[By Tania Hui]
As a woman approaching the half century mark (it’s simply too painful for me to write down the actual number in digits!), I often asked myself, “How can I slow down or reverse the visible signs of my aging skin and body?” While the latest advances in medical technology seem to offer a myriad of choices to turn back the clock, the results may not match up. Flipping through the glossy pages of tabloids and magazines documenting society events, there’s an emergence of a disturbing army of clones with what I would call “the old new face”— women with unnaturally smooth, over-inflated pillow cheeks and sausage lips from too much dermal fillers, often coupled with taut, expressionless mask-liked faces from overzealous Botox usage. Thankfully, of late, women are starting to realize that “too much of a good thing may really be too much”, opting to seek out anti-aging treatments that give natural looking results on their journey towards graceful aging.
With this in mind, we pick the brains of 3 experts in their respective fields to provide you with some insights on the latest trends towards looking good at any number, in an age-appropriate way….
Trish Lee, skincare specialist and brand manager
Throughout the ages, fairness has been coveted and used as a measure for beauty.It is a classic definition of beauty that transcends time and unlike any fashion trend, a great fair complexion will never go out of style. At any given skin age, one that is clear and void of blemishes such as pigmentation and scars will always appear younger and healthier.
It’s good to know that women are starting to invest in a good anti-aging regime earlier in life compared to say 15 years ago. To pick the right products, it helps to understand what’s happening to your skin during different stages of your life. If you start young and progress on with the appropriate switch in skincare products, chances are you will end up with a more youthful mien compared to those who don’t. Women all over the world should learn from their French or Japanese counterpart, “a cream a day keeps the years away.”!
Dr. Jinly Wong, aesthetics physician
For me as a medical aesthetics practitioner, Botox and dermal fillers are likened to the blusher and eyeshadow of a makeup artist. The eventual results will depend on what product you use, how you administer them and the frequency of treatment as well. In my opinion, there will always be a place for Botox and dermal fillers which cannot be replaced. To avoid the so called “pillow faces”, techniques have to be refined and alternatives such as the dream sculpture treatment can be engaged.
Dream Sculpture is the latest cutting edge technique of using Sculptra, a biocompatible and biodegradable compound made of Poly-L-lactic acid, to boost your skin’s own collagen reserves to allow it to stay young, supple and lifted for a longer period of time. The concept behind Sculptra is that it is a natural collagen stimulator, working in overdrive after being introduced as a ‘natural fertilizer’ to jump start collagenesis over the next 4 to 6 weeks. Unlike the effects of traditional HA dermal fillers which are reversed once they get metabolised, collagen that is stimulated into production stays for a long time long after the Sculptura injected is gone. Depending on your age and the number of treatments you have undergone, results can last for 2 to 3 years.
In addition, there’s clearly a resurgence in the popularity of lasers and other modalities which harness one own skin’s own capability to rejuvenate with the appropriate stimuli. The Youth Revival Program is specially tailored for those seeking a natural looking ‘perk-me-up’ sans surgery. Combining the FDA approved Ulthera which utilizes ultrasound energy for intense facial lifting with a youth-enhancing long pulsed Light Lift treatment, one can achieve a ‘non-surgical facelift’ with tighter, smoother and more lifted skin without breaking a sweat.
Dr. Tan Ying Chien, consultant plastic surgeon
While the previous trend is for women to come into my practice with a Genie’s wish to go from 50 to 25, nowadays it is more common to have them saying that they do not want to look done up or artificial like everybody else. They want to look like themselves, only better. Many are seeking gentler options to deal with visible signs of aging instead of going straight for the scalpel if possible. One of these options that is fast gaining a worldwide following is the Silhouette Instalift Threadlift.
This is a minimally invasive treatment which uses 100% bio-absorbable threads strategically placed under the skin to lift and restore facial contours to the right place. Targeted and meant for those who embrace graceful aging, this procedure when properly executed will provide sufficient volume at the right tension, but not too much to steer clear of artifically pumped-up balloon liked faces that one can single out from miles away.
Dr Wong Jinly obtained her medical degree at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland (National University of Ireland). Her postgraduate qualification includes a Diploma in Aesthetic Medicine from the American Academy of Aesthetic Medicine and is currently practising @ The Sloane Clinic.
Dr Tan Ying Chien is the Consultant Plastic Surgeon at The Sloane Clinic Plastic Surgery Centre and remains a Visiting Consultant to the Plastic Surgery Departments at both KK and SGH, Singapore.