Beautiful Skin: Part I

by Tracy James


Come Fall, I tend to focus on my skin more than I do in other months. Perhaps it's because the changing weather makes my eczema flare up a bit, requiring a little extra care… Perhaps it is that I am without a tan (faux or otherwise) to camouflage imperfections….Or perhaps it's because with the layered clothing of cooler weather, my face feels on display. So over the next couple of months, I am going to try out and review different skincare treatment options. 

First I checked out the facial treatment available at Smart Skin Med Spa. You may know Smart Skin from their Homewood and Crestline locations, but now, conveniently for me, they have a location inside one of my favorite stores, Gus Mayer at The Summit. Tucked in the back of this luxury department store is a tranquil treatment room, equipped with the latest and greatest, cutting edge equipment skin care has to offer. Rachel, my knowledgable and lovely aesthetician, introduced me to 2 treatments that felt very high tech - colored lights and all! 

Apparently, the Vortex-Fusion® serum delivery system is what sets the HydraFacial apart from other procedures. The multi-step treatment cleanses, evenly exfoliates and extracts to remove impurities and dead skin cells while at the same time replenishing vital nutrients including Antioxidants, Peptides and Hyaluronic Acid. Thanks to the devices’ superior delivery system, these performing ingredients are able to more effectively reduce the appearance of fine lines & wrinkles for results you can see and feel instantly.

The HydraFacial is a non-laser skin resurfacing procedure that utilizes super-serums filled with antioxidants, peptides and hyaluronic acid to boost hydration, help address the signs of aging and protect skin from environmental leaving it recharged, renewed, and invigorated. In a nutshell, the procedure combines cleansing, exfoliation, extraction, and hydration resulting in better-looking skin. Apparently, the Vortex-Fusion® serum delivery system is what sets the HydraFacial apart from other procedures. The multi-step treatment cleanses, evenly exfoliates and extracts to remove impurities and dead skin cells while at the same time replenishing vital nutrients including Antioxidants, Peptides and Hyaluronic Acid. Thanks to the devices’ superior delivery system, these performing ingredients are able to more effectively reduce the appearance of fine lines & wrinkles for results you can see and feel instantly. Check out some of the photo results here.

Next came the Pro-Light Therapy, which is like a disco for your face. Red, Blue, and Amber lights are used in combination to combat aging, reduce redness, irritation and rosacea as well as killing acne-causing bacteria. I don't know how it does this, it's "SCIENCE!" (in my best Thomas Dolby impression voice) The primary goal of ProLight LED Light is the stimulation of new collagen, which visibly improves the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles without damage to the overlying epidermis. Plus you feel super fly while it's happening.

Finally, we moved on to SmartSkin's other popular offering, the Signature Ultrasound Elite Facial.  The entire procedure feels more ticklish than it does painful, with high-speed oscillations courtesy of ultrasound waves. First, exfoliation via light microdermabrasion is performed to remove the top layer of dirt, oil, and make-up; Second, ultrasound with LED lights and custom masque (a lifting and hydrating gel is applied to your face and neck that is much like the gel applied during sonograms) to completely empty oil ducts and shrink pores from the inside out, tighten, tone, and help with fine lines and wrinkles; and Third, an oxygen jet treatment to re-hydrate and preserve your skin for longer lasting results.  My aesthetician Rachel said, "The ultrasound skin-tightening device reaches deep under the skin, penetrating underneath the facial muscles." This treatment offers results like those of much more dramatic, invasive procedures, with none of the downtime.

Ultrasound treatment was recently featured on Entertainment Tonight as a way to combat aging and delay more invasive surgeries.

Ultrasound treatment was recently featured on Entertainment Tonight as a way to combat aging and delay more invasive surgeries.

My consensus of the whole experience? I admit I'm a sucker for anything high-tech when it comes to my skin - if great minds can come together to combat the aging process, I want to be a part of that. So while this treatment may not have had all of the soothing smells and bells of a regular spa, my skin felt tightened and hydrated when I left, like I had done something beneficial rather than just relax for an hour. Fortunately, SmartSkin offers monthly memberships so my skin can benefit from their expertise on a regular basis.