FOF Survey: Choosing and Using Skincare Products

If you think buying a house is easier than choosing skincare products, you’re probably going about it the wrong way. Please answer these eight simple questions about an extremely complicated subject, even if it isn’t rocket science.

Geri’s Excellent Aesthetics Adventure

    The young me with Grandma Rosie

When I was younger, I often wondered why handsome men were attracted to me because I never considered myself attractive. I’d look in the mirror to do my hair and makeup in the morning, but rarely after that. I never actually thought about my overall face. Now, when I flip through old photo albums, I realize I was appealing, even if not in a traditional Reese Witherspoon kind of way. Problem is, by the time it registered that I was attractive as a young woman, I had turned into a less fetching older woman. I’m far more emotionally secure today than I was decades ago, and my personality is as stellar as ever, but my face had definitely become less alluring. 

A tight neck and jawline had given way to hanging skin and jowls. Once rosy cheeks became dull. Bright eyes now looked sunken. Previously uninterrupted smoothness was punctuated with fine lines, folds, and wrinkles. Many women accept these inevitable changes, but I wanted to do something about them, especially after I learned about aesthetic medicine from dermatologists and plastic surgeons who I interviewed for www.faboverfifty.com.

THIS is not a good look

Aesthetic medicine involves non-invasive to minimally invasive procedures that are designed to help improve a woman or a man’s physical appearance.  Even if you’ve never elected to have your frown lines temporarily erased with botulinum toxin injections that paralyze your forehead muscles, you probably know someone who has. But today doctors can go to work with sophisticated machines using different kinds of energy to firm, tighten, smooth, brighten, contour and revitalize the skin all over your body without a single incision. They’re freezing fat cells. Exfoliating dead cells. Heating collagen. Zapping unwanted tattoos, unsightly hair, undesirable discoloration, and much more.

These new game-changing techniques are safer and less expensive than plastic surgery. They often involve little to no downtime. There’s minimal pain and discomfort. And they can help keep you looking rejuvenated for years. Before the invention of these minimally invasive methods to help reverse the signs of aging, plastic surgery was a woman’s only option. No longer. As a matter of fact, many plastic surgeons across the country have reinvented their practices to focus on aesthetic medicine.

It looks painful. It wasn’t.

GERI’S AESTHETIC ADVENTURE 

After seeing the outstanding results of the procedure Dr. Gilly Munavalli performed on 69-year-old Gray O’Neill, I wanted to know what he thought he could do for my face. I was especially interested in reducing the laxity and discoloration around my eyes, and the sagging neck skin, jowls and droopiness around my mouth. Dr. Gilly confidently told me he could improve my concerns with a group of non-to-minimally invasive treatments that would work synergistically, over time, to help achieve natural and noticeable results. I liked what I heard and booked an appointment.  

I had the following four procedures: 

♦ Jeauveau injections to reduce the dynamic lines between my brows and on my forehead. Recently introduced, these injections don’t create an “artificial, stiff appearance,” Dr. Gilly told me. “You want some movement, rather than a completely frozen look.” I will need to repeat these injections every four months if I want to keep my lines at bay. 

 A full-face fractional CO2 laser treatment with the Lumenis UltraPulse to stimulate collagen, tighten the skin, minimize the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines, and even out skin texture and tone. “This device has two handpieces: Its Deep FX provides deeper collagen stimulation for maximum contraction, and its Active FX provides textural improvement,” Dr. Gilly said. He did two passes around my eyes with the Deep FX at a lower density to contract the skin as much as possible.  

Neck following liposuction

♦ Liposuction of my neck and jowls, followed by subdermal heating with a laser, to tighten my neck and improve my jawline. Dr. Gilly calls this a “non-surgical neck lift.” Tumescent fluid (eg lidocaine) is injected locally to produce anesthesia, swelling and firmness of the area (“a well established and safe technique,”), and then three small incisions are made under the chin and along the jawline. After using cannulas to remove submental fat and reduce fullness, Dr. Gilly worked with the laser to produce further contraction. “Rather than cutting and pulling the skin to tighten it, we’re relying on heat,” he said. 

Protecting my skin from the sun

♦ A microneedling treatment from mid cheek to the bottom of my neck using radio frequency (RF) energy to induce the body’s natural healing response to regenerate collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid. “While this RF device safely heats the mid dermis for maximum contraction of the skin, it doesn’t affect the skin’s surface or the pigment,” Dr. Gilly explained.  It also further tightens the cheeks, jawline and neck following liposuction. .  

It took about three hours for Dr. Gilly and his team to perform the menu of treatments, although it felt like far less time. Semi-conscious throughout the session, I experienced discomfort at one point, but soldiered on. It was bearable. Aesthetic medicine may be minimally invasive, but CO2 laser and RF energy actually injure the skin in order to stimulate cell turnover, which slows down as we age. These treatments also revive the production of proteins that give the skin elasticity and firmness. Declining proteins such as collagen often causes increased laxity, folds, wrinkles and fine lines. 

POST-TREATMENT 

Swelling going down

A picture says a thousand words, but I looked a lot grimmer than I felt.  I had no pain, despite the swelling, redness, modest bleeding, and bruising. I filled a prescription for a mild painkiller, but never used a single pill. I took Tylenol for minor discomfort. It was a bigger pain in the neck – figuratively speaking – to wear the stylish garment on my head that’s designed to help tighten the skin after liposuction, but it came off after a few days. 

Like a dutiful student, I faithfully did my homework assignments, which included gently washing my face with a mild cleanser and applying a thick clear ointment to protect my healing skin. Going outside without a hat to shield my face was a no-no. When it comes to the signs of aging, sun is one of the biggest offenders, even if you haven’t been a sun worshipper for decades. Believe it or not, harmful rays can penetrate the windshield of your car. “A patient in her late 40s did well for the first two weeks, but then she went to the beach and now we’re battling hyperpigmentation, where patches of skin become darker than the surrounding skin,” Dr. Gilly related.  

Neck is looking good and face has color without makeup

I had the treatments on September 19, 2019, and started to look noticeably better by the sixth day. Despite my black and blue neck, lumps and bumps under my chin, peeling skin on my cheeks, and overall splotchiness, I could see the effects of Dr. Gilly’s artistry. My eyes opened wider and looked brighter. My neck was tighter and firmer. A healthy glow had returned to my complexion. My face continued to improve every single day for the next few weeks. “The initial Inflammatory stage lasts about four weeks, but that all goes away,” Dr. Gilly explained. 

It’s been four months since my aesthetic adventure began, and I’m pleased with the results. I think I now look considerably better without makeup than I used to look with makeup. “It can take up to six months to see the full effects of the treatments, because new collagen forms more slowly in the deeper tissue.” Dr. Gilly explained. “You’ll see the surface results first, but your skin will contract even more when when collagen is created in the tissue below.” 

AESTHETICS BEFORE AGING

Swelling and bruising are gone

I’m 72, but if you have aesthetic treatments when signs of aging start accelerating  – say in your fifties – the long-term benefits will be greater. That’s because your skin won’t have lost as much of the elasticity, moisture and radiance that make younger faces look, well, younger! While I wouldn’t mind looking like I did when I was in my fifties, that ship has sailed, so I’m delighted to look like a more refreshed 72 year old. 

The advantages will be greater yet for women in their twenties and thirties who opt for aesthetic procedures. And every year more and more are doing just that. We look younger than our mothers did at our age, and when our daughters become FabOverFifty, they’ll look younger than we did. Many women emphatically say they want to “age gracefully,” but  I’m not sure what that means. I see nothing graceful about wrinkles, jowls, crows feet and turkey necks, not to mention gray hair that resembles straw, underarms that jiggle like Jell-O, and breasts that look downhearted.  

I’m certainly not a fan of faces and bodies that have been excessively pulled, snipped,  lifted, tucked, and injected, a la Joan Rivers. But I’m all for looking refreshed. If we reupholster sofas that look dingy, discolored, and worn, and repaint walls that have cracked and peeled, why not laser and microneedle our faces if they have the same issues? I’m delighted when friends compliment my home. When they think I look great, I’m over the moon.

                                              Refreshed but still the old me

 

MEET DR. GILLY MUNAVALLI 

Dr. Gilly Munavalli, medical director and founder of Dermatology, Laser & Vein Specialists of the Carolinas in Charlotte, NC, brings to his practice an impressive academic background and breadth and depth of clinical experience.  He earned a Master of Health Science from the Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health followed by a Doctorate of Medicine from Morehouse Medical School. After an internship and residency at the Mayo Clinic and Emory University, he received dermatologic surgery fellowships in Mohs Micrographic Surgery, cutaneous oncology, facial reconstruction, cosmetic and laser surgery at  UC San Francisco.

         Dr. Gilly Munavalli

Board Certified since 2002 from the American Board of Dermatology, Dr. Munavall currently serves as an Assistant Professor at the Wake Forest University School of Medicine – Department of Dermatology, and as a Cosmetic Dermatologic Surgery Fellowship Director for the ASDS. His diverse expertise includes tumescent liposuction, blepharoplasty, laser skin resurfacing, facial volume enhancement, fat transfer, as well as laser removal of small blood vessels, birthmarks, acne, tattoos, fine lines and wrinkles. 

Dr. Munavalli enjoys reading, keeping tropical fish, international travel, exercising and sports. He and his wife have a son.

Treating the Skin of Modern American Women with Ancient Indian Beauty Rituals

Aavrani compensated FabOverFifty to create this sponsored post, but we only recommend superior products or services that we believe will benefit women in our community. Insights and opinions are our own. All facts are fully substantiated.

   “The absolute best mask I’ve ever used.” -Geri

Visiting her grandmothers in Calcutta during Christmas, or at home in Detroit with her mother, young Rooshy Roy would often catch a whiff of turmeric wafting out from the kitchen. But the aroma didn’t necessarily mean she’d be enjoying a luscious dinner that evening. Indian girls like Rooshy grew up watching their moms concoct the creams and solutions for their faces with the same ingredients they’d gather to cook their families’ favorite meals. Now brilliant and glowing, grown up Rooshy is bringing centuries of tried-and-true Indian beauty secrets to American women through aavrani, her carefully conceived and curated collection of skincare products.

While working in finance, Rooshy rediscovered the beauty rituals she learned during her childhood. “I started to fully appreciate them in my 20s,” said the young woman whose composed manner belies her 29 years. Taught from their youth that beauty emanates from the inside out, Indian women fully embrace healthy lifestyles, from what they eat and how they sleep to the ways they center their minds and bodies. Think yoga and meditation. “We understand that how we live our lives, not only what we put on our skin, is vital to looking and feeling our most beautiful,”Rooshy told me in her downtown Manhattan office. 

Clean Recipes for Beautiful Skin Passed Down From Generation to Generation 

Determined to keep aavrani beauty formulas “as authentic to ancient Indian rituals as possible,” Rooshy uses the same clean natural ingredients, in identical combinations, favored by her mother and grandmother. “The recipes are so rooted in our culture, passed down from generation to generation, that It’s hard to pinpoint when I learned which elements work together best,” she explained. Rooshy choose the name aavrani (rani means queen in Hindi) to signify female empowerment and the celebration of natural beauty. 

                       Rooshy Roy

The aavrani collection is handcrafted in the United States from high-quality ingredients that are sourced from around the world. Organic manuka honey comes from New Zealand, for instance, because it’s the best variety for preserving hydration of the skin, Rooshy noted.  And neem comes from India. Extracted from the neem tree, this natural herb acts like a strong anti-inflammatory agent and is amazing for blemishes, redness and calming the skin, she added.  

Remaining true to ancient rituals also means sourcing naturally derived preservatives that will prolong the life of each unique aavrani formula, but won’t alter its potency and integrity. “Natural preservatives aren’t easy to find and don’t all work well with the ingredients we want to highlight, which adds time and expense to our research and development processes,” Rooshy said. “The inexpensive preservatives used in many mass market products, such as parabens and mineral oil, wind up being harmful or associated with harmful effects.” 

and enter code FOF25 and save 25% until 12.24.19

 

A Modern Four-Step Skin Care Ritual Rooted in Ancient Traditions

Women are becoming more and more educated at younger and younger ages about what they’re putting on their bodies as well as into their bodies, Rooshy related. “We’re want to appeal to them when they’re exploring new beauty products at transitional stages in their lives, whether they’re 20-something professionals or 50-something women with new skin concerns. These women are willing to spend a little more on better quality, more efficacious products,” Rooshy maintained. 

Aavrani provides solutions for every woman’s essential skin care needs, including anti-aging, brightening, resurfacing, hydration and moisture retention, Rooshy said.  Seeing her brand as the pioneer of iBeauty, her mission is to introduce Indian beauty rituals to American women in a way that has never been done. Unlike K-Beauty (Korean beauty), which can have up to 20 steps and intimidate women who are looking at their skin in new ways, the complete aavrani ritual takes only four steps. 

STEP 1:  GLOW ACTIVATING EXFOLIATOR

             The wonderful four-step aavrani ritual

Aavrani’s hero product, formulated with organic turmeric, neem, jojoba and honey, this acts as a cleanser and mask to gently exfoliate, brighten and even skin tone. Neem is an “amazing and superior alternative to alcohol because it doesn’t irritate the skin and can be used on sensitive skin types,” Rooshy said. 

STEP 2:  BALANCE RESTORING SERUM 

Formulated with tea tree oil, cucumber extract, chamomile flowers, and witch hazel, this toning polish removes toxins, reinstates the natural moisture barrier of our skin, and enables aavrani Hydra-Whip to work more effectively. 

STEP 3:  SOFTENING HYDRA-WHIP

Formulated with coconut, meadowfoam and rosehip seed oils, plus shea nut and lavender extract, this ultra-hydrating yet lightweight solution locks in moisture, nourishes, and soothes skin. “We wanted to create a moisturizer that maintained the hydrating benefits of coconut oil but didn’t feel heavy and greasy or clog pores. You only need to apply a pearl-sized amount for the entire face, and it will last for hours and hours,” Rooshy explained.

STEP 4:  EYE REJUVENATING ELIXIR 

Formulated with sweet almond oil, rosewater, avocado oil and vitamin E, this revitalizing eye treatment minimizes dark circles and puffiness, stimulates collagen production, and decreases the appearance of fine lines. A metal rollerball at the top is cooling and depuffing. 

“This set is amazing for women of all ages. Dryness and wrinkles all come down to lack of hydration. The aavrani ritual can maximize your skin’s ability to retain water and make it look its best,” Rooshy said. 

The aavrani Complete Ritual Set of skin beautifiers comes in TSA-friendly amounts so you can experience the ritual before purchasing the larger sizes. And, it would make a distinctive Christmas gift for the important and beautiful women in your life. Check out the hundreds of outstanding reviews online.

and enter code FOF25 and save 25% until 12.24.19

Thicker–And Fuller-Looking–Hair At Last!

This is a “sponsored post.” Volaire compensated FOF with an advertising sponsorship to write it. Regardless, we only recommend products or services that we believe will be helpful for our readers. All insights and expressed opinions are our own.

My body and my hair have taken dramatically different directions as I’ve aged: The former is fuller and thicker, the latter thinner and flatter. Woe is me! I’ve tried countless volumizing products and even bought an expensive custom hair piece to give me fullness up top. The products coated my hair strands to make them thicker, but only weighed down my already pancake-like style. Worse, they made my hair look and feel dirtier! As for the hairpiece, it became a nuisance to maintain.

Now, a revolutionary Hair Volumizing System called VOLAIRE has come into my life, and my tresses (and I) are doing a happy dance.

So are millions of other women. “I used my Volaire products this morning and threw out all my other hair products. I love this stuff! I have very fine hair, and have tried everything I could find to get volume and texture. I finally found it. I will use these products forever,” Cheryl wrote in her online review.

Unlike all those traditional, heavy products, VOLAIRE exclusive AIRWEIGHT TECHNOLOGY blends nourishing ingredients with unique microspheres to give lift and volume to my thinning and lifeless hair. These positively charged microspheres literally attach to each negatively charged hair shaft to create more space between individual strands for weightless volume.  It’s not magic. It’s science. And, it works!.

>> Click here to try VOLAIRE!

“VOLAIRE approaches hair volume in a totally new way,” said Carey Grange, president of Junee Brands, which discovers beauty products with transformational benefits for women. “Typical volumizers coat the hair strands to make them thicker, but they actually weigh down hair and make it look and feel dirtier,” Carey explained. Hair becomes even heavier when we use additional styling products like gels and mousses. The result is hair that’s gunked up with product.


Three products make up the 
VOLAIRE Hair Volumizing System with proprietary AirWeight Technology:

WEIGHTLESS VOLUMIZING SHAMPOO

An aerated dispenser releases a pillowy and rich foam lather that I easily work throughout my hair, leaving it feeling soft, silky and lifted. The shampoo is free of sulfates and parabens, can safely be used on my color-treated hair, and infuses it with nutrient-rich ingredients, such as avocado oil, kelp and algae extracts, and chamomile. Coconut-derived surfactants make my hair feel clean, but don’t rob it of essential oils.

WEIGHTLESS FORTIFYING CONDITIONER

I need to use only a small amount of this wonderfully rich, nourishing and hydrating conditioner to help prevent breakage, without adding weight to my hair. I leave it on for two minutes, and, after rinsing it out, my hair is touchable and soft, but never heavy or sticky. Ingredients include oat protein, which softens and smoothes my hair, and panthenol, which helps reduce dryness, dullness and breakage. My hair is finer than it’s ever been, but this conditioner treats it richly, without weighing it down and making it feel lifeless.

and save on VOLAIRE + get FREE SHIPPING today!


UPLIFT VOLUMIZING MIST

After towel drying my hair, I spray on this ultra-light mist, which is formulated to lock onto my hair roots and strands to pump up the volume without making my hair stiff, sticky or tacky. Restorative extracts actually nourish the roots and scalp. When I use the mist on my wet hair, it adds body, smoothness and bounce, whether I blow it dry or let it air dry. It also includes natural sea salt, so when I apply it on my dry hair, it refreshes my naturally curly hair, and gives me a full-bodied texture. I only have to shampoo and style every few days.

Besides giving my hair immediate fullness and body, The VOLAIRE Hair Volumizing System makes it shinier and healthier because it’s formulated with essential fatty acids and vitamins. What’s more, the volume lasts all day!

VOLAIRE  has put together an introductory set so you can try these innovative products for 62% savings over buying each product separately. And, the company is so confident you’ll become a VOLAIRE fan, it’s offering a 60-day money back guarantee on everything!

Plus, you’ll get the super absorbent, smoothing Aquis hair turban, a $30 value, as a free thank you gift. I’ll never use a regular towel to dry my hair again.

and save on VOLAIRE + get FREE SHIPPING today!

Give Your Hair A Summer Break

I play havoc with my hair in the summer, running in and out of air conditioned spaces, romping with my grandson in the pool or ocean, and soaking up the glorious sun. I scorch it, deprive it of moisture, drench it with chlorine and saltwater and coat it with sand. My tresses are thin and fragile enough as it is, but sometimes a girl just wants to have fun, even if her hair is paying a price. When it’s time to give it a break after I’ve had a grand time, I want products that won’t just wash my hair, but will bring back shine, bounce, and volume. Yes,definitely volume!

I’d learned to steer clear of volumizing products, especially in the summer. They coated my hair strands to make them thicker, but only weighed them down to give me a pancake do. Worse, they made my hair look and feel dirtier, especially when mixed with the sticky icky humidity.

Now, a revolutionary Hair Shampooing, Conditioning and Volumizing System called VOLAIRE has come into my life, and my tresses (and I) are doing a happy dance. Not just during the summer, but all year round.

Unlike all those traditional, heavy products, VOLAIRE exclusive AIRWEIGHT TECHNOLOGY blends nourishing ingredients with unique microspheres to give lift and volume to my thinning, mistreated summertime hair. These positively charged microspheres literally attach to each negatively charged hair shaft to create more space between individual strands for weightless volume.  It’s not magic. It’s science. And, it works!

>> Click here to try VOLAIRE!

“VOLAIRE approaches hair volume in a totally new way,” said Carey Grange, president of Junee Brands, which discovers beauty products with transformational benefits for women. “Typical volumizers coat the hair strands to make them thicker, but they actually weigh down hair and make it look and feel dirtier,” Carey explained. Hair becomes even heavier when we use additional styling products like gels and mousses. The result is hair that’s gunked up with product.

Three products make up the VOLAIRE Hair Volumizing System with proprietary AirWeight Technology:

WEIGHTLESS VOLUMIZING SHAMPOO

An aerated dispenser releases a pillowy and rich foam lather that I easily work throughout my hair, leaving it feeling soft, silky and lifted. The shampoo is free of sulfates and parabens, can safely be used on my color-treated hair, and infuses it with nutrient-rich ingredients, such as avocado oil, kelp and algae extracts, and chamomile. Coconut-derived surfactants make my hair feel clean, but don’t rob it of essential oils.

So what air conditioning, sun, saltwater and chlorine take away, Volaire helps give back!

WEIGHTLESS FORTIFYING CONDITIONER

I need to use only a small amount of this wonderfully rich, nourishing and hydrating conditioner to help prevent breakage, without adding weight to my hair. I leave it on for two minutes, and, after rinsing it out, my hair is touchable and soft, but never heavy or sticky. Ingredients include oat protein, which softens and smoothes my hair, and panthenol, which helps reduce dryness, dullness and breakage. My hair is finer than it’s ever been, but this conditioner treats it richly, without weighing it down and making it feel lifeless.

and save on VOLAIRE + get FREE SHIPPING today!

 

UPLIFT VOLUMIZING MIST

After towel drying my hair, I spray on this ultra-light mist, which is formulated to lock onto my hair roots and strands to pump up the volume without making my hair stiff, sticky or tacky. Restorative extracts actually nourish the roots and scalp. When I use the mist on my wet hair, it adds body, smoothness and bounce, whether I blow it dry or let it air dry. When I apply it on my dry hair, it refreshes my naturally curly hair, and gives me a full-bodied texture. I only have to shampoo and style every few days.

Besides giving my hair immediate fullness and body, The VOLAIRE Hair Volumizing System makes it shinier and healthier because it’s formulated with essential fatty acids and vitamins. What’s more, the volume lasts all day!

VOLAIRE  has put together an introductory set so you can try these innovative products for 50% savings over buying each product separately. And, the company is so confident you’ll become a VOLAIRE fan, it’s offering a 60-day money back guarantee on everything!

Plus, you’ll get the super absorbent, smoothing Aquis hair turban, a $30 value, as a free thank you gift. I’ll never use a regular towel to dry my hair again.

and save on VOLAIRE + get FREE SHIPPING today!

An Aesthetic Transformation Without A Single Incision

One look at Gray ONeill’s before and after photos would convince any woman with deep wrinkles and pigmentation to shout: “I WANT WHAT SHE HAD!”

                          Gray before

What 69-year-old Gray had was a CO2 laser treatment with the Lumenis UltraPulse,  the most powerful CO2 laser in aesthetic medicine. Dr. Gilly Munavalli performed the two-hour procedure in his Charlotte, NC, office nine months ago, and both he and his patient are mighty pleased. “She just keeps getting better and better,”  he said.

Gray’s dry aging skin, lined with wrinkles and ridges from solar elastosis, made her a perfect candidate for the UltraPulse resurfacing treatment,  said Dr. Munavalli, who has done hundreds of CO2 treatments during the last 18 years. “Lumenis has been a consistent market leader in this category.  I can always count on it for sound technology,” he added.

Firing a 10,600 nanometer wavelength of infrared light to heat the water in the skin, UltraPulse vaporizes the skin surface and removes the aged and damaged skin. “I like its high peak power and its speed. And, it can penetrate deeper than any aesthetic ablative CO2 laser I’ve used,” Dr. Munavalli noted. After a short healing period, the new skin has normal collagen, normal color and normal texture, and is often tighter,  he explained.

UltraPulse offers a range of treatment modes, including DeepFX for wrinkles, acne scars and other deep cosmetic lesions; ActiveFX/MaxFX for full and fractional treatment of texture and pigment inconsistencies; ScaarFX for deep, thick lesions, and IncisionFX for clean, precise incisions.  

“I’D LOOK IN THE MIRROR AND GO ‘EW!’”

Interestingly, Gray met Dr. Munavalli through her daughter, who happens to be a dermatologist in Greenville, SC, about two hours away. “She often visits a professional dermatology site where doctors share questions and stories, and even though she didn’t know Dr. Munavalli she was really impressed by his comments about everything,” Gray explained.

“I asked my daughter about the lines around my mouth and down my cheek, and she said a heavy-duty laser was the only thing that would work on my skin and satisfy me,” Gray explained. Her deep wrinkles and uneven skin texture were no surprise, considering how much time she spent in the sun when she was growing up in Charlotte in the 1960s. “Oh yeah, I went out as much as possible to get just as tan as I could get. We even went up on the rooftops and rubbed iodine mixed with baby oil all over our bodies,” Gray chuckled.  

“When I was almost 60 years old a decade ago I’d look in the mirror and go ‘ew.’ My skin definitely made me feel older and less attractive,” said the mother of five and grandmother of seven.

“My mother was a freckled redhead who also had deep wrinkles, and I remember going with her when she had a dermabrasion treatment at a famous, and recently deceased, New York dermatologist back in the 70s,” Gray added. “She even flew back the same day of the procedure, with her face entirely covered and oozing. But mom’s treatment was too aggressive and it took over a year before she looked completely normal because they removed so much color from her face. Eventually she looked amazing.”

Aside from skin peels, a series of light laser treatments when she was in her 40s, and an eye lift, Gray hadn’t had anything substantial done to her face. Although her mother’s experience made her a bit apprehensive about a “heavy-duty laser” treatment, “I knew it was going to be worth it when I met Dr. Munavalli and saw his B&A photos.  He’s a sweet and gentle man and extremely smart,” she said.

TRANSFORMATION DAY

“When I arrived at Dr. Munavalli’s office I was prepped for the procedure, placed on monitors and put right to sleep in the office (with conscious sedation).  When I woke, they put lots of cream on my face and I went home! My wrinkles were gone and my skin felt as smooth as silky as a baby’s bottom, even if was too pink to look normal,” Gray recounted.

“Pleasantly surprised” by the minimal pain she felt, Gray said her face felt warm and looked red and swollen. She was glad to have the fan and ice pack Dr. Munavalli recommended. She also suggested an electric toothbrush for anyone having the treatment because “you don’t want to open your mouth to clean your teeth.”  And, if you don’t feel like going out, make sure you have a friend or relative who can get takeout for you, she added.

Content to stay home in her PJs and watch TV while she healed, Gray took a nap every afternoon for about two weeks, which was “really odd” for her.  As instructed, she washed her face very carefully every day and applied Vaniply ointment to help protect her skin while it healed. “It took awhile for my natural color to return, but I could tell my skin was getting better and better. I could apply mineral powder if I didn’t want to go out looking, pink,” she noted. She’s still supposed to use Retin-A to avoid getting milia on her cheeks, which are tiny white bumps that develop when tiny skin flakes become trapped in small pockets near the skin’s surface. “The aesthetician in Dr. Munavalli’s office told me the epidermal cells are still healing and milia are a normal part of the healing process,” Gray said.

THE SKINNY ON CO2 FROM DR. MUNAVALLI

No matter which way you look at it, Gray looks stupendous after her Lumenis treatment with Dr. Munavalli

“Gray healed very well,” Dr. Munavalli said. “Dermatologists really know the skin, and Gray needed extreme rejuvenation and resurfacing to eliminate the aging. Plastic surgery (a cutting procedure) wouldn’t have helped her skin texture and appearance.  Plus, she got an added benefit of some contraction of the jowls so it almost looks like she got a lift. If you have a great deal of sagging skin, plastics is the only way to go. But even if Gray had had a facelift, she wouldn’t have seen this kind of result since a facelift can only do so much to improve wrinkles in the central face. And, the damage from the chronic sun exposure is not something a facelift can improve.  Facelifts can’t improve skin quality or texture. Resurfacing can.”

         Dr. Gilly S. Munavalli

If Gray’s skin was any darker, Dr. Munavalli would have been much more hesitant to have performed the treatment, he said. “Her skin was on the cusp for doing CO2. You can’t do it on darker skin because it can likely cause more hyperpigmentation, but other lasers like the Erbium may be an option.”

Dr. Munavalli believes a core doctor should have advanced training on the UltraPulse so he or she can feel completely comfortable using it. “You have to push the envelope a little to get the kind of result we saw with Gray. It’s easy to go too far when you’re resurfacing to this depth, which you definitely don’t want to do. It will take three to six months for you to see if you made a mistake during treatment, and by then additional treatment might be necessary to fix the problem if that’s even possible,” he explained. “I really needed to hit a home run because Gray’s daughter is a dermatologist!”

AND SOME FINAL THOUGHTS FROM GRAY

“My close friends told me ‘you look like a little girl.’ My children said I look great. I was getting tired of looking in the mirror and being really dissatisfied with those wrinkles around my mouth and cheeks. The experience was so worth it. It’s almost like I have teenage skin.” 

To My FOFriends, Please visit Dr. Munavalli’s Facebook, Instagram and practice Instagram pages. You’ll love the work he does!

Enter to Win An Exceptional At-Home Skincare Tool!

Six lucky ladies will win one of these exceptional, clinically proven, skincare tools from Trophy Skin that operate on the identical technology as the expensive machines used by dermatologists, plastic surgeons and medi spas around the world.

MicrodermMD Home Microdermabrasion System gently but deeply exfoliates dead skin cells to smooth, brighten and revitalize rough, crepey, dry skin as well as reduce pitting, pockmarks and light acne scarring. It also decreases or eliminates enlarged pores and buffs away fine lines and wrinkles around the mouth and eyes. Can be used on the neck and body, too!  $299 value!

RejuvaliteMD uses state-of-the-art LED light therapy to safely and effectively stimulate skin healing and collagen production to improve skin elasticity and firmness and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. It also improves skin tone by reducing inflammation, redness and the appearance of age spots and sun damage. $249 value!

Learn more about MicrodermMD and RejuvaliteMD and tell us below your name and email which of these two skincare tools you’d like to win and why.

6 FOFS will win either MicrodermMD or RejuvaliteMD from Trophy Skin (See official rules here). Contest closes Thursday, June 6th, 2019 at midnight E.S.T.

By entering this giveaway you agree to receive emails from FabOverFifty and Trophy Skin.

Contest limited to residents of the continental United States.

An At-Home Beauty Device That’s Garnering 5-Star Rave Reviews

This is a “sponsored post.” Trophy Skin compensated FabOverFifty with an advertising sponsorship to write it. Regardless, we only recommend products or services that we believe will be helpful for our readers. All insights and expressed opinions are our own.—Geri Brin

You’d jump at the chance to have those new skin treatments that will help get rid of the “age spots” on your cheeks and crow’s feet around your eyes, but you simply can’t afford them.  As it is, you’ve invested in costly creams and serums that include high-quality ingredients, like retinol and hyaluronic acid, to treat your skin concerns. But realistically you know they can just do so much!  Ladies, now you can get affordable skincare tools to use at home that operate on the identical technology as the expensive machines used by dermatologists, plastic surgeons and medi spas.

         Taking a RejuvaliteMD treatment

The man behind these innovative beauty devices is Imran Karim, who owned one of the most successful medi spas in Dallas, TX  “Our skin treatments transformed the way thousands of clients looked and how they felt, so I knew the technology worked, but only a limited portion of the population could afford them,” Imran told me. “So I thought, how can we take this very effective technology, scale it down and allow it to be affordable and convenient for more people?”

After a couple of years of research, development and rigorous testing with doctors, scientists and product engineers, Imran launched Trophy Skin. Each of its three professional-grade skin care tools-MicrodermMD, RejuvaliteMD and Jenu Plus–have been clinically proven to do exactly what they promise to do, including revitalizing our skin, reducing wrinkles and furrows, sun damage and age spots.  “We met with the same manufacturers who produced the equipment for my medi spa to determine how to create at-home products that didn’t have to be used by doctors and trained professionals,” Imran explained. “They may not be as powerful as the professional machines, but we work with doctors on our clinical studies to ensure that each device is correctly tested and is highly effective. We also have FDA clearance when it’s required.”

Today, I’m introducing you to RejuvaliteMD, one the company’s top sellers. Using state-of-the-art LED light therapy, it safely and effectively stimulates skin healing and collagen production to improve skin elasticity and firmness and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. RejuvaliteMD also improves skin tone by reducing inflammation, redness and the appearance of age spots and sun damage.

“Some devices use only red light, but RejuvaliteMD utilizes four UV-free wavelengths–red, yellow, amber, and infrared light–to treat multiple signs of aging on different levels of the skin,” Imran explained. It’s also hands-free, so it’s much easier to use than other devices.

All you have to do is put on the goggles that come with the device, push a button and get a five-minute, painless, full-face treatment. “The panel is large and powerful, so it basks the whole face in all four wavelengths of light at once for maximum results,” Imran added. RejuvaliteMD is ideal for thinner, sensitive skin since the light therapy works from four to six inches away from the skin, so nothing mechanical or abrasive touches it.

Look at these superb results from a 6-week Trophy Skin clinical study, not to mention the extraordinary before-and-after images.

Clinical Stats-6 weeks after starting RejuvaliteMD

91% OF STUDY PARTICIPANTS SAW A DECREASE IN WRINKLE DEPTH AND LENGTH

81% OF STUDY PARTICIPANTS NO LONGER DESCRIBE THEIR SKIN AS AGED OR LEATHERY

89% OF STUDY PARTICIPANTS NO LONGER DESCRIBE THEIR SKIN AS INFLAMED, RED OR SENSITIVE

The RejuvaliteMD reviews are phenomenal, from women of all ages.

We can already tell a difference in our skin

“My husband and I have been using the RejuvaliteMD for about three weeks. We have been very faithful in using it. We both can already tell a difference in our skin. The texture and tone just appear fresher. We consider the daily treatment time as a nice ‘quiet time’ to relax. 50-something Tamara R.

It’s Not Just About Vanity, It’s About Good Healthy Skin At Every Age!
“Healthy skin is beautiful skin and well worth this modest investment. I am 66 and have been using my RejuvaliteMD for the past month. It’s a simple to use device, and I am finding it effective in conjunction with my MicrodermMD, another Trophy skin product.  RejuvaliteMD has already given me results in fading mild hyperpigmentation, smoothing the texture, and increasing the tone of my skin. Thank you for helping me turn back the clock.” Elaine M.

and receive 20% off RejuvaliteMD, exclusively for the FOF community. Be sure to enter code FABFIFTY at checkout.  

P.S. You can try RejuvaliteMD for 60 days and return it for a full refund if it doesn’t meet your expectations!

 Special Offer Expires on Thursday, June 6, 2019 

The Game-Changing At-Home Beauty Device That’s Racking Up 5-Star Rave Reviews

This is a “sponsored post.” Trophy Skin compensated FabOverFifty with an advertising sponsorship to write it. Regardless, we only recommend products or services that we believe will be helpful for our readers. All insights and expressed opinions are our own.—Geri Brin

You’d jump at the chance to have those new skin treatments that will help get rid of the “age spots” on your cheeks and crow’s feet around your eyes, but you simply can’t afford them.  As it is, you’ve invested in costly creams and serums that include high-quality ingredients, like retinol and hyaluronic acid, to treat your skin concerns. But realistically you know they can just do so much!  Ladies, now you can get affordable skincare tools to use at home that operate on the identical technology as the expensive machines used by dermatologists, plastic surgeons and medi spas.

I just did my third treatment at home with MicrodermMD

The man behind these innovative beauty devices is Imran Karim, who owned one of the most successful medi spas in Dallas, TX  “Our skin treatments transformed the way thousands of clients looked and how they felt, so I knew the technology worked, but only a limited portion of the population could afford them,” Imran told me. “So I thought, how can we take this very effective technology, scale it down and allow it to be affordable and convenient for more people?”

After a couple of years of research, development and rigorous testing with doctors, scientists and product engineers, Imran launched Trophy Skin. Each of its three professional-grade skin care tools-MicrodermMD, RejuvaliteMD and Jenu Plus–have been clinically proven to do exactly what they promise to do, including revitalizing our skin, reducing wrinkles and furrows, sun damage and age spots.  “We met with the same manufacturers who produced the equipment for my medi spa to determine how to create at-home products that didn’t have to be used by doctors and trained professionals,” Imran explained. “They may not be as powerful as the professional machines, but we work with doctors on our clinical studies to ensure that each device is correctly tested and is highly effective. We also have FDA clearance when it’s required.”

Today, I’m introducing you to MicrodermMD Home Microdermabrasion System, the company’s best seller.  A beautifully designed tool, it smoothes, brightens and revitalizes rough, crepey, dry skin as well as reduces pitting, pockmarks and light acne scarring.

A diamond particle encrusted tip and a pore extraction tip restore radiance to the skin by gently but deeply exfoliating dead skin cells and suctioning away the dirt, oil and makeup residue that cause the skin to look dull, aged and lifeless.  MicrodermMD also reduces or eliminates enlarged pores and buffs away fine lines and wrinkles around the mouth and eyes. It can be used on the neck and body too.

The device features Auto Mode that directs you through the process on an LCD screen and automatically adjusts the suction level for each section of your face. Sensitive Mode provides gentler suction levels, and Manual Mode lets you create a custom treatment. Skin can be treated up to twice a week. “You’ll immediately feel softer, smoother skin after the first five-minute treatment, but when you remove the filter you’ll be surprised to see the amount of dirt and oil that came off your face. You’ll be left with smooth, soft, perfectly clean and bright skin,” Imran explained.  

An infusion tip included with the MicrodermMD kit is designed to be used after your treatment to help gently push the active ingredients in your creams and serums deeper into the skin. The suction motor on the device opens your pores so products can more effectively be infused into the skin.

Trophy Skin has custom-developed Argan Stem Cell Serum especially for use after microdermabrasion because your skin will be a little pinkish red, which actually is the sign of a good treatment. Soothing and gentle, Argan has anti-aging and anti-inflammatory ingredients, including hyaluronic acid, algae and mugwort extracts to hydrate, protect, calm and renew skin from the inside out.  When used consistently, Argan Stem Cell Serum reduces fine lines and wrinkles, diminishes age spots, increases skin firmness, tightens and refines pores, and supports collagen and elastin production.

Look at these superb results from a 6-week Trophy Skin clinical study, not to mention the extraordinary before-and-after images:

6 weeks after starting MicroDermMD

80%  SAW DECREASED PORE SIZE

80%  EXPERIENCED DECREASED WRINKLE DEPTH

95%  HAD SOFTER, MORE HYDRATED AND REFRESHED SKIN

100% WOULD RECOMMEND MICRODERM MD  TO THEIR FAMILY & FRIENDS

The Trophy Skin reviews are phenomenal, from women of all ages.

The Best Skin Care Investment!!!

“Love Love the MicrodermMD!!!! The first two sessions I set the mode for sensitive skin, the 3rd session and after I stepped out of my comfort zone and set the mode on manual. I have sensitive skin and I could tolerate the suction. I am not saying that this would be a good idea for everyone but OMG my pores are starting to disappear, my skin is soft like a baby’s behind, and I’m slowly noticing the age spots fading and the wrinkles are not so prominent. Skin looks brighter as well. I use the MicrodermMD twice a week and I do not regret the purchase.”50-something Mary K.

Magic in a wand

“This has been quite the experience for me. I never realized what a filthy face I walked around with until I started using MicrodermMD…lol. I haven’t had it for very long but I can say I love how easy it is to use and how well it does, just like it’s advertised. I’ll be ordering a couple of other things as I’d like to do more than just my face. Thank you so much for selling a product that does what you say it does.” –50-something Tammy L

 

and receive 20% off MicrodermMD, exclusively for the FOF community. Be sure to enter code FABFIFTY at checkout.  

P.S. You can try MicrodermMD for 60 days and return it for a full refund if it doesn’t meet your expectations!

 Special Offer Expires on May 2, 2019 

Lip Service

   Geri sans lipstick

I’ve been obsessed for quite some time with finding a lipstick color that flatters my face. Like many women, I’ve tossed out tube after tube throughout my adult life, falling out of love with shades faster than Artie Shaw and Mickey Rooney fell out of love with their wives. When red was all the rage, I thought I’d try it, but felt self conscious the minute it hit my lips. Bright coral looked good in the store, but too pink once I got outside. Pale shades made me look like Casper, but dark tones turned me into Cruella. Whenever I see a flattering color on a woman’s lips I wonder why I can never find a single one I like for mine!  My lips seem to provoke a chemical reaction that transforms tones that look beautiful in the tube into hideous shades once they’re applied.

My quest for the perfect lipstick took a fortuitous turn last week when I spotted a cool shop in Soho called Lip Lab by Bite that looked like it blended custom lip colors.  I had some time before my next appointment, and time is a dangerous thing for me if I’m near almost any kind of store, but as I entered I rationalized that I’ve been looking my whole life for a lipstick color I could love.  As luck would have it, only one other customer was in the shop so I could meet with a “color artist” right away, even though I didn’t have an appointment.

Inviting me to sit down in front of a tray filled with dozens of little pots of pigment, Jennifer explained I could either choose a pre-existing shade (Lip Lab actually offers 200 pigments, but the little pots represent the most popular colors), or she could create a completely custom shade. I applied five stock colors using cue tips, but none appealed to me, so I told Jennifer I’d prefer to take the custom route.  (My lips were feeling a bit chapped after applying and removing the five colors, but I forged on, determined to walk out with a signature Geri Brin lipstick.)

     Creating custom colors

Although I wanted Jennifer to tell me which shade would suit me best, she stressed that choosing lipstick is totally personal.  “I might think you look great in a color, but you shouldn’t buy it if it makes you feel uncomfortable. Buy what you like,” Jennifer said.

After asking which family of colors I like best (“oranges, but not too bright or dark,” I answered) and the finish I preferred (“slightly shiny”), Jennifer began scooping out little bits of creamy pigments, blended them on a piece of paper and handed me one cue tip applicator after another topped with a different hue.

Pouring the ingredients into a mold

A spectrum of colors looked good on the paper and on my lips under the indoor fluorescent lighting, but they were way too red, pink or rose when I carried the hand-held mirror outside to see how they looked in natural lighting. I must have communicated how overwhelmed I felt at this point, because Jennifer said I needn’t feel obligated to choose anything. But she wasn’t giving up and started blending teams of new colors. At last, her artistry paid off, and I fell madly in love with a color that’s a combination of apricot, nude, coral and yellow. The Lip Lab Bespoke Lip Service included a second tube in the same or different color, so I asked Jennifer to create a darker shade, and she came up with another winner, this one combining apricot, yellow and brown.

Primo (left) and Geri

Colors chosen, the next step was to select the scent for each of my lipsticks, created by infusing essential oil into the color formula.  I picked fresh citrus for the darker lipstick and violet for the lighter shade. Other scents included vanilla, mint and citrus mango. Jennifer then poured the liquid concoctions of “all-natural” ingredients into metal, lipstick-shaped molds, which she set atop a freezing unit for about seven minutes until they solidified. Finally, she used lipstick tubes to gingerly extract the solid columns of color from the molds.  I also got to name my new lipsticks, so I chose Geri for one and Primo for the other, after my six-year-old grandson. Jennifer imprinted the names in silver type on the tops of the elegant gray tubes. Voila!  My custom lipsticks were ready. Besides the tubes of lipstick, my Bespoke kit included a mini whipped cherry lip scrub, mini agave lip mask and mini line & define lip primer, which is supposed to make the color last longer.  

     Wearing Geri

Lip Lab, based in Toronto, Canada, also has a shop there, as well as in San Francisco and Los Angeles.  You can buy its stock shades online, but can only enjoy the custom experience in person. The Bespoke Lip Service is $150.  Certainly not drug store prices, but these lipsticks are certainly not drug store colors or quality.

PS I bought Mac lip pencil in chicory to complement both new lipstick colors.