Good-For-Nothing Skin Tags

What is a skin tag? Skin tags are basically areas of excess skin that form on the stalk. Skin tags usually develop around areas of loose skin such as the neckline, under the arms, in the groin area, and under the breasts (for men and women).

Nobody really knows why skin tags develop, or why some people have them and others don’t.  They are definitely more common in areas of friction between skin and clothing, and people who are overweight tend to have them as well.

Other factors that are proposed include family history, hormonal changes, and other diseases that can affect the skin chronically.  Diabetes is a great example of such a disease in the latter case.

Even though skin tags are harmless, they are also extremely common.  They can also become very irritated when rubbing up against clothing or jewelry.

There are lots of home remedies for skin tags, but most are either ineffective or are potentially dangerous.  Some of them even make the person more prone to infection, especially if the skin tags are removed and the open skin is prone to infections.

Topical creams and even freezing techniques done at home can also leave scars and discolorations of the skin if not done properly.  As you might imagine, using a pair of scissors and a bandage is not a good idea either, and could result in an infection.

Even though skin tags seem like a relatively minor problem, your best bet is to go to a medical setting where the provider has expertise in skin care.  When someone comes to Maine Laser Skin Care with skin tags, we have a variety of treatment options available.

If the skin tags are small, they can be clipped off using sterile surgical scissors, which will leave minimal scarring and will also make infection much more unlikely.  If the skin tags are larger, we may use a laser, which will make the likelihood of a scar or pigmented spot also less likely.

As with any skin growth, it is important to consult a skin care professional with what you think may be a skin tag, as it could be something more serious.  It would be terrible to remove what you think is a skin tag and have it turned out to be a sign of a more dangerous ailment, such as skin cancer.

As always, if you have any questions concerning skin issues like skin tags, please call our Augusta office at (207) 873-2158 or our Scarborough office at (207) 303-0125 to schedule a free consultation to evaluate the areas of concern.  Removing or diagnosing skin tags are part of our mission to “beautify Maine one face at a time”.

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January Product of the Month

A very popular product that is used daily by many of our clients and patients has been chosen as the Product Of The Month for January 2019.  This month, we are highlighting our own Vita-C Peptide Spray, and it is very popular for a reason.

Vita-C Peptide Spray is excellent for all skin types, providing a gentle hydrating mist that combines the beneficial effects of vitamin C and peptides.  This mixture moisturizes the skin while also preventing photoaging.  Many women use it after applying makeup, and feel that it soothes with its attractive aroma.

The major ingredients within our Vita-C Peptide Spray include:

  1. Magnesium Ascorbyl Phosphate, which is a soluble form of vitamin C that increases skin hydration, acts as an antioxidant, and improves skin elasticity.
  2. Geranium Extract, which is a botanical product that is used in aromatherapy to provide a sense of well being.
  3. Algae Extract, which is a highly concentrated mixture of moisturizing and replenishing factors derived from Hawaiian Sea Algae.  It has been shown to stimulate new collagen formation and to increase long term skin hydration.
  4. Kola, Mate, and Guarana make up a calming botanical blend that soothes and hydrates.

This popular item comes in a 6-ounce bottle.  Since it is a mist, as opposed to a creme or lotion, it usually lasts a long time.

It also happens to be very affordable at $28, which contributes even more to its popularity.  To get a bottle for yourself, just call our Augusta office at (207) 873-2158 or our Scarborough office at (207) 303-0125 to order by phone, or visit our shopping cart to order online.

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Before Your Very Eyes

Caring for the skin around your eyes is as important, if not more important, than caring for the skin on the rest of your face.  The skin around the eyes shows more visible signs of aging earlier because it is thinner, has decreased oil production, and has less circulation than most other skin areas.

When looking at another person, the eyes are usually the first area to which you are drawn, and are considered to be a focal point of beauty for the face.  Unfortunately, because of the aforementioned unique characteristics of the skin around the eyes, this area is one of the first showing signs of aging on the face.

With the current state of aesthetic technology, multiple treatments can be used to keep your eyes looking their best.  In this blog post, I would like to highlight several regimens that are available to treat the skin around the eyes and to give it a more rejuvenated appearance.

The simplest treatments are skin care products that can be used at home, and are specially formulated for skin around the eyes.  I generally recommend specific eye serums, which help reduce puffiness around the eyes and help to reduce irritation.

The best way to stop age-related fine lines and wrinkles around the eyes is to prevent them from forming in the first place.  For this reason, protecting your eyes from the sun is key.

Sun protection includes wearing UV-protective sunglasses and applying broad spectrum sunscreens to the skin around your eyes.  The best sunscreens for use around the eyes contain zinc oxide, which has the best SPF profile and is least likely to cause skin irritation.

When lines are beginning to form, we tend to need more aggressive medical treatments.  One of the most popular and effective treatments around the eyes is Botox.

Botox is known as a neuromodulator, which means that it works by stopping muscle contractions in specific areas where it is injected.  Botox is commonly used to reduce the deep lines between the eyes also known as the 11s, or scowl lines.

Botox is also used to soften the smile lines or crows feet around the outer aspect of the eyes. Reducing these lines around the eyes can dramatically reduce the appearance of tiredness and age, and typically lasts at least three months in duration of effect.

Another excellent treatment is known as microneedling. With this treatment, we use a sterile and automated device that contains very fine needles and creates microscopic channels of injury in the skin.  These tiny punctures trigger a wound response that stimulates collagen production and tightens the skin, thereby reducing fine lines and wrinkles.

Microneedling can also be combined with the use of platelet rich plasma, or PRP.  This treatment rejuvenates the skin by using the growth factors within the person’s own blood, and is popularly referred to as the Vampire Facial.

PRP can also be safely injected under and around the eyes to stimulate collagen production and reduce the signs of aging.  Injecting PRP also reduces the risks of using thicker fillers around the eyes.

Radiofrequency treatments are another technology that can be used around the eyes very safely.  With this technology, radio frequency waves heat the underlying dermis of the skin to a point, which stimulates collagen production.

With radiofrequency treatments, one very nice feature is that the skin tightening occurs very quickly.  Further collagen stimulation continues to build in the treated area for up to a year.

At Maine Laser Skin Care, we will be soon introducing a new technology that combines radio frequency and microneedling.  This new treatment will dramatically improve collagen production and skin tightening with minimal downtime and minimal pain.

Stay tuned for our announcement when the equipment for this new technology is installed and training is completed.  Spoiler Alert= This technology will also improve another problem area: the neck!

Since ancient times, the eyes have been considered to be the pathway to the soul.  Most people want their eyes to reflect a well-rested and youthful appearance, especially when facing our stressful modern lives.

As always, at Maine Laser Skin Care, we continue our mission of “beautifying Maine one face at a time”. Call for a free consultation to either one of our offices: in Scarborough at (207) 303-0125 or in Augusta at (207) 873-2158.

Posted in Facial Health, Other, Youthful Appearance | 1 Comment

November Product of the Month

This month’s featured product is the very popular AHA Marine Moisture Creme. This product is a high potency moisturizer with 15% concentrated glycolic acid combined with marine derived peptides.

This combination visibly reduces wrinkles, increases skin luminosity, and improves texture.  Clinical tests have shown that AHA Marine Moisture Creme, when used twice a day for 4 weeks, increases skin smoothness by 62% and skin firmness by 32%, while also decreasing fine lines by 41%.

The purified glycolic acid preparation will strip away dead skin cells on the surface, uncovering the more youthful skin under the surface. This process also acts to increases levels of hyaluronic acid (HA), a naturally-occurring moisturizing molecule, in the skin.

The marine peptides within the creme are derived from Hawaiian red algae.  They promote collagen formation, which helps to reduce wrinkles.

If you obtain a jar of AHA Marine Moisture Creme, we recommend that you apply it to your face once a day for the first 2 weeks, and then twice a day thereafter if no sensitivity occurs. During the day, you can apply your sunscreen and other products after first using the AHA Marine Moisture Creme first.

If you would like to get your youthful glow back and improve the smoothness and firmness of your skin, AHA Marine Moisture Creme is definitely the product for you.  It is always available online through our website store or at our offices in Augusta (12 Shuman Ave, (207) 873-2158) or Scarborough (438 US Route 1, (207) 303-0125).

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Hate the Double Chin? You Will Love the New CoolMini!

Until recently, the only non-surgical approach to the double chin fat has been Kybella injections.  While highly effective, many people don’t like the idea of having needles pricked into their neck and the subsequent swelling and redness that results as the fat cells are being liquefied and removed from that area.

Remarkably, Maine Laser Skin Care has added another highly effective and completely non-invasive approach to treating the double chin area in the form of the CoolMini device by CoolSculpting.  This FDA-approved treatment is the most advanced fat reduction treatment for small areas such as the area under the chin.

The CoolMini is both safe and effective.  It only takes one to three treatments under the neck to dramatically improve the appearance of the double chin areas with few if any side effects.

Since there are no needles, no anesthesia is needed and there is no discomfort, swelling, or bruising afterwards.  This is the latest application of CoolSculpting technology that damages and kills fat cells in a local area by a process called cryolipolysis.

Basically, extreme cold causes the damage to fat cells without damaging other tissues such as the skin.  Your body then removes the damaged tissues gradually through natural repair mechanisms over a period of several months.

We are excited to introduce this CoolMini at both of our offices in Augusta and Scarborough.  We have a video posted on Facebook showing the treatment in action and with an associated contest to win a free treatment.

If you have a Facebook account, simply view the video, then like, comment, and share the video and you will be entered.  A drawing will be held October 26, 2018.

The video has had over 10,000 views just this past weekend.  Hurry to see this amazingly simple but highly effective treatment in action, and get your name in the drawing!

Posted in Coolsculpting | 1 Comment

Huge Allergan Announcement

Huge announcement and thank you! We at Maine Laser Skin Care have recently received a big announcement from Allergan, the makers of Botox, Juvederm fillers, Kybella and CoolSculpting:

Allergan regularly ranks aesthetic practices at different levels based on their patient volume and overall use (i.e. distribution) of their products.  Maine Laser Skin Care started out several years ago at Allergan’s Silver level, and quickly progressed to Gold.  In the past year, we transitioned quickly through Platinum and Platinum Plus.

The big announcement and thank you concerns the recent announcement that we have just achieved Diamond level.  This distinction now ranks us among the top practices in Maine and in the top 3% globally.

This achievement is truly mind-boggling considering our modest beginnings 15 years ago.  Plus, Maine is a predominantly rural and sparsely populated state compared with our national and global competition.

I personally want to thank you, our clients, and all our patients for this great achievement. It will translate this achievement into more discounts and specials that we can pass on to you, plus more Brilliant Distinctions benefits.

Meanwhile, if we can help you in any way to look better and feel better, please call our Augusta office at (207) 873-2158 or our Scarborough office at (207) 303-0125 to schedule a consultation or treatment.

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October Product of the Month

Our October Product of the Month is a staff favorite that Emily, our Augusta receptionist, uses every day. This month’s special product is the SkinCeuticals Daily Moisture.

SkinCeuticals Daily Moisture is a lightweight, non-greasy moisturizer that minimizes pore size.  It has been specifically formulated for normal or oily skin.

This exclusive combination of marine extracts acts to hydrate and nourish the skin, giving a fresh, glowing appearance to whomever applies it.  The reduction in pore size also results in a smoother texture for the skin.

Daily Moisture is best applied once or twice daily to the face, neck, and decollete. For the best results overall, Daily Moisture can be used after applying an antioxidant and before applying a sunscreen.

The 60 milliliter, or 2 fluid ounce, jar retails at $62, and will last several months even when used twice daily. You can order a bottle for yourself online at this link, or call us either in Augusta at (207) 873-2158 or in Scarborough at (207) 303-0125.

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Six Strategies to Save Your Skin

There are certain common daily habits that can be bad for your complexion, but you may not realize how bad these habits can be until the damage is done.  While new technologies are now available to reverse certain prolonged skin impairments, they can only do so much in the end.

Prevention remains the best medicine.  In fact, these six key strategies will save your skin from unnecessary repercussions and expensive treatments down the road:

1.) What You Eat Can Help Or Hurt Your Skin

You are probably familiar with the saying, “You are what you eat.”  Just like other benefits to eating healthy, your skin needs nourishment from the inside as well as the outside.

Important components of diet for skin health include daily protein intake to support production of collagen, and elastin & omega-3 fatty acids to improve cell membranes and to reduce inflammation.  Antioxidants are also vital, which is why foods rich in vitamins A, C, and E can help limit damage before it progresses to visible levels.

2.) Drink Your Water

Insufficient total body intake of fluids can result in your skin drying out, making the signs of aging more evident.  Without adequate water consumption, your body and your skin will not work efficiently, resulting in an accumulation of toxins and the skin looking dry and frankly older.

Ideal water intake can vary from person to person depending on gender, weight, and activity levels.  My rule of thumb for people is that if your urine has any yellow coloration, you are not drinking enough.  Keep drinking water until the urine itself looks like water.

3.) Protect Your Skin

Too much sun exposure is the number one factor affecting skin health and causing premature appearance of aging.  Ultraviolet rays causes collagen to break down, pores to enlargement, and pigmentation of the skin to become abnormal, which is the most evident effect of them all.

The prescription remains the same: try to stay out of the sun during its peak hours of 10 AM to 2 PM.  Wear hats and sunglasses when you can’t avoid the sun.  Finally and most importantly, wear sunscreen with a minimum SPF 30+ every day.

4.) Keep Your Skin Clean

Pollution in the environment, whether in the air or on your hands, can cause damage to your skin.  The most effective methods to counter the effects of these agents include a skin care regimen of a gentle cleanser morning and night, an antioxidant serum, and a moisturizer.  Clean the dirt off your skin whenever you can, and your skin will be better able to repair itself.

5.) Your Skin Needs Beauty Rest

Lack of sufficient sleep is most obvious on your skin with the appearance of wrinkled puffy skin and dark circles.  Be consistent with your sleep habits.

Go to bed at the same time most nights, and wake up at the same time every day after at least 6-8 hours of sleep.  Also try to eliminate as much light and sound in your bedroom as you can.

6.) Get More Exercise

Physical exercise is important for your body and your skin.  Time and again, medical studies have shown that exercise can slow and reverse the appearance of skin aging.

Exercise increases blood flow through your skin.  More blood flow helps flush out toxins within the skin, and delivers more oxygen and nutrition throughout your body.

As you can see, lifestyle habits can have dramatic effects on your appearance and overall health.  Since your skin is your largest organ, many of the habits for your general health will make you feel better and look better too.

However, if there is old skin damage from years past, we here at Maine Laser Skin Care can help reduce it or remove it depending on its severity.  Feel free to call us at our Augusta office at (207) 873-2158 or our Scarborough office at (207) 303-0125 for your free consultation.  Our mission remains to “beautify Maine one face (and body) at a time”

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Important Update on Vampire Procedures

Many regular readers know not only how much I stand by every procedure that Maine Laser Skin Care practices on our patients, but most especially how much I have stressed the effectiveness of the recent Vampire procedures.  Unfortunately, there has been a great deal of attention in the news media lately about a spa in New Mexico that was improperly handling blood and needles in a way that may have exposed their clients to bloodborne infections such as hepatitis and HIV.

Over this past weekend, I received an email from Charles Runels M.D., the inventor of the Vampire Facelift procedure.   In the message, he discussed some very important details about this incident that I feel personally and professionally obligated to relay to all of you, especially those of you who are understandably concerned.

First and foremost, this New Mexico spa was illegally using the name Vampire Facelift.  Unlike us, the providers were not trained by Dr. Runels and were not certified to perform this procedure.

The only medical offices or spas that allowed to use this formal name of Vampire Facelift are those that have been trained either by Dr. Runels himself or his certified medical teachers.  All of us who perform Vampire Facelifts safely and successfully are members of the American Cellular Medicine Association (ACMA), and can also be found on the official Vampire Facelift website,

Second, there are over 10,000 medical papers published on the effectiveness and safety of the use of platelet rich plasma (PRP) in multiple medical specialties.  Over one million procedures are performed per year worldwide using PRP, and no one has died or had a serious infection when done by someone certified by the ACMA group and using FDA-approved equipment.

Third, proper medical technique needs to be used at all times in any procedure involving human blood.  Those techniques are followed meticulously when any Vampire procedure is performed at Maine Laser Skin Care.

The blood is drawn in a sterile fashion and placed in a sterile tube specifically designed and FDA-approved for PRP treatments.  After being centrifuged, the PRP is also removed from tube into sterile syringes with sterile needles.

Before anything is re-injected into the body, the skin is cleaned thoroughly to insure a clean site for injection or microneedling.  Done properly, everything in the chain of blood handling is sterile, and there is no trace of blood from anyone else.

Fourth, whether it is Botox, injectable fillers, or Vampire procedures, I feel it is important that the consumer knows that the injector is fully trained and certified and experienced.  I have been a physician for over 30 years, and have performed aesthetic procedures for over 15 years.

I traveled to Alabama over three years ago to be trained in person by Dr. Runels in Vampire techniques.  I have since treated hundreds of patients with these procedures over that time frame.

With as much medical certainty as possible, I can vouch for the safety of the use of platelet rich plasma.  I have had the Vampire Facelift done on myself, and several members of my family have undergone Vampire treatments on multiple occasions without complications.

Sadly, there are always going to be unscrupulous people out there who pretend to be medical professionals when they are not, or who take advantage of unsuspecting consumers who only want to improve their appearance.  Hopefully this incident will be an isolated case that will not tarnish the image of this very valuable and safe procedure or anyone who is actually qualified to practice it.

If you have any questions about the Vampire Facelift or any of our other procedures, please feel free to call our office in Augusta at (207) 873-2158 or in Scarborough at (207) 303-0125 to ask or to schedule a free consultation.  We also carry the book about the Vampire Facelift authored by Charles Runels M.D.  To get your free copy, just call us or drop by our offices at either 12 Shuman Ave, Suite 7 in Augusta, or 438 US Route 1 in Scarborough.

Posted in News, Other, Vampire Facelift, Vampire Facial, Vampire Hair Regrowth, Vampire Procedures | 1 Comment

Tips For Managing Acne

Acne is a very common and very visible skin condition that we commonly treat here at Maine Laser Skin Care.  As a result, our patients ask us lots of questions that revolve around how to prevent outbreaks or how to manage acne when outbreaks have already occurred.

As we are well into a new school year, I thought now would be an especially good time to review useful skin care tips for the acne prone, both teens and adults:

1.) Wash your face twice a day and after sweating.

Removing elements that could plug your pores is important, of course.  Sweat can make acne worse, especially when one is wearing a helmet or hat.  Washing your face after a game, practice, or workout is a great start to preventing more acne from spreading.

2.) When washing your face, do so gently.

Gently apply a non-abrasive cleanser to your face, and use only your fingertips when washing.  Scrubbing can unnecessarily irritate the skin, so please be gentle!

3.) Use gentle products on your skin.

Avoid products that contain alcohol.  Do not use astringents or exfoliants that irritate the skin.  When skin is red and dry, acne looks and feels worse.

4.) Rinse your face with lukewarm water after washing.

If you wash your face with hot water, you will overly irritate delicate tissues.  You can wash your face with cold water, but lukewarm water will feel much more comfortable and be just as effective.

5.) If you have oily hair, shampoo daily.

Oily hair will result in acne outbreaks along the hairline and neck.  Regular shampooing will remove pore-clogging oils and debris.

6.) Do not pick or pop your acne pimples.

Popping pimples, while temporarily satisfying after the initial pinch, makes the localized acne worse.  Even more importantly, it increases the risk of scarring in the long term.  Like any other bad habit, avoid it at all costs.

7.) Keep your hands off your face.

You would be shocked if you knew all the disgusting bacteria that are on your fingertips over the course of a day even with regular hand washing.  Touching acne-prone skin can result in more flareup and that temptation to pick (See Tip #6 above).

8.) Avoid the sun and tanning beds.

Not only does tanning damage your skin, but many acne medications make your skin more sensitive to ultraviolet rays, increasing both pigmentation of current acne scars and future risk for skin cancer.  Wearing sunscreen every day and staying away from tanning beds altogether are ideal habits for your overall skin health, but it is especially great for preventing the spread of acne as well.

Acne is a very treatable condition.  The team here at Maine Laser Skin Care can help you to combat existing acne while also preventing new breakouts and reducing the risk of  developing scars.

You can call us either in Augusta at (207) 873-2158 or in Scarborough at (207) 303-0125 to schedule your next free and confidential consultation to see how we can help with acne or other skin issues you may be having.  As always, our mission is to beautify Maine one face at a time.

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