Collagen banking

Image by Amy Wesley from Pixabay

Aesthetic treatments come and go, with scientific, medical and technological advancements improving progress on a daily basis, writes Karen Ellithorne

So many consumers who have never actually experienced an aesthetic treatment, even mentioning the possibility that the results could be natural looking might seem like a complete contradiction. Images of overdone looking celebrities with trout pout lips and puffy skins immediately come to mind.

There is much truth to be said about ageing gracefully. However, ultimately in reality we can only look like a good version of our age, or a bad version. This is no-matter how much aesthetic intervention we have engaged in.

What most consumers are currently seeking is enhancement and not alteration. We would like our friends to still recognise us when they see us after a long period of time.


Consumers are all well aware of the wrinkle-reducing properties of injectables like botulinum toxin and hyaluronic acid fillers. While this treatment has its place and instantaneously makes our wrinkles and fine lines disappear, it does not have any benefit on our underlying skin condition and health. However, it is important to mention that some of the newer fillers on the market have evolved tremendously and do have additional collagen building ingredients.

Botulinum toxin has many positives and certainly a place in aesthetics in that it can prevent hereditary expression lines from forming. There is, however, the risk that if your practitioner is not highly skilled and does not understand the facial muscles well, that you could possibly develop lines in other areas that would not normally form, or that you could end up looking expressionless.

Devices and treatments

In my opinion, when it comes to skin rejuvenation, the natural look is far better achieved through the use of aesthetic devices and regular, high-quality aesthetic skin treatments.

These types of treatments help to keep the skin functioning adequately, boosting everything from collagen production to improving skin brightness. All while still having the ability to reduce pigmentation, red veins and inflammation.

Below we take a look at just some of the available treatments and how they improve the functioning of the epidermis. Although I only have space to mention a few, there are many other products and devices in the South African market that can assist in keeping the skin’s ‘collagen bank’ full and prevent any reverse ageing.

Cosmelan and Dermamelan

This treatment from Mesoestetic is an effective hyper-pigmentation management programme, consisting of both professional treatment and home care. The protocol will be tailored to your client’s skin condition by a professional skincare aesthetician or aesthetic doctor.

Cosmelan and Dermamelan is used to treat hyperpigmentation, a very common skin disorder especially with our outdoor lifestyles in South Africa.

Hyperpigmentation presents itself in brown patches, often found on the hands and face, leaving the skin blotchy and uneven. It is caused by a genetic predisposition, hormonal influences (such as pregnancy, menopause and oral contraceptives) and exposure to the sun.

The beauty of this treatment is that not only does it treat hyperpigmentation, but also has a wonderful rejuvenating effect on the entire application area. It is also beneficial in the following ways: compatible with all skin photo types; ideal for acne scaring; can be applied onto the face, décolleté, hands and body; and is minimally invasive.

Cosmelan and Dermamelan contain the same active ingredients to treat hyperpigmentation, however Dermamelan is slightly stronger.

Mesoestetic has also recently launched Dermamelan Intimate. The depigmented action is complemented with an anti-ageing function, making it a unique, all in one treatment for intimate rejuvenation.

It is important to note that the maintenance period of a Cosmelan and Dermamelan treatment for a client to get the ultimate result is 12 months.

Elaine Brennan Peel

This particular peel was formulated by an ex South African, Elaine Brennan, who ran a very successful clinic in Rosebank for many years. The company is currently being run by her daughter, who resides in the USA.

The Elaine Brennan Peel is based on resorcinol and salicylic acid and helps to treat and lessen deep seated wrinkles, scarring, unseen blemished skin, acne, hyper pigmentation and many other skin conditions. This treatment can also be applied right under the eye and onto the eyelids.

Downtime is seven days, but it is perfectly safe to treat all photo types with no risk of rebound pigmentation.

I have noticed that this particular treatment is very useful to offer to more mature clients, who are not necessarily interested in injectables, but just want to do something for themselves by rejuvenating their skin and feeling more confident.

BBL SkinTyte

A BBL Photo facial is a corrective phototherapy treatment that uses broadband light (BBL) to target signs of ageing, sun damage and other skin conditions. This process will restore your skin to its natural beauty, making it clearer, smoother and more vibrant.

SkinTyte BBL light therapy firms skin and can remove wrinkles and fine lines over time, rebuilding skin from the inside out for smoother, younger-looking skin. It can also be used to treat wrinkles, fine lines and sagging skin with no recovery or downtime.

Pre-treatment prep

As aestheticians, we are all well aware of the importance and advantages of preparing the skin prior to treatment. The better you prepare the skin in the six weeks leading up to the treatment, the lower the risk of inflammation and discomfort for the client.

Prepare the client’s skin well with vitamin C and low level AHAs (Alpha-Hydroxy Acids) or retinol. These ingredients are to be used by the client as part of their homecare treatment. Then, most importantly, the application of an effective SPF before and after the treatment.

More and more skin savvy patients have begun to recognise the benefits of investing in their skin’s ‘collagen bank’ for better quality, more natural looking skin. Non-invasive treatments such as those mentioned above enable the skin to remain naturally lifted and defined, with a much more natural looking jawline and brow.

A qualified aesthetician, Karen Ellithorne has been actively involved in the skincare industry since 1992, working as a lecturer and therapist, as well as successfully importing and distributing various products throughout South Africa. You can email her on: karen@spaandsalonsolutions.co.za

Karen Ellithorne

27 views0 comments