When natural beauty Gwyneth Paltrow confessed that one of the secrets to her luminescence was Thermage, she had beauty bloggers and skincare worshipers alike considering this celeb-endorsed skin tightening treatment. Though Gwyneth likened the treatment to getting smacked in the face with an electrified rubber band, she found the gain well worth the amount of pain, telling Harper’s Baazar in 2013, “I would do it again, because I feel like it took five years off my face.” As if there isn’t enough to envy about the effortless beauty and yoga-perfected body of the blonde actress, it appears she’s found a way to age in reverse: Thermage. Luckily, unlike some of Gwyneth’s more eccentric beauty routines (i.e. vaginal steaming), finding a practitioner to administer this hi-tech cosmetic treatment is becoming increasingly easier. Gwyneth’s treatment was performed by Dr. Karyn Grossman. Here’s the lowdown on what exactly to expect if you decide to follow in Gwyneth’s glowing footsteps and book an appointment to get Thermage, plus our #charlottesays quick tips:
One of the key things with Thermage is expectation management…this is not an alternative to surgery. For those ideal candidates just first starting to notice the effects of gravity, this is one of the very few treatments where one may be enough to get the results you need. Smokers be warned: cigarette smoke will break down the collagen that is trying to rebuild from the Thermage treatment… Also – Thermage is known to be painful. Talk to you doctor about this. Just read this patient’s full account of her experience. Or read Tatiana Boncompagni’s account in her story “I Lost Ten Pounds But Gained Five Years.” If your also considering a facelift, learn the average age of a facelift candidate.
What is it?
Thermage is a noninvasive skin tightening treatment that uses radiofrequency technology to smooth fines lines and wrinkles and to tighten and lift the skin of the face and body. Thermage treatments can be divided into 2 categories: more superficial treatments for skin tightening of the face, neck, and eyelid and deeper treatments for body contouring on the abdomen, thighs, buttocks, and arms. During the procedure radiofrequency energy penetrates deep into the skin to heat the underlying connective tissue that supports the skin. This causes immediate tightening of the skin and stimulates the formation of new collagen, which promotes further tightening and lifting over time. Read this doctor’s take on why nobody deserves to sag – ever.
Who is it for?
Thermage is safe and effective on all skin types. However, the best candidates for Thermage treatment are those with mild to moderate skin laxity, minimal sun damage, and do not regularly smoke cigarettes. The effects of Thermage treatment are less dramatic than surgery but there are no associated risks, down time, or recovery period. Related Watch: This video reveals what sun damage really looks like.
What does the treatment feel like?
Read this patient’s account of their treatment for the best guidance. Thermage treatment involves heat energy being applied to the skin that is alternated with a cooling device. Any minor discomfort during treatment is tolerable without anesthetic or pain medication; however, your doctor may recommend local anesthetic if your pain threshold is extremely low.
How long does it take?
Thermage treatment takes 30 minutes to 1 hour.
Are there immediate side effects?
After Thermage treatment, you may experience slight redness and swelling that will resolve within a day, but you should be able to resume daily activities as normal. Related read: What are the best post treatment practices?
What are the anticipated results?
Immediately after Thermage treatment there is noticeable tightening of the skin, but results continue to develop over 2 to 6 months as the newly stimulated collagen is produced. Just like with its counterpart, Ulthera, peak results are delayed and patience is rewarded with a tighter, more lifted appearance without any risks or side effects. Typically, treatment results last 1-2 years.
What is the recommended course of treatment for optimal results?
Very noticeable results are realized after the first Thermage treatment, but 2 or 3 consecutive treatments will improve the outcome. Follow-up treatments every 1 to 2 years are recommended to maintain results.
Who should give me this treatment?
For more information about how we choose our providers, please read Credentials We Abide By. Consult the Charlotte’s Book Premier Provider directory to find a doctor who meets these standards and specializes in this treatment. You should only visit an actively board certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon. Dermatologists should be certified by the American Board of Dermatology (ABD). Plastic Surgeons should be certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS). Both of those boards are part of the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS), a non-profit organization that is considered the gold standard of physician certification.
How much does it cost?
$2,000 – $5,000 depending on areas treated.
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