Four things to try before Botox

  • Article by: MCCLATCHY NEWS SERVICE
  • Updated: September 11, 2013 - 3:16 PM
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Photo: Rick Nease • McClatchy News Service,

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Not into being poked and prodded in the name of beauty? These age-reversing innovations can smooth wrinkles and fade spots — without the sting of a needle.

1. Chemical Peel

Usually made with glycolic, salicylic or lactic acid, the solution lifts away the top layer of dead skin and leaves behind smooth, even skin. Light peels improve skin texture with little to no downtime, but if you opt for a more aggressive type, expect burning during treatment and peeling for up to two weeks. (Applying moisturizer will help.) Dermatologists love them for their versatility: Peels can be used on your neck, hands, chest and back.

2. Radio-Frequency Skin Tightening

Radio waves trick cells into making more skin-firming collagen. Major bonus: They’ll continue making collagen for up to two years — so you can take a lengthy break before retreatment. There’s no downtime, though you may see some redness for up to half an hour afterward. Note that smokers’ skin is beyond repair. Their collagen-producing cells are so damaged that it is hard to stimulate them.

3. Microdermabrasion

A handheld device resurfaces the skin’s outer layer, leveling dark spots. Dark skin may produce melanin upon trauma, so go with a gentle treatment to avoid additional spots.

4. Nonablative Laser

Light heats the water beneath the skin’s surface, boosting collagen and smoothing wrinkles. Results are seen gradually (over the course of a few sessions), so you won’t receive any “Did she have work done?” double takes.

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