A Guide To Non-Surgical Facial Aesthetic Treatments
Aesthetic treatments have advanced significantly in the last few decades. Many new breakthroughs have resulted in facial treatments that can reduce wrinkles, tighten sagging skin, recountour your features, and improve complexion among many other benefits.
In fact so many new beauty treatments are unveiled every year that it may be difficult for the average consumer to keep up and make an informed decision. To help you understand a little more about what they offer, and how minimally invasive procedures with little to no downtime can make a big difference to your appearance, we delved deeper into the most popular non-surgical facial aesthetic treatments.
What Are Facial Aesthetic Treatments?
The term facial aesthetic treatment refers broadly to a number of different cosmetic procedures aimed at enhancing features, reducing signs of ageing, and achieving a more balanced and even look. These treatments can be offered by trained professionals like dermatologists and aesthetic medical practitioners. Some familiar examples of facial aesthetic procedures include botox, injectable dermal fillers, chemical peels, facelifts, and surgical facial contouring.
Many of these therapies are aimed at keeping our faces youthful and vibrant to fight back against the visible signs of ageing. This is due to the fact that as we get older, our bodies go through several changes. Skin becomes less elastic, collagen production drops, and exposure to pollutants and UV light have a cumulative effect to make skin more uneven and dull. Facial aesthetic treatments are one way of turning back the clock to help rejuvenate your skin and allow you to hold on to a more youthful appearance.
Surgical vs Non-Surgical Treatments
When deciding on a type of facial treatment, patients have the option of choosing between surgical and non-surgical procedures. As the term implies, surgical procedures are more invasive and involve going under the knife. These treatments must be conducted by qualified medical professionals with extensive training and expertise in facial anatomy, aesthetics, and surgical techniques.
Surgical facial treatments are usually used to reshape a person’s features for a more pleasing and desirable appearance. Facelifts are one example of a surgical procedure that’s used to address signs of ageing by tightening tissues in the face and neck, reduce fat, and smoothen skin. They generally take a few hours from start to end and the recovery process may last a few weeks. Another example of a surgical treatment is a rhinoplasty or nose job, which involves reshaping or reconstructing the nose to improve its appearance and function.
While surgical treatments are effective and certainly have their place in the aesthetics world, they are generally more invasive, have longer downtimes, and usually cost much more than non-surgical treatments. For minor to moderate enhancements non-surgical facial treatments are preferred as they provide good results quickly with little discomfort, lower risk of complications, and are more affordable for most people.
The Different Types Of Non-Surgical Treatments
Non-surgical facial aesthetic treatments refer to any procedure that aims to improve your skin and face without resorting to surgery. Many of these treatments have been scientifically researched and clinically tested to be safe and highly effective. Different mechanisms are at play in how these treatments work and understanding them allows patients to make a more educated decision on which one to pursue.
Collagen is almost synonymous with all sorts of anti-ageing treatments. It is the main ingredient in several beauty products and is often seen as having an important role in maintaining a youthful and desirable appearance. Collagen is actually the most abundant protein in our body but decreases in production as we reach our 30s. Collagen performs key functions in holding cells together, is an essential component of connective tissue, and provides strength and elasticity.
A drop in collagen levels is strongly associated with the many ill-effects of ageing. Without sufficient collagen, skin becomes less taught, resilient, and more prone to wrinkling and creasing. Collagen also provides thickness and hydration to skin and a lack of collagen means skin is thinner, more fragile, and generally more dry.
Reversing the decline of collagen in our bodies is the main aim of collagen treatments for your face. One way to do this is by stimulating our natural healing processes, which in turn jumpstart collagen production. When tissue is damaged, our bodies are triggered to produce collagen in response and send it to the injury sites. This allows the affected tissues to regain structure and function.
Collagen growth can be stimulated in a number of ways. Laser therapy, intense wavelengths of light, and ultrasound are some popular methods. While they may differ in their approach, the end goal of triggering collagen production via natural processes remains the same. By increasing collagen in your face via these treatments you may experience benefits like reduced wrinkles and sagging, better elasticity, and increased hydration.
Another method of increasing collagen production in your face is via collagen facials in Singapore. Collagen facials come with added benefits as the procedure can help with issues like uneven skin tone, visible pores, hyperpigmentation, and scars. Similar to a normal facial treatment, collagen facials often begin with a thorough cleaning of the face to remove dirt and other impurities. This may then be followed by an exfoliation process to remove the layer of dead skin on your face which can make your skin look brighter.
Once these steps are done, a collagen-rich mask, serum, or cream is then applied to the face. These products contain ingredients that can help boost collagen production, such as collagen peptides, amino acids, or collagen-stimulating compounds. The formulation is gently massaged into the skin, ensuring even coverage.
Learn More: Benefits Of Collagen Treatment
Laser Skin Treatments
Lasers are some of the best tools available to aesthetic doctors and have shown good efficacy in treating a number of skin conditions. They are highly versatile, effective, precise, and can be customised to suit individual patients. Laser treatments in Singapore are especially used for skin conditions like acne, acne scarring, rosacea, and hyperpigmentation.
Many different lasers exist and each one is meant for a specific purpose and penetrates into the skin at varying depths. Some lasers affect only the most superficial layer of skin, while others may reach down deeper to target different components.
For patients suffering from acne, lasers can help by killing the bacteria on your skin that causes breakouts and regulating oil production in your pores. One distinct advantage of laser treatments is their ability to combine with other acne treatments for better cure rates.
When it comes to acne scars, fine lines, and wrinkles, laser treatments work by destroying the outermost layer of your skin and heating up the underlying dermis layer. Over time, this stimulates collagen production which promotes skin tightening and skin healing.
If you have hyperpigmentation, laser treatments are some of the best aesthetic options available to you. Lasers can target excess pigmentation in the skin, such as sunspots or age spots, and break down the excessive melanin which is usually the root cause.
Rosacea is a chronic inflammatory skin condition characterised by facial redness, visible blood vessels, flushing, and acne-like bumps. Lasers with specific wavelengths are able to reduce the redness associated with rosacea by constricting the blood vessels responsible which results in a more even skin tone. The acne-like bumps can also be addressed through laser treatment’s ability to increase collagen and promote skin remodelling.
Laser treatments are fast and can be conducted by a trained medical professional in sometimes under an hour. Their effects can be long-lasting and the results are usually satisfactory. Make sure to talk to a dermatologist before starting any laser treatment.
Learn More: Misconceptions About Laser Skin Treatment
Chemical Peel Treatments
Chemical peels range from light peels which lightly exfoliate your skin by removing the most superficial layer, to deeper peels which can penetrate into the middle layers of the dermis. The different types of chemical peels treat various conditions but the concept behind them are similar.
Light chemical peels rejuvenate the skin by exfoliating the outermost layer with a weak acid. This promotes cell turnover and increases collagen production. By removing the outer layer, the inner younger looking skin is revealed which contributes to a more youthful and vibrant appearance. This process can also smooth out rough or uneven skin texture and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles.
Deeper chemical peels use a strong solution which penetrates deeply into the skin causing controlled damage. This triggers a wound healing response in the skin, Over the next few days, the skin begins to peel and the damaged outer layers gradually slough off. This process is usually used to treat deeper wrinkles and scars or precancerous skin patches. Deeper chemical peels may be done with local anaesthetic to minimise discomfort and a two week downtime is usually expected.
The exfoliating effect of chemical peels is beneficial for those who have acne and mild to moderate acne can often be treated with superficial peels. For more severe acne, stronger peels with ingredients like salicylic acid may be recommended. Chemical peels in Singapore can also help with uneven pigmentation, dark spots, acne scars, and minimising pores.
High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU) is a relative newcomer to the aesthetic treatments scene. However the technology behind the treatment has been in use for decades and is prescribed for conditions like uterine fibroids and prostate cancer.
HIFU treatments use ultrasound energy to heat up the tissue just below the surface of the skin. This localised heating causes thermal damage to the tissue. Similar to how chemical peels or laser treatments work, the controlled damage triggers a healing response which leads to tissue remodelling, reduction in volume, or collagen production depending on the final goal.
The benefits of HIFU are more effective healing, ability to melt facial fats for a more defined cheekbone and jawline structure, and reduced appearance of wrinkles and lines. HIFU can even be used to reduce stubborn fats in areas like arms, tummy, hips, and thighs.
Beyond this list of positive effects, HIFU treatment is also highly sought after as it is non-invasive, almost no downtime, sessions are concluded quickly, and can be combined with other cosmetic treatments. It’s important to note that you should consult with your doctor before combining HIFU with other treatments.
Injectable Facial Aesthetic Treatments
Injectable facial treatments is a category that includes well-established procedures like Botox, Dermal fillers, and hyaluronic acid fillers like Profilho. Still considered minimally invasive, their mechanisms are different. Unlike the treatments mentioned above, their primary function is not to stimulate collagen production via natural healing responses. Rather, injectable treatments focus on specific parts of the face to restore volume, correct wrinkles, fill in scars, and hydrate skin.
Injectable dermal fillers are made from substances including hyaluronic acid, calcium hydroxylapatite, and Polymethylmethacrylate. These gel-like fillers are injected into specific areas of your face using a fine needle. The parts of the face often targeted are cheeks, lips, temples, chin, and nose. Often these areas lose plumpness and volume as you age and are prone to sag. Injecting dermal fillers provides instantaneous results to make you look younger without resorting to surgery.
Dermal fillers can also be used to address wrinkles and fine lines to fill them in and make them less obvious. By adding volume, they can smooth out the skin’s surface and create a more youthful appearance. Fillers utilising hyaluronic acid have the ability to attract and retain moisture in the skin leading to a more hydrated and rejuvenated appearance. Other fillers using calcium hydroxylapatite can also stimulate collagen synthesis under the skin.
When performed by an experienced practitioner, dermal fillers are an excellent option to improve your overall appearance. They smoothen out dark eye circles, lift cheekbones, volumize lips, enhance and emphasise natural features. The results from fillers can last several months or even up to a year. Future treatments will still be needed to maintain the results. There is virtually no downtime for injectable dermal fillers although intense physical activity should be avoided for 1-2 days.
Botox is one of the most well-known and popular injectable cosmetic treatments used around the world. It involves injecting very small doses of a toxin which paralyses muscles into the face. By targeting the specific muscles that are responsible for causing wrinkles and lines, Botox blocks the nerve signals that would normally instruct the treated muscles to contract.
As a result, muscle activity is reduced or paralysed. The relaxation of the muscles leads to a reduction in the corresponding wrinkles or lines. Botox is extremely effective for wrinkles caused by movement. It is less effective for static wrinkles that are present even at rest. While Botox may have impressive effects, it only lasts a few months and requires frequent follow up treatments.
Impressively, Botox also has a preventative effect to stop you from developing more wrinkles. The paralysing of specific muscle activity also makes it less likely that your face will contract in a way that will lead to wrinkles and fine lines. The younger you start Botox, before wrinkles appear, the more pronounced this preventative effect will be.
Botox treatments in Singapore don’t require recovery time, but aftercare is important for the first few days. You should avoid touching or rubbing the injected areas and intense physical activity or exercise should be avoided. Botox should always be administered by a trained and qualified practitioner and it’s crucial that you follow their advice before and after treatment.
An injectable moisturiser that contains a unique hyaluronic acid based product, Profhilo is known for its bio remodelling qualities. It is able to hydrate skin, stimulate the production of collagen and elastin, improve skin tone, and enhance texture.
Unlike dermal fillers, Profhilo does not affect the contours of the face and is not meant to address loss of volume, define cheekbones and jawlines, or lift facial skin. As compared to dermal fillers, Profhilo is designed to flow over a larger area to boost hydration. Rather than plumping up your face, its focus is on improving the quality of your skin by making you look more radiant. This effect is mainly due to the hyaluronic acid component of Profhilo.
Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occuring substance that’s found throughout your body. It retains water extremely well and makes your skin flexible. By helping skin to stretch and flex properly, it can reduce wrinkles and lines. Profhilo injections containing hyaluronic acid are administered to specific areas of the face such as cheeks, jawline, and neck.
Multiple sessions are required to see the full effect of Profhilo with the recommendation being twice per month. Once the full effects are visible, you only need treatment sessions every 6-12 months to maintain it. Generally it is encouraged for patients 30 and above or for those who have begun to notice signs of ageing in their skin.
No downtime is required although patients are encouraged not to use makeup or engage in intense physical activity for at least 24 hours after.
Rejuran is another recent entrant into the world of injectable aesthetic treatments. Its mechanism and component ingredients are very different from Profhilo. Rejuran contains Polynucleotides (PN) suspended in a gel matrix. Polynucleotides are the building blocks of DNA and may have regenerative and healing properties.
Derived from salmon DNA, Rejuran is perfectly safe for use in people and has benefits like increasing skin elasticity, pore size reduction, speeding up skin healing, and strengthening skin barrier. The skin healing effect of Rejuran extends to damage from UV light, pollution, as well as oxidative stress. Rejuran can be used as a preventative measure to slow down the appearance of ageing skin. It is also compatible for usage alongside other treatments like skin laser treatments.
The initial treatment phase requires sessions once every 2-4 weeks. Once the full benefits have been received, maintenance sessions should be scheduled once every 3-6 months. Similar to other injection-based aesthetic treatments, downtime is minimal. However patients may experience slightly raised and reddish welts at the injection sites which may take anywhere from 12-24 hours to fully disappear. Excessive heat, intense activity, and exercise should be avoided during this window as well.
Frequently Asked Questions
1) Which facial aesthetic treatment is best for me?
Determining which non-surgical aesthetic treatment in Singapore is best for an individual depends on several factors. Due consideration has to be given to desired outcome, current skin condition, budget, lifestyle, and any existing health issues.
Your aesthetic doctor is best placed to give you advice on the treatment that would likely have the best outcome for you and patients should have a thorough discussion with them about their options.
Patients with skin conditions like acne may benefit from chemical peels or laser treatments. Scars leftover from acne breakouts can also be treated with chemical peels or lasers, along with dermal fillers for deeper scars. Those who may have more concerns over ageing skin may find collagen treatments, HIFU, Botox, Profhilo, and Rejuran more suitable. As always, seek the consultation of an aesthetics specialist before making your decision.
2) How long do the results from facial aesthetic treatments last?
Some treatments like Botox only last a few months before another session is required, although Botox can also have a preventative effect. The results from chemical peels vary depending on the depth of the peel. Superficial peels may also only last a few months, while deep peels can offer long-lasting results.
The other non-surgical treatments listed above generally last for months at a time. However a maintenance regimen and touch-ups are almost always necessary to ensure the effects are kept. Many of the timelines given are also estimates and the longevity can be influenced by factors such as skincare routine, sun exposure, lifestyle choices, and the natural ageing process.
3) How does collagen make your face look younger?
As we age, the production of collagen in the skin gradually declines, resulting in visible signs of ageing such as wrinkles, sagging, and loss of volume. By enhancing collagen production in our face, skin becomes more supple due to higher elasticity and resilience.
Collagen also promotes smoother and more plump skin, diminishing the visible signs of wrinkles and fine lines. It also contributes to skin hydration which can lead to the much desired glowing complexion. By replenishing collagen, your skin also regains its firmness and tightness, reducing sagging and giving your face a more lifted appearance. Finally, collagen treatments for your face evens out skin tone and texture by reducing the appearance blemishes, scars, and hyperpigmentation.
4) Are there any side effects of facial aesthetic treatments?
Most facial aesthetic treatments have undergone rigorous testing and are safe for use by trained medical professionals. However they may still have some side effects which patients need to be aware of.
Some common side effects include redness, temporary hyperpigmentation or hypopigmentation, swelling, bruising, tenderness, discomfort, and sensitivity. Many of these side effects are temporary and localised to the specific areas which have been treated.
Botox treatments may have some rarer side effects like muscle weakness or drooping in adjacent areas if the toxin spreads. For dermal fillers there can be allergic reactions, infection, or lumps forming under the skin. If you experience any of these side effects, it is important to seek medical attention immediately. Choosing a skilled and experienced practitioner from a licensed aesthetic clinic in Singapore can also help minimise the risk of complications.
5) When should I opt for non-surgical treatments over surgical treatments?
Non-surgical facial aesthetic treatments offer many benefits over surgical treatments. But choosing one over the other comes down to some key considerations.
If you are looking for dramatic changes to your appearance, then you may not be satisfied with the results from non-surgical treatments. Cosmetic surgery like rhinoplasty, facelifts, and neck lifts may be more suitable. If you want more subtle changes to enhance natural features then non-surgical treatments are usually preferred.
Non-surgical procedures are much more reversible than surgical options, meaning that patients are not stuck with permanent unwanted changes to their appearance. If you are not ready to commit to surgery, you can consider trying non-surgical treatments first. Non-surgical treatments are also much cheaper, have less downtime, fewer risks, and shorter recovery times.
Lastly if you are looking for a more natural aesthetic, non-surgical methods may be better as many of these treatments are focused on replenishing natural substances like collagen in your body to improve your appearance from within.
The Final Word On Non-Surgical Aesthetic Treatments
There are a multitude of options for patients looking for non-surgical aesthetic treatments. They are all scientifically tested and have shown proven benefits for patients. Some like Botox have a preventative effect to protect your skin from showing signs of ageing. Others stimulate healing processes to keep your appearance more youthful.
Treatments like chemical peels or laser treatments are also useful for specific skin conditions and can be used to reduce minor scarring or blemishes. For deeper scars or wrinkles, dermal fillers are a good option. One downside of non-surgical treatments is the fact that they last a few months and lifelong sessions may be needed every so often to keep the desired effect.
However these treatments are usually done within a few hours at most and have minimal recovery time. Patients can schedule these sessions with little disruption to their daily schedule. The other drawback of non-surgical treatments is that they cannot dramatically alter a person’s appearance and have their limitations. For patients who are hesitant about surgery, the impermanence of non-surgical aesthetic treatments and their lower cost can serve as a testing ground before they opt for a surgical procedure.
Ultimately, the decision between non-surgical and surgical treatments should be made in consultation with a qualified specialist. They can evaluate your concerns, discuss your goals, and provide recommendations. Their expertise would be invaluable to guide you towards the most suitable treatment approach to achieve your desired aesthetic outcome.
Dr Plus Aesthetics Clinic aims to help you on your journey towards enhancing your beauty from within through scientifically proven and clinically researched methods. Helmed by Dr Kenneth Lee, our treatment methods have a special focus on replenishing your body’s natural store of collagen for its anti-ageing effect. Contact us today to learn more about our services and drop us a line with your questions.