Beauty is in the doctor's syringe


Whether or not everyone agrees that the latest clinical treatments are safe, they are nevertheless very popular among the youth and the middle-aged alike, informs Dr Shuba Dharmana

It is no longer uncommon to hear the words “Botox”, “Vampire Facelift”, and “Photofacial” thrown in casually. As creepy as these might sound, they nevertheless offer very visible changes to your beauty, and have minimal to no side-effects. Here are ten of the most popular ones:


Repetitive habitual expressions over a period of time, along with age, causes lines to form on the forehead, by the side of the eyes and under the eyes. Botox is a purified protein which when injected into the muscles of the face causes the muscles to relax so that the skin overlying the muscles is stretched out and appears smooth.

The results last for up to 4 months but when done regularly, last longer and train muscles to prevent the lines from forming. These injections are given to reduce forehead lines, frown lines, crow’s feet, bunny lines on the side of the nose, smoker’s lines on the lips, for correction of masseters, gummy smile, to improve jaw line contour and to reduce lines and bands on the neck.

Dermal Fillers

Dermal fillers contain hyaluronic acid which is part of the structure in our skin called ‘collagen’ which is lost during the process of ageing. This is the supporting structure of the skin so its loss causes skin to sag and droop and causes depressions and folds.

Dermal filler injections are used to plump volume, fill in folds and restructure and resculpt the face making one look younger. Dermal fillers are used to plump volume in the lips, to enhance and augment cheeks, chin, to improve a sagging jaw line, to improve facial contours, to remove lines and wrinkles, to lift eyebrows and for nose corrections. They last for 6 months to 2 years.

Filler Hydration

Apart from plumping volume, most dermal fillers also have a hydrating range which uses a much smaller molecular structure of hyaluronic acid to hydrate the skin. These injections do not plump volume but restore the elasticity of the skin and hydration that has been lost.

This hydration happens internally so they help where moisturizers cannot in ageing skin. A series of 3 treatments is required for good skin hydration that lasts for up to a year. The treatment can be done on areas like the face, décolletage, neck, and hands, which show ageing the most.


Peels are ever popular and are the most affordable form of treatment for skin rejuvenation. A peel solution uses hydroxy acids typically that peel away the outermost layers of the skin, revealing younger radiant skin that has lesser pigmentation, spots, fine lines, and has better texture and tone.

A course of 6 peels is required for great looking skin that can be maintained thereafter with good sunscreen and skin care products. There are various types of peels that maybe prescribed by your dermatologist. Some are intended to improve pigmentation and spots, while some are intended for skin brightening, and some others for reducing acne.


Lasers and other devices are being used to treat sun damaged skin, fine lines, spots, pigmentation, and freckles. The energy is absorbed by excessive deposits of pigment in the skin that breaks down from the heat and is cleared eventually.

The treatment improves tone and texture of the skin and imparts a glow to the face. A series of sittings is required to lighten spots, depending on the condition of the skin. This treatment is also combined with peels for better results.

PRP Therapy

Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP Therapy) is used for hair loss and thinning but also used on the face ( known as ‘Vampire Facelift’) to rejuvenate skin and to reduce acne scars. It is somewhat a natural alternative to Botox treatments, as it too reduces fine lines and wrinkles. The treatment uses one's own blood that is centrifuged to collect the plasma suspended with platelets.

This is then applied to areas of hair thinning and hair loss on the scalp after preparing the skin by causing micro wounds with a dermaroller instrument. The treatment not only promotes hair growth but also helps to thicken thinning areas of hair. In the right candidate, it can avoid the need for hair transplantation. Or it can atleast be combined with hair transplantation. 8 sittings are required, but results are seen after the 4th sitting.

Laser Hair Removal

More and more people are discovering the benefits of laser hair removal for unwanted hair. The treatment permanently reduces hair in 6-8 sittings. The lasers of today are not only painless and effective but are also suitable for the most sensitive of skins with minimal side effects.

This form of hair removal is suitable for all areas of the body including upper lip, face, underarms and bikini area. The treatment is a blessing for people suffering from PCOD or Hirsutism.

Fractional Therapy

Fractional treatments use fractionated energy like Laser, Co2, or Radiofrequency that treats only smaller damaged areas causing fast recovery and less downtime. The treatment reduces acne scars, pitting, open pores, accidental and surgical scars, fine lines, wrinkles, etc. A course of treatments are carried out 4 weeks apart for best results. The treatment also improves the texture of the skin as it builds collagen underneath.

Depigmenting Peels

These skin peels are stronger than hydroxy acid peels and have to be performed once or twice with adequate sunscreen and other maintenance products. These peels are done for removing sun tan, to reduce sun damage, fine lines, and to reduce melasma and other forms of pigmentation. It also improves skin tone and rejuvenates it. The treatment may be combined with antioxidant tablets for maintenance.


This is a liquid skin polishing system that uses various different serums that contain hydroxy acids and antioxidants for skin rejuvenation. This procedure takes 15-20 mins to perform and consists of cleansing, exfoliation, extraction of blackheads and whiteheads and finally hydration.

Your dermatologist might add a mild peel with the procedure depending on the condition of the skin after analysis. The treatment is helpful for most skin types including oily, dry, and sensitive skin. It helps to reduce acne, blackheads, whiteheads, fine lines, and open pores.

(The writer is a dermatologist)

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