inform you of this during the consultation and advise on other complementary treatments to get you to your goal. We never “hard sell” treatments, giving you only honest advice.
Andrea may discuss changing your brand, altering your dose or injection pattern, if deemed necessary to get you better results. No one brand works for everyone. Andrea uses all brands available to give you best results.
Andrea uses tiny needles to inject you which are the smallest on the market at this time, and hardly leave a mark. However, the risk of getting a bruise cannot be completely eliminated, especially if the skin above the lip is being treated. You can take arnica to help minimize bruising. The treatment is actually not painful only tiny stinging at some points.
WHAT SHOULD I DO AFTER MY APPOINTMENT?
This is extremely important that you follow this advice to get the best results. No results can be guaranteed as every face in the world is different, but follow these guidelines to get the best results.
You will have small bumps which reduce, usually within a few hours which is the solution just settling into the skin.
Do not pull or stretch the treated skin, it's best to just leave it alone.
Do not rub, massage, have eyebrow waxing, semi-permanent makeup, rub creams, or have facial treatments, around the treated areas until the skin is healed.
Do not exercise within 6 hours of your treatment.
Do not have saunas, sunbeds, within 72 hours of your treatment to avoid infection.
Washing and makeup application must be done gently until the skin is healed.
Avoid alcohol for 24 hours as it causes bruising as it thins the blood and facial flushing which adversely effects the toxin.
Address your lifestyle issues that cause premature ageing, for example, smoking and UVA/UVB exposure. Both damage the skin at cellular level. Cosmetic treatments would therefore be needed far more frequently and be more costly.
Wearing SPF 50 every day helps protect your skin as does using nightly retinol improving collagen in your skin. Andrea will advise you on this if you require it.
ARE THERE ANY SIDE EFFECTS TO SKIN BOOSTERS?
There are no permanent side effects however there are several well known minor side effects that are temporary and DO NOT require any intervention and DO NOT need to be reported to the clinic.
Bruising, avoiding fish oils, vitamin E supplements, alcohol, green tea, sunbeds, NSAIDS painkillers (Ibuprofen, naproxen, aspirin) will all reduce bruising risk. The only way to guarantee no bruising is not to have treatments involving a needle.
Temporary Swelling, usually very mild and transient, relieved with simple analgesia and a cool compress. Some under eye swelling can sometimes occur that is temporary and requires no treatment or intervention.
HOW LONG WILL MY TREATMENT LAST?
The average response is 3-4 months however some get 6-8 months others only 2-3 months. Skin boosters are the lightest of all hyaluronic acids so will need repeating regulary to maintain and achieve the best results.
Depending on which treatment plan you are on can affect the duration of your results, preventative, maintenance, repair.
How quick your body "metabolises" or turns over hyaluronic acid. This is very individual and cannot be predicted until treatment is administered.
If you follow the aftercare advice you will get longer results, and if you avoid smoking and UVA/UVB your results will last longer.
Results are best in hypokinetic clients (those people who are not overly expressive), compared to hyperkinetic clients (people who have lots of facial expressions), please ask which you are and Andrea will happily inform you.
If you are very slim or lose/gain more than 7lb - 10lb in weight this can affect your facial features and ultimately your results in a positive/negative way. Andrea will tailor your treatment to try and work with your individual needs.
WHEN WILL I SEE MY RESULTS?
Again, everyone is different but usually some skin improvement can be seen either immediately or from 4-6 weeks.
Andrea always advises that when you leave after your treatment you are careful driving, looking in the mirror. It is very exciting and you want to see your results but be patient it will be a gradual process.
WILL ALL MY LINES AND WRINKLES DISAPPEAR?
Some clients lines do completely disappear but some may need other supporting treatments to improve them or in some cases, very deep lines where the skin is loose and lines are visible when no facial expressions are made, will never be completely removed. You may need a thicker filler to support, fill or plump the skin beneath skin booster and Andrea will advise you on this. However as a rule of thumb, have all the structural fillers first leaving the skin booster as the icing on the cake!
WHERE CAN SKIN BOOSTERS BE USED?
Skin boosters can be used almost anywhere! across the forehead, between the eyebrows if there are any stubborn fine lines remaining after toxin injections, eyelids, hands, neck, anywhere!
WHEN WILL I BOOK IN FOR MY NEXT TREATMENT?
Skin boosters can be repeated over and over with little time between treatments. However it would be sensible to allow previously treated skin to heal completely, approximately 2-4 weeks before treating the exact same tissue again. You can continue to treat different areas though with no gap between treatments if preferred.
HOW WILL I LOOK WHEN IT WEARS OFF?
This is a common query; if you decide to not maintain skin booster, you will gradually notice a return of the fine lines and wrinkles over a period of weeks or months. If you have had this treatment for a number of years and decide to stop for a while or completely, you will not excessively age and will not develop all those years of wrinkles that have been prevented.
Stubborn lines that were removed do not usually come back as deep.
WHAT IF I DO NOT LIKE THE RESULTS, WHAT CAN BE DONE?
I have never in all my years in medical aesthetics, had a client who didn't like skin booster. If anything they all want more as it's almost a drink for your skin! Unlike mainstream fillers which can be dissolved using hyalase, skin boosters rarely cause problems or issues that can occur with normal fillers.
HOW MUCH SKIN BOOSTER SHOULD I HAVE?
This is a very individual preference on how you view your lines and wrinkles. However the more you have the better your skin will be.
Andrea will advise you at your appointment how much you should have to get the look you require, being mindful the more ageing that is present, the more you will need.
HOW MUCH DOES SKIN BOOSTER COST?
This varies country to country and practitioner to practitioner. Andrea’s prices can be found on the online booking system.
Be very wary of cheap, too good to be true deals. It is professional law to be insured to carry out these treatments. Only dentists, doctors and independent nurse prescribers can prescribe. Ensure your practitioner has clinical waste contracts, and is trained in advanced treatments. Andrea’s certificates are displayed within the clinic. It is also against our professional and regulatory standards to offer deals, offers or raffles on medical treatments. Each skin booster brand is a different price due to the fine differences between them. The prices are non negotiable.
Reputable businesses all have this in place and only obtain the product from reputable UK suppliers and adhere to the manufacturers guidelines on storage and mixing, administering and disposal.
Andrea offers a range of payment methods to consider spreading the cost pre–payment direct debit schemes are in place.
You can pay with a valid debit/credit card, cash and BACS transfer too. We do not accept cheques, You are responsible for paying in full at the time of treatment for your treatment.
DO YOU GUARANTEE MY RESULTS?
As every person has a different face, no results can be guaranteed unfortunately, however Andrea will endeavour to achieve realistic results using the treatments available, considering the type of skin, muscles, and face you have. We do not issue refunds.
DO YOU OFFER A FOLLOW UP APPOINTMENT?
You do not need a follow up appointment for skin booster treatment. You can of course rebook further treatments at your leisure to continue the skin improvement.
WHAT ARE REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS?
It is entirely appropriate to have certain expectations when you book for a treatment. Now you have had the opportunity to read all the advice and information about this treatment, we need to be assured that your expectations are realistic.
Some clients due to certain mental health issues or personality disorders or clients who are misinformed may have expectations that will never be fulfilled. This can be disappointing to both the client and the medical practitioner when this occurs.
If you are concerned you may be becoming obsessed over a certain facial feature or addicted to treatments, please go to the downloads page and complete our confidential body dysmorphia screening tool. You can also speak candidly to Andrea who will advise you too. If your expectations are unrealistic, Andrea may discharge you from the clinic until you receive further assessment.
UNREALISTIC EXPECTATIONS CAN INCLUDE:
1. Expecting dramatic or instant results from treatments,
2. Never being happy or content with how you look or how treatment results appear,
3. Wanting to appear more than 5-10 years younger than your actual age,
4. Not accepting that all treatments have limitations on what they can achieve excessive sagging of the skin, continuing smoking, sun damage & premature ageing can be difficult to repair, if at all.
5. Not following the pre treatment or aftercare advice, but still expecting the treatment to give perfect results would be unrealistic.
6. To expect not to have any bruises when needles are being used in your skin,
7. To expect the treatment results to last longer than what the manufacturer advises,
8. Expecting a treatment to give you the effect of a different treatment i.e. toxin to give a filler result,
9. Expecting the treatment results of a multi treatment procedure or a more expensive treatment given over a period of time, from only one treatment.
10. Expecting bruises, swelling or other side effects to resolve within unrealistic healing time frames.
11. Expecting to look like your favourite celebrity is unrealistic.
12. Wanting to look like a filtered, digitally enhanced, social media picture of yourself or someone else.
13. Expecting out of hours emails to be answered, or sending excessive amounts of emails about already provided information. Although this is not an absolute unrealistic expectation, or contraindication, unfortunately, Skin 1st do not have the human resources to provide this level of client support. If you feel you want this level of support, please find an alternative clinic who have the capacity and resources to accommodate you.
14. If after having treatments you worry excessively or lose sleep, you may not be suitable to have treatments. Treatments should enhance how you feel, not contribute to feelings of anxiety.
15. Expecting "bargain basement prices" when you are receiving the top brands, available on the market, performed by a regulated health professional who is an expert in aesthetics and other fields at Skin 1st.
This is not an exhaustive list but gives an indicator to whether treatments are for you and whether you are suitable to be a client. If Andrea feels that you are not suitable, no further appointments will be booked for you until you have had further assessment.