Photo Credit: Kane and Social
Laser therapy uses light to selectively target and eradicate brown splotches, redness and sun damage, leaving skin more even-toned. Worth considering: innovative treatments that employ more than laser type. Pigment Protocol, as practiced by cosmetic dermatologist Dr. Paul Jarrod Frank, founder of PfrankMD and PFrankMD Skin Salon, is an example. “The Enlighten III Pico Genesis used in conjunction with the Clear + Brilliant laser attacks pigment in every layer of the skin in one session with only one day of downtime,” he says. The combination treatments are done every three weeks (the number of treatments depends on the skin’s initial condition) and are combined with sunscreen and lightening creams. You should complete your last treatment a week prior to a big event and you will be red for up to 12 hours, so staying out of the sun is key. For younger brides with less serious concerns, Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) photo-facial treatments are less aggressive than traditional lasers, with no downtime — a good option for treating mild redness, enlarged pores and hyperpigmentation.
Laser combo: $850-$1,200 per session
IPL: $500-$800 per session
Injectable fillers such as Restylane or Juvederm plump and fill moderate to severe facial lines and can be used to add facial volume (filling out hollows beneath the eyes or boosting the cheekbones or lips). Results last from six months up to a year. Dr. Broumand recommends having the procedure done six weeks prior to the big day so if a touch-up is needed, you are able to see your doctor again within a week or two before the big day. When using filler on the lip area, remember less is always more. “You want to aim for a bee-stung look, a bit fuller, but not a duck-lip appearance,” cautions Dr. Engelman.
Filler: $500-$1,500 depending on area treated
Devices that administer heat (SculpSure) or cold (CoolSculpting) to areas like the abdomen, thighs, love handles — even beneath the chin — can reduce fat cells without invasive surgery or downtime. "This new painless technology targets and destroys fat cells in 25 minutes without affecting the skin’s surface," says Dr. Frank, "And it has no recovery time (you can resume work and daily activities immediately after)." Ideally, you need to start well in advance. “Each patient requires a tailored plan and you will start to see results in as little as 30 days, but optimal results are not seen until 90 days,” says Dr. Stafford Broumand, board-certified plastic surgeon and founder of 740 Park Plastic Surgery. “We ask patients to have this treatment completed at least four months prior to their wedding for optimal results. If the bride has enough time, we can treat the same area multiple times since the procedure involves at least two sessions before seeing results.”
CoolSculpting: about $600-$1,500 per treatment
SculpSure: about $1,600 per treatment
At the top of over 1 million young women’s beauty to-do lists last year, Botox is quick, consistent and remarkably effective. Performed with or without topical anesthesia (depending on your comfort level), Botox is an injectible neurotoxin that smooths facial wrinkles by relaxing the underlying muscles, with results that last anywhere from three to eight months. Patients typically notice the effects around a week after the treatment. There’s even a term for the most popular pre-wedding targets: “Bridal Botox” — light applications that focus on lines between the eyebrows, around the eyes or on the forehead. Botox also blocks the chemical signal to the nerves that stimulates sweat glands, so it can be used on the scalp, underarms and hands to prevent excess perspiration. “Scalp botox will ensure that hair stays perfect the day of the wedding and reduces sweating when on the dance floor — results last about nine months,” says Dr. Dendy Engelman, a dermatologic surgeon in Manhattan.
Botox: about $300-$1,800 depending on patient needs and area treated
“Sun damage and collagen loss can thin your skin over time, causing the blood vessels underneath to become more visible,” says Dr. Anne Chapas, founder and medical director of Union Square Laser Dermatology in NYC. "Retinol products will help even your skin tone. Look for a gentle version (0.5% retinol or less) to avoid additional irritation and redness." Dr. Chapas recommends SkinMedica Retinol .5 Complex, $78 For blushing brides: Rhofade is a relatively new FDA-approved cream that activates vasoconstriction (tightening) of the blood vessels near the surface of your skin to visibly reduce persistent facial redness that accompanies rosacea. Best results are achieved after about one month of daily use.
Rhofade: by prescription only, price varies