“I am a strong believer that natural beauty reflects honesty and authenticity, an approach I take as a dermatologist— sharing the truth about skin. Our pursuit of beauty should always celebrate individuality over vanity, I always emphasise that beauty starts with an inner consciousness and empowerment, starting with a scientific approach towards skin health, building confidence and finding peace.”
Dr. Teo Wan Lin is an accredited dermatologist by the Ministry of Health and is the medical director of TWL Specialist Skin & Laser Centre, as well as the founder of Dr.TWL Dermaceuticals, a specialist cosmeceutical skincare line. Want to know the top aesthetic treatments performed by accredited dermatologists? She shares the top aesthetic treatments in her dermatology practice here.
Once I start doing aesthetic treatments, am I reliant on them forever? Will the results go away after some time?
Optimum Face Lift Results with Accredited Dermatologists
“I find two major pitfalls of aesthetic treatments administered in clinical settings– the first relates to the lack of understanding of the total face structure — each layer of ageing skin needs to be addressed individually and dermatologists are well-positioned as MOH-accredited specialists in skin to ensure that correct treatments are administered and combined to each individual’s specific skin age according to the Glogau Photoageing system, developed and used by dermatologists.” Dr. Teo Wan Lin.
Aesthetic Treatments – The Key to Sustained Face Lift Results
“The second pitfall is the lack of maintenance, a touch and go approach, especially without using cosmeceuticals together with aesthetic treatments, is not scientific. While it is a surefire way to fuel ‘repeat treatment sessions’ when signs of ageing quickly recur, I find it unsustainable as results always taper off. I do not use such an approach with my patients. Our joint goal is always, in-clinic treatments for a specific duration until we meet our target, and then home maintenance to maximise the longevity of the clinical results, ”emphasises Dr. Teo.
The Dr.TWL 360 Degrees Face Lift System
At TWL Specialist Skin & Laser Centre, an accredited dermatologist practice in Singapore headed by Dr. Teo Wan Lin, the favourite of many patients seeking aesthetic treatments is a potent full-face anti-ageing cocktail prescribed by her. All patients undergo a medical consultation and with an objective staging of their ageing process to determine the intensity, duration and maintenance of treatment periods.
What does the Face Lift treatment consist of?
The Dr.TWL 360 Degrees Face Lift System is a full face targeted aesthetic treatment which comprises the following
1. Epidermal/superficial dermal treatment
Beginning with microdermabrasion and an in-house formulated gentle chemical peel) performed by our dermatology staff nurses, lasting 45 minutes including preparation and recovery time.
2. Deep Dermis Stimulation and Muscle Relaxation
The second component is performed by Dr. Teo Wan Lin. It comprises deep laser lifting to stimulate bulk tissue heating and collagen growth. The epidermis is treated for superficial pigmentation and fine lines, wrinkles which are the earliest giveaway signs of ageing. Microinjected muscle toxins are then administered to further stimulate collagen production around the jawline and hairline for a relaxed, natural face lift effect.
“The SMAS is best envisioned as the curtain rail that holds the entire curtain up, it’s what holds up the entire facial structure. It’s important to lift this structure when one is anti-ageing the face because it’s really the support of the facial structure,” shares Dr. Teo. At her dermatology practice, she uses High-Intensity Focussed Ultrasound (HIFU), a Korean technology as well as radiofrequency to achieve a SMAS face lift.
4. Composite Eyelid lifting and Wrinkle removal
The eyes often giveaway one’s age. The reason for this is due to the thinner periorbital skin, as well as the natural facial expressions that cause brow furrows and crows feet. At our dermatology practice, plasma nitrogen technology is used for periorbital resurfacing for undereye wrinkles, sagging, and lid drooping, also known as a soft blepharoplasty.
This maintenance system includes a home medifacial regimen fulfilled by Dr.TWL Pharmacy’s Mask Bar, freshly delivered to your doorstep monthly for a 3-month maintenance regime, with freshly compounded face masks containing oligopeptides to further tighten and lift the dermis. The system includes a full-face set of QRASER lifting patches made of medical grade polymers that mimic the skin barrier and erase wrinkles. The CollagenUP Facial Wand which is a FDA-approved Radiofrequency lifting device is used with the Polysaccharide Mask to increase absorption of Oligopeptides, the star molecule of Dr.TWL Dermaceutical that stimulates collagen production with a tightening face lift effect.
This non-surgical face lift system is designed and tested for proven results by accredited dermatologist Dr.Teo Wan Lin at her practice TWL Specialist Skin & Laser Centre. The number of shots used for each treatment is titrated according to the individual’s specific need. For patients who wish to stay home, they can opt for the home medifacial component which is delivered to their doorstep by the clinic’s specialist skincare pharmacy.
For whom is this aesthetic treatment suited for?
People who want a non-surgical, long lasting approach to a face lift effect with minimal to no downtime. A single clinic session followed by a strict home maintenance regime for 3 months helps boost the efficacy of the treatment. Can be adjusted in intensity and frequency according to individual need.
How long will the treatment results last?
This is the very question the Home Mask Bar treatment was created to address. According to Dr. Teo, “I would like to say, for as long as you are diligent to comply. The in-clinic treatment session is completed in a single day, and results peak at 2 weeks. I have seen patients who have maintained the overall face lift results for as long as 2 years. Inter-individual variability exists, due to lifestyle and genetic factors, some individuals have extremely good responses. For those who are at a more advanced stage of photoageing, more frequent treatments should be instituted before attaining the ideal for maintenance.” The effect of regular use of the Dr. TWL 360 Degrees Face-Lift System is sustained improvement.
How many sessions of this treatment do I require?
The in-clinic full sessions can vary from single session to 3-6 sessions depending on the level of skin ageing. The aftercare home system should be used on a daily basis.
Who should not undergo this treatment?
Components such as deep laser toning will be omitted for individuals with photosensitive (sun-sensitive) skin conditions. It is important to consult an accredited dermatologist as he/she is well equipped to manage these medical conditions simultaneously with your aesthetic treatment.
How much does this cost?
Single in-clinic session (expect half-day, 4 hours including recovery time) $2799, with Home Mask Bar Maintenance at $180.50/month, and CollagenUp Facial Wand at $599. All prices before GST.
Dr.TWL 360 Non Surgical Face Lift was featured by Men’s Folio. Read the full article here.
Do you dream of a slimmer face? Is a V-shape face your ideal face shape? What are the ways you have heard of to achieve your dream face shape? I have been interviewed by several magazines and media on how to achieve your ideal face shape and in the process have debunked many myths. I have written this article to shed some light on safe and effective methods, such as HIFU, to achieve and maintain a V-shape facial structure.
HIFU is for anyone with mild to moderate sagging skin from all skin types and tones. It is for those looking to:
to improve and tighten sagging skin
to reduce wrinkles
to reduce nasolabial fold
to remove stubborn areas of fat that are at least 1 inch in size
for skin rejuvenation
for cellulite removal
for fat cell reduction
What are the benefits of HIFU treatment?
HIFU is a safe, effective and noninvasive procedure for skin lifting and tightening. It’s a cost effective option in comparison to a surgical face life. It is comfortable and painless and results can be seen after just one treatment. HIFU acts on the SMAS (superficial musculoaponeurotic system) layer which essentially functions as a structure that the entire face tissue hangs onto.
To address the lifting of the SMAS, HIFU targets that specific layer of tissue which helps to reduce surface wrinkles as well as induce the lifting of the facial tissues by the stimulation of collagen production. HIFU not only results in facial lifting and improvement of wrinkles but also in improvements in skin tone, facial contour, and subjective symptoms such as tightness or tension on the skin. Another recent study showed that HIFU could also be used safely and effectively to improve the skin texture and contour of the upper arms, extensor knees, and medial thighs.
HIFU is also ideal for fat reduction on the abdomen and the flanks. It works by inducing rapid cell necrosis which results in fat reduction. This is done by ablasting subcutaneous adipose tissues which cause molecular vibrations in targeted areas and increasing the temperature of local tissues.
How does HIFU treatment work?
HIFU essentially causes the skin tissue cells to die based on a physiological process known as cell necrosis. This results in the subsequent reduction of bulkiness of the affected area being treated. Common areas that HIFU is used for treatment would be the jawline, the cheeks which leads to an aesthetically pleasant shaping and lifting effect.
How long do the effects of HIFU treatment last?
The effects of hifu treatment can last up to a year. I employ less painful methods in my clinic which require 3-6 successive treatments for the full effect, building up on initial treatment. Sustained treatment rather than a touch-and-go approach is my personal practice as this tends to have more long-lasting results without necessitating the need for repeat treatments over a long period of time. I also combine this with adjunctive treatments such as botox fillers and cosmeceuticals. Studies have shown that the average wrinkle and skin laxity score decreased most in the jawline and periorbital (around the eye) areas.
Fig.1 Clinical photographs showing before (A, D), 3 months (B, D), and 6 months (C, F) after high-intensity focused ultrasound treatment.
TWL Specialist Skin and Laser Centre helmed by accredited dermatologist Dr. Teo Wan Lin uses HIFU as a painless way to shape and lift your face with evidence based methods. This is sold in a full face bundle and used in conjunction with our cosmeceuticals, which penetrate the skin, and the Qraser polymer patch which helps to draw moisture to the top layer of skin, causing a multidimensional lifted effect.
Do you dream of a slimmer face? Is a V-shaped face the ideal face? What are the ways you have heard of to achieve your dream face shape?
A slim v-shaped face is often known as the ideal beauty in Asia. It has thought to be achievable only through plastic surgery. However, with the emergence of a new therapy known as Golki Therapy, many women aim to remodel the face and body through unique bone massage techniques to realign the bone structure. I have been interviewed by several magazines and media on how to achieve your ideal face shape and in the process have debunked many myths. In this article, I hope to shed some light on the safe and effective methods to achieve and maintain a V-shape facial structure.
Dr. Teo Wan Lin is an accredited dermatologist and an expert on cosmeceutical skincare research and development. She is the author of “Skincare Bible – Dermatologist’s Tips for Cosmeceutical Skincare” which was published July 2019 by leading bookstores Barnes & Noble, Baker & Taylor and Apple Books and available in bookstores islandwide from January 2020. She heads up Dr.TWL Dermaceuticals, a specialist cosmeceutical skincare line with evidence-based active ingredients for anti-ageing and skin health. Its subsidiaries, the Pi- Cosmeceutical Custom Makeup Lab and the Conscious Mask Bar are part of the Conscious Concept Pharmacy launched in December featuring environmentally sustainable makeup and skincare materials. In this series “Dermatologist Talks” she shares her top tips on common skincare topics. In this article, she shares about a special Asian beauty trend – Golki Therapy.
What is one strange Asian beauty trend?
In terms of Asian beauty trends, I think what I find one of the strangest would be Golki therapy whereby the therapist actually uses a lot of manual force to reshape one’s facial bones, to achieve an ideal v-shaped face for example. I obviously never experienced that but physiologically, it is incredibly brutal to have this sort of therapy where someone is literally attempting to fracture one’s facial bones in order to achieve a smaller face shape.
I do not think it is possible for the therapist using any sort of method to actually reshape the bones in a single session. As our adult bones are not malleable (they are all calcified), what I have actually heard from people who have undergone that is that it is simply very painful.
While I do not think it is very common to sustain a facial fracture from such a procedure, and indeed there is some sort of training program that these therapists undergo, I personally feel that one could be exposed to certain traumatic risks when undergoing this treatment.
On top of skin bruising, it is also possible to have fat necrosis due to the extreme amount of force that is exerted on the face. If there is any sort of improvement from this treatment, it would not be coming from one’s facial bones but perhaps from the trauma of the entire experience, which I can imagine can only be extremely painful. I do not think that it is advisable or safe.
How do facials make your face smaller?
Our definition of facial has to shift from the traditional spa beautician mold whereby extractions and massages are performed to the medical equipment used in dermatologist offices. Something that does indeed help to slim the face and has evidence-based long-lasting results is a machine known as high-intensity focus ultrasound. What that does essentially is that it targets the SMAS (superficial muscular aponeurotic system) layer.
It is best envisioned as the curtain rail where the layers of your skin (epidermis, dermis, subcutaneous fat) and the muscles are all hanging on this curtain rail. When you lift it up as indicated by high-intensity focus ultrasound where the technology targets, you will see a noticeable lifting and shaping towards a v-shaped face. This has nothing to do with your bone but it also does result in fat necrosis which causes some shaping of the face to make it look smaller. Facials, in the sense of the traditional facial massages, I think is of very limited value.
What alternatives are there?
The trend should be moving towards devices that can be used at home and are models of technologies that we use in the office. For example, radiofrequency is something that is safe, and my team and I worked on an FDA-approved radiofrequency device last year known as the CollagenUp Wand. It helps to tighten the skin via action on the dermis. This can overall lead to increased collagen formation and gradual shaping of a v-shaped face with sustained use.
For Facial Gua Sha, it is a form of facial massage which aids in lymphatic drainage. Any form of facial massage can result in this. There have been studies that link an increased sense of well-being to massage practices. Massage itself is helpful because it increases blood circulation. By increasing blood flow, there is more nutrients and oxygenation that is delivered to the skin. Topically active ingredients such as cosmeceuticals can also be better absorbed. Using Dr.TWL’s Jade Roller before application of cosmeceuticals increases skincare absorption, and contributes to enhanced effects on anti-aging.
High-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) is a noninvasive procedure for skin lifting and tightening. HIFU essentially causes the skin tissue cells to die based on a physiological process known as cell necrosis. This results in the subsequent reduction of bulkiness of the affected area being treated. Common areas that HIFU is used for treatment would be the jawline, the cheeks which leads to an aesthetically pleasant shaping and lifting effect, to approach the v-shaped face desired.
TWL Specialist Skin and Laser Centre helmed by accredited dermatologist Dr. Teo Wan Lin uses HIFU as a painless way for shaping and lifting to achieve the v-shaped face, with evidence based methods. This is sold in a full face bundle and used in conjunction with our cosmeceuticals, which penetrate the skin, and the Qraser polymer patch that helps to draw moisture to the top layer of skin, causing a multidimensional lifted effect.
Book a consultation with Dr Teo to determine the most suitable treatment for your skin.
To book an appointment with Dr Teo, call us at +65 6355 0522, or email [email protected]. Alternatively, you may fill up our contact form here.
With the festive season just around the corner, we can expect our time spent hopping from one party to another. Eating one too many nibbles, and all those glasses of fizz – we want to look ready when we hit the party scene. You may have got what to wear sorted, so turn your focus to your skin. Whether you are celebrating with family and friends or getting ready for the office party, get your party-ready skin and look your best this festive season with these beauty upgrades.
With multiple treatment types available, it is recommended to familiarize yourself with the options available before making the best decision for your concerns. Cut through the confusion and get the facts that you need for an informed decision.
Improve and smooth the texture of your skin with a chemical peel, which removes the outermost layers of the skin with a gentle peeling solution derived from fruit or milk acids. When performing the treatment, this solution is applied to the skin for a duration of time ranging from three to seven minutes. The solution can include alpha-hydroxy acids, glycolic acid, lactic and salicylic acid.
With the application of the acids, the skin undergoes microscopic peeling, whereby dead skin cells which are usually shed with time, are induced to shed earlier, resulting in a fresh and radiant complexion. One should know part of the normal skin ageing process results in a longer duration of skin cell( keratinocyte) turnover, resulting in slower shedding, and this can contribute to dull looking skin. Skin cells from the deeper layers of the epidermis regenerate after the peel, allowing smoother skin with fewer wrinkles, as well as stimulating collagen in skin.
According to Dr.Teo Wan Lin, an accredited dermatologist, “I recommend the chemical peel for those experiencing acne, or as a form of anti-ageing treatment to maintain youthful skin, either alone or in combination with lasers and cosmeceuticals. My patients who come for chemical peels also look to minimize damage caused by sun damage, such as wrinkles, or other problems such as dark spots, dull or uneven skin texture, freckles and fine lines. As compared to other treatments, chemical peels can be more cost-effective as a form of maintenance and as an adjunct treatment.”
Ensure that this treatment is performed by a medical professional, and go for a professional evaluation before going for the treatment. The concentration of the acid solution applied to the skin has to be controlled, and results may vary according to either commercial brands used. A specially compounded in-house chemical peel solution is used at the clinic, tailored either for lighter, caucasian skin types, or darker asian or hispanic skin types as each as different requirements. Darker skin types should be particularly cautious as stronger peels, when used inappropriately can result in pigmentation instead.
According to Dr. Teo, ” One should be wary that over the counter DIY cosmetic skincare which tout various acids, such as lactic, salicylic acids, and AHAs all contain sub-therapeutic levels of the ingredients, as higher concentrations are illegal to be used at home without medical supervision.What this results in is simply drying out the skin, which very often does not treat acne, result in antiaging but merely causes a form of eczema known as irritant contact dermatitis. I would avoid using skincare with any of these ingredients on a long term basis without consulting a dermatologist. “
For facial rejuvenation and reversing signs of ageing, you may consider going for laser therapy. This treatment can help to reduce wrinkles, age spots, acne scarsand help to tighten your skin. When a laser is used, a concentrated stream of a invisible wavelength penetrates the skin. The laser treatment can target either the surface layer or deeper layers of your skin, depending on the results you are looking for. Lasers that work beneath the surface skin layer are called non-ablative lasers.
Non-ablative lasers help to remove skin discolouration, reduce redness from rosacea and improve fine lines and wrinkles. With multiple treatments, it can also help to stimulate collagen production.
Ablative lasers work by targeting the surface layer of your skin by ‘ablating’ the surface of your skin. Such lasers can make a greater difference in your skin replacing damaged skin from sun damage with healthier, new skin. Follow-up care is necessary with ablative lasers to ensure smooth result and needs at least two weeks for full recovery. If you are rushing to be all ready for the festive period, it is recommended to postpone your ablative laser treatment.
In the hands of accredited dermatologists, laser treatment will help to dramatically improve your skin appearance. Lasers advertised by spas or aestheticians may not even be medical grade, as the HSA does not allow therapeutic lasers to be operated by aestheticians. Such “laser facials” may hence be ineffective or even outright dangerous.
HIFU is ideal for the tightening, lifting and rejuvenation of facial skin. It is safe and effective and is a popular alternative to a surgical face lift to help improve lines and wrinkles. With high intensity focussed ultrasound energy, two particular layers below our skin are targeted – the superficial muscular aponeurotic system (SMAS) and the dermis. The SMAS is a layer of facial muscles that is tightened during a facelift, while the dermis layer is made up of collagen and elastin fibres that provide the skin with strength and elasticity.
Using the power of ultrasound, HIFU is able to this energy to safely tighten and lift the skin. The safety of the treatment comes from being able to protect the surface of the skin whilst still penetrating precisely deep into the skin to treat beyond the surface layer. No damage will be done to the surface layer or any adjacent tissues.
Targeted skin tissues will be subjected to thermal heat that promotes healing, stimulating optimal levels of collagen production. Response to the thermal heat can lead to the desired effects of lifting and tightening, allowing HIFU to be a viable alternative to surgery. Energy emitted from ultrasound lasers would also melt facial fats during the treatment.
Finally, are you tempted by those advertisements offering aesthetic treatments like an ‘a-la-carte’ menu? One word of warning by our dermatologist though, “For safe and effective results, all these aesthetic treatments are regarded as medical interventions still and a trained dermatologist will not administer any of these without a thorough consultation discussing risks, benefits, costs involved and the overall maintenance required for a proper anti-ageing regimen, so as to ensure the treatment is tailored to your needs.” Armed with this guide, you are well on your way to look party-ready this festive season.
People have been increasingly conscious about aging and the effects of aging on appearance. Skin aging will cause facial wrinkles and decreased collagen. Maintaining a youthful appearance seems to be the trend and many have resorted to skin treatments. There are many treatments like chemical peels, fractional laser and more but recently, ultrasound has been used in new treatments. HIFU and Ultherapy are examples of ultrasound treatments. It has been introduced as non-invasive and effective in having anti-aging effects on the skin.
What is High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU) Sygmalift?
High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound also known as HIFU Sygmalift, is used for rejuvenation, lifting and tightening of the facial skin. Research has been done to demonstrate the efficacy of HIFU Sygmalift. It has been found that HIFU Sygmalift is a safe and effective method for facial skin tightening. It can be used not only to improve skin texture, but also contour the upper arms, knees and thighs. Besides facial skin, it can be used for other parts of your body.
How does HIFU Sygmalift work?
HIFU mainly causes cellular damage and reduces volume of the designated area by coagulation and generating instant microthermal lesions. This is done by using high frequency ultrasound waves targeted at the tissue area without causing any damage to the skin epidermis and surrounding tissues. The targeted skin tissues get heated up which causes cells to be activated, generating new collagen to produce a skin lifting and anti-aging effect.
What is Ultherapy?
Ultherapy is a new Food Drug Administration (FDA) approved treatment that tightens and lift facial skin. The treatment is mainly for the eyebrow, chin and neck area but can be used anywhere where the skin is lacking tightening. Follow up treatments are recommended once a year to maintain the effects. The procedure has been used as it is non invasive and hence does not require anesthetic or sedation.
However, it has been said to be painful and it would be better for some to use local anesthetic. It has been said to have no foreign substances or drastic changes but achieves to improve the health of the cells beneath your skin surface to result in a subtle, natural and healthy effect on the outside.
How does Ultherapy work?
Ultherapy is different from the common laser techniques that target the outer layer of the skin. It penetrates the surface and transmits energy to the deeper skin layers. This way, it causes damage to the collagen layers to stimulate more collagen production as the cells are tricked into repairing the collagen. It uses ultrasound technology which has been used in fat burning treatments. With collagen production, it produces skin tightening and anti aging effects.
How are HIFU Sygmalift and Ultherapy different?
HIFU Sygmalift and Ultherapy sound similar in terms of their methodology. Both use ultrasound treatment, a popular choice for non invasive and non-surgical face lifting and tightening treatments. Their main goal is to produce anti-aging effects, helping you to preserve your youthful look. However, there are still some small differences between the two which can impact your decision is choosing the most suitable treatment.
Extent of Pain
One of the main complaints about ultherapy treatment is that it is known to be painful and some people require local anesthetic. However, HIFU Sygmalift is mainly painless because it uses fractionated HIFU. Instead of traditional HIFU techniques which use one concentrated beam, HIFU Sygmalift breaks up the beam into fractions and penetrates the skin at precise extents. People who use HIFU Sygmalift may feel a small sense of tolerable pain but it is definitely less painful that Ultherapy.
Extent of Skin Penetration
HIFU Sygmalift targets the dermis and connective tissues to stimulate collagen production. Meanwhile, Ultherapy can penetrate deeper even into the muscle tissues, which is why some people feel pain. However, both result in skin tightening and lifting effects.
Post Treatment Maintenance
For Ultherapy, most people may see visible results even after the first or second session. To follow-up, they are recommended to go for treatments once a year to maximise the effects. On the other hand, HIFU Sygmalift is used once a month to maintain your skin. Patients of HIFU Sygmalift are recommended to use anti-aging products that contains peptides to complement the treatment, supporting a gentler type of treatment.
Both HIFU Sygmalift and Ultherapy use similar technology and methods with very subtle differences. However, these differences can make a big impact on your comfort with the treatments. Both methods are still safe, striving to produce anti-aging effects on your skin. With the similarities and differences explained, you can now make the best decision for yourself and choose the treatment that suits you the most.