Skin Tightening Overview
As you age, your skin naturally loses elasticity. With gravity, sun, physical activity, and other elements taking their toll over the years, your facial skin may begin to wrinkle, sag, or droop. At our Houston cosmetic surgery office, Dr. Michel Siegel can perform plastic surgery options to revitalize patients’ faces, but we also recognize that some patients prefer minimally invasive options. In these cases, skin tightening treatments are an excellent choice.
These personalized procedures remove old, damaged skin and signal your body to produce new skin cells. Skin tightening allows you to discard the superficial skin layer (the epidermis) and penetrate into the deep skin layer (the dermis). The dermis is made of collagen- long fibers that loosen and stretch with age and sun damage. By interacting with the dermis, skin tightening encourages new collagen to form, giving your skin a fuller and younger appearance. As you heal, a new epidermis (top layer) regenerates, restoring a more youthful you. For patients not quite ready to schedule a face lift, a skin tightening procedure can be the best option to rejuvenate their image and improve on issues like slight droopiness that many people begin to notice in their mid-thirties. There are many skin tightening treatment options, but at the core of all of these, the common goal is to firm the tissue and build up collagen. Dr. Siegel can analyze your skin to determine which method is best suited to your skin type, so we can help you achieve a rejuvenated, refreshed look.
The Skin Tightening Process
The first step in the facial skin tightening process is an appointment with Dr. Siegel. During this meeting, he will help you select the best skin tightening treatment for your individual skin type and concerns. One common method used is laser skin tightening. In Dr. Siegel’s extensive facial rejuvenation experience, the best skin tightening laser is our Lumenis® Ultrapulse™ Fractional CO2 laser. This device sends micro-beams through only a “fraction” of skin tissue, stimulating collagen while leaving skin tissue in between the beams undisturbed, which allows for a much faster recovery time. Dr. Siegel can also perform a chemical peel with our proprietary solution or use a skin tightening injection, such as BOTOX® or fillers. He will tailor each treatment plan to your aesthetic preferences, medical needs, and the area you wish you rejuvenate. For example, eye skin tightening might require an entirely different treatment plan than typical overall facial skin tightening.
Since skin tightening is a highly individualized procedure, your exact preparatory instructions will depend on the treatment Dr. Siegel devises for you. He will give you a specific list of guidelines to follow before and after your face skin tightening, as well as help you plan and schedule any necessary follow-up appointments.
Since skin tightening can involve such a wide range of techniques and is individualized to each patient, there is no single standard procedure for this treatment. Dr. Siegel will use the method (or combination of methods) discussed and determined at your initial consultation to deliver your desired results. Typically, skin tightening treatments do not take more than a few hours to complete.
How long it takes you to heal from your skin tightening treatment will depend on the approach Dr. Siegel uses to accomplish it. In most cases, patients are able to return to work immediately and experience only minimal side effects for a very short time. Dr. Siegel will give you guidelines to follow to speed your healing and improve your outcomes. Depending on the treatment type, you may begin to see results immediately or within a few weeks of your skin tightening procedure.
How often can you do skin tightening?
The frequency with which you can undergo skin tightening depends entirely on the type of treatment. Because Dr. Siegel creates a custom procedure plan for each patient, frequency and recovery will depend on your specific case. Generally, you will need to wait at least two weeks between treatments. Dr. Siegel can provide you with a more detailed timeline and give you more information about what to expect at your initial consultation.
Can you undergo skin tightening when you’re losing weight?
It is technically possible to have skin tightening treatments when you are in the process of losing weight, but Dr. Siegel does not recommend it. Fluctuations in your weight can contribute to your skin’s elasticity, so it’s best that your weight is healthy and stable before you undergo any skin tightening procedures. Otherwise, if you gain or lose weight, this could alter or altogether undo the effects of your treatment. If you are in the process of losing weight, Dr. Siegel will determine whether or not skin tightening is appropriate for you. If you are not currently eligible for this type of procedure, he can help you create a plan to become a good candidate for skin tightening.
Is skin tightening permanent?
Many skin tightening procedures offer lasting results. The type of treatment you undergo, condition of your skin, medical background, and other factors influence how long you can expect to enjoy the outcomes of skin tightening. For example, light chemical peels offer more subtle, temporary results, while laser skin tightening tends to have a slightly longer recovery with longer lasting results. However, in all cases, remember that while skin tightening can greatly enhance and revitalize your skin, your tissue will continue to age. You can help maintain the results of skin tightening by taking excellent care of your skin, keeping up with a healthy lifestyle, and seeing Dr. Siegel for follow-up appointments as needed.