Welcome to our blog. A place where our doctors and staff will be providing you with the latest information from our practice, and what's happening in our industry.
Author: Ironwood Dermatology
A pocket of fat below the chin—commonly referred to as a “double chin”—is often believed to be caused by weight gain, but that isn’t always the case. Yes, gaining excess weight all over your body can cause more fat to be deposited in the chin and face area, but people who aren’t overweight at all can also sometimes have this issue. This is because genetics determine where the body stores fat. So-called double chin exercises that claim to reduce fat in this specific area might be able to strengthen your neck muscles, but they probably won’t have any effect on the localized fat, because targeting specific congregations of fat cells doesn’t work that way. Even with a strict diet and good exercise routine, it may seem nearly impossible to get rid of persistent double chin fat. A more reliable option is Kybella®, an injectable form of deoxycholic acid that gradually dissolves isolated fat below the chin to create a sharper jawline without harming other tissues in the body. Not sure whether double chin reduction at the Tucson and Oro Valley area’s Ironwood Dermatology is right for you? Here’s what makes a good candidate:
You Prefer a Non-Surgical Approach
Patients who are frustrated by the appearance of submental fullness but want to avoid the long recovery times, invasive nature, incisions, and anesthesia involved in plastic surgery can avoid all of those drawbacks with Kybella®.
You’re at a Stable Weight
Patients get optimal results when they remain at or close to their ideal body weight, because future weight gain could cause any remaining fat cells below the chin to become enlarged and create a bulkier look once again.
You Have Good Skin Elasticity
Is your double chin caused mainly by loose skin or by fat? Kybella® is ideal for reducing fat cells specifically, but tightening loose skin requires other strategies. That means fat-reduction injections produce better results on patients who only have mild to moderate skin elasticity. People who have dramatic skin elasticity may have better results with other procedures.
Kybella® is a convenient injectable treatment for removing stubborn fat below the chin without invasive surgery. Sculpt a more defined jaw area with double chin reduction from Ironwood Dermatology, or find out about other cosmetic treatments available. Call 520.618.1630 or submit a contact form to request an appointment and find out whether you are eligible.
Many people looking for a rejuvenated look wonder: “Does microneedling actually work?” The simple answer is yes. While deep creases and hollows may respond best to facial fillers, the collagen-replenishing effects of microneedling are proven to improve the overall health of your skin from the inside out, addressing a wide range of cosmetic complaints. Some people may consider face rollers and antioxidant products to try to give their skin a renewed glow at home, but skin needling from our Tucson and Oro Valley area team at Ironwood Dermatology is a safe, reliable, and ideal way to revitalize your skin “from the bottom up” by boosting collagen levels.
If you’re thinking about getting a treatment, or are about to come in for a microneedling session, take a look at these additional steps you can take before your visit and when you get home to maximize your results:
- Exfoliate several days before microneedling (just remember to never try exfoliating the night before you’re planning to have skin needling!). Exfoliating several times in the weeks leading up to skin needling will improve your results by shedding the dead skin from the surface.
- Microneedling makes your skin more sensitive to sun damage. Constantly apply sunscreen during the first two weeks after having a treatment, especially during the hours between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m. when the sun’s rays are most intense. Limit your exposure as much as possible to prevent discoloration, dryness, and other side effects of ultraviolet radiation.
- Keep your skin well hydrated and nourished following microneedling. After you’ve had skin needling, it’s the perfect time to add in extra hydration and use topical anti-aging products, since they will be absorbed more effectively. Many patients like to use serums containing hyaluronic acid, antioxidants, and sheet masks on the same day that they’ve had this treatment.
- Reduce your risk of infections by washing your hands before you touch your face and applying antibiotic creams if your dermatologist prescribes them.
- Your skin needs time to heal, so be gentle with it. You’ll want avoid activities that cause you to sweat and open your pores. Protect your skin during the first 72 hours by avoiding swimming pools, saunas, and heavy workouts at the gym.
Explore your options for skin needling at Ironwood Dermatology or learn more about other skin rejuvenation techniques available. For more advice on getting a radiant and smooth look, call us at 520.618.1630 or submit a contact form to request a consultation.
The air is particularly dry and cool during wintertime in Arizona. These weather conditions can take a negative toll on the thin, delicate skin of the lips, leading them to become tight and chapped—even for people who haven’t recently had lip fillers. Our Tucson and Oro Valley area injectors recommend giving your lips some extra attention during the colder season, especially if you’ve had lip injections. Here’s what you can typically expect after a filler session, as well as some simple tricks for keeping your lips hydrated and soft.
For patients who have always wanted to give their lips a poutier appearance or more defined shape, lip fillers are the gold standard for achieving this look. One of the aspects of lip injections that patients are most curious about before having the procedure is what their lips will feel like after they’ve received their injections.
Although one of the benefits of an injectable procedure is that there’s no actual recovery time needed after, there are some short-term side effects to consider, such as mild bruising and swelling. Simply put, your lips can feel “weird” at first, but each person has a different experience depending on a range of factors.
Despite the hyaluronic acid that fillers contain, which is designed to retain water in the skin, post-lip injection dryness is a rare side effect that happens to some people—and can persist for a few days after you’ve had fillers like JUVEDERM®. This can be more likely if you already naturally tend to have drier lips. The flaky, dry feeling could be happening as a result of the skin stretching due to swelling and added volume, as well as licking your lips more often after fillers, or because of the lip products you’ve been using.
If your lips are looking and feeling uncomfortably dry, here’s what you can do:
- Apply a thick ointment, like white petroleum jelly, several times during the day
- Apply moisturizing ingredients like vitamin E, ceramides, hyaluronic acid, and shea butter
- Drink plenty of water
- Stick to non-irritating lip balms and lipsticks that are fragrance free and hypoallergenic
- Avoid ingredients that dry or irritate the lips, such as eucalyptus, menthol, and salicylic acid
Need more advice on aftercare for lip injections? Our Tucson-area providers at Ironwood Dermatology can guide you on everything that’s involved in healing and maintenance for lip fillers. Call 520.618.1630, or submit a contact form to request a consultation.
It can sometimes seem like everyone is obsessed with skincare these days, but it’s more than just a passing trend. There are very good reasons behind this movement toward protecting and enhancing our body’s outer covering. It’s so important to give your skin the attention it needs consistently, not just for cosmetic reasons (such as making your pores appear tinier and defying the aging process), but also for the sake of your overall health. Even though we might think we’re doing our skin good, sometimes we’re actually harming it without knowing. Understanding where you’re going wrong can help you to keep your skin calm, avoid intense breakouts, and enjoy your most stunning complexion. At Ironwood Dermatology, our team provides aesthetic treatments like neuromodulators and injectable fillers for Tucson and Oro Valley area patients, and we can also assess your skin to help you develop a skincare routine that’s customized for your needs.
With that in mind, here are some of the most typical beauty mistakes most people make—most likely without even realizing it.
Overdoing Exfoliation Techniques
As any experienced skin professional will tell you, regular exfoliation is the key to maintaining clear, glowing skin instead of being left with a dull, washed-out, and uneven look. Exfoliation removes dry skin, dead cells, and dirt that clog the pores. Just remember that too much exfoliation with harsh mechanical techniques or chemicals can harm the skin’s moisture barrier.
Forgetting the Neck
The neck has thinner skin and is one of the areas that shows the most pronounced signs of aging. Don’t forget to cleanse, exfoliate, moisturize, and use sunscreen on the neck area.
One of the biggest misconceptions people have is that toners are useless. Actually, toners can be a crucial part of your skincare routine because they help to close the pores after you’ve finished cleansing and prevent any remaining dirt or impurities from getting in. They also prevent your skin from becoming dried out and boost the effects of serums or moisturizers. If you’re not using toner, your skin might become dehydrated.
Some skin conditions only cause minor symptoms and don’t have an impact on your quality of life, while others are more severe. Although many of us put off going to a dermatologist unless there’s an emergency—and plenty of appointments have been put on hold since the coronavirus pandemic began—it’s important to get the care you need for your health and prevent problems from becoming worse. Still wondering if it’s worth it to go to a dermatologist? The mid-20s and onward is the perfect age range to start seeing a skin-focused provider regularly each year. Here are the three top reasons to visit your nearest dermatologist if you haven’t already. Not only can we diagnose and treat skin conditions like acne for Tucson and Oro Valley-area patients, but we can also help you manage skin diseases and provide other ways to enhance the appearance of your skin.
Skin cancer is the most common type of cancer globally and can become deadly when it spreads. It’s also highly preventable, as well as curable when diagnosed in its earliest stages. Annual skin check-ups by a dermatologist are a critical component of this effort, especially for people who are high risk for skin cancer, such as patients who have numerous or abnormal moles, red or blond hair, light eyes, and fair skin that sunburns easily, who spend a lot of time in the sun, or who live in a sunny or high-altitude area.
Damaged, Aging, or Lackluster Skin
Dermatologists see many patients who are self-conscious about skin that has an irregular tone and texture, or even more severe signs of sun damage and wrinkles. If these are some of your concerns, you can finally get the treatments you need to repair your skin, such as injectables, microneedling, chemical peels, and laser skin resurfacing. A dermatologist can also advise you on the lifestyle changes you need to make to improve your skin health and appearance.
Something’s Bothering You
Many patients are unsure why they’re experiencing rashes, irritation, flaky or scaly areas, hair loss, or other symptoms. Dermatologists diagnose and treat conditions that occur anywhere on the skin, as well as nails and hair. Some of these symptoms can indicate more serious underlying health problems, so trusting your health to a specialist can be key.
If you need to see a dermatologist for a skin condition, the Tucson and Oro Valley-based providers at Ironwood Dermatology are available to answer any of your questions and guide you on what you need for healthier, clearer skin. Call us at 520.618.1630, or submit a contact form to request a consultation.
Lip augmentation is a cosmetic treatment designed to enhance the shape or size of the lips by adding volume. The demand for the most common lip augmentation option—hyaluronic acid-based dermal fillers like JUVEDERM®—has continued to rise steadily worldwide as consumers have become aware of their choices for achieving fuller, plumper lips with lip injections. The Tucson-area’s Ironwood Dermatology team explains that Juvederm VOLBELLA® XC is one popular option from the Juvederm line due to its subtle, natural-looking results.
Statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons have shown that soft tissue fillers—which are popular volume-adding strategies for filling out skin that has lost collagen and fat over time—were the second most popular form of cosmetic minimally invasive procedure performed in the United States in 2018.
In recent years, a number of innovative products have been introduced to the lip injections market, making the treatment more convenient and accessible than ever for women and men seeking a specific look. While there are various forms of dermal fillers that can be injected into the lips and around the mouth, JUVEDERM® is one of the most recognized and commonly requested.
All of the options in the JUVEDERM® collection of fillers have the same hyaluronic acid base, but are formulated differently depending on the area they are designed to treat. VOLBELLA® XC is a soft and supple HA variation. This cosmetic “tweakment” offers a soft, light touch for smoothing delicate areas and fine lines on the face and lips. The malleable gel is ideal for temporarily adding subtle definition to the upper and lower lips with natural-looking outcomes.
The “XC” added to the end of the name means that it contains lidocaine for a more comfortable injection experience.
To get a better understanding of how VOLBELLA® XC works to plump up naturally thin or age-depleted lips, it’s helpful to start by examining its main ingredient. In simple terms, hyaluronic acid is a transparent, gel-like, lubricating molecule found naturally in almost every cell of the body. It is most densely concentrated in the skin, cartilage, and joints. VOLBELLA® XC (and other injectables in the JUVEDERM® family) contain a synthetic form of hyaluronic acid, which draws in moisture, hydrating the areas where is injected to further restore lost volume over time.
To find out more about lip injections like VOLBELLA® XC, contact Tucson’s Ironwood Dermatology online or call 520.618.1630.
While much has been said about how time transforms the skin, one of the more overlooked aspects of this process is how it affects the lips. Getting older generally means experiencing some not-so-pleasant developments, such the depletion of moisture, fat, collagen, elastin, and other elements that make the skin supple and springy well into our 20s. Because of this, the lips can become thin and dry as time goes on. To make matters worse, fine lines around the lips can become increasingly pronounced, drawing even more attention to the area. Lip fillers such as JUVEDERM Volbella® can restore that youthful, hydrated appearance and soften lines around the lips, while maintaining a natural, subtle appearance.
Lip fillers at Ironwood Dermatology are customized to fit your individual needs and desired result. Is a luscious, plump pout something you’re after? Along with high, defined cheekbones and contoured jawlines, the trend of fuller lips has dominated Instagram for a long time. Topical skin products and makeup can help make the mouth appear somewhat fuller, but if you want to significantly restore volume or improve the physical structure of your lips, you want lip injections, such as Tucson and Oro Valley-based Ironwood Dermatology’s dermal filler treatments.
Dreaded “duck lips,” “sausage lips,” or other undesirable outcomes of lip-injection sessions (we’ve all seen photos) have a lot to do with the provider. In the hands of a skilled, experienced injector, injections are handled with great care and with an eye for results. This means you can add volume or definition without going overboard. Lip augmentation is a very common procedure, but for the best outcomes and to reduce risk, women and men looking to add volume should avoid untrained or uncertified injectors who may overdo the injections.
Also, be sure to choose fillers from trusted manufacturers that have put countless research hours into developing their products. For example, Volbella®, a member of the JUVEDERM® family, is useful for sharpening and contouring the lips. As opposed to some other lip fillers, Volbella® isn’t designed to add dramatic fullness, but rather imparts slight volume for subtle embellishments, correction of asymmetry, and smoothing out fine lipstick lines. This filler is often used on the outline of the lips (vermillion border) to produce a more natural look. It has a very light, silky, and natural feel, and, like other JUVEDERM® products, is made of hyaluronic acid.
Learn more about JUVEDERM® lip injections at Ironwood Dermatology in the Tucson and Oro Valley area. Call 520.618.1630 or submit a contact form to request an appointment.
There’s no reason to not be excited about your lips—even if they aren’t as luscious as you’d like. That’s because with lip injections at Tucson and Oro Valley’s Ironwood Dermatology, a thin smile can become a full one in a matter of minutes.
Our experienced injectors use VOLBELLA® XC and JUVEDERM® XC to add volume for lip plumping and shaping. Made by Allergan and part of the trusted JUVEDERM® family, these dermal fillers are designed to diminish signs of aging on and around the mouth. They can also be used to enhance lips that have never been especially full thanks to the hand genetics dealt you.
These hyaluronic acid-based gels are specifically formulated to give a more youthful hydrated look by adding volume, definition, and improved symmetry.
Allergan uses a carefully developed manufacturing process to make their filler by cross-linking hyaluronic acid molecules. This results in a gel that is stable and reliable, but that also is smooth for ease of injection and positioning in the skin. Once in the lips, the hyaluronic acid molecules get to work binding to water, which improves the hydrated appearance of the lip. The gel can gives thin lips a much-desired subtle boost in size—but not to the point that they look out of proportion or fake. In fact, VOLBELLA® XC is a particularly subtle filler, making it ideal for fine work, details, and natural-looking enhancements.
Results from a lip injection session can last for about six to 12 months, for up to a year of confident smiles. Though the filler has only temporary effects, it can be injected repeatedly as needed to make thin lips nothing more than a memory.
VOLBELLA® XC can also be used to address lip lines, which appear around the mouth and give the area a more aged appearance. Instead of creating a look of fullness here, the filler serves to smooth out the wrinkles that form as collagen and hyaluronic acid break down over time.
Talk to the Ironwood Dermatology team in Tucson and Oro Valley to learn more about lip injections, VOLBELLA® XC, and other available dermal fillers by sending a message online or calling 520.618.1630.
Allergan makes many products that dermatologists use every day to improve the look of patients’ faces. One of the most popular lines from this manufacturer is Juvederm®, which is a family of hyaluronic acid-based dermal fillers. Fillers are typically associated with smoothing out static wrinkles on the face, but the volume-adding clear gel can accomplish so much more. Case in point: VOLUMA® XC at Tucson’s Ironwood Dermatology.
A special process that links different “weights” of molecules together gives VOLUMA® XC some unique qualities. It is both smooth and hardy, able to flow easily into the skin when injected, but also robust enough to provide the structure and support so crucial to the midface.
Patients who benefit from VOLUMA® XC are those who have lost volume in the “apples” of their cheeks. So named because of their rosy roundness, the apples are signs of youthful health—and are especially apparent when someone smiles.
Unfortunately, the natural effects of aging on the skin can be particularly apparent on the apples. As volume decreases over time—a process made worse by regular exposure to ultraviolet rays from the sun—the roundness can flatten into a gaunt look. As volume loss continues, it can progress into an aged, even skeletal look common to older people who have hollow cheeks.
To further the undesirable cosmetic changes, dwindling volume also leads to skin laxity. Tissue that slides downward without proper support from healthy amounts of collagen and facial fat creates jowls.
VOLUMA® XC counters all of these changes by restoring that vital volume. The gel is injected directly into the skin to replenish the apples. Using just the right amount, an injector creates a natural-looking symmetry that can make the apples “re-appear”—which also lifts away the slight look of volume-loss-related jowling.
Of all the available Juvederm® fillers, VOLUMA® XC lasts the longest. Studies have shown that its effects can last for up to two years—especially when injected by experienced providers who know how to maximize results.
Patients interested in smoothing out nasolabial folds or other creases are encouraged to learn more about other options available in the Juvederm® family. Signs of aging are not typically limited to just one area, so chances are good that diminished volume in the cheeks may accompany facial creases, thin lips, and other signs of retreating collagen.
Arizona is known for its deserts and interesting geologic formations, so locals should feel right at home with the language commonly used to describe laser tattoo removal. Tucson-based Ironwood Dermatology offers the PicoSure® laser from Cynosure for treating unwanted tattoos, which are often described as being made up of “rocks” of ink in the skin.
Since ink is a liquid, many people may picture it as a black or otherwise colored fluid that flows into the skin and sits there, or perhaps dries, to form the image seen in a tattoo. It is actually more accurate to think of the pigment as tightly packed chunks of material. If someone no longer wanted their tattoo, these bigger chunks could be broken down into smaller pebbles, rather like a worker wielding a pickaxe to pulverize a rock.
This is the premise behind nanosecond lasers, which use light energy to attack the ink and break it apart. Unfortunately, the process generated a significant amount of heat, making the process uncomfortable for patients. There is also only so much the body can do with “pebbles” of ink. Though they are smaller than the original “rocks,” they can still leave visible evidence of a tattoo, which may look faded, but not cleared up.
The picosecond laser—known as PicoSure®—improves on both of those drawbacks. First, the increased speed of the laser means sessions can be shorter and not generate as much heat during a full session. Second, instead of achieving “pebbles” as an end result, the breakdown creates something more akin to “sand.” These significantly smaller particles of ink are far easier for the body to process and remove, making the tattoo that much harder to see.
Arizonans know: Sand can be a beautiful thing, whether it’s creating a beautiful landscape or referring to the fading of an unwanted tattoo of any color.