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Medical Aesthetics

The Ultimate Guide to Laser Skin Resurfacing

September 15, 2021
laser skin resurfacing

What is laser skin resurfacing

Laser skin resurfacing, also called lasabrasion, laser pelling, or laser vaporization is the process of using lasers to help reduce a wide variety of skin conditions such as wrinkles, scars, blemishes from your skin. 

 

Types of Lasers

There are two types of lasers used in laser skin resurfacing, that is ablative lasers and non-ablative lasers. Each type of laser has its own advantages, and this guide will help you determine which type of laser is best for you. These two types are ablative and nonablative lasers. 

  • Ablative lasers – These lasers work by removing the outer layer of skin known as the epidermis and stimulates the underlying skin, the dermis. These types of treatments are more invasive, making them a better choice for treating mild to moderate wrinkles, facial scarring, and skin discoloration. You will see results after one treatment, but the recovery process will be longer. As the epidermis heals and regrows, the treated area appears smoother and tighter. Types of ablative treatments include the following.
    • Fractional C02
    • Erbium 
    • Combination systems
  • Nonablative laser– These lasers improve the appearance of mild wrinkles, minor scars, and discolorations like liver spots by heating the skin without injuring the surface of the skin. These lasers stimulate collagen growth, which over time helps improve skin tone and texture. This approach can be done with various types of lasers as well as intense Broadband light (BBL). Non-Ablative laser resurfacing is less invasive and requires less recovery time than ablative laser resurfacing.
    • ND: Yag
    • Broadband light
    • Moxi

 

What can laser skin resurfacing treat?

Laser skin resurfacing can be used to treat a number of skin conditions. 

  • Wrinkles
  • Skin irregularities such as acne scars or blemishes
  • Aged or sun damaged skin
  • Eczema
  • Stretch marks
  • Warts
  • Liver spots
  • Birthmarks
  • Enlarged oil glands
  • Tattoos 

Who can get laser 

Laser skin resurfacing is a good option if you have been trying over the counter products of one of the above skin conditions without results. You should consult your doctor if you have one of the following disqualifiers. 

  • Have taken the acne medication isotretinoin during the previous year
  • Have an autoimmune disease or a weak immune system
  • Have had radiation therapy on your face
  • Are prone to cold sores or have had a recent outbreak of cold sores or herpes virus
  • Have a darker skin tone
    • Certain lasers do not work as well with darker skin tones, but your surgeon will know which is best (like Erbium or Moxi)
  • Are pregnant or breastfeeding

 

Who performs the procedure? 

There is a lot of information floating around about what qualifications are adequate.You should have your surgery performed by a plastic surgeon or dermatologist certified by one of three boards. The top tier of qualification would be a surgeon certified by the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS). This is the highest standard for specialty medical practice and physicians must meet the highest standard to become Board Certified. To become certified by the ABMS, a surgeon must have at least six years of surgical training, as well as an accredited plastic surgery training program. They must also complete thousands of hours of cosmetic and reconstructive surgery procedures, and pass a rigorous written and oral examination, as well as continued education to maintain their accreditation. The ABMS recognizes two other boards, the American Board of Plastic Surgery, and the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. The ABMS does not certify cosmetic surgeons. Many cosmetic surgeons are certified by the American Board of Cosmetic Surgery (ABCS) however this board is not recognized by the ABMS. The requirements to become certified by the ABCS are much less rigorous, they require experience in 300 procedures along with one oral and written exam, there are no continued education requirements. In 2018 California ruled that ABCS was denied the right to advertise as “Board Certified”. Use this link to find out if your surgeon is an ABMS Certified practitioner.

Things to know before your laser skin resurfacing appointment 

If you get cold sores or fever blisters around your mouth, laser skin resurfacing can trigger breakouts. 10 days before your appointment you should refrain from taking supplements and medications such as ibuprofen, aspirin, and vitamin E. NASID’s (non steroid anti inflammatory drugs) such as aspirin and ibuprofen thin your blood and make it harder for damaged skin to clot. This could lead to excessive bleeding after your procedure so it is best to avoid these starting 10 days before your appointment. 

Depending on your procedure, you will likely receive some form of anesthetic. Some non-invasive forms of anesthetic include topical creams, cryoanesthesia, or a combination of both. Some more invasive forms include nerve blockers, a local anesthetic injection, and finally supervised anesthesia. 

 

Types of lasers and their specialties 

Fractional C02

Laser to the dermis deeper layer of skin, laser stimulates and rejuvenates cells to produce collagen and produces a more natural appearance,  blending with the surrounding skin, the end result is more elastic skin, improved texture and quality, and more youthful appearance.Results produce lasting a natural results, your skin rejuvenates itself

Recovery happens in two phases

  1. 7-10 days after treatment, changes to texture and quality, smoother skin and improvements in fine lines and wrinkles
  2. 12 months after- full effects, body will produce new collagen and improve elasticity, tightening, and help even out skin tone 

Broadband Light (BBL)

Targets signs of aging, sun damage, and other skin conditions. BBL can treat brown pigmentation often found in aging spots or freckles. BBL can also target vascular problems such as smaller blood vessels, excess redness, and rosacea. 

  • How it works: BBL targets the upper layer of your skin, gently heating it. This heat stimulates your skin cells to regenerate. If your target is redness, the blood vessels will absorb the energy causing them to close off, following treatment your body will reabsorb the destroyed vessels. If you are targeting a brown spot, such as a freckle or liver spot, the laser will target the pigmented particles, breaking them up. 7-14 days after your treatment those spots will peel off.
  • How many treatments will you need?: Your treatment should be personalized based on your needs. Typically complete corrections require 3-4 treatments.
  • Recovery: After your treatment you will have redness that may feel like a sunburn. Depending on the area of treatment you may experience swelling for a day or two. After vascular treatment you may see what looks like bruising, this is from the blood of the targeted vessels. Be sure to use sunscreen after your treatment as your skin will be more sensitive to sunlight.

Moxi

A non ablative fractional laser resurfacing treatment that can aid in the correction of the initial signs of sun damage and aging by fixing uneven pigmentation and improving the general tone and texture of the skin by way of collagen stimulation. Moxi is designed to treat all skin types. Moxi also works particularly well with younger patients, or those who are just starting their skincare journey, as it is quick, effective, and has a short recovery period. Because it is non ablative, the recovery time for moxi is a lot shorter than say a Fractional C02 treatment. Moxi is a quick procedure that is usually completed within 30 minutes. Moxi lasers produce gentile micro-pulses to induce controlled damage to desired targeted areas. Your body will naturally remove these damaged cells and replace them with new cells, resulting in fresh and vibrant new skin.

Recovery with moxi is very quick, with patients being able to apply makeup as soon as 24 hours after their treatment. 

Erbium (Er:YAG)

Lasers can be ablative or non-ablative. Erbium treatmetns promote collagen remodeling, making them popular options for treating fine lines, wrinkles, skin laxity, and age spots.The Erbium laser emits light that is absorbed by water as the light hits the skin which vaporizes the tissues holding that water. This controlled vaporization of the superficial skin cells leads to collagen remodeling and healing, as it stimulates the formation of collagen which will tighten the skin further. The object is to damage the skin to stimulate it just enough to promote healing. This damage will be similar to a burn and afterwards with potential for the skin to ooze. Deeper wrinkles require more treatment, while shallow scars and wrinkles may be completely erased after just one treatment.

Healing typically takes around a week. There may be mild swelling and inflammation, but it will recede within a week’s time. Keep the area clean, and you may be given an antibiotic ointment.

ND: YAG

Neodymium-doped yttrium aluminum garnet is a crystal that is used as a medium for solid state lasers. This laser works by emitting a high energy wavelength of light which, when focused on certain skin conditions, will create heat and destroy diseased cells. ND Yag can treat a wide range of conditions including vascular lesions, pigmented lesions such as liver spots and freckles , hair removal, and even tattoo removal. The vascular conditions ND yag can treat include, varicose veins, spider veins, facial veins, vascular birthmarks and vascular tumors. 

 

Maintenance/upkeep after a laser skin resurfacing treatment

After your procedure is completed you will need to keep the treated area clean. You will want to clean the area 4 to 5 times a day, as well as applying an ointment such as petroleum jelly to prevent the area from scabbing over. Depending on your swelling, you may be prescribed steroids to help the swelling. You will likely be itchy in the areas where your treatment took place, this will subside within a few days. Typically 10- 20 days after you start your healing you can start wearing oil free makeup. 

After surgery you should be using a broad spectrum sunscreen as your new skin is more susceptible to sun damage. You want a broad spectrum sunscreen that protects your skin from both UV-A and UV-B rays. You also want to choose a sunscreen with a high zinc oxide content that is at least spf 30. If you can use clothing to protect your skin that is a better option than sunscreen as you don’t have to worry about reapplication. Keep your skin moist with an ointment like petroleum jelly, this will promote your skin to heal and prevent scabs. 

Schedule your laser skin treatment today with milk and honey. 

Massage

What Is Lymphatic Drainage Massage and How to Do It At Home

September 15, 2021
self massage

Over the last year or so, people from every corner of the world had to pivot quickly to land on their feet when things went awry. In the hustle to morph our homes into makeshift offices,  command centers, and even classrooms, it’s entirely possible that there were plenty of things that may have slipped through the cracks. Undoubtedly, ergonomic desk setups, desk posture, and self-care are high on that list. 

Fast forward more than a year later, and here we are. Many of us are still sitting at awkward desk setups, probably for longer daily stints than we’d like. At the end of the day (both literally and figuratively), our neck and back muscles are likely paying the price through the accumulation of toxins that build up over time. 

Indeed, by this point, the knots in your neck might be in need of a little TLC, and a self-massage with lymphatic massage therapy can certainly help. 

While you can book a consultation with one of our licensed massage therapists, it’s understandable if you’re not quite ready to visit a spa just yet. If that’s the case, rest assured that doing self-massage at home can be equally beneficial for promoting lymphatic drainage. Ahead we take a closer look at what lymphatic drainage is, the benefits of a lymphatic drainage massage, and we share some tips for how you can do it at home. 

 

What is lymphatic drainage?

The lymphatic system is a network of connective tissues and organs that is responsible for draining and removing excess fluid and waste from your body. Additionally, the lymphatic system also transports fats, water, proteins, and toxins to lymph nodes which are small clusters of cells located throughout the body that contain immune cells and work to fight infection. 

Lymphatic drainage is the process by which your lymphatic system moves toxins out of your body tissues into the lymph nodes so they can be eliminated. Lymphatic drainage works by pulling toxins out of body tissues and transporting them through a fluid called lymph using lymph vessels, into the lymph nodes where the toxins are removed. Once toxins are removed, the result is fresh lymph fluid that continues circulating throughout the body to pick up and remove more toxins. 

However, the flow of lymph can be slowed down or blocked if toxins build up in a particular area resulting in a condition known as lymphedema. With lymphedema, you may notice swelling and reduced range of motion in the affected area. More importantly, the disrupted lymphatic drainage process reduces the effectiveness of your immune system because the removal of toxins is slowed down. To address lymphedema, you can use lymphatic drainage massage to help restore the natural flow of lymph fluid.

 

What is lymphatic drainage massage?

Lymphatic drainage massage is a type of gentle massage that promotes the movement of lymph fluid throughout the body. Essentially, the skin is gently stretched and released over known lymphatic pathways.

For most spas, lymphatic massage therapy is considered a cornerstone technique for reducing inflammation and fatigue, and it is often used to help rid the body of toxins. Moreover, lymphatic massage can help reduce stress and anxiety, boost your immune function, and glowing skin when performed on the face. 

 

How to do a lymphatic drainage massage at-home 

Lymphatic massage therapy is relatively easy to perform on your own, but it’s important to remember that the key to a successful outcome is light pressure. Essentially you’re only rubbing your skin and stretching it gently toward your lymph nodes. If you happen to feel the muscle under your skin, you’re likely pressing too hard, so a good rule of thumb is to use your finger pads only, not your palms. 

One of the best areas to do lymphatic drainage massage is your neck, because it contains some of the largest lymph nodes in your body. To begin, rest your fingertips in the triangular dip just above your collarbone. And again, with an extremely light touch, gently and slowly stretch the skin in a downward motion. 

Next, place your hands flat on the back of your neck, right at the base of the skull on either side of the spine. Then stretch the skin towards your spine and move your fingers down toward the base of your neck, and release. 

Finally, place your full right hand across your neck, resting your index finger on your jaw. With light contact and just enough pressure to gently stretch your skin, move your hands in a downward motion toward your collarbone. 

While it may take some time to get the hang of a lymphatic drainage massage, you may find that if you keep at it, you’ll feel a little less stressed and a bit more relaxed. 

 

When to visit a professional for lymphatic drainage massage

If you’re experiencing severe swelling or reduced range of motion in a particular area, you should talk with your doctor to discuss treatment options. They may recommend a combination of exercises, treatment lotions, and lymphatic massage therapy to help.

While at-home lymphatic massage therapy can be helpful for mild issues or as part of your regular body-care routine, for severe or ongoing issues a professional massage therapist is recommended. If you’re interested in scheduling a professional massage, book an appointment at your local milk + honey spa.

Medical Aesthetics, Skin Care, Treatments

What is a BBL Photofacial and How Does It Work?

August 24, 2021
laser skin treatment

If you’re considering getting a BBL photofacial but would like to know more, learn everything you need to know including what it is, how it works, and other helpful info to help you decide if this treatment is right for you.

What Is A BBL Photofacial? 

BroadBand Light (BBL) photofacials are a popular laser treatment for the face or other areas that can treat acne, rosacea, and hyperpigmentation. Additionally, this popular treatment also addresses other common skin concerns like those associated with aging and sun damage. BBL photofacials have been shown to effectively treat age spots, sun spots, and spider veins, and it can even reduce the prominence of freckles and some birthmarks. 

 

How Do BBL Photofacials Work?

Often confused with laser treatments, BBL photofacials are actually different. Instead of the more focused light of a laser, the BBL procedure uses non-invasive light waves to target and treat trouble spots and damaged tissue due. Moreover, laser treatments operate on a single laser wavelength, whereas BBL uses a broad spectrum of light that can be filtered in myriad ways to treat different skin conditions. Another notable difference is that BBL treatments can also treat a larger area of skin than a laser.

Most practitioners and skin care professionals will agree that BBL photofacials are the gold standard as far as laser treatments are concerned. Not only does it effectively treat a slew of skincare issues, but it’s also the only photofacial that changes and even reverses the expression of the genes associated with aging. 
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Skin Care

3 Reasons To Get A Back Facial

August 24, 2021
woman's back

While the focus of most skincare routines is squarely on the face and maybe even the neck, there are a few other parts of your body that stand to benefit from a little TLC from time to time. 

While most people are familiar with the benefits of a regular facial, it’s likely they don’t think about their back in the same way. But the truth is a back facial can help clean, tone, and exfoliate a part of your body that’s often forgotten or taken for granted.

And as we approach the height of the summer, you’ll also find that a revitalizing back treatment could help you pull off a backless top, a sexy dress, and of course, that swimsuit you’ve been waiting to debut. 

 

What Is A Back Facial?

Performed by a licensed esthetician, a back facial, like the one offered by Milk + Honey, typically begins with gentle cleansing and exfoliation, which is then followed by extractions, a masque, and oil-free hydration. 
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Medical Aesthetics

How Long Do Medspa Treatments Last?

August 24, 2021
medspa treatments

Milk + Honey offers our clients a wide variety of medspa treatments to help them look and feel their best. Ahead, we take a look at some of our most popular procedures, what they’re good for, and how long the results from the treatment will last. 

 

Injectables and fillers 

Injectables and fillers are minimally invasive med spa procedures that restore volume and lift the face. These products can be used all over the face to plump, smooth, and minimize the look of moderate to severe wrinkles. Dermal fillers can also be used under the eyes to diminish the look of bags and dark circles. 

How long do injectables and fillers last?

The longevity of dermal fillers and injectables depends on quite a few factors, including the type of filler used, the injection location, and even the patient’s individual metabolism. Some fillers can last anywhere from 6 to 12 months, while others can last up to 5 years. 

For example, Milk + Honey offers a collection of 5 different Juvederm products to treat our client’s specific needs. And while these products all fall under the Juvederm line of soft tissue fillers, their longevity tends to vary as follows: 

  • Juvederm Vollure – Up to 18 months
  • Juvederm Voluma –  up to 2 years
  • Juvederm Ultra –  up to one year
  • Juvederm Volbella –  up to 1 year
  • Juvederm Ultra Plus – Up to 1 year

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Skin, Skin Care

5 Common Types of Wrinkles and How to Get Rid of Them

August 24, 2021
wrinkles

After a long soak in the tub, your skin will wrinkle, and after years and years of sun exposure, your skin will wrinkle. While the wrinkles from your bath will disappear within minutes, it’s not that easy to rid your skin of the wrinkles caused by sun damage; this little example clearly shows that all wrinkles are not created equal. In fact, there are five distinct types of wrinkles; each one has a different cause and, therefore, a different approach to get rid of them. Ahead, we’ll look at different types of wrinkles and what you can do about them. 

 

Expression Wrinkles

Also known as dynamic lines, expression wrinkles are caused by a combination of a loss in elasticity and repeatedly making the same expression over and over again; think crow’s feet from smiling and frown lines. Remember that unlike other parts of the body, facial muscles are attached directly to the skin tissue. So when you make certain facial expressions like a smile or a frown, you’re causing the muscle just under your skin to expand and contract. These movements tend to cause temporary creases in the skin; however, they can become permanent and even deepen over time. 

Expression lines are just a part of your face, and there’s little you can do in terms of prevention. You can, however, minimize the appearance of this type of wrinkle with injectable neurotoxins like Botox or Dysport
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Medical Aesthetics, Skin Care, Treatments

How To Address Sun Damage

August 17, 2021

The dog days of summer are upon us, and undoubtedly we’re all doing our best to take it all in and soak up the sun before fall blows in. And while getting out and about may be good for the soul, it can wreak havoc on your skin. 

Prolonged sun exposure can lead to myriad skin concerns such as freckles, hyperpigmentation, fine lines, and wrinkles. Over time, repeated sun exposure can lead to the destruction of collagen fibers, sagging or leathery-looking skin, and even skin cancer. 

When it comes to sun exposure, proper prevention with SPF is ideal, but if you’ve experienced any degree of skin damage, there are a few non-invasive procedures to help you recharge and refresh your skin. Ahead we take a look at a few laser skin treatments offered by milk + honey for when you’ve had a little too much fun in the sun. 

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Body, Skin Care

What are Back Facials and Why Should You Get One?

July 21, 2021
back facial

By now, everyone seems to have a skincare routine down. But what about the skin you can’t see? Back facials may seem like a new trend, but consider how much pampering you give the rest of your body. Your back skin deserves just as much care as the rest of you, and this is one area that you probably need a little help to tend to. 

What is a back facial?

Similar to the more common face-facial, a back facial is a series of treatments that opens pores, extracts impurities, and leaves the skin soft, moisturized, and refreshed. Steam is used to open the pores and prep the skin for cleansing and exfoliation. From there, the esthetician will assess the client’s skin and determine what treatments will bring your best back forward. 

If there is acne or clogged pores, the esthetician will perform extractions to safely remove the offending spots and help your skin clear up. On the other hand, dry skin will receive extra hydration through masques, serums, and oil-free moisturizers. 
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Skin Care

13 Tips for Preventing and Treating Maskne (Mask Acne)

July 21, 2021
mask acne

During the COVID-19 pandemic, masks became part of our regular routine as they were required in most public places. The primary reason for wearing a mask was to help reduce the spread of COVID-19, but even after people got vaccinated some continued wearing masks because it also helps prevent the spread of other illnesses such as the flu. Beyond reducing the spread of viruses, other reasons people continue to wear masks include helping with allergies, reducing the need for makeup, or simply as a means of expression through the mask design much like with clothing and accessories.

While masks definitely have their benefits, they also come with one unfortunate consequence: mask acne or maskne. Masks, especially reusable fabric ones, trap oil, bacteria, and dead skin and then rub up against your face, clogging pores and irritating follicles which causes mask acne. Even if you’re wearing a clean mask every day, maskne is inevitable. 

If you plan on continuing to wear a mask, learn everything you need to know about mask acne including prevention and treatment tips.

What is maskne?

Maskne is acne around the mouth, chin, and cheeks that is specifically caused by wearing a mask. The term is an umbrella that can refer to acne (clogged pores), rosacea (a skin condition that causes redness and pimples), contact dermatitis (a sensitive reaction to the mask itself), or folliculitis (infected hair follicles). If you already had any of these conditions, the friction and buildup of substances can provoke a flare up. On the other hand, if you previously experienced clear skin (lucky you!), the addition of a physical barrier against your face can spark new skin issues. 
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Massage, Treatments

Benefits of Detox Steam And Massage Treatment

June 23, 2021
woman getting a relaxing massage

When you opt for a detox steam and massage from milk + honey, you’ll know from the description that it includes a body brushing, our signature massage with a delightful blend of rosemary, echinacea, eucalyptus, and geranium essential oils, and, of course, a steam treatment. But what are the benefits of steam, and why should you choose the detox steam and massage over any other body treatment to begin with? 

While the menus and brochures from your favorite spa might provide the information you need to make a decision, chances are you’ll still have questions about your treatment prior to your appointment. What should you wear? What happens when you walk into the treatment room? Will your massage therapist leave you alone in the room? If it’s your first time, your questions and (and maybe a little apprehension) are completely understandable. 

Ahead, we take a look at milk + honey’s Detox Steam and Massage. We’ll talk about the benefits of steam for your body (and why you may want to consider adding this treatment highlight to your spa experience), and we’ll also walk you through the process so you’ll know exactly what to expect when it’s time for your appointment.  
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