Skincare Choices: Home vs Clinic

The most important part of our daily beauty regimen is skincare. No one wakes up deciding to look their worst each day. Each of us does what we can to make our skin look healthy. As time progresses, our skin become wrinkled and bumpy and shows our true age. At some point, we ask ourselves if we are doing enough. Do we need professional treatments or can we repair our skin at home? Here are several popular treatments and how they compare.

Cosmetic Laser Procedures

Each cosmetic or medical grade laser uses a specific spectrum of light to target certain cells. They can be used for hair removal, scar or tattoo removal, skin resurfacing, and a variety of other treatments. Each device is set to perform a specific treatment. Lasers operate under two basic types – ablative and non-ablative. Ablative means it causes intentional injuries to the surface of the skin whereas non-ablative lasers leave the skin’s surface intact and undamaged.

There are few devices, mostly hair removals, that perform skincare treatments at home. Laser devices require that the operator is certified to handle them. Without specialized training, lasers can cause major injuries. Even if you can find laser hair removal equipment for sale, it will be incredibly expensive to use just for occasional treatments. These devices should be left to the experts to handle.

Microneedling

Microneedling is a process which uses a handheld device with a barrel on one end covered in tiny needles. The barrel is rolled over the skin using slight pressure in order to create tiny punctures or channels reaching the dermal or under layer of skin. By creating micro injuries, it stimulates the skin into creating fresh collagen, something our bodies produce less of as we age. To get the most of out the treatment, collagen or vitamin enriched creams are applied during treatment.

Anyone can purchase personal use microneedling devices, serums, and cleansing products to perform microneedling at home. They work for mild rejuvenation at home, but not on moderate issues. Home devices have limited needle lengths to protect users from injuring themselves. In the clinic, the trained technician may use longer or larger needles depending on what results you are looking for.

Skin Peels

Typically referred to as a chemical or facial peel, this procedure involves using an acid to “exfoliate” the skin. The area to be treated is cleansed, then a chemical solution is applied to the face, neck, or hands and left on for approximately fifteen minutes. It is then washed off the skin. Mild or superficial peels use alphaydroxy acids such as glycolic or fruit enzymes. They are also called lunchtime peels since they can be done during lunch breaks and still be back to work on time. Mild peels refresh the skin by only removing dead skin cells. Moderate and deep peels use harsher chemicals such as phenol to remove the surface layer of skin for more dramatic results. Only a clinic can provide moderate to deep facial peels.

You can purchase at home facial masks and peels. Typically, these products contain organic ingredients like cucumber or papaya as the base. They are applied to the skin, then peeled off once they have dried. They remove impurities from the skin, but do not treat deeper skin issues like acne, wrinkles and scarring.

Home vs. Clinic

No matter what the advertisers claim, products for use at home are not nearly as efficient as treatments performed in a clinic. Any product made for personal use is created to be safe for home users. The machines used in clinics require that the technician is certified to use cosmetic lasers and other devices safely on their clients. They must follow rules laid out by the Board of Health to protect clients from bacterial infections as well. Home users rarely maintain sanitary conditions in the same way.

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