The holidays are a time for happiness, togetherness and memories. As the invites to cocktail parties and social gatherings roll in, we find ourselves wanting to look our best. It is always nicer to wow people with positive changes rather than wowing them with how aged we look. Besides exuding confidence and good cheer, which is key, I have included some beauty tips to help prepare for the season. A number of simple products and procedures impart an image of youth and vibrancy. When we look better, we project confidence and are able to enjoy ourselves more thoroughly. It is best to have a little lead-time in planning procedures so that it won’t coincide with the mad rush of holiday shopping.
Face The face is my specialty! Injectables can go a long way in a very short time. Artfully done filler in the lower face and Botox® in the upper face can take five to 10 years off in less than a week. With Botox®, we can soften lines on the forehead, frown and crow’s feet area, providing also what we call a “chemical browlift.” The browlift must be done carefully so that it looks natural (arched, not pointed). With advanced filler techniques, we can fill the smile lines, marionette lines, circles under the eyes, cheeks, jawline, temples and more. At our office, filler and Botox® combination is an extremely popular procedure.
If injectables are not in the cards, there are many other options. A Fraxel® series can rejuvenate the skin, reducing unwanted brown spots and lines and providing a refreshed look. We love Fraxel® because it goes deep but has only two days of downtime. Ultherapy® is the newest ultrasound energy modality. With no downtime, the Ultherapy® procedure improves the skin tone, firming jowl and neck skin. If freckling is the problem, then Intense Pulsed Light photofacials with the Lumenis
M22 can lift off pigmentation and sun damage. The brown spots appear browner for a week, but they are coverable with makeup. One other option is my favorite: the Jessner’s peel. It is a low-downtime peel that can be done as a series and helps reduce fine lines and pigmentation.
*Star tip: Pre-event facials such as IS Clinical’s Fire and Ice facial or our Oxygen Facial leave the skin glowing and red-carpet (or dance-floor) ready.
No time for procedures at the moment? Try IS Clinical’s new Youth Serum. We are all addicted! It is a polymer that contracts over the surface of the skin and gives it a fabulously smooth look. It is excellent as a primer under makeup or a skin refresher later in the day before an evening event. Try it under Chanel Double Perfection makeup. In fact, a full, personally tailored skin-care regimen can make an amazing difference in how the skin looks.
Eyes They say the eyes are the windows to the soul. We don’t want our eyes to say, “I’m exhausted.” Ideally, they say, “I’m ready for life!” There are many options to rejuvenate the area, providing a more youthful, alert appearance. Besides the Botox® chemical browlift discussed earlier, we can do Thermage®. Thermage® is a radiofrequency device that induces skin tightening and new collagen formation with no downtime. With Thermage Eyes, we include treatment of the entire forehead so that the brows are lifted as well. Peels can firm the “crepe-y” appearance of the lower eyelid skin but with a seven-day downtime. For prominent circles, we use Juvederm® injectable gel to correct under-eye hollows.
Lashes are important in the eyes’ appearance. Latisse® can help you grow your own longer, thicker and darker lashes. There are salons nearby that perform now-popular eyelash extensions. These can be fabulous when not overdone; however, they make the eyes prone to conjunctivitis and glue allergy.
Eye creams make a difference. I love Lumiere Riche Eye Balm, because it has phytoestrogens derived from sweet potato that help to plump up collagen in thinning skin. For daytime, I recommend the revolutionary Neotensil product. Developed by MIT-trained scientists, this product is a polymer that is dubbed “spandex for the eyes.” This twostep process shows immediate results that last about eight hours. It is a great pick-meup either daily or just before an event.
* Model star tip: Visine. A few drops clears the whites of the eyes (think Elle McPherson) and reverses the rheumy bloodshot look. There is a rebound effect the next day, so save this for special events, photo shoots or particularly tired days.
Generally, to reduce puffiness, I recommend a low-sodium diet, taking vitamins at night and antihistamines if you are prone to allergies. Rubbing the eyes is a no-no. It is always best to treat the thin skin around the eyes gently.
Lips The lips can be rejuvenated in a tasteful way so that they are harmonious with other facial features. I generally use Juvederm® or Belotero® injectables around the lips and mouth to also fill small vertical lines in the area. Injectables can cause bruising and are swollen slightly for two days afterward, so a minimum seven-day lead-time is optimal for this procedure. Ultherapy can be performed on the upper lip to firm the skin and shorten the distance between the nose and the red part of the lip. This is to ameliorate the long upper lip.
*Model star tip: suck on thumb or finger for a minute before doing makeup to give the lips a more plump, bee-stung look.
Lip plumpers such as Lip Venom by DuWop are popular. These contain mild irritants and a slightly anesthetic effect, which makes the lips look and feel full for a few hours.
Body There is no substitute for healthy diet and exercise, but when stubborn areas such as love handles or belly do not respond, it becomes unreasonable to try to lose enough weight overall to flatten these areas without hollowing out the face. Coolsculpting is a popular procedure with no downtime that is designed to treat specific bulges. This treatment reduces areas by a quarter of an inch or more, with results being achieved over the following two to three months. The new flat-panel attachment is great for fine-tuning abdominal fat in areas that have already been liposuctioned or the lateral thighs (saddlebags).
*Star tip: Wear a long corset or spanx for “waist training” one to two days prior to the event. This curbs the appetite and conceivably wicks away extra water from the midsection.
To prevent weight gain during party season, it is best to have a high-protein snack and a full glass of water before an event. This way, you are not starving when the high-calorie hors d’oeuvres are served.
Legs Fabulous legs can make the holiday dress. To have a more svelte appearance, the inner and outer thighs can be treated with coolsculpting for permanent fat-reduction. Velashape series works for temporary cellulite reduction. Models and actresses love to have the Velashape procedure series before photo shoots or impromptu beach sightings. Thermage can tighten the skin on the thighs and knees.
*Pageant secret: Preparation H cream under Saran wrap for the thighs (not recommended after tanning because of streaking).
*Star secret: Skinnies Instant Lift adhesives pull extra skin from the knees. Stars often wear these on the red carpet to minimize the appearance of wrinkled knees or cellulite.
Spider veins can be improved with sclerotherapy (leg vein injections), a procedure that requires a minimum two-week lead-time, so plan ahead. No time for leg vein injections? MAC skinsheen leg spray makeup gives the appearance of an even tan, masking imperfections without the orange hue. For a longer lasting faux tan, Jergens’ Body Glow is a popular option. Holiday events are more fun when you feel great about yourself. Hopefully, some of these tips will help you look and feel your best this season. Whether it’s a procedure or a product, treat yourself early in the season before the inevitable shopping and wrapping frenzy begins.
This article is written as a guide and does not substitute for individual medical advice
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