Photo Credit: anushkaspa.com
Ever wonder where do Palm Beach ladies who lunch go to get flawless skin? Anushka Spa, Salon & Cosmedical Centre’s top facialist Uslin Wood has been beautifying the South Florida elite for 10 years. Her special combination of extractions, peels and serums with a hint of Caribbean know-how has made her the go to facial wizard for the ladies who lunch set. In between cobb salads, tennis tournaments and parties for a cause, Uslin’s well heeled clientele come in to get buffed and beautiful. Her secret, as she says, ‘It’s all in the hands, and loving what you do.” She combines the best of advanced clinical skin treatments with classic training and years of experience working with the skin. Uslin is a mother of two children who keep her very active and a self-proclaimed skincare afficionado who practices what she preaches. We dare you to find a wrinkle, line or mark on her smooth complexion. Conveniently located at CityPlace in West Palm Beach, the island’s best kept secret, Uslin Wood, is tucked away in her tranquil treatment room in the Cosmedical Centre.
What are some of your favorite skin care products and why do you like them?
I really love medical-grade products. They are more aggressive, and also more effective. My clients want to see results from their skin care. I like Dr. Dennis Gross Skincare products for problem skin. I also use SkinMedica products for sensitive and acne prone clients.
Which treatments do your clients ask for most often?
The iS Clinical Fire & Ice Facial is our “glow-to-go” treatment. This is a medical grade treatment that falls somewhere in between a facial and a peel. The first step is the “fire” part of the facial, which includes glycolic acid and vitamin A. Next the skin is neutralized and the “ice” part is applied, which has peppermint, hyaluronic acid, aloe vera and green tea extract as well. It works at the cellular level to decrease fine lines and stimulate collagen and elastin. They also love the SilkPeel Dermal Infusion System, which is similar to microdermabrasion, but so much better. The SilkPeel system combines non-invasive exfoliation with a deep delivery of specific solutions directly to the skin without using any crystals or other chemical exfoliants, so I can customize the treatment to each client. These are both great to have before a big event or a vacation for a real WOW effect.
What is your philosophy for treating oily, acne prone skin for all age groups?
It is important to include a purifying toner in your daily skincare regimen if you get pimples and frequent breakouts. It disinfects and unclogs pores, and removes the accumulation of oil on your skin. You should use toner twice daily, especially at night time, and in humid weather. I recommend SkinMedica’s Purifying Toner for normal skin, and Glytone Acne Cleansing Toner for acne prone clients.
Being in South Florida, you must see a lot of sun damage. How do you teach your clients to protect their skin?
Many people recommend highly protective SPF creams, which is good and necessary, especially for my clients who are swimmers, go out on their boats, play tennis and golf, and generally love the sun. I personally recommend also getting a peel with a facial treatment. The top layer of skin is removed when you perform the peel treatment. With regular safeguarding of the skin, in addition to adding peels to your facial routine, you will be doing the best you can to defend against the sun’s powerful damaging effects. One of our best selling sun care products is Skinmedica’s Environmental Defense Sunscreen™ SPF 50+ with UV ProPlex™.
Describe how you perform your most popular anti-aging facial
I perform a treatment-duo: a microdermabrasion with a peel. The SilkPeel exfoliates the skin first, removing unwanted debris, and getting pores super clean. The peel solution then resurfaces and polishes the skin. Finally, I use a custom mixture of serums on the skin that smooth the face, even skin tone, and prevent lines from forming. The client leaves with smoother, softer, and refined skin.
If you could use anything on your skin, what would it be?
I would use a mixture of top of the line serums. These products penetrate better than creams, which have a lower absorption rate. Using a serum as the foundation layer protects your face from external pollutants and the dirt and residue of daily makeup. Ultimately, it’s the best way to defend against inevitable skin irritating environments.
Photo Credit: londonfacialplasticsurgery.co.uk
Dr. Julian De Silva, an eminent UK facial plastic surgeon, talks to BITB about microsurgery and what it means to be one of London’s go-to face experts.
Educated at the London Teaching Hospital, De Silva studied plastic surgery at the University of California, Los Angeles in 1999 during an international elective. His transatlantic training and subsequent network have served him well, giving him real appeal with his clients and a pipeline into the evolving cosmetic trends and techniques from overseas.
De Silva performed his first facial surgery over 12 years ago, and went on to complete fellowships in facial cosmetic surgery in Los Angeles and facial cosmetic and reconstructive surgery in New York, an oculofacial plastic surgery fellowship in London, as well as the inaugural Darzi Clinic Leadership Fellowship in London. When the Olympics were held in London in 2012, the international organizers selected De Silva to provide clinical care to the competing athletes and coaching staff.
Today, he is known for perfecting procedures that require tiny incisions between 2-3 millimetres. He has also consulted for the UK National Health Service (NHS). It’s no wonder patients seek him out for his “small incision and fast recovery technique” to give natural-looking results.
Here, he tells BITB more about his achievements and his brand of super-surgery.
Tell us a bit about yourself
I am a London-based facial cosmetic surgeon who specializes in the eyes, nose, face, and neck areas only. I am a perfectionist and that’s what patients need—someone who has fastidious attention to detail with the surgical skill to back this up. 15-20% of my work is complex revision surgery on patients who have received treatment elsewhere and are not satisfied with their results so you could say that I am a fixer as well as first port of call for people that want to address a facial complaint. I’ve completed over 1,000 procedures to date but no two cases have been alike. There is no formula for the perfect nose for example and unlike what surgeons believed in the 1980s, one size definitely does not fit all. To get the best possible result for your patient, you really do need to love what you do and approach each and every case with the same enthusiasm and uncompromising care and attention in order to continue to create happy patients.
Why did you choose to specialize in facial plastic surgery?
I pride myself on my attention to detail and I am sure this stems from my training in microsurgery plus I love of arts and am a keen sculptor in my spare time so I think this was the natural direction to take. I like the fact that facial plastic surgery is hugely challenging, not simply from a surgical point of view, but also because of the extraordinary level of trust you must establish with your patient before making it to theatre. It’s a real honor when you are entrusted with somebody’s face. You need an exceptionally well-trained eye in this area—it’s not enough to be good at surgery, you need to have the vision to achieve the desired outcome. My obsession with this specialty has helped me achieve triple memberships in British, European, and American surgical organizations.
What advice would you give to someone considering facial plastic surgery?
If you think that 15-20% of all my patients see me for revision surgery (and that’s just at my clinic) imagine the numbers of people all over the UK that are not happy with their result. It’s so hard to pick the correct surgeon and to communicate what you want when it is effectively an image or idea in the patient’s head—how do you describe what you want to a surgeon? The answer is, find a way! Take photos of you with from all different angles, tear sheets of images that you like from magazines, touch your face to illustrate what you are talking about, and don’t be afraid to cross-question the surgeon to see if they really understand your vision. In fact, don’t be afraid to fire questions at the surgeons you meet because they owe you a response to each and every question you have no matter how silly you think it may be. I would recommend asking what percentage of a surgeon’s cases result in revision surgery, i.e. how often does this surgeon get it right and how often does he or she need to get a patient back on the table for further treatment.
Are there any tips that you would give to a budding facial plastic surgeon wanting to make it big?
Find out what you are good at and what you actually like to do; if you can tick both boxes you can become an expert. I would suggest having a portfolio of case studies for people to look over and keep that up to date so everyone has access to your most recent cases. You are only as good as your last result. It is hugely motivating to have satisfied patients so for that reason it’s best to work out how you are able to make the most people happy that you can.
Tell us why you have the edge on other facial plastic surgeons?
I specialize in a technique that reduces scarring and minimizes downtime and people come to me for that and the fact that I can offer a very natural look. I have treated people in the public eye, show business etc. and they, like everyone else, don’t want to look like they have had work done. It’s the rapport you build with patients that gives you the edge. If you can understand what a prospective patient wants, you are realistic about what you can achieve, and you communicate this clearly then this provides the basis for a happy customer. Manage expectation all along—the best kind of plastic surgery is undetectable and a natural looking improvement. Perfect is a very subjective term and there really is no such thing and therefore no magic formula for perfection. My patients know that they are going to emerge from treatment looking their very best.
Are there any new or unique techniques that you offer?
I have pioneered innovations such as the use of fibrin tissue adhesives and laser research. The techniques I use foster natural looking results, and I am continually bringing in new equipment and innovations to give patients faster recovery times and longer lasting results. The use of endoscopic and key-hole techniques minimizes scarring and the use of other innovations such as tissue glue can result in no need for conventional sutures in some facial procedures. I am always looking to improve patients’ recovery and reduce down time and invest in the latest in high-tech innovations in order to provide patients with these advancements.
How would you describe your style?
My style is a natural looking result and this will depend on the individual—their genetics, age, and ethnicity are all key factors. I don’t have the same approach for any two cases so I’d say that having a style would mean that you tend to follow a formula or prefer a certain kind of look, which just isn’t the case. I am a big believer in creating the best natural looking result possible. I look after all my patients on a personal level, and treat them as though they were my friends or family; this has resulted in patients coming back for more procedures and bringing their friends and family to see me.
How do you think your transatlantic training and connections help your work?
My experience from working in the US had helped me give the very best treatments and procedures to my patients. Having worked in both Los Angeles and New York, I use the most advanced techniques to give patients the results they are looking for. Ninety percent of the skills and surgical techniques that I use on a daily basis are from the US, as they minimize incisions, give faster recovery, and deliver more natural looking results.
What do you love most about your job?
I enjoy the challenge of facial cosmetic surgery; every person requires a different set of my skills, whether blepharoplasty, rhinoplasty, or face and neck lift. The relationship and trust that is built between patient and surgeon is quite amazing and it’s a privilege to be chosen.
Thirty years of practice has led Idaho-dermatologist Carl Thornfeldt, MD, to a conclusion about skin disease and aging: much of it can be attributed to the breakdown of the skin’s natural barrier function and chronic inflammation. He treats skin disease with prescriptions but for obtaining maximum skin health he focuses on rebuilding the barrier function. Enter, Epionce, the skin care system that Thornfeldt created to repair the barrier and fight inflammation. The comprehensive range is infused with botanicals and can be customized to address a variety of conditions, including acne, eczema, hyperpigmentation, psoriasis, rosacea, and, of course, skin aging. Here, Thornfeldt tells Beauty in the Bag about his professional background and his insights into maintaining healthy, youthful skin.
Please tell us about your background. Why did you choose dermatology as your specialty?
I have struggled with dermatitis since I was a child. When I was a teenager, there were very few options available for treating dermatitis. The most common therapies were tar and sulfur being applied to the skin. It was a very challenging time for me and dramatically impacted me. I vowed I would grow up and try to find a better way to help people like me.
As a physician, how do you describe healthy skin?
I describe healthy skin as skin that has proper function and structure—the way it was originally intended to be. After all, the skin’s natural number one purpose is to interface between the dry air environment and our fluid filled body. If this barrier does not function properly, skin diseases occur. When the skin is healthy, other things we describe as “problem skin” tend to go away.
What inspired you to create and launch Epionce? How does it differ from other skin care lines?
I was inspired to create Epionce because I wanted something better for my patients. When I started as a physician, it was hard to help my patients get completely clear and maintain remission of their skin disease because so many of the prescription products adversely affected the skin barrier, really hindering their quality of life. Over time patients would rather just deal with the disease state than manage the medical options that have been available. This led me on a quest to answer the question—if we could optimize the structure and function of the skin, can we prevent skin disease and skin aging? Due to the complexity of the multiple processes we see as damaged skin, unique botanical ingredients were formulated to reverse these processes. Ultimately, to have products that improve skin is what led to Epionce. When I gave samples to my patients to try for their skin diseases, months later they came back asking for the “wrinkle” cream. We realized that Epionce was not only for diseases and conditions, but also anti-aging. We confirmed what Dr. Albert Kligman first published in 1988 that inflammation is critical in driving skin aging.
To my knowledge, no other skin care line addresses the underlying causes of how the damaged skin barrier and chronic inflammation contributes to skin disease, various conditions, and aging the way that Epionce does. We use a blend of unique botanical ingredients that work synergistically to reverse the abnormalities and to provide optimum therapeutic benefit to the skin. Then we did what no one was doing at the time—we started doing clinical studies against market leaders, including prescription products.
Can damaged skin really be repaired? What ingredients are effective in fighting signs of age?
Because of the world we live in, our skin will continually be exposed to things that will cause damage to the skin. So, while the skin absolutely can be repaired, it does require regular attention to continue the repair process.
The premise behind Epionce is that signs of aging are triggered and driven by both a damaged skin barrier and chronic inflammation in the skin. So, Epionce uses a variety of botanical ingredients delivered at therapeutic concentrations to specific skin cells to address both of those issues. Some of the ingredients we use that help repair the skin barrier are avocado, safflower, meadowfoam, and quercetin. Some of the ingredients that help stop chronic inflammation are date, apple, flax, and rosa canina.
Are there any new skin care technologies on the horizon that you find particularly promising?
I’m intrigued with some of the new research on proteonomics, metabolomics, and glyconomics. The theory seems good, but of course I will want to see the blinded clinical trial data with statistical significance of the finished product before coming to any conclusions about the use of that technology in skin care. Too often there is a lot of hype or buzz before enough research has been done. Many people have spent money on products that make promises based on theories that don’t pan out. That is why I fought so hard for Epionce to have conclusive clinical studies so I can say with confidence to my patients that they will see results, and it’s not just a fad.
What’s next for Epionce?
There is a lot of ongoing research into the functionality of the skin, and how to optimize it. We are always looking at ways that we might be able to improve how our products impact the skin for maximum therapeutic value. I always say, my patients never come in asking to get 40% clear from their disease or condition; they come in asking for 100% clearance and they want to stay clear. I am always pushing myself and my team to reach for that.