What if we had an all-access pass to the country's best
Since leaving New York City nearly a decade ago, I've become firmly anchored to the Ocean State by two decidedly non-city kids and my own intrinsic New England sensibilities. But I still write about beauty and most days I still feel the familiar pull—of old friends still living the dream, of the vast only-in-New-York opportunities, and as I inch closer to 40, of the army of esteemed anti-aging wizards I once had at my disposal. These dermatologists are the collective Scarecrow to my Dorothy: I think I'll miss them most of all. (Sorry, friends.)
Here, I asked the pros to pull back the curtain on the ultimate age-defying treatments, decade by decade.
WHAT TO GET IN YOUR 20S…
MINI FRAXEL, 3 TIMES YEARLY:
"Twenty-somethings eat this up," says New York City dermatologist Paul Jarrod Frank of Fraxel's Clear + Brilliant laser, which zaps dullness, gaping pores, and dark spots from both the sun and long-departed pimples. "They don't want a heavy Fraxel—they think it's for old people—but this lighter version improves the texture and tone of their skin, and if done regularly, can minimize the need for more aggressive treatments down the road." A few rounds come fall will abate signs of a summer spent plastered to the Bridgehampton sands—but "if the sky is truly the limit, come in on a monthly basis, while also using sunscreen and retinol daily, and your skin will look nothing short of fabulous," says Robert Anolik, a dermatologist in New York City.
WHAT TO GET IN YOUR 30S…
BTL VANQUISH ME, ONCE A WEEK FOR FOUR WEEKS
The non-invasive body shaping treatment uses heat to melt fat in problem areas like love handles, thighs, and abs—essentially "stubborn fat areas that no amount of exercise seems to ever make disappear," says Dendy Engelman, a dermatologist in New York City. What makes BTL Vanquish compelling to women in their 30s, she explains, is that once the fat cells are destroyed and eliminated from the body, they’re gone for good. But Engelman also emphasizes the importance of being realistic. "I always stress to my patients that this shouldn’t be thought of as an 'easy fix' to not work out or eat whatever you’d like. The weight and fat can always be gained back without a healthy lifestyle."
NEUROMODULATORS, UP TO FOUR TIMES A YEAR:
Just as expression lines are starting to dig in, Dr. Frank breaks out what he calls "the famous vitamin B: Botox" (though, for first-timers, he sometimes prefers the "softer look" of Dysport, a Botox competitor.) The most common starting point for neuromodulator injections is right between the brows, as they have "a wondrous effect" on the angry 11 lines known to settle in there, he says, easing them almost instantly. For those without budget constraints, Dr. Anolik books
INTENSE PULSED LIGHT (IPL), TWO TO FOUR TREATMENTS A YEAR:
IPL devices painlessly deliver multiple wavelengths of light that seek and destroy both brown sunspots and the leaky capillaries that underlie ruddiness. "They essentially clear the canvas, and enhance cell turnover to make skin look even-toned, radiant, and dewy—accomplishing everything we try to achieve with makeup," says Dr. Engelman.
WHAT TO GET IN YOUR 40S…
HYALURONIC ACID (HA) FILLERS, TWO TO FOUR TIMES A YEAR:
For the first time ever, you may find yourself mourning a certain loss of plumpness. "We start to see a marked drop-off in the volume of the face during this decade," says Dr. Anolik. It's most obvious in the cheeks, as they lose their soft light-catching curve, and such deflation directly contributes to smile lines and jowls. A syringe or two of Voluma—a thick sugar-based gel that lifts as it swells—can typically rectify both issues in minutes. Other key filling zones for 40-somethings include the temples, chin, and lips. While HA fillers have different life spans—based on their viscosity and where they're placed, among other things—Dr. Anolik encourages touch-ups every three to nine months, noting that avid exercisers, who "metabolize filler more rapidly," tend to keep the tightest injection schedules.
FRACTIONAL RESURFACING (À LA FRAXEL DUAL), THREE SESSIONS A YEAR:
That laser once deemed only for oldies? It's now a perfect fit.
WHAT TO GET IN YOUR 50S AND BEYOND…
ULTHERAPY OR THERMAGE, ONCE A YEAR:
By 50, it's high time you graduated from Forma to one of these more powerful tightening methods. "While I can't give a true face or neck lift with my [ultrasound-based] Ultherapy device, I can diminish the rate at which laxity develops over time by targeting the collagen layer with deep-penetrating heat," says Dr. Anolik. To boost heavy upper lids and open the eyes, he treats across the forehead and around the outer eye area. Zapping the cheeks—from the mid-face out toward the ears—lessens smile lines and jowls. And to firm up the neck, he starts below the chin and moves out laterally, to the left then right, covering the entire area. For most, he achieves a one to
JAWLINE AND NECK INJECTIONS, TWO TO FOUR TIMES PER YEAR:
In addition to the standard upper-face freezing,
FRACTIONAL ABLATIVE CO2 LASER RESURFACING (À LA FRAXEL
RE:PAIR), ONCE EVERY FIVE YEARS:
"Not even a facelift can achieve what an aggressive fractional CO2 resurfacing can for wrinkles around the mouth and eyes, for crepey texture, and for that sort of
This story originally appeared on Townandcountrymag.com.
* Minor edits have been made by the