We all know the tips and tricks – sit in front of a window or use a ring light, and definitely make use of Zoom’s ‘touch up my appearance’ feature for an airbrushed, unblemished look.
However, those jowls and that double chin staring back at you may take a bit more real-time commitment, and by far your best bet is new generation radio frequency (RF) aesthetic treatments.
One that has piqued our interest for some time now is Thermage, so we thought we’d give the new upgraded version FLX a try.
Clinician Rachael Myers at 111 Harley St started by thoroughly cleansing my skin, before laying a grid-like transfer on my face and neck – this was to help aid her when performing the treatment.
I'd heard that Thermage was quite uncomfortable, but Rachael had a trick up her sleeve to distract me – using an exfoliating glove she firmly pinched the skin she was about to treat before zapping it with the RF device. Clever.
Thermage FLX uses radio frequency technology to heat the deep, collagen-rich layers of the skin. The applied heat separates the water molecules from the fibrous collagen, causing an immediate contraction, resulting in skin tightening. New collagen growth builds and tightens the skin further over time.
Along with pulsed RF which you feel as fleeting heat, this latest version of Thermage also has integrated cooling and vibration which is said to aid in patient comfort.
The treatment was actually very tolerable – the most ouchy places were near any bony areas, and for some reason the base of my neck near my hairline.
In total, Rachael did around 300 passes over my skin; this took around an hour. Afterwards, I looked like I'd just done a heavy gym workout, but the redness was more from the pinching than the actual treatment itself. And by the time I got home, my neck was back to normal and my face not far behind.
And maybe it's my imagination, but I can already see a noticeable improvement – my skin looks firmer, my jawline appears tighter and my neck smoother. Considering how quick and non invasive this treatment is, I'll be first in line for another session in two years time...
“What I love most about Thermage FLX is that it’s a one-time, non-invasive treatment with zero downtime," says Myers. "The advanced FLX device is extremely effective, virtually pain free and perfect for men and women who are looking for natural rejuvenation and skin tightening around the eye area, face, jawline, neck and body.”
Who does the treatment best suit?As Thermage FLX is a skin tightening and contouring treatment, ideal candidates may have mild to moderate skin laxity on the face or neck, or around the eyes. It can also soften lines and reduce wrinkles. As well as the face, neck and eyes, it can also be used to tighten skin on the abdomen, arms, legs and knees.
How many sessions are required?Unlike many aesthetic treatments, Thermage FLX delivers results for most people in just one session, with results continuing to improve over time.
When will I see results?After treatment, the secondary healing response continues as collagen is produced, deposited and remodelled. For most people, results will appear gradually within the two-to-six month period following the treatment; these are said to last up to two years.
How much does it cost?The cost depends on the area you are having treated.
What do I need to do after the treatment?Because the outer layers of the skin are unaffected, apart from a little redness and possibly swelling which soon subsides, there is no downtime so you can carry on with your daily schedule.
EV Experts say:"I've been using Thermage at Cranley Clinic since 2006 and to this day it remains a hugely popular and successful treatment for patients," confirms Clinician Davinia Halliday.
"Multiple areas of the face and body can be targeted in one session and patients can return to normal activities straight after treatment. Results can often be seen immediately, however the magic of Thermage continues to improve over time!"