Dictionary

Ablative

As in ablative laser skin treatment. The intense energy of the laser creates micro-injuries to the skin or removes (vaporizes) tissue which then triggers the skin's natural healing process.

Active Acne

Acne, also known as acne vulgaris, is a chronic inflammatory skin condition. It affects over 80% of adults and is particularly prevalent in teenagers. Acne appears most commonly on the face, chest, back and neck. If it remains untreated may cause permanent damage to skin (appears as darker, red and/or uneven skin areas) commonly known as acne scarring.

Alexandrite

The Alexandrite laser is one of the most frequently-used lasers for hair removal.
Melanin in the hair follicles absorbs the Alexandrite laser light very well and selectively to prevent damage to the surrounding tissue.

Allergan

The makers of Botox(r), the Juvederm family of facial fillers, Latisse for eyelash growth, SkinMedica home skin care products and other aesthetic products.

Blackhead

Blackheads are small bumps that appear on your skin due to clogged hair follicles. These bumps are called blackheads because the surface looks dark or black. Blackheads are typically mild form of acne that can present on the face and neck, but they can also appear on the back.

CO2 laser

Carbon Dioxide (C02) Fractional laser resurfacing creates micro injury to skin. Tiny channels of skin through all layers are removed (vaporized) leaving the skin surrounding each channel intact to aid in natural healing process creating collagen and improving firmness.

Collagen

Collagen is a naturally occurring protein in the body and is found in the skin, muscles, joints and ligaments. Through sun exposure and the aging process, collagen production slows and is then responsible for sagging, dull skin. Collagen production can be restimulated through the body’s own healing process. This is why laser skin resurfacing is the best option to combat the aging process.

Cystic Acne

Cystic acne is a severe form of inflammatory acne often found in teenagers, often brought on by puberty. Adults may also suffer from this skin condition. Pores in the skin produce an oily substance called sebum. Overproduction of sebum and insufficient cell turn-over cause the bacteria Propionibacterium acnes to grow. When this bacteria ridden area becomes infected, cysts or pustules develop.

Decolletage

A low neckline on a woman’s clothing, also a term for chest or cleavage.

Dermablading

Also known as epiblading or dermaplading, this treatment is a gentle method of deeply exfoliating the surface of the skin. A surgical blade is worked over the face removing the outer layers of dead skin cells as well as any fine vellus hair improving skin’s surface cellular turnover improving brightness and luminosity of skin.

Dermabrasion

Dermabrasion, also called Epiblading or Dermaplaning, (not to be confused with Dermablading) is the process of exfoliation by means of running a blade over the skin, removing dead skin cells, removing vellus hair and leaving a smooth, glowing skin texture.

Dermal Filler

Also known as: injectable filler, injectable cosmetic filler, injectable facial filler, soft tissue filler. Is a soft gel type compound injected deep below the skin’s surface to help fill in facial wrinkles and folds, restoring a more youthful, smoother appearance. Most wrinkle fillers are temporary because they are eventually absorbed by the body.

Dermaplaning

Also known as epiblading or dermablading, this treatment is a gentle method of deeply exfoliating the surface of the skin. A surgical blade is worked over the face removing the outer layers of dead skin cells as well as any fine vellus hair improving skin’s surface cellular turnover improving brightness and luminosity of skin.

Dermis

The thick layer of living tissue below the epidermis that forms the true skin, containing blood capillaries, nerve endings, sweat glands, hair follicles, and other structures.

Dysport

Dysport is a cosmetic neurotoxin product offered by Medicis and is an alternative to Botox Cosmedic (SkinMedica). Dysport is used to temporarily paralyze facial muscles responsible for contraction-induced wrinkles in the skin. Dysport is only slightly different from Botox in that the disbursement is slightly more even, which is typically only important for treating small lines in the skin.

Eczema

Eczema or atopic dermatitis is a condition marked by itchy, dry, flaky, inflamed areas of the skin. Eczema can be a constant irritant or only manifest periodically. Eczema is not contagious and typically decreases in severity as age increases. This condition is thought to be brought on by an overactive immune system.

Elastin

Elastin is a naturally occurring, coil like protein in the body that is responsible for the stretching capabilities of the skin, blood vessels, heart, lungs, intestines and other connective tissues. Over time, the elastin can lose the ability to tightly recoil after being stretched, which accounts for sagging, crepey skin. Elastin production usually ends after puberty.

Emulcifier

Scientifically speaking an emulsion is the combination of two or more immiscible (unable to mix) substances. A good example of this would be mixing oil and water. An emulcifier is a surface active ingredient that floats between these two immiscible substances, forming a bond. Emulcifiers are found in many skin care products, such as moisturizers, creams, serums and soaps.

Epiblading

Also known as dermaplaning or dermablading, this treatment is a gentle method of deeply exfoliating the surface of the skin. A surgical blade is worked over the face removing the outer layers of dead skin cells as well as any fine vellus hair improving skin’s surface cellular turnover improving brightness and luminosity of skin.

Epidermis

The top most or outer layer of the two main layers of cells that make up the skin.

Exfoliant

An exfoliant is a type of lightly abrasive cosmetic product or technology used to remove dead skin cells from the surface of the skin. See exfoliation

Exfoliation

Exfoliation is the process of removing dead skin cells from the top layer of the skin. This is important to allow new, healthy cells to surface and to provide a glowing, healthy look.

Exilis Laser

The Exilis laser treatment combines radio frequency (RF) and ultrasound technologies to tighten skin and reduce fat.

Extraction

Extractions, when done correctly (by a professional aesthetician), can clear closed comedones, remove whiteheads and blackheads, and give your skin a newer, fresher foundation for your skincare products to penetrate. This is usually part of the facial process.

Facial

A facial is combination of skin care treatments for the face, neck and chest (decolletage), which may include steam, exfoliation, extraction, creams, lotions, facial masks, peels, and massage. The aesthetic treatment is often considered a spa treatment.

Fractional laser

Carbon Dioxide (C02) Fractional laser resurfacing creates micro injury to skin. Tiny channels of skin through all layers are removed (vaporized) leaving the skin surrounding each channel intact to aid in natural healing process creating collagen and improving firmness.

Hair Follicle

A hair follicle sits in the dermis level of the skin and is responsible for hair growth and sebaceous oil containment.

Hyaluronic acid (HA)

Hyaluronic acid is a naturally occurring substance in the body that has an unparallelled ability to retain moisture. Dermal and facial fillers are comprised of this substance that provides firmness and plumping capabilities. Hyaluronic acid can also be used in liquid form during laser skin resurfacing treatments to bolster healing and provide adequate moisture in the skin for optimal results.

Hydroquinone

Hydroquinone is a skin bleaching substance that works to break down melanosomes or melanocytes in the skin, often found in freckles, age spots and even melasma. This solution is often used before undergoing laser skin treatments to increase effectiveness of the treatment in highly pigmented areas.

Juvederm

The brand name of the original Allergan facial filler product line. There are currently two products available: Juvederm+ XC and Juvederm Ultra XC. The line of filler products has grown in the U.S. to include subbrand items such as Volure, Volluma, and Volbella.

Keloid (scar)

A keloid scar is marked as a smooth, hard scar tissue that compiles over a scar and is typically larger than the original scar. In short, a keloid scar is the overproduction of scar tissue.

Laser Fat Reduction

See Exilis laser. The Exilis laser is a non-surgical approach to tighten skin and combines radio frequency (RF) and ultrasound technologies. The device delivers energy to heat the skin causing the collagen to tighten and causes the fat cells to open and spill out the contents. It is an effective way to spot treat exercise resistant fat - think stubborn lower abdomen pooches or love handles. No cells are officially "destroyed".

Laser Skin Resurfacing

Laser skin resurfacing is the process of using laser technology to remove layers of the skin to allow natural healing and collagen production. There are multiple lasers and technologies used to accomplish this treatment. This process is often coined as the most effective way to rejuvenate skin cells and provide a glowing, healthy look. See: Microneedling, Active FX

Laser Skin Tightening

See Exilis laser. The Exilis laser is a non-surgical approach to tighten skin and combines radio frequency (RF) and ultrasound technologies. Controlled heating and cooling ensure that energy is delivered to various depths in the tissue without pain.

Liposculpting

See alsoTumescent Liposuction. Liposculpture is a type of liposuction that involves the use of a very thin tube called a cannula to extract fat. While liposuction can produce very significant changes to the body, liposculpture can provide subtle changes to small or delicate areas.

Liposuction

Liposuction, also known as lipo, is a surgical procedure to remove fat and reshape the body’s contours. See alternate versions: Liposculpting and Tumescent Liposuction.

Melanin

Melanin is a type of pigment that gives skin and hair its color. Melanin is produced by cells called melanocytes, which are activated by sunlight. Examples of an increase in melanin are freckles and age spots.

Melasma

Melasma (muh-LAZ-muh) is a common skin over pigmentation problem and is often triggered by hormones. It is so common during pregnancy that melasma is sometimes called "the mask of pregnancy." It causes brown to gray-brown patches, usually on the face. Most people get it on their cheeks, bridge of their nose, forehead, chin, and above their upper lip. It also can appear on other parts of the body that get lots of sun, such as the forearms and neck. Women are far more likely than men to experience melasma.

Milia

Milia or a milium cyst is small, white bump that typically appears on the nose and cheeks. These cysts are often found in groups, therefore called milia. The cysts occur when keratin becomes trapped beneath the surface of the skin. They're most frequently found on the face, eyelids, and cheeks.

Minimally Invasive

In minimally invasive surgical procedures, doctors use a variety of techniques to operate with less damage to the body than with open surgery. Generally, minimally invasive surgery is associated with tiny incision sites and therefore less pain and fewer complications.

Moisturizer

A moisturizer, or emollient is typically a topical cream or lotion used to provide moisture in the top layer of the skin. The goal of a moisturizer is to hold water in the skin and to protect against external contaminants.

Naturopathic medicine

Naturopathic medicine is a health care practice that relies on the body’s natural processes for healing and prevention. Naturopathic medicine can combine: modern and traditional, scientific, and empirical methods of healing.

Nd:YAG laser

Specifically, Nd:YAG stands for neodymium-doped yttrium aluminium garnet and is a type of laser used to penetrate below the surface of the skin using an intensified light that heats the skin. This type of laser can be used to treat skin pigmentation issues, laser hair removal, acne scars and even tattoo removal.

Neurotoxin

As in cosmetic neurotoxin (such as Botox(r)). These injectable substances temporarily inhibit muscle receptors relaxing and smoothing facial lines and wrinkles.

Non-ablative

As in non-ablative laser skin treatment. The energy directed at deeper layers of the skin does not cause injury or remove (vaporize) skin but rather causes collagen rebuilding without damaging the surface.

Peptide

Peptides are tiny chains of amino acids in the skin that are the result of collagen breakdown in the skin. Peptides are responsible for skin firmness, wrinkles, and changes in texture. Peptides in skin care products are used to penetrate the skin and rejuvenate skin cells.

pH

pH (potential of hydrogen) is a scale of acidity from 0 to 14. It tells how acidic or alkaline a substance is. More acidic solutions have lower pH. More alkaline solutions have higher pH. Our skin is naturally designed to fight infection and environmental stresses and its ability to do so is affected by its pH level. On a scale of 1-14, with 1 being the most acidic to 14 being the most alkaline, 7 is considered a neutral reading for your skin’s pH. Our skin has a thin, protective layer on its surface, referred to as the acid mantle. Ideally skin should be slightly acidic – at about 5.5.

Pigment

Simply put, pigment is skin coloring. Skin color is determined by the amount of melanin in the skin and pigment is used to describe the amount of melanin in the skin.

Radio Frequency (RF)

Radio frequency skin tightening (RF) is an aesthetic technique that uses RF energy, heating tissue and stimulating subdermal collagen production reducing the appearance of fine lines, loose skin and wrinkles. The technique not only produces new collagen but also elastin. (see elastin).

Radiowave

Radio waves are a type of electromagnetic radiation. (as in radio frequency, RF)

Ruby laser

The Ruby laser has been used and tested widely. It causes direct, selective damage to hiar follicles while preserving the integrity of skin. The delay between pulses with the Ruby laser is designed to provide more comfort for the patient. There is a two-second pause between pulses delivering a far more comfortable treatment. The Ruby laser, when operated correctly, is safe, effective, and relatively pain-free.

Serum

Skin serums are important in a daily skin care regimen due to their ability to drive active ingredients into the skin. Serums should be applied after a thorough cleansing, but before a moisturizer application. Serums are comprised of small molecules that are able to repair many skin care concerns, such as scarring, lines and wrinkles.

Skin Toner

Modern skin toner is a topical liquid, placed on the skin to enhance the effect of a moisturizer. Skin toners are used to drive deeper hydrating action to the lower layers of the skin to give a fresher, smoother look. Different toners can be used to help reduce large pores, decrease the amount of oil production,and reduce redness and flaking.

Subdermal Acne

Subdermal acne is also known as cycstic acne, a severe form of inflammatory acne often found in teenagers, often brought on by puberty. Adults may also suffer from this skin condition and is brought on by hormones. Pores in the skin produce an oily substance called sebum. Overproduction of sebum and insufficient cell turn-over cause the bacteria Propionibacterium acnes to grow.

Tumescent Liposuction

Tumescent liposuction is an effective and minimally invasive fat elimination procedure considered to be the gold standard in fat elimination. It is the safest and most effective form of liposuction surgery. The use of large amounts of local anesthetic not only reduces pain after surgery, but also reduces bleeding, swelling, and skin irregularities and makes the entire procedure more effective. No general anesthesia is required.

Vellus hair

Vellus hair is commonly called peach fuzz and is described as thin, short, often translucent hairs found on the face, ears, and even eyelid.

Whitehead

A whitehead is a blocked sweat (or sebaceous) duct of the skin. Whiteheads are a mild form of acne and looks like small, round, white bumps. They can appear on the face, neck, chest, and back.