The Best Cold-Weather Cosmetic Treatments For Fall And Winter
Sure, you have a skincare regimen that you follow religiously, get regular facials, and check in with your dermatologist from time to time (we hope). But sometimes your skin just needs that extra boost—especially if you're looking for anti-aging results. The fall and winter are the perfect time of the year to take care of those treatments. Certain cosmetic procedures—particularly laser treatments—should be avoided during the summer months because excessive heat and sun exposure can lead to increased skin sensitivity. In addition to that, if any healing wounds or freshly zapped areas aren't adequately protected from UV exposure, you could wind up with pigmentation problems and even scarring. With summer coming swiftly to a close, now's the time to book those fall and winter procedures. These are some of our favorite treatments for the colder months.
Renew your skin with Fraxel.
Fraxel is a marvelous treatment that's best performed when the summer sun goes on hiatus. And there's no better time than now to undo the sun damage you accidentally suffered over the summer. A treatment that targets wrinkling, brown spots, and rough texture, Fraxel is the gold standard for laser resurfacing. Dr. Robert Anolik explains how it works: "The laser penetrates through the surface of the skin, but creates microscopic wounding within the dermis. This spurs new collagen production and remodels skin to a healthier state." According to Dr. Amanda Doyle, Fraxel is more aggressive than a treatment like Clear + Brilliant, so you have to be extra careful about sun exposure post-treatment. That's why autumn is a great time to make an appointment. After the treatment, it takes five days for the damaged skin to naturally flake off (taking dark spots and uneven patches along with it). Dr. Gervaise Gerstner told us that many of her patients are fans of Fraxel Fridays—by the time Monday rolls around, the worst part of the healing process is already over.
Try Ultherapy for younger-looking skin.
While most lasers are only skin-deep, the ultrasound technology used by Ultherapy penetrates a deeper layer of tissues above the facial muscles. According to Dr. Shereene Idriss, Ultherapy "offers a deeper micro-focused delivery of heat beneath the skin's surface via ultrasound energy." By targeting this deeper layer, Ultherapy is able to lift and tighten the skin to produce a more youthful, glowing look. Dr. Julie Russak says that Ultherapy is a good alternative to a traditional facelift. If you have more mature skin, you'll want to get two treatments per year to tighten skin laxity, she tells us. What kind of results will you see? Dr. Jennifer MacGregor tells us that Ultherapy "strengthens the skin's foundation, improves skin quality, and smooths deeper wrinkles." This time of year is perfect for your Ultherapy session (or sessions), since it takes about 2-3 months for new collagen to appear and give you younger-looking skin. That means you'll see effects right around the time the holidays roll around!
Look radiant after a few sessions of Clear + Brilliant.
If you want a laser treatment that's more gentle than Fraxel, look no further than Clear + Brilliant. According to Dr. Russak, this treatment is especially great for younger skin. "These lasers address pigmentation and increasing skin porosity, so you get the most from your [skincare] products," she says. Clear + Brilliant is the perfect way to get out of the end-of-summer slump and prep your skin for the colder months.
Zap away those not-so-pretty leg veins with sclerotherapy.
Did you start to notice your leg veins while you were lying by the pool this summer? Now is the ideal time to zap the unwelcome visitors so they don’t accompany you on your next trip to St. Barths. Try sclerotherapy, which works best when you're untanned and can keep your gorgeous gams out of the sun for several weeks. Dr. Julie Karen, one of NYC's top doctors for this type of treatment, says,"It works so well because the leg veins are an intra-connected system, like a tree with the big trunk, branches, smaller branches, and twigs. Oftentimes, the patient is most bothered by the twigs—the tiny vessels—but those twigs are being fed by underlying branches and sometimes even trunks. Sclerotherapy takes advantage of that network because when you inject into a small vessel, you reverse into the feeding vessel, but it's also going backward into the branches. You can treat a network of vessels with fewer injections." Keep in mind that this is not a painless procedure, so be sure to talk to your doctor about pain management before you go in for treatment. Plus, you’ll want to clear your workout schedule the week following treatment. While you can resume normal daily activities right away, you'll have to refrain from vigorous activities and excessive standing for at least one week post-treatment.
Say goodbye to shaving. Try out laser hair removal.
Are you over the constant shaving and waxing you had to do this summer? It's enough to break even the best of us. That's why so many people love laser hair removal. For the best result, wait until your tan fades, since this treatment works best on lighter skin tones. The more contrast there is between a dark hair follicle and a paler skin tone, the easier it is for the laser to target the root of your hairs with more accuracy. Also, post-treatment, your zapped skin needs to be kept out of the sun for several weeks to achieve optimal results. You're better off getting a laser hair removal treatment in a dermatologist’s office versus medi-spa because doctors can give you medical-grade numbing cream for the pain (laser hair removal is not a pain-free matter). And starting small is the way to go: have your underarms done before a larger or more sensitive surface just to see how well you handle this treatment.
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