[By Sophie Reuben]
You just had your firstborn and everyone around you seem to be in a good mood and beaming from ear to ear. You tried not to think about it but somehow, you aren’t quite getting it, overwhelmed with guilt that you’re worrying over your looks instead of celebrating your new motherhood. Relax mommy—you’re certainly not alone! It’s a right for every women to want to look good at any point of her lifetime, and being a mom shouldn’t usurped her needs to engage in ways to define herself. Baby or no baby, do not allow yourself to fall into a guilt trap, or apologize for the ‘ME’ time you need to partake in a spot of personal grooming. Ignoring your own needs is not going to make you a better mom, and those pent up frustrations is going to end up with worse repercussions in the long run. Thankfully, in today’s world of medical aesthetics advancement, being a mommy doesn’t necessarily mean you have to live with the tell-tale signs of pregnancy.Here’s a list of 5 common preggers’ beauty banes that some have it worse than others, along with proven post-pregnancy beauty treatments you might wish to consider to set things right, allowing you to truly celebrate motherhood and your femininity in full bloom.
Mask of pregnancy you rather not wear
Gone are the days enshrouded in pregnancy glow (if you ever had one), and unfortunately, the fall back to earth can be a tough reality check for most mothers. Due to skyrocketing and fluctuating hormonal levels, more than 50% of pregnant women actually develop melasma, a dark skin pigmentation also known as the “mask of pregnancy” around the forehead, cheeks and mouth, robbing your skin of its radiance and mar your once flawless visage with their darkened footprints.
The new kid on the block for laser therapy is the Picosecond technology, a second generation laser (after nanosecond lasers such as Revlite and Medlite) which hit the skin in super short pulses (a picosecond is a trillionth of a second) that allows it to go strong where it’s directed without harming normal surrounding skin and causing collateral damages.
“As opposed to traditional CO2 lasers and even newer fractionated CO2 lasers commonly used in skin resurfacing treatments, Picosecond lasers do not depend on induced heat generated for reach its therapeutic goals.” Says Dr. Low Chai Ling, medical director overseeing the SW1 Clinic (formerly from The Sloane Clinic). “The Picosecond technology allows the use of light as the unfiltered, direct energy source by virtue of its speed of delivery, achieving similar, or perhaps even better end results.”
SW1’s Pico Laser forms part of the Porcelain Skin Program which engages the Pico Discovery laser in a pigment busting, skin smoothening protocol specially designed to tackle melasma head on. Aimed to uncover the undesirable “mask of pregnancy” with maximal benefits and minimal downtime, this comprehensive skincare regime is what it takes to give you the confidence to face the world, perils of motherhood and all… with gusto.
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Baby weight that refuses to budge
Healthy living starts with healthy eating. Crash diets and food fads that cause our weight to yo-yo are not going to give you the post-delivery weight loss that you desire. In fact, it can sabotage your best weight-watching intentions and your skin’s appearance will suffer too. Having a good, clean diet that’s rich in vitamins and nutrients such as fruits and leafy vegetables along with a suitable exercise regime and adequate eye shut will help you reach your goal in a comprehensive manner.
In recent years, Cryolipolysis or fat-freezing has remained steadfast as one of the most requested non-invasive medical technology for effective target fat loss. When combined with sound dietary habits and a regular exercise regime, it is a great adjunct to help post-pregnancy moms achieved results that are both permanent and long lasting. A single session is all it takes to see a 20-23% of fat reduction in the area(s) treated. While some may not experience notable results in round one, statistical studies analyzing collected data proved that “second time’s a charm” holds true for the majority. Coolshape cryolipolysis is currently the go to treatment, literally freezing unwanted fat cells to death by employing advanced German Zimmer technology. With an in-built massaging mechanism replacing or adding on to manual means for better lymphatic drainage of broken down fat cells and the possibility of treating multiple areas concurrently as key features, Coolshape is certainly ahead of other similar modalities seen in the current market. By cutting down treatment time and shortening the recovery period with visible results seen earlier, Coolshape offers superior results which makes it the obvious choice.
Tag on Exilis Body Magic to further enhance your body sculpting efforts, a novel, FDA-approved treatment that engages a unique combination of ultrasound waves and radiofrequency (RF) to systematically heats up skin to various depths. With body shaping benefits of fat reduction, skin tightening, circumferential reduction, cellulite smoothening and textural improvement, you’ll be waving bye bye to baby fat gained sooner than you thought you would.
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Skin graffiti you rather erase
Stretch marks are one of the most common and distressing skin changes that occur during pregnancy and affect up to 90% of expectant mothers during their third trimester. They are thought to be contributed by changes in the hormones which then disrupts the protein balance in the skin. There is also a genetic predisposition to developing stretch marks during pregnancy as well. There are plenty of over-the-counter creams for stretch marks but alas, no topical remedies have been medically proven to improve their appearance, and if ever, only marginally so.While stretch marks might seem to appear very easily, the same cannot be said about banishing them. Medical intervention might be veering on the expensive side but up to this moment, laser technology appear to be the route with the best outcome. Earlier this year, Kim Kardashian opened up on the changes her body went through after becoming a mom for the first time, including stretch marks on her boobs after breastfeeding baby North which she eventually had them treated with Coolbeam, a fractionated Erbium laser.
Stretch marks can be roughly divided into early or late variant. Early ones known as striaerubra are generally red in color and respond well to VBeam Perfecta. This special pulsed dye laser has the unique ability to selectively target and shrink the blood vessels that lend the red discoloration to early stretch marks without adversely affecting the surrounding tissues. If left untreated, stretch marks eventually lost their reddish discoloration over time and become fainter to an almost silvery white appearance. Once they reached this phase, they become much harder to treat.
“In the near 15 years of my experience with aesthetics concerns of women, Resurfacing Lasers seem to be the only effective treatment worth trying to improve the appearance of long standing slivery white stretch marks otherwise known medically as striae alba.”Explains Dr. Low Chai Ling.“ Fraxel Dual Laser with its 1550nm Erbium wavelength resurfaces the skin gradually, approximately 20-30% at a time, thus allowing for rapid skin healing without the risk of raw skin and other complications associated with traditional ablative laser resurfacing treatments. After 4 to 6 sessions, treated individuals will appreciate the improvement in appearance, quality and texture of their affected skin.”
SmartX micro-resurfacing laser is another viable option that uses state-of-the-art fractional CO2 technology to effectively treat this unsightly dermal graffiti of pregnancy. Apart from banishing these skin squiggles, SmartX has the added benefit of being one of the best lasers for skin tightening. Your skin is resurfaced deeply a fraction at a time, allowing minimal downtime with maximal results as collagen and elastin is stimulated intensively to tighten your skin and fill up the marks, pulling a Houdini’s disappearing act on them forever!
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Loose belly skin tightened & tucked
Unless you are Sandra Bullock or George Clooney stuck in outer space, Gravity can sometimes be a pain. The overlying skin stretched by a progressively protruding belly for 9 months might not recover in a timely or satisfactory manner, and as skin moves southwards and sags, the appearance of any accompanying stretch marks are undoubtedly aggravated as well. The new and improved Body Shape by Thermage utilizes patented mono-polar radiofrequency or RF waves that is especially good for tightening sagging skin, helping to put you back into your pre-pregnancy jeans, reduce the grip on those love handles and allow your 2-piece swimwear to return to their rightful place as your summer’s essentials.
The upgraded Thermage employs advanced Comfort Pulse Technology (CPT) to enhance patient comfort while maximizing efficacy, with the new Body Tip 16.0 having 5 times the coverage of the standard version to dramatically reduced treatment time. In patients who have loose skin riddled with stretch marks, improving the tone and elasticity of the skin can certainly improve their appearance. As a bonus, any noticeable cellulite over the affected areas can be treated concurrently with Thermage, and by the time summer comes round, you will be all ready with a new wardrobe selection to flaunt not hide.
A hairy affair to remember
Hormones keep your hair in fabulous condition while you’re pregnant but the honeymoon is over once the baby is born. Known medically as postpartum alopecia, female hair loss after delivery is simply your hair returning to its normal growth cycle with hair falling off at a faster rate. This usually presents as gradual thinning of hair but can result in the formation of unsightly bald patches spread over the scalp. According to the American Pregnancy Association, 40% to 50% of women will experience hair loss up to 6 months post-delivery. It can be mild and back to normal in good time or can be very dramatic and extremely traumatizing, at times leading to or aggravating symptoms of postpartum depression.
The FDA approved Revage 670 Laser is now widely recognized as the gold standard to address your follicular woes, rejuvenating postpartum thinning hair to nothing short of resplendent. With a total of 30 laser diodes, Revage provides critical coherent beams as a direct source of low level laser energy in a hood that goes over the scalp to ensure maximum contact with the areas to be treated. With no injections nor chemicals involved, Revage is no doubt safe for post-pregnancy mothers even if they’re still breastfeeding. Studies have shown an 85% success rate in halting hair loss with an almost 40% of increased fullness reported. Therefore, this is not just a treatment that targets current hair thinning but is also useful to help prevent further hair loss, providing the perfect solution to yummy mommies troubled by hair loss woes.
Join Dr. Low Chai Ling and other esteemed guest speakers @ MUMMY TO YUMMY post-pregnancy fixes workshop, whereby medical experts from plastic surgeons to O&G specialists give valuable insight on the latest innovations and treatments that can help you not only restore your beauty but take it to the next level.
Early bird discount: 10% off before 20 July, enter code <Early20>.