Ten Ways to Look Younger
Easy and (almost) painless ways to take a decade off your age. No knives, epic costs, or recovery time required. Yes, really.
FORTY MAY BE THE NEW THIRTY — and fifty the new forty — by cultural standards, but that doesn’t necessarily mean your body got the memo. And while the signs of aging may make you want to devote your entire schedule to the pursuit of looking and feeling younger (insert operation scene from Nip/Tuck here), the reality is that your life — a.k.a. bosses, spouse, kids, and pets, to say nothing of your conscience — isn’t likely to let you out of your daily routine long enough to go in search of the fountain of youth.
[sidebar]So how to wrestle back the clock without major hassle, constant dedication, pain, and sticker shock? To find out, we tapped experts across the city to pin down the latest and greatest quick fixes for looking younger. After all, Botox may get most of the acclaim, but these days there are hordes of other contenders as well. We sought out the most promising of them, dipped into some of the scientific research behind each, spoke to clients who’ve had both good and bad experiences, played the guinea pig when necessary, and finally whittled down our list to the easiest and most sustainable options. The result: 10 solid ways to help you reclaim some of the vitality that’s more than rightfully yours.
1. THE PEARL LASER
We all know about face peels, which means we all know why they’ve become a cultural anathema: The threat of a long healing process, and thus unavoidable public humiliation, looms large. Which is precisely where the Pearl Laser comes in. The instrument is at the heart of a two-year-old process that zaps surface layers of skin cells, creating a controlled injury that brings up smoother, tighter replacement skin as you heal.
In the Brookline office of Dr. Leonard Miller, the procedure takes two forms. The heavy-duty version vaporizes the epidermis, then further heats the skin to create “coagulation” (a kinder-sounding word for blood clotting) and promote new collagen growth. Full recovery takes a couple of months, but downtime is only about a week, during which patients can’t have any sun exposure (it would cause hyperpigmentation, says Miller). The end result: much-softened wrinkles, and a far more even skin tone.
That’s the high-drama version. There’s also a less-invasive incarnation — the results of which are, not surprisingly, less dramatic. But after putting the treatment to the test, we found the upshot still quite noticeable. The process is similar to the first procedure, but the laser doesn’t penetrate as deeply, and results in mere discomfort as opposed to actual pain. It also takes less than an hour, and recovery time is about a week (it looks like you simply have a garden-variety sunburn for the first two days, and everything can be hidden under makeup after that). The yield? Softened fine lines, smoother skin texture, and subtly collagen-plumped skin — all with no need whatsoever to miss a meeting, a date, an event, or, in short, a beat. Heavy-duty, $1,500–$4,000, and superficial, $750; Boston Centre for Aesthetic Medicine, One Brookline Place, Ste. 427, Brookline, 617-735-8735, bostoncentreaestheticmedicine.com.