Beauty's high-tech future
From blood transfers to topical face-freezers, fix your sights on beauty's high-tech future.
The idea of a chemical peel is scary enough, but acid on the eyes? US dermatologists are currently prescribing courses of Glytone, a gel-based trichloroacetic and lactic acid treatment which can safely be used around the eyes, including the lids. There's no downtime and the results - in terms of a reduction in fine lines and pigmentation spots - are apparently equal to laser.
Stem cells really do appear to be the future of skincare - at least at L'Oreal, anyway. The beauty behemoth is investing heavily in stem-cell research, attempting to understand how the cells behave during ageing. The boffins at L'Oreal say future face creams will help protect the cells' environment", or where the dermis and epidermis meet.
Frizz and flyaways a problem? Don't blame your genes - blame your plumbing. A recent Proctor and Gamble study claims copper, transferred to the hair via copper piping, could be responsible for everything from split ends to lack of shine. The hair soaks it up sponge-like and is left weak and dull. The solution, claims P&G, may lie in new shampoos (P&G makes Pantene) that neutralise the damage caused by copper and flush bad-hair days down the drain.
Worried about hair loss? Welcome to the world of Platelet Rich Plasma (or PRP). Employed in medicine to treat bone and soft tissue injuries, PRP is now being used for baldness. It involves separating platelets and plasma from a patient's blood sample, spinning it down and then re-injecting the concentrated mixture into the scalp. Once that's done, a spiked roller is used to induce trauma on the scalp (as if the injections weren't enough) and activate the platelets. Results vary but are claimed to be promising.
Botox can freeze wrinkles but can also be used to reduce the appearance of pores,which tend to get bigger as we get older. Low concentrations injected into the T-zone can lessen sebum production and restrict blood vessel expansion, leading to smoother skin. And while we're on the subject of Botox, a proper topical version is currently being trialled in the US with favourable results.
Sagging jowls could soon be a thing of the past, thanks to the development of radio frequency technology. It works like this: a handheld RF device is passed over the chin area, simultaneously heating up fat cells and tightening the skin. In about a month the damaged cells are eliminated by the body, the skin retains its firmness and jowls remain tight without the need for scalpels.