By Vanessa Steele, Medical Aesthetician At Image Clinic

So many of us anticipate the beginning of a new year. A time we can set new goals, establish healthier habits, as well as create a more confident version of ourselves, through more self-care routines, such as joining a fitness class of choice or booking routined treatments to maintain our skin. As Manager and Medical Aesthetician of Image Clinic in South Windsor, Top Choice Cosmetic Clinic of 2018 & 2019, I find it so important to create a healthy lifestyle change, not only for our inner happiness and confidence, but for how we view ourselves on the outside and the skin we are in.

Most of us reading this I am sure have looked in the mirror and said to ourselves, “Okay, time to get myself together here, what I feel like on the inside does not match my outside, I know I can create change if I just dedicate myself.” Well, this article is about to kick off your new year with an outlook on creating healthier skin changes and the type of dedication needed to achieve that. Now, if there is one word I cannot, and I mean, cannot stress enough, is patience. Having patience to build the results you are wanting to achieve is what I try my best to express to all my clients.

Whether it be body contouring or skin tightening treatments –  acne scarring, or treating pigmentation in the skin, every step of the way, from at-home skin care, to customized treatments, everything is progress towards the end result; how long it takes to get there varies with each individual and their skin’s natural response. We live in a society that expects and wants everything right in this exact moment, no matter how unrealistic expectations may be.

We hear and try so many crash diets, or “quick fix” treatments that try and guarantee us the world of results in a short amount of time; and yes while some may work, I am sure most would agree that if we just changed our daily habits and created a consistent regime, while actually making this a lifestyle change, it is then that we will see not only incredible results, but long-term ones. The same goes for our skin, just like our bodies when we work out. If we want to see changes, we must understand that our skin needs time to respond naturally, as age and hormones continuously play a factor, but if we stay committed to dedicating that time, with the proper treatments customized to your needs of course, you will always see long-term results.

One of the most common treatments at Image Clinic and what I discuss most often in a consultation is skin tightening, scars and age spots. Whether the focus is full face, neck area, decollette, body contouring, stretch marks, or scarring, I always ensure that clients are fully educated on the process; the time it will take to begin to see results, as well as stay on top of what my clients are doing to assist the treatments at home and in their daily routines when they are not checking in with me. Exclusive to the Fotona laser at Image Clinic, I truly enjoy creating incredible results for clients on a monthly basis when they are coming in for a tightening treatment to stimulate collagen in the areas the skin laxity lacks, pigmentation issues, stretch mark areas, or even as a preventative treatment to slow down the aging process. I customize the treatments accordingly to skin type, concerns, and utilize optimal settings and handpieces to create the best results possible. Understanding first and foremost that our bodies have a natural healing response as cell turnover in our skin happens approximately every 30-40 days based on age; when building collagen in the skin, the process will respond ultimately with the proper treatments being done, time, consistency, and a solid skincare regime.

Now, as with anything, varying on the skin being worked on, I try to improve as much as I can for my clients on a monthly basis, while showing pictures along the way to keep their progress going. It is so easy to give up quickly, especially when it is a concern one has had for a long time, but if this new year we can all push ourselves a bit more to stay dedicated to ourselves, you will be so much more satisfied with your long-term results.

As I always remind my clients, I am similar to a gym, you check in with me as a good workout, your healthy eating habits is the skincare use at home. The more you train your skin on a daily basis, the sooner you will see results.

Another option I created that I found to be the most effective way to keep clients dedicated to themselves is the SkinMembership I offer at Image Clinic. Everyone can benefit from the nine treatment options offered monthly, choosing one each month to check in with themselves. I offer face tightening options, Dermal Infusion Silkpeels for a deep clean facial, chemical based treatments such as Jessner or Vivier Peels, to even laser hair removal options or an hour relaxation facial. I found this to be the best dedication for my clients to always look forward to their next month’s treatment and see the progress with themselves by signing up for the six months or one year option.

As this new year begins, I hope to leave you with a perspective that allows you to stay patient with yourself through any process that includes change. If you feel less confident in your skin, opt for change by finding a trusted aesthetician to guide you. If you feel unhappy in your body, opt for change by dedicating some time for fitness or perhaps a personal trainer. You are the only individual that can create this for yourself if you just believe and understand that patience is all that is needed. The progress will begin when you do, so I challenge my readers to go out there this year and dedicate yourself to whatever makes you happy and confident in the skin you are in, while enjoying every step of the process along the way! Happy New Year Everyone!