The latest (relatively) new facial treatment to hit our shores after trending amongst celebrities, including Jen Aniston & the Kardashians, is facial cosmetic acupuncture. Traditionally, the ancient traditional Chinese remedy has been used on specific points of skin throughout the body to restore the balance of qi (life energy) and in turn treat various disorders, but there are now plenty suggesting that it may also offer rejuvenating and anti-ageing benefits.
According to specialists in the treatment, including the Cosmetic Acupuncture Melbourne clinic, the technique is a safe, gentle and natural practice that can assist in softening lines and wrinkles, lifting sagging, increasing firmness and boosting circulation to increase brightness, and also aims to treat acne, pigmentation, scarring and muscle tension. Moisture levels and stagnant pigmentation are said to be improved through the increase in blood and lymph, and acne and breakouts improved through the balancing of hormones and lymphatic draining of toxins.
In some ways, cosmetic acupuncture may be likened to micro needling in terms of its benefits, creating micro-traumas in order to increase circulation and stimulate collagen production to the area. The technique itself is virtually the same as the traditional method for the body, but needle placement depends on the concern being treated. The needles themselves are also of a different variety. They are finer and sharper than those used on the body, and have a silicone coating over the medical grade stainless steel so they are hypo-allergenic, and smoother and less painful to insert.
For lines and wrinkles, the super-fine needles are inserted directly along the line to be treated – what Cosmetic Acupuncture Melbourne refers to as ‘threading’. For muscular concerns, the needles are placed at specific motor points to stimulate the central nervous system to relax those muscles, and for circulation and qi balance, needles are placed strategically at certain vortex points, as with the traditional method.
Some clinics like Cosmetic Acupuncture Melbourne, and Sydney’s Acupuncture Facial Rejuvenation, incorporate the method in conjunction with traditional, full body acupuncture. “The focus is on the facial skin for anti-ageing and skin health, acne and other skin conditions, but there is also a focus on treating the body system as a whole to relax and rejuvenate,” says clinic founder Vivien Tam. Others, like Sydney’s Acupuncture and Beauty Centre, include cosmetic acupuncture as a component of a complete holistic facial, including sound therapy, herbal face mask, aromatherapy, light therapy and jade roller.
Patients are said to report noticeable results after 8-10 treatments, with the coast per treatment coming in around $80-200 each, depending on inclusions, with some clinics offering health rebates. Sessions should be booked at 4-6 week intervals for best results.
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