Drop off the dry cleaning, get the oil changed, have your wrinkles erased,
pick up the kids up from soccer practice -- wait, whose to-do list is this?
Cosmetic procedures don't all require general anesthesia, a nip, and a tuck.
Some minor procedures can ease wrinkles in the doctor's office in less than an
hour, and with little or no recovery time. Today, having cosmetic work done can
be a lunch-hour errand.
Like most women, I fret about lines and blotches on my face, but I mostly ignore my hands. Sure, I get a manicure now and then, and I slather on cream when I remember to. But otherwise, I barely give them a second thought. Then one day, after a very stressful period in my life, I looked down and barely recognized them: When had my hands become so paper-dry, wrinkly, veiny, and splattered with spots? For all the TLC I give my face, I realized that my hands were a dead giveaway of...
Botulinum toxin A, sold as Botox, is the purified toxin of the bacteria that
causes botulism. Creepy, for sure, but it's also extremely effective as an
Tiny, over-clenched facial muscles are responsible for crow's feet, frown
lines, and other facial wrinkles. Botulinum toxin is a paralyzing agent, which
in tiny doses can relax these uptight muscles for months at a time.
Botox represents the ultimate in cosmetic convenience. Injections of Botox
usually take about ten to fifteen minutes in an office setting. The injections
cause minimal discomfort for most people, with no recovery time.
The flip side to this almost drive-through efficiency: the results are
temporary. Treatments must be repeated every few months.
In a chemical peel, a chemical solution is applied to small areas of skin on
the face, neck or hands. The chemicals damage the outer layers of skin in a
controlled way. After the procedure, the damaged skin becomes red and peels
off. Chemical peels can remove age spots, acne scars, and some wrinkles.
As the smoother skin underneath heals and grows, your skin looks
Chemical peels come in a variety of strengths and types. Glycolic acid,
trichloroacetic acid, salicyclic acid, lactic acid, or carbonic acids are used,
sometimes in combinations. The application can take as little as 15 minutes.
There may be mild redness and irritation afterwards, but most people return to
normal activities immediately. It's important to wear sunscreen to protect your
vulnerable skin after a chemical peel.