Are you struggling with dull skin, irregular pigmentation and fine lines? Do you have particularly sensitive skin? Does taking a few days of “down-time” seem impossible with your lifestyle? If you answered yes to these questions, then microdermabrasion is the perfect solution for you.
Unlike the majority of aesthetic procedures that use light energy or chemicals to exfoliate skin, microdermabrasion uses physical exfoliation, so it is safe for all skin types and tones. The device used by the licenced aesthetic team at Bryn Mawr Dermatology is not available for at-home use and requires significant training and practice before it can be applied safely and effectively. It is a powerful machine that combines steady suction and personalizable micro-exfoliation that should only be used by a consummate professional. This is why the results of our microdermabrasion therapy is far superior to any you can expect with a kit you can purchase online.
Normal skin cell turnover occurs constantly on all parts of our bodies including the face, scalp, torso and extremities. The process of creating new skin cells in the deepest layers of skin and shedding the oldest skin cells from the outermost layer of skin allows us to repair damage that may accumulate over time or due to an injury. Skin cell turnover is an essential part of our response to the wear and tear that we experience every day, whether in the form of UV exposure, harsh temperatures and wind, dehydration, or assaults by microorganisms.
Cells start out brand new deep within the skin, where they are developed, and progress slowly outward. During their lifetime they provide protection from external injury in addition to regulating temperature and provide sensory functions. As the new skin cells accumulate they push older skin cells towards the epidermis where they harden, die and are shed through a process called exfoliation. It normally takes a healthy, young adult 28-40 days to develop a new skin cell, allow it to provide its purpose and then shed it. Like many activities, this process slows with time, resulting in a change to the appearance of your skin. Wrinkles, sagging and other visible signs of aging become more apparent as old skin cells accumulate, but fail to slough off.
By using a manual exfoliation process like microdermabrasion, we can remove dead skin cells and accelerate the natural skin rejuvenation process. This results in younger, brighter, smoother looking skin and can also help to prevent clogged pores.
That’s right, our professional microdermabrasion device is equipped with four different handpieces that have diamond dust embedded in them. They range from fine to extra-coarse and will exfoliate skin to a multitude of depths based on the tip selection and on the amount of pressure applied by the aesthetician. The center of each diamond-encrusted tip is hollow and attached to a precisely calibrated vacuum. This allows the practitioner to apply precise amounts of pressure using suction while the tip is carefully moved across the planes of the face.
Devices that are available for purchase online tend to be designed with less predictable suction (if any at all) and tips made of materials that can’t compare to the strength of diamonds, are not interchangeable and may contain irregularities that cause unexpected damage to the skin.
When you are getting microdermabrasion done at Bryn Mawr Dermatology, you are putting your skin in the hands of experts welding expert tools.
Microdermabrasion can be completed in a half-hour appointment and results are seen and felt immediately. We do recommend that you discontinue (or at least disclose) all anti-acne or anti-aging products that you are using at home about a week in advance of your appointment. We want to make sure that we are not overly aggressive with skin that has already had some help in the exfoliation department.
At the beginning of your appointment you should discuss the clinical skin care products or any at-home devices you use with your skin expert to make sure that they are synergizing to maintain your most beautiful skin. When you arrive at the office, the aesthetician will go over your medical history and explain how the procedure works. She’ll even snap some before pictures to put in your electronic medical record. You’ll then be invited to relax in a reclined chair and your skin will be gently cleansed. The appropriate tip and suction strength will be chosen to ensure you get a personalized treatment. Sometimes, your aesthetician will change the settings during your treatment to focus on your trouble-spots like scarring or hyperpigmentation.
After the treatment area has been passed over with the microderm handpiece your provider will take the opportunity to deeply moisturize the newly exposed skin, leaving it hydrated and refreshed. The procedure is painless and results in little-to-no down time.
The short answer is: anyone. Microdermabrasion can be used on clients of any age, race, gender, complexion, and sensitivity so long as the individual is in general good health and does not have any active rashes or significant acne breakouts in the treatment area. Because this modality uses only physical exfoliation, it is safe to use on those who are prone to hyperpigmentation and/or have conditions like melasma where melanocytes (cells that produce pigment) can be triggered to multiply out of control. It is a safe and effective treatment for nearly everyone, even if you have an active tan – which of course, we discourage at BMD.
The long answer is: anyone who is looking to combat acne scars, an outcropping of unwanted freckles, lines and wrinkles that are getting less fine with time or skin that lacks vibrance. By exfoliating the skin in a controlled fashion, the cosmetic dermatology team can help with many of the signs of aging, sun exposure, post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation left behind after acne is under control and trigger new skin cell growth. What’s even better? You don’t have to plan for any down-time and the appointment takes only half an hour.
Any time the skin is proactively exfoliated, your body recognizes that it needs to produce new, healthy skin cells deep within your body’s largest organ. It gets to work creating new layers of skin from the inside out, which initiates the formation of new collagen and elastin fibers as well. These are the building blocks of skin that keep it firm, taught and crease-free. Some of the awesome results of accelerating the skin cell production and exfoliation are:
Microdermabrasion is one of the oldest tricks in the skincare handbook. It uses basic technology that has been highly refined in order to exfoliate skin and increase skin cell turnover rate. It has long been a tool in the toolbox of the aestheticians at Bryn Mawr Dermatology because of its dependable results. Similar devices may be available in beauty spas or other skin care facilities, but at Bryn Mawr Dermatology every procedure that is performed by our aestheticians has been reviewed and approved by a medical doctor. The devices are kept in perfect working order and receive regular maintenance. On top of that, every cosmetic practitioner is required to supersede the annual education required to retain their licenses.
The aestheticians who work out of our Collegeville and Villanova offices have been honing their craft for over a decade and take pride in personalizing each patient’s experience. They are expert listeners and pride themselves in understanding the unique needs of patients and translating that into results. They are intimately versed in the workings of all the devices they utilize. More than the sum of their licenses and experience, our aestheticians love their jobs, and they love their patients. They take extra special care with every individual to ensure that their goals are heard and enjoy the challenge of finding the combination of treatments and clinical skin care products to meet (and hopefully exceed) those goals.
We all love the post-dermatologist glow we get after a facial, peel or microdermabrasion treatment, but it can be short-lived. The best way to retain the vibrant skin you see is to do your homework! That means listening to your skin care specialist and using clinical skin care products that help cleanse, treat, moisturize and protect your skin. And yes, there is such a thing as overdoing it. Too many products, or too many products that do the same thing, can irritate skin and leave it vulnerable to bacteria and other microbes. Your aesthetician can design a skin care regimen just for your post-procedural skin and for every-day care. No questions about it, that skin care regimen will include a healthy dose of sunscreen!
The second best way to retain that look of rest and relaxation you get from a dose of Bryn Mawr Dermatology is to do it all over again. Exfoliative treatments like microdermabrasion are best in a series. We recommend 3-5 treatments, spaced about 4 weeks apart to really jump start your skin health.
The easiest way to determine if Microdermabrasion is right for you is to Request an Appointment with our skincare experts and board-certified dermatologists. During your consultation, our friendly staff will evaluate your concerns and determine an ideal treatment plan to meet your needs. Our office is beautifully equipped, so you’ll feel at home as soon as you walk in the door.
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