The other day I popped into the Skin Renewal Clinic at the Cape Quarter to take in a little chat by the group’s CEO, Victor Snyders.
Every so often he rallies up le beauty peeps to fill us in on trends in the aesthetic biz as well as general skincare-related info while treating us to champers and spoilicious treats like cupcakes.
Anyway, as always, Victor and one of his rad female docs, Dr Toni van der Merwe, had loads of interesting stuff to tell us but these are some of the things I thought I’d share:
There’s a lot of fake Botox floating around. It won’t necessarily ensure you end up looking like that crazy Cat Lady but it’s not going to be effective. This is why it’s best to go to a proper registered aesthetician to get your fix, not some crazy chica you found on Gumtree. Also, if it’s half the price or at a rate that sounds too good to be true chances are it is; so don’t take the risk.
Here’s a little Botox sidebar for you… Botox doesn’t ‘paralyze your muscle’. I mean, it does, but not in the way that you think. How it works is that it dissolves the nerve transmitters that carry the message from your brain to a specific muscle. So while your brain says ‘hey there muscle, get a move on!’, it can’t because the ‘telephone wire’ that carries the message has been removed. (Or stolen if you’re in SA…) Over time, however, those little transmitters grow back, which is why Botox is a temporary solution lasting about three to four months. This is also why Botox can take up to five days to kick in; it takes a little while for all those nervy guys to dissolve.
MANY women are still confusing Botox and fillers and they’re not the same thing. If you’re one of them, this is the deal in a nutshell: Botox stops your muscles from moving which results in the softening of lines like crow’s feet around your eyes and forehead wrinkles. Fillers are kind of like Pollyfilla in that they’re actual liquid or gel-like substances that you can inject into lines (or your lips) to literally fill them up. One of the most popular fillers is hyaluronic acid (sold under various brand names; think Juvederm, Perlane etc). It generally lasts around six to 18 months depending on where you use it. (I had my lips done a few years back as it was offered to me for free and I was super curious. Initially, I thought my bottom lip looked too big so I made a point of massaging the living shizz out of it every night – Arden’s Eight Hour Cream was my friend – and this helped it to break down and disappear much faster. In fact, after ten days I’d gotten it down by at least 20% in size and was then much happier with the look.)
A new way in which fillers are being used is to create volume. Instead of simply filling up a line, doc’s are now using fillers to plump up parts of your face that lose ‘fullness’ as you get older (like in your late fourties, fifties older…). To give you an idea, instead of zapping those lines that appear around the side of your mouth with a filler, your doc might suggest that you add volume to your cheeks which will ‘lift it up’ and prevent that nasolabial fold (lip line) from happening in the first place.
The average age of the Botox user has dropped dramatically. In fact, Victor says it’s now 34. And that’s not to say that that’s when you should start, that’s just the average. From the moment you notice a wrinkle you don’t like and feel as though you’d like to klap it, that’s the time to start. (Of course you don’t have to. Not everyone is averse to wrinkles and some people are quite happy to look their age. I’m just not one of them.)
Wear sunscreen. Okay? Just bloody do it already. When it comes to pigmentation, if you don’t go the laser route and treat it with lotions and potions, it can take six months to a year to get rid of what you’ve got. You then need to ensure you’re using a seriously good sunscreen every single day. If not, you can undo all of that good work with just fifteen minutes of unprotected sun exposure. Seriously girls. The sun is not your friend and if you’re going to tan on holiday at least ensure you protect your hands, chest and face. Filling in the white bits with a self tanner isn’t fun, I know, but neither is being offered Spur’s Pensioners Menu when you’re only forty.
Thanks Victor, talking to you is always fun.
*Okay, okay… that’s a lie…