Plastic Surgery and the Social Media Effect

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Written by Nancy Weinberg Simon

I was once on the cover of a national magazine. It was in the early days of Photoshop and the magazine I was working for at the time didn’t like the way the celebrity looked in her cover images so the creative director took a photo of me, put the celebrity’s head on my body and voila, problem solved. Except it created a whole slew of new problems. The celebrity and the photographer were insulted, we got numerous calls from media outlets with strict instructions from our own higher-ups not to discuss this matter with anyone and the images ended up on a celebrity news show anyway.

I too was less than delighted. If I’d wanted to work in front of the camera, I wouldn’t have chosen to be working so hard behind the scenes. This was way before social media and the current situation we have where virtually everyone is more than willing to put themselves out there and be the director and star of their own social network. Social media is like The Truman Show come to life, except “the stars of the show” (almost all of us!) are doing the documenting. Though it happens in the more “mature” generations too — hey, I’m not so willing to put an unflattering shot of myself out there — millennials in particular are even more affected by this phenomena. It might be due to the fact that they’re the first generation that has been able to capture every moment for immediate sharing. Unfortunately this constant keeping up with social media or fall behind in the social circle has a bigger downside than just lots of wasted, unproductive time and a lack of in-person social skills. There has also been a huge upswing in plastic surgery requests as a result of how people want to present themselves on their social media accounts. When they’re posting and instagramming and snapchatting they feel they must look their absolute best doing it…and photo-shop just isn’t cutting it for many.

Because social media centers around photos and video, and the atmosphere of the entire social media world is therefore extremely visual, these sites have become a driving force behind aesthetic cosmetic procedures like rhinoplasty, otoplasty, Botox and fillers. People scrutinize their own photos looking for perceived flaws. Selfies force them to be way more self-critical than they ever would have been and it can make them feel less confident about their looks so they’re more willing to go under the knife or get an injection to change that.

If someone is really unhappy with their looks, they need to ask themselves why they feel that way and consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon like Dr. Laura Randolph that can help them decide if plastic surgery or any aesthetic procedure is the right choice for them. In certain circumstances, the surgeon might actually refer them to a psychiatrist because the patient might have perceived flaws that aren’t there, or extremely unrealistic expectations. In addition, not all patients are good candidates for the procedure(s) they seek. This is why board-certified plastic surgeons are trained to determine which procedures will best suit a particular patient’s needs, or advise them not to go under the knife if they feel it is truly unnecessary and won’t produce a satisfactory result for anyone involved.

Common Skin Care Mistakes May Be Causing Your Irritating Skin Reactions

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Written by Jenny Isenman

Most women claim to have sensitive skin, but as it turns out, few women do. You might be thinking, “Wow, Jenny thanks for that scintillating bit of news and who cares if I’m wrong about my sensitive skin, it can’t hurt to be on the safe side, right?

I’m here to help you differentiate between skin sensitivity and sensitive skin. Truth is you could be doing harm. Self-diagnosing or a diagnosis by anyone other than a doctor, may mean missing out on amazing products or procedures that your skin could benefit from greatly, like those that slough off dead cells, which, if left alone can lead to breakouts, dullness, dryness or dare I say it, older looking skin. You may also be missing an underlying problem that might require medical treatment like Rosacea or Eczema.

Look, I’m with you. I’ve claimed to have sensitive skin for years – decades even, but I’ve found that the reactions I’ve had: itching, redness and even blotches have been due to a skin sensitivity not sensitive skin. Sensitive skin is usually exacerbated by things like sun exposure, wind, heat, cold, chemicals in products and other similar factors. Understanding this distinction and discovering your true skin type will open a world of possibilities in skincare.

Here are some facts and tips that will help you determine what you’re dealing with and how to proceed:

We Tend to Do Most of the Damage

We have more control over what irritates our skin than you would think. Common mistakes can cause reactions and sensitivity including over-washing, over-exfoliating, using products that dry out skin, using water that is too hot, scrubbing too hard, applying products that are known irritants too frequently, not allowing our skin time to get used to new products and too much sun exposure, to name a few.

How to Deal:

Be kinder to your skin and avoid excessive procedures and use of products with common irritants.
Avoid products with alcohol when possible.

Be aware of common irritants and allergens like, salicylic acid, alpha hydroxy acids, retinoids, fragrances, formaldehyde, niacinamide (a topical form of the B3 nutrient), chemical peels, physical exfoliators, lanolin, parabens (and other preservatives that extend shelf life)

If you use products that strip skin or are known to irritate skin like peels and acids, remember some irritation, redness and tingling is common (up to about 15 minutes).

If you react to microdermabrasion, chemical peels or exfoliants, cut down on the frequency and/or intensity.
Listen to YOUR Skin:

Allow your skin to get used to strong products over time; better yet, do a 24-hour patch test on your neck or behind your ear to test for sensitivity. You may find that starting slowly, once a week and building up helps or … you may find your skin can’t tolerate more than one application every 2 or 3 days.

If you have a reaction to something, write down what it is and what the offending product’s ingredients are. You may be allergic to something in the product, which you’ll be able to weed out over time.

If you find your skin is sensitive to fragrance, remember that fragrance-free and unscented are not equal. There can be fragrances used to mask other scents in “unscented” products.

Be aware of environmental factors. Excessive cold, hot or moist weather can leave skin more prone to reaction… so can stress and hormones.

Rule out Something Else:

The best person to determine whether you have sensitive skin or not, is your doctor. A doctor should also be the one to diagnose Rosacea or Eczema. Both of those conditions can be treated and both can make your skin more sensitive. If those conditions are in remission your skin may not be considered sensitive!

Things That You Can Do To PREVENT Wrinkles, Other Than Not Smiling

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Written By: Jenny Isenman

I’m not gonna lie, I have had a laugh, cackle, guffaw and chortle cut short recently, because something in my brain reminded me that I was doing something far more significant than giddily enjoying myself and the moment – I was possibly setting my already apparent marionette lines and crow’s feet into a downward spiral of being etched even deeper into my once wrinkle-free face.

Yep, we all gave Kim K flak for saying she doesn’t smile in photos to prevent wrinkles and there I was, holding visual laughter inside for the sake of getting carded at a bar, which I never do, because A. who am I kidding? and B. when was the last time I went to a bar?

That being said, there are myriad ways to prevent wrinkles without pathetically holding back from a smile, chuckle, or full on belly laugh and here they are:

1. Avoid the Sun: This should be written in a neon sign at the top of this list. Sun exposure is the number one cause of wrinkles … more than heredity. Numerous studies have shown siblings have huge variances in the amount of wrinkles they acquire later in life, which can be directly correlated to differences in the amount of sun exposure they’ve had.

2. Don’t Smoke: Smoking breaks down collagen and elastin in your skin leaving it looser and prone to sagging and wrinkles.

3. Sleep on Your Back: The way you sleep does cause sleep lines which turn into wrinkles over time. It is best to sleep on your back. If that is impossible, then swap your cotton pillow case for a satin one. Alternatively, you could replace your pillow with a beauty sleep pillow made with a special foam, with a unique shape that alleviates pressure on the face.

4. Give Yourself a Facial Massage: Facial massage is an ancient Japanese practice which involves simply pressing and stroking the face. This small addition to your regimen will help slough off dead skin, increase blood flow, reduce puffiness, remove toxins and help soften wrinkles. Tip: Use a light milky moisturizer, with your finger tips and palms always moving in a circular motion and directed upward with mild pressure and repeat daily.

5. Wear Sunscreen: Clearly, we can’t really strictly adhere to number 1 and live as hermits indoors. That would be depressing and who would get to see our young fresh faces in the best natural light? So, the next best thing is sunblock. Wear it daily and unsparingly.

6. Use a Moisturizer with Retinol at Night: You should moisturize daily to keep your skin hydrated, but if you’re trying to prevent wrinkles, Retinol will add that extra oomph. It will help slough off the dead skin and promote the production of collagen which will help keep those little lines at bay.

7. Chemical Peel: Light, medium and deep chemical peels are a popular nonsurgical cosmetic procedure used to peel away the skin’s top layer to improve sun-damaged, unevenly pigmented and wrinkled skin. You can learn more about the procedure here

Good luck and may the forces of nature not be with you!

Revealing the Beauty Within: Dermabrasion and Chemical Peels

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By Mary Cunningham

Most of us dream of recapturing the essence of youth and returning to the dewy freshness that’s faded with the years due to hours on the beach, long runs in the summer, that pesky smoking habit in college, and exposure to other environmental toxins. Every line tells a story and sometimes we don’t want those stories broadcast.

While face, brow and neck lifts can transform a face into a more youthful version of itself, there are other options to enhance the look and feel of our skin– which is thankfully much less expensive and non-invasive. Awesome.

Dermabrasion, dermplaning, dermblading- are all terms for using a small sharp object or rough surface to remove surface acne scars, fine wrinkles and other skin imperfections.

An alternative, one with which I have a LOT of experience, is any one of a variety of chemical peels. Peels can successfully reduce the size of pores and the appearance of wrinkles and scars. There are varying levels of intensity, based on the type and concentration of acid used, and how long it is left on the skin.

In addition to reversing skin damage, both can be used proactively to slow the first signs of aging – which is wonderful.

Yet in both treatments, it is paramount that you trust your skin to professionals because each requires: a) expert evaluation to determine whether your skin type will yield optimal results, and b) precision in execution of the treatment.

In light of the many people performing these treatments, and the potential for lasting skin damage, I want to share a few keys to success:

1) Start by consulting with a board-certified plastic surgeon specializing in these procedures.

2) Inquire about the details.

Ask to have a patch tested on a part of your skin, other than your face. Skin tone and sensitivity are determining factors in your overall success. For example, chemical peels can have a bleaching effect, so if you have an olive complexion, make sure you are comfortable with a test section first.
Ask how long the full process takes- this is not limited to time in the doctor’s office. Your face will be sensitive, red, extremely sun-sensitive and shedding dead layers for days, and likely weeks (depending on the potency of the acid, for example).
With those answers, plan your treatment accordingly- if it’s the middle of summer and you have a beach vacation planned, don’t try to squeeze these treatments in before. Sometime in the fall–or when you’ll be ensconced in shade–is ideal.

3) Follow the directions of the doctor, nurse and your care team.

Your skin will be extremely sensitive and you must care for it tenderly in these days and weeks post treatment.
Going in the sun at this point could multiply the sun damage because you’re working with a new, gentle layer of skin right now. This is not the time to be careless with your skin care. (That may be what landed you in this situation in the first place. Just sayin’.) If you’ve invested the time in research as well as the money, don’t stop short after you leave the doctor’s office. If there are creams to apply, do so. Make sure that you are not only the ideal patient, but that you are your own personal care-giver.

While we were not all born with the gift of beautiful skin, with just a little time and care plus a lot of expertise, the opportunity for a new, fresh face isn’t just a dream.

Call Dr. Randolph (309) 664-6222 for a consultation. Contact Us

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