SPRING is the SEASON FOR CHANGE

As we enter into springtime, days are getting longer and nights a little shorter. The chill of winter begins to fade, and the promise of warmer weather on the horizon puts a “spring” into our step.

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It’s a season where most people are looking forward to coming outside and shedding some of the bulkier clothing of the last few months. It’s also a time when we question what we can do to make ourselves look good now that we’ll be showing more of ourselves.

After COVID-19 put a halt to last year’s excitement over the season, this year we’re seeing a renewed sense of hope as many people start getting vaccinated and re-emerge after spending much of 2020 and even the first half of 2021 inside.

“It’s a special kind of spring,” points out Dr. B. Aviva Preminger, one of Manhattan’s top plastic surgeons. “In general, spring is always an interesting time for plastic surgeons; it’s a small window we have to get things done before the summer months.”

Dr. Preminger also points out that it is a good time to focus on our skincare before heading into summer when the sun exposure is much greater.

With this new season comes some fresh, exciting products to help us look and feel our best. Dr. Preminger shared with BELLA what’s new in her arsenal of options for patients. “It’s as if we’re going to war against aging, and we want to have all of the weapons on hand,” she says.

What new products have hit the market for spring?

There are a number of new products out now—some are facial and some are body related. There’s a whole new line of fillers from a company called Revance Aesthetics, also known as the RHA Collection. In general, most fillers are made of hyaluronic acid, a compound that is naturally present in the body. What happens as we age is it’s lost to an extent, and that’s when we start injecting it to restore what’s been lost. One of the things I like about hyaluronic fillers is that they’re pretty versatile; essentially we’re putting back what was lost.

What is it about fillers that you like?

Can you share the way in which the product is used?One of the nice things about this particular product is it’s a hyaluronic acid product. The way they talk about it is RHA2, RHA3, and RHA4, which has to do with the thickness of the product. It’s also the only product that has been approved for what they call ‘dynamic wrinkles and folds.’ It’s nice to be able to add this Swiss product, which has been in use for awhile, to the toolbox of what we can offer our patients.

RHA2 fills really fine lines and can be used more superficially than a lot of other fillers. It’s something new coming into the mix for patients to request. When they say, ‘Hey, I have these very superficial lines around my eyes even though I’ve had Botox and you can still see the fine lines,’ or ‘I have those thin smokers’ lines above the lips’ even if they rarely smoked, this is a nice, malleable filler for very superficial lines.

Then there is the RHA3, which is comparable to your classic Restylane and Juvaderm, kind of a mid-weight hyaluronic acid product. And lastly, there’s RHA4, which is like a Radiesse type of filler, that’s a little heavier than the others. Radiesse is composed of hydroxyapatite, which is a thicker product that is not made up of hyaluronic acid. What’s nice about RHA4 is it’s a filler that’s used deeper in the tissue to create more volume, especially in areas like the cheeks where you can lose a lot of that fullness.

Fillers can get a bad rep but what they’re actually doing is restoring what’s been lost. It’s nice to be able to offer patients something new—in addition to what we already have—in helping them look their best.

When it comes to the body, what new products have you incorporated into your practice?

There’s a new product called QWO that was originally used for a different purpose involving the hands. That same product, which is FDA approved, is now being used as an injectable treatment for cellulite in the buttocks, and it is pretty amazing. Injected into the divots in the buttocks, it works by breaking down the fibrous chords underneath the skin.

In addition, Coolsculpting and liposuction have always been popular this time of year, right before summer when people start to wear less clothing and the weather’s getting better. Everyone’s had a tough year and the lack of access to gyms and working out in the way in which they are used to was hard. Body contouring procedures are a constant, but they’ve come back with a vengeance. I also do a lot of breasts in general, especially when it comes to bathing suit season.

I think right now, with people still home, it’s a great time to get things done, especially because they can still lay low while they recover.

Why is spring a great time to do anything skin-care related?

Right before summer is a good time to do any skin interventions because once those summer months hit, sun exposure becomes the bigger issue. I have this “cool peel” laser in my office, which offers less downtime than the more traditional lasers. Now is the time to do those skin peels and laser resurfacing to get rid of the dry skin leftover from the winter months and irritation from masks.

Masks seem to be here for a while longer. Do you expect a continued interest from patients in treating the eye and brow area?

Yes, 100%—and we’ve been so busy with that. Eyes are one area in which you can make a big impact without having to be too obvious.

When you meet with new or existing patients do you suggest these new options?

I like educated patients, and it’s great when a patient comes in and has heard about a new product and wants to try it. On the flip side, I have patients who’ve been coming to me for a long time, as well as those coming in for the first time, who trust me to use whatever is most versatile and cutting edge for them.

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