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Ulthera Light at Russak Dermatology Clinic
Medical Beauty

Ulthera “Light” — A Quicker, Easier Way To Boost Collagen


February 24, 2017

If you’re a regular reader of Charlotte’s Book, you know all about skin tightening and the inevitable loss of collagen that happens as you age. Many factors contribute to the breakdown of our precious proteins (collagen and elastin), including time (natural aging), the sun, free radical damage, and UVA damage: it all leads to sagging skin and a loss of elasticity, but at the core of this is a loss of collagen. Sadly, there is a 7% reduction in skin thickness every 10 years.

Enter Ulthera, which uses UltraSound technology to help rebuild collagen. By this point, you’ve read about it, and you know what it is. But did you know that a lighter version of Ulthera—we’re affectionately calling it The Diet Version—is being administered? It’s takes less time, hurts less, and costs less. Convinced yet?

We explain who it’s for, how it works, and all the 101 details, right here.

Who Is Ulthera Light Really For?

Ulthera is typically used for women 40 and over, and it’s often considered painful, expensive, and slightly scary—but Dr. Julie Russak, CB expert dermatologist and head of the Russak Dermatology Clinic, noticed that sometimes her younger clientele wanted something slightly stronger than the usual treatments, but weren’t ready for something as strong as Ulthera. So she designed a treatment called “The Sonic Lift.” This is effectively a lighter (and less painful version) of the traditional Ulthera treatment—it’s more appropriate for women who are not yet ready for full-fledged Ulthera.

Dr. Russak explains, “Younger patients who are noticing changes in their skin and want to take preventive measures sometimes want something more advanced than using an antioxidant or getting a Photo Facial. Ulthera is great because it speaks directly to rebuilding collagen. Traditionally, the more extensive Ultherapy protocols were targeted towards a more mature demographic: this Sonic Lift version addresses the needs of my younger patients.”

Often, these patients are in their late 20s and early 30s who notice changes in firmness and elasticity, but aren’t ready—or in need—of an overhaul.

How Is “The Sonic Lift” Different Than Ulthera?

The treatment is done on the same machine, the Ulthera, using a custom facial mapping protocol. Dr. Russak explains, “The ultrasound energy is focused more on the superficial layers, versus traditional Ulthera which goes much deeper.” This helps build up collagen levels and combats early signs of skin laxity, like loss of firmness and elasticity, while tightening the skin, reducing overall pore size and smoothing texture. The procedure is followed by antioxidant-infused oxygen + NeoCell’s Blueberry Hyaluronic Acid cocktail.

How Much Does it Cost?

It’s less expensive than traditional Ulthera and is approximately $1,200 for a full treatment.

What’s The Down Time?

Dr. Russak’s office assured us the treatment time is just one hour and has no downtime, as ultrasound doesn’t affect the barrier of the skin. We experienced the treatment and we can say we looked glowing immediately afterwards. We even attended a lunch and dinner that day. There was definitely tenderness in some of the treated areas, but nothing to deter us from going about our regular activities. We can confidently say that you can  actually go right back to work after a treatment and look gorgeous (that happened to us!). While sometimes “lunch-time” lasers or peels can leave you red and pink, we saw no such issues with this treatment, in fact, we were complimented on our skin the whole week.

Does it Hurt?

While the treatment is not a walk in the park, it’s not the end of the world either. Many doctors administer pain medication during traditional Ulthera treatments but this version does not require it. After experiencing the light version, we can definitely see the need for pain medication during a full-fledged treatment. However, the pain with The Sonic Lift was tolerable. In contrast to a laser treatment, the positive is that the pain is fast. The heat does not linger for hours: the second the machine is finished, the pain is gone.

When Do I See Results?

Dr. Russak says you can see results in as little as three weeks, but full results can take up to three months. While we saw results early on (we looked amazing on treatment day), we can’t wait to report on our full results in the coming month.


 Dr. Russak is a regular contributor on Charlotte’s Book – read all her expertise here. And speaking of Ulthera: did you know it can be used to firm your décolletage?


 Learn more about expert Dr. Julie Russak. Read client reviews, book appointments, and get expert advice. Only the best cosmetic doctors, skincare gurus, nutritionists, fitness and wellness professionals make it into our book.

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