Did you know that microdermabrasion dates back to ancient Egypt when doctors used sandpaper to scrape the outermost layer of the skin to get rid of unwanted scars and signs of old wounds? If it’s good enough for Cleopatra, it’s good enough for us!
Kidding aside, we tend to forget that skin is the largest organ in the human body eliminating almost 10% of the body’s toxins. Unfortunately, the vitamins and nutrients needed to replenish our skin are oftentimes used up by other organs, leaving skin dull, dehydrated, sallow and vulnerable to wrinkles, sun damage, scars and blemishes.
In the battle against aging, regular microdermabrasion is key for keeping skin in tip-top shape. Officially developed in Italy, in 1985, microdermabrasion is a quick, safe process which promotes the production of new skin cells in the deepest layer of the dermis by “sandblasting” the top layer of skin. Simple, painless and non-invasive, microdermabrasion is remarkably effective at diminishing fine lines, age spots, wrinkles, acne, shallow skin scars, as well as hyper pigmentation and sun damage. Similar to brushing one’s teeth, microdermabrasion helps remove skin “plaque” and dead skin cells, aiding the penetration of skin care products (creams, serums and medications) by up to 10-50 percent. Patients typically note even makeup goes on more easily after microdermabrasion.
There are two primary types of microdermabrasion. Crystal microdermabrasion utilizes a compressor that draws in air through a hand-held wand. When the wand touches the skin, a vacuum is created. Very tiny crystals -- like aluminum oxide, sodium chloride or sodium bicarbonate -- blast across the skin’s surface, removing dead skin cells. Diamond microdermabrasion, on the other hand, uses a single, diamond-tipped wand rather than a stream of particles, giving it the flexibility to be used near the eyes or around the mouth. The wands are of varied size and coarseness for different skin types and depths of resurfacing, making it a more efficient tool in advanced anti-aging skincare.
No matter which method you choose, after one 30 minute treatment, there is a visibly healthy glow and marked improvement in the appearance of fine lines and skin texture. With repeated microdermabrasion treatments, benefits expand to include further wrinkle reduction, increased collagen production and notable repair to sun-damaged skin, acne and resultant scarring, enlarged pores, age spots and pigmentation. Microdermabrasion is most commonly used on the face, but it’s safe for all areas of the body, including back, neck and hands. Best of all, it works well for all skin types and ethnicities.
One last note: While microdermabrasion can achieve dramatic results, a great deal is dependent on the expertise of the professional administering the procedure. Be certain your aesthetician is a fully-qualified, licensed professional who has been certified for microdermabrasion. As such, it’s best to follow the recommendations of your aesthetician regarding the number of treatments necessary for optimum results. Skin type and condition is considered in making a determination. And, remember to avoid sun for several days after treatment and protect yourself with sunscreen… your skin will thank you!
This article was originally published in Panache Vue magazine, June 2013. To schedule an microdermabrasion with our professional medical spa aesthetician, call 813.874.2332 for an appointment or click here.