You’ve tried Botox. You’ve given fillers a go. Vampire facials? Tick. Well, a new anti-ageing treatment, likened to an injectable moisturiser that plumps up the skin, is getting the cosmetic industry excited. The Italian treatment, Profhilo, is popular overseas, and since November it’s been available to Kiwis.
Unlike other anti-ageing injectables that use fillers to add volume and stretch out the skin, Profhilo uses Hyaluronic Acid (HA), a naturally occurring substance in the body that is said to hydrate, firm and rebuild new, younger-looking skin cells. With dermal fillers, the results tend to be very localised because the gel only stays in the area in which it has been injected, but once HA is injected, it disperses evenly throughout the skin, so the effects are visible across the face, giving a more even anti-ageing result.
Profhilo is one of a growing suite of anti-ageing treatments on the market. Botox is still thought to be best for treating frown and expression lines, as the neurotoxin works to temporarily paralyse the muscles. And it is quick: you can see results in three days with Botox. Profhilo takes up to a month to show benefits, but it is now considered one of the best forms of attack for ageing, dehydrated and saggy skin.
In her clinic, Cosmetic Solutions in Auckland, cosmetic nurse Dianna Morgan started offering Profhilo when clients who regularly got vampire facials started asking for it.
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If you can remember back to 2013, vampire facials were de rigueur in the beauty industry after Kim Kardashian shared images of her blood-splattered skin after getting vials of her own plasma injected into her face. Dubbed as a treatment to rejuvenate the skin, vampire facials work through microdermabrasion followed by a mask of platelet-rich plasma (PRP) to help boost skin cell turnover. A doctor or nurse draws blood from you, spins it in a centrifuge to extract the PRP, and then injects it or applies it topically.
Profhilo leaves skin glowing and radiant. “It’s like an injectable moisturiser, although I don’t want people injecting their moisturiser at home,” says Morgan. She offers it to clients aged 40 to 70, and steers them away from vampire facials, unless those with big budgets want both.
Christine Hames, a cosmetic nurse, is the New Zealand trainer for profhilo, which she offers in her Auckland clinic, Skin on Allendale. “It spreads like liquid honey through the skin and smooths away fine lines and wrinkles. It stimulates the production of elastin and collage and improves skin elasticity,’’ she says. It’s particularly good at treating loose, ageing skin on the neck and decollatage, and for women going through menopause, who are losing elasticity in their skin.
Marnie Fleming has been using botox for the past seven years. When Hames suggested she try Profhilo, the 44-year-old agreed to give it a go. “My skin looked tired,’’ she says.
In November, tiny needles were injected into three sites on her face. The treatment left tiny bumps like bee stings, which disappeared within 24 hours.
“My skin literally glowed for months,” Fleming says. “It also filled out the fine lines. It gives you such a youthful look. People said things like: ‘You look so well, your skin is glowing’’.’’
It’s not a cheap fix for ageing skin, though. Therapists recommend two sessions about four weeks apart, costing about $1600 for two treatments. Some clients see results within days, while others might not notice any changes for a couple of weeks. It also leaves bumps on the face for about 24 hours.
Fleming says: “Yes, it’s expensive but I haven’t needed botox for six months. Normally, I’d go back every three months for botox but I haven’t needed to as it literally has smoothed away all my fine lines and wrinkles.’’