The face is often the area people are concerned with when they are trying to fight the signs of aging, such as loss of volume, wrinkles and age spots. But, all parts of the body start to age at some point or another, and some will reveal your age, no matter how youthful your face looks.
One such area is the hands. Like your face, your hands start to lose volume as you get older. Years of sun exposure also make them more likely to develop discoloration or spots. But, just as there are numerous treatments to restore a more youthful face, there are ways to make your hands look younger. A hand lift focuses on two areas that commonly contribute to signs of aging on your hands: volume loss and age spots.
Loss of Volume
The skin that's on the upper part of your hands is naturally thinner than the skin on other areas of your body. The thinness of the skin is enhanced as you start to lose fat from the area, which is a natural part of getting older. As a result, the skin begins to look tissue paper-thin, the bones of the hand become more visible and veins become more prominent.
To conceal the loss of fat in the area and make skin more plump, part of the hand lift involves injecting the hands with Radiesse. Radiesse is a heavier filler, made of calcium hydroxyapatite, the same substance that's found in human bones. The filler immediately adds volume to the hand area. It also stimulates the production of collagen beneath the surface of the skin, which helps the effects last even longer. The treatment takes less than 20 minutes and the results from Radiesse can last for about a year.
While fillers will restore volume to the hands, they won't help tackle the age spots that often develop on the top of hands, thanks to decades of sun exposure. That's where laser skin resurfacing, using the Artisan Skin Laser, comes in.
Laser skin resurfacing removes the top layer of skin, taking with it areas of hyperpigmentation, uneven texture or fine lines. The Artisan treatment is typically non-ablative, meaning it completely destroys the top layer of skin. Instead, it targets specific areas to be treated, leaving the rest of the skin's surface untouched. The combination of treated skin cells and untreated, healthy cells, speeds the healing time and results.
Laser treatments not only remove areas of hyperpigmentation from the surface of the skin. Non-ablative treatments also stimulate the production of collagen and elastin in the hands, making the skin look thicker and helping to diminish the visibility of veins and bones.
Results from a laser treatment aren't immediate. It can take up to 10 days for the hyperpigmentation to fade and for new, spot-free skin to show on your hands.
Taking Care of Your Hands at Home
As with other treatments to reduce the signs of aging, a hand lift doesn't stop the clock. But, you can make the results last longer if you take care of your hands after treatment. It's not enough to simply apply lotion to the hands to keep them soft. You want to use skincare products on them that will help encourage cell turnover and exfoliation. Look for a production that contains Retin-A or retinoids, ingredients that help fight against aging. Products with Retin-A are only available with a prescription while retinoids are the over-the-counter, weaker version.
If you want to avoid having those age spots come back, the best thing you can do is protect your hands from sun exposure. Stay out of the sun for the first few days after your hand lift. Make sure to wear sunscreen on your hands everyday, even if it's cloudy or you'll only be outside for a few minutes. Sun protection is especially important if you're using a product with a retinol in it, as the ingredient makes the skin more sensitive to the sun.
To make sun protection easier, look for a lotion that contains at least SPF 30 and tuck it into your handbag or purse, so that you always have it on hand. Reapply the lotion every few hours, throughout the day.
Voted “Best in Brevard,” Dr. Ross Clevens regularly performs hand lifts at his practice in Melbourne, Florida. To learn more about the procedure and whether a combination of laser skin resurfacing and fillers, or one or the other is right for you, call 321-727-3223 for an appointment today.