[By Tania Hui]
Living by my mantra that “a woman can never be too young, too thin or have too many pairs of shoes”, I immediately jumped on it when I was presented with the opportunity to try out the newly launched “Thermage CPT Total Tip”. If you do not already know by now, Thermage ranks high as one of the premium non-surgical aesthetic treatment of choice for Hollywood A-listers and the rest of the glam pack around the world. A little bit of history— Thermage pioneered the non-invasive treatment of wrinkles using radiofrequency energy and has been FDA approved for over ten years.
Although many other manufacturers had jumped on the bandwagon since, Thermage has remained steadfast and continue to be the leader of the pack, currently into its improved third generation Comfort Pulsed Technology (CPT) packaged in their latest ‘Total Tip’ that offers twice the original depth of energy delivery; translating into better skin tightening and more remarkable end results. To date, physicians in over 2300 practices and 80 countries have treated patients. That’s more than 1 million treatments for women and men of all ethnicities, each with their own reasons for wanting to look and feel younger.
One of my major concern was whether it’s a little too early for me to start treatment at the age of 35. To answer this question, Dr Kenneth Lee from The Sloane Clinic put all doubts to rest with a very good analogy. “Say for instance you own a BMW convertible, will you continue to drive till it breaks or will you send it to the workshop for regular maintenance to keep it in tip-top condition?” explains Dr Kenneth.
“Thermage is for when you want to tackle the effects of aging on your skin without the overly drastic changes or extended downtime that comes with surgery. As one ages, one skin’s collagen and elastin simply break down faster than what the body can rebuild, leading to a loss of elasticity that leads to fine lines, wrinkles and loose, sagging skin. The idea of starting treatment earlier in life is to anticipate such changes and age-proof oneself before real time aging catches up with you.”
After a detailed consultation and assessment, Dr Kenneth identified my problem areas that she would like to address. Being bi-racial with deep set eyes, I’m starting to show early ‘hooding’ with heaviness of my upper eyelids that would benefit with a Thermage-browlift. In addition, having a naturally wide smile led to more prominent laugh lines that make me look grumpy when I’m not smiling. Thereafter, I was led to the treatment room by a friendly beauty therapist who gave me a detailed rundown while preparing me for the procedure. I was cleansed and suitably numbed with a topical anaesthetic cream that promises to make the treatment much more tolerable. A tracing grid pattern to mark out the areas to be treated was applied and Dr Kenneth was informed that I’m now ready for my ‘makeover’!
Once again, Dr Kenneth calmed my frazzled nerves with her reassuring demeanour and cheerful, light banter. With the new CPT system, radiofrequency energy is released in short rapid pulses to provide complete deep heating of the tissues at a therapeutic level that can be easily tolerated. The in-built vibrating hand-piece also ensures maximum comfort during the procedure. I later discovered that I was actually overly worried about the pain level. It was simply a warm sensation following by a slight sting that was rather bearable. Another marvellous feature is that the treatment level can be individualised and tailored according to the patient’s need and level of tolerance.
Dr Kenneth covered every inch of my face and continued with several passes over my “vector lines”. “Vector lines” are imaginary lines on the face that trace the directions of desired lifting for anchorage. For me, these run from the corner of my nose, round the lower border of my cheekbone and towards the upper part of my ear to ameliorate my laugh lines, also known as the naso-labial folds. More passes were also applied above my brow bone to address the ‘hooding’ I had described earlier on. With each passing minute, I grew more and more excited with anticipation of the end results!
Post treatment, my face was slightly flushed but it went down quickly within the next hour so there’s actually no downtime to this procedure. The best part is, results are visible right after treatment! There’s subtle yet definite lifting that gave me a totally rejuvenated look that’s natural and fresh. As with our hair and nails, the collagen remodelling and growth brought about by Thermage will continue in the preceding weeks with best results seen 2 to 3 months after the treatment.
It has been a month and I’m glad to report that compliments has been flowing since. I especially love the effect on my eyes because that tiny bit of lift is all that is required to bring about a huge amount of improvement. My peepers are more alert looking, brighter and more youthful than I’ve ever remembered them to be! Would I go through the treatment again when required? A definite and resounding YES and I couldn’t thank Dr Kenneth from The Sloane Clinic enough for helping me regain my confidence and tackle aging head on in a graceful way.