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The Botox-like Facial

By Kellie K. Speed August 2006 issue of Skin Inc. magazine

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The Botox1-like facial recently has been introduced as a noninvasive clinical treatment that works as a wrinkle corrector to minimize expression lines while smoothing and relaxing the skin. The addition of potent antioxidants strengthens the dermis and inhibits the breakdown of the cellular matrix, resulting in a visibly reduced appearance of fine lines and the prevention of new ones. Embellish Hair Salon and Day Spa in Quincy, Massachusetts, is one of the first day spas in the area to offer the facial.
        The Botox-like facial was introduced by G.M. Collin Skin Care Inc. in September 2005. “A few years ago, alpha hydroxy was very popular, but it was hard on the skin,” says Jean Lalonde, vice president of G.M. Collin. “This facial attempts to achieve better results, and it is much gentler.” Although there has been some debate about whether Matrixyl2 or retinol is more effective, both are included in the treatment for maximum results, according to Lalonde. If a client decides that Botox is right for them, they can continue with the Botox-like facial to extend the results of the injection. For those who are not interested in the more invasive procedure, this offers a better alternative for the long term. Although the facial does not provide initially drastic results, with continued use it does help to restructure the skin.

How it works
        “The most amazing thing about the Botox-like facial is that you see results after the first session,” says Diane Schwidde, esthetician for Embellish Hair Salon and Day Spa. “This facial is ideal for someone looking to decrease the appearance of fine lines, and it helps those with hyperpigmentation and sun damage.”
        According to Schwidde, Argireline3—one of the only peptides known to function similarly to Botox—and Myoxinol4 work together for an intense myorelaxing action. Argireline disturbs the nervous signals sent to the muscles and relaxes them. Matrixyl, retinol, copper and zinc peptides increase collagen and elastin synthesis to fight free radicals, detoxify and even out the skin tone. The combination of the strong antioxidant alpha lipoic acid and isoflavone, which has the biological activity comparable to that of the human hormone estrogen, inhibits the cell’s matrix breakdown, and works to reinforce and strengthen the skin. “When clients arrive for their first visit, I start by explaining the benefits of the facial and the immediate results they can expect,” continues Schwidde. “I tell them how each of the ingredients works on the skin and how they address different problems.”
        The Botox-like facial helps to prevent and eliminate expression lines caused by microcontractions of the skin. The complexion is left smooth and relaxed with a rejuvenated and re-densified look. The facial produces not only an instant effect, but also a long-term younger-looking appearance, if properly maintained.
        During a clinical evaluation, up to 85% of participants discovered a reduction of wrinkle length, and up to 88% saw a reduction of wrinkle surface area. More pronounced surface wrinkles or lines on the forehead, crow’s-feet and frown lines between the eyebrows also were reduced visibly in terms of depth, size and number. Facial muscles also were relaxed, and lines were smoothed.

Treatment steps
        The Botox-like facial takes approximately one hour and costs $150. In order to achieve continued results, four initial facials are recommended, one to two weeks apart. Thereafter, the facial should be booked once a month in order to provide ongoing maintenance.

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