“Forever 21”

January 22, 2015

Three of my patients sent me a copy of a recent W Magazine article, “Forever 21,” by Christine Lennon.

The article focused on celebrities and how young they look despite their age.   Ms. Lennon provides a simple, but comprehensive explanation of just how celebrities can accomplish their youthful looks – and just how much they spend to do so, frequently without what you might consider traditional plastic surgery.  The regular and frequent use of special fillers, intense facials, in addition to strict adherence to diet and exercise programs, all factor into the looks we see on the red carpet. Patients come into my office every day asking me about procedures, injectable fillers and other options that could possibly help them forestall the aging process.

I focus on making sure my patients are healthy on the inside, but I am very aware that feeling and looking healthy on the outside is also important!

Is how we look on the outside an indicator of how we feel on the inside? Does this positive attitude toward our outside help our overall health and wellbeing?

The celebrities in the article “Forever 21” are in careers and have chosen to work in an area that calls for people to look younger and fresher and preserved Lets be real most of us do not, and would not, spend $6000 every two weeks, as is quoted in the article, in order to look younger. For the celebrities mentioned, this can be considered a business expense for all of them.

For the rest of us, how do we achieve our goal of feeling and looking younger?

First of all, a healthy lifestyle leads to a healthy body. Healthy skin, healthy hair and a trim waistline are key. Achieving this through eating mostly fruits and vegetables, avoiding the sun and using sunscreen, exercising 3 to 4 days a week and seeing your doctor once a year to prevent chronic illnesses, creates a healthy foundation for feeling and looking young and vibrant.

Before embarking on a visit to a specialist, it is a good idea to review your daily moisturizer habits.

I tend to use expensive moisturizer on my face and try to skimp and use a drugstore brand on my body.   My face is the most visible and so the moisturizer and the money spent on it is most visible. Is this the right decision? Should I be skimping on my legs, neck and hands? Possibly not, as knees and hands are often tell- tale aging signs!

But if you decide, in addition to maintaining a healthy lifestyle, that you want to look to some of the “secrets of the stars,” what do you need to know about the outside enhancement options available that can help you make an informed decision?

There are many types of cosmetic fillers and Botox available today, that if performed in a dermatologist or plastic surgery office, are relatively safe.  Make sure you have discussed and understand the potential side effects of both treatments at the appropriate doctor’s office before the procedure. As I have said previously and will continue to say, all surgery has risks. Office procedures such as Botox and fillers have much less risk to a patient (there is either no anesthesia or local anesthesia only). Talk to your primary care doctor before making a decision for a cosmetic procedure, non-surgical or surgical.  Your primary care doctor knows your full medical history, medications, etc., and can be a good resource in helping you choose a procedure.

We all need to figure out who we are and how do we achieve the best version of ourselves. We all need to start with the necessary healthy items to treat ourselves from within. Talk to your doctor about your lifestyle and any positive adjustments that can be made in your life, that can help you achieve your goals, inside and outside.

And then evaluate your options.  We all make personal choices that work for us.  If you decide to move forward with a cosmetic procedure, laser or light treatment, or cosmetic fillers and Botox, be sure to talk to your primary care doctor, and be educated about the products, procedures and options that will work best for you.