NO BIG SMILES, NO BITING INTO CRISP APPLES AND AVOID THE DENTIST…WHAT YOU REALLY NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE NEW THREADLIFTS
We’ve seen the laser facial and Botox is old news – so what are women now doing to turn back the clock in their quest for a youthful face?
The latest anti-ageing treatment taking the cosmetic industry by storm is the threadlift, dubbed the new weekend lift – which can help women beat wrinkles and tighten sagging skin on the face (and now the body) without going under the knife.
The non-surgical face-lift is currently the fastest growing non-surgical treatment with the biggest increase in enquiries – up by a whopping 470 per cent compared to 2014 and estimated to be the biggest cosmetic trend this year.
What’s new about today’s thread lifts compared to the old style feather lifts launched a decade ago are the actual threads along with the technique to insert them and the instruments used, which are all far superior. Then the threads were bigger, had tiny little cones attached which only pointed downward and often broke or showed through the skin.
Today the new threads have benefited from the latest technology and are ultra fine and stronger. There are different types of threads available but they are all made from the same material – PDO (Polydioxanone)- which has been used in medicine for over 30 years, is safe and used on a daily basis in hospitals around the world, mainly for wound closure, so there are no problems with allergic reactions or any long-term complications and Poly Lactic acid, which is the same material as Sculptra so as they dissolve they stimulate collagen production to further improve the texture and tone of the skin.
The most common threads currently being used to lift and tighten the skin are what we call N Cog threads – these have bio directional cones attached and in the business known as A Swiss group threads. The threads were developed in the U.S. and introduced here last year, and this time round are dotted with cones pointing up and down. As well as stimulating collagen production, the upward ones push into facial tissue, making skin tauter and giving more of a lift.
The threads are inserted through a miniscule needle hole in the cheek, (below the subcutaneous tissue at a depth of between 3- 5mm) an area so small it is not visible after the procedure. The newly designed fine needle to which the thread and cones are attached are inserted into various points of the face depending on the areas to be treated and then come out though an exit point on the face. When pulled the threads will gently lift the sagging skin back into place.
PDO (Polydioxanone) Beauty Lift threads are another type of thread now being used to rejuvenate ageing faces – also called mono threads – but these do not have hooks or tapers that raise the tissue but are good for skin tightening and collagen stimulation.
Depending on the treatment, the type of thread and the number s used can vary but they can correct horizontal and vertical forehead wrinkles, the outer eyebrow area, sagging cheeks, naso-labial folds (smile lines), mouth corners (marionette lines) and under the lower jaw. More recently, we are also using them successfully to tighten sagging skin on the body including the neck and décolletage, tummy and the arms. The treatment can also be combined quite safely with dermal fillers, Botox and PRP therapy for complete overall facial improvement.
Although the procedure takes less than an hour, we still advise patients to allow at least a few days downtime and best results are seen about six weeks later. If you are thinking about having the procedure, here’s what you need to know
THREAD LIFTS WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
* It’s vital to have a consultation before the procedure. The best candidates for a thread lift are between the ages of 35 to 65 who have relatively good skin tone and just a little sagging or would not consider a traditional facelift or who aren’t quite ready for a surgical but want to test the water. If there is too much loose skin it may be that a surgical route is best, while for others, dermal fillers may be more appropriate to correct problem areas.
**Thread lifts can be called a number of different names – from The Puppet Lift to Silhouette Lift according to the clinic and the type of threads they use during the treatment. Our most popular lifts are the WAF (Wide Awake) Face Life which actress Sherrie Hewson had last year and which uses both types of threads along with PRP therapy to boost skin tone. Actress Gillian Taylforth opted for The Silhouette Lift which uses coned threads to gently restore volume to her face.
*Downtime after a Thread Lift is minimal, but there may be some very slight bruising or swelling in the days following your procedure and some mild tension in the areas that have been elevated. It is still a procedure which needs after care and for some patients who have multiple threads it’s no walk in the park! There will be some discomfort. Usually, you are able to resume work a couple of days later but for some patients it can take longer.
*Avoid blood thinning herbs and Vitamin E a week before and after treatment. If painkillers are needed, take paracetomol rather than Ibuprofen, which can increase bruising.
*As the treatment isn’t particularly invasive, pain is kept to a minimum as local anaesthetic is used during the procedure to prevent soreness. It can feel slightly odd or uncomfortable as the threads are pulled like someone is tugging at your skin. If the threads are pulled too tight during the procedure the doctor can loosen them slightly before securing.
* For some patients a slight depression, bunching, or irregularity of the skin may appear at entry points of the sutures, but again this should subside within a week or two. If there is still a problem you should return to the clinic.
*Immediately after treatment you should avoid facial massages, beauty treatments and dental work for at least two weeks. Contact sport and excessive exercise, including running is not recommended for the first few weeks following a treatment, and patients are advised to sleep on their back and slightly elevated immediately after treatment to reduce swelling. Do not sleep on your side, or your face. Avoid heavy chewing; including gum; biting into crisp apples (cut them up), and no alcohol, heat treatments like sauna or steam. Arnica can help with swelling
*Be gentle when applying skincare for the first couple of weeks after treatment. Use upward strokes when using moisturiser or serum and light tapping movements around the eyes and lips. Do not exfoliate or use masks during this period.
*Some patients experience ‘pinpricking’ sensations or the odd jolt of pain, sometimes for up to a month. This is normal but if you are concerned or there is excessive pain go back to the clinic.
*An SPF minimum 30 should be used after treatment to avoid post inflammatory hyperpigmentation
As with any treatment, your safety and final results depend entirely on the skill of the doctor performing it. Providing you work with an experienced medical practitioner, thread lifts are a highly safe treatment with proven results and success but there is still a danger of skin infection. Most patients are prescribed antibiotics after treatment. The procedure is not suitable for patients with autoimmune connective tissue diseases, Hepatitis B+, Hepatitis C+ and HIV. Also do not have if pregnant or breastfeeding (as local anaesthetic lidocaine is used) if you are having anti coagulant therapy, have existing infection in the areas to be treated or have a history of keloid scarring.