Keep the collagen coming! Dr Ana Barragan talks clinical treatment trends
As we age, our appearance changes. This is not necessarily a bad thing, fine lines can add character to a face, and crows’ feet can represent a life spent laughing.
But, when those fine lines deepen, and the force of gravity seems to be getting stronger every day, rudely pulling your skin (and entire body parts) towards the ground, we find ourselves wondering if there is a way to stop, or even reverse this.
Of course there are a multitude of treatments designed to combat signs of ageing. But with so many options to choose from, where does one begin? We caught up with Dr Ana Barragan, Non-Surgical Senior Aesthetic Doctor, to get her opinion. “When it comes to clinical anti-ageing treatments, there is no ‘one size fits all’. Each patient is unique, and so the treatment needs to be tailored to their needs and expectations.” Dr Barragan begins. “What I will say though, is that these days, most treatments I perform work to stimulate the body’s natural collagen production, one way or another.”
Turn back time
When asked what the most common requests are that she receives, Dr Barragan says “Most of my clients come to me with a similar idea of what they would like to achieve; a natural looking, younger version of themselves.” She goes on to say that “The first order of business in achieving more youthful looking skin is to increase your collagen production. At present, this can really only be done mechanically – by physical stimulation.”
Threads and fillers
“The majority of the collagen stimulating treatments I perform work on two levels. They will provide an immediate effect, for example, an injectable filler such as ELLANSÉ™ will instantly correct wrinkles and folds, but also work long term, by stimulating the generation of the body’s own natural collagen.” When we ask about another popular treatment,
Thread lifting, she is quick to point out that “This is a tricky category, because the word ‘lifting’ implies that you will lift the face, which is not always entirely true. There is of course a lift effect, but it cannot be compared to a face lift, like some clinics do.” But then she starts talking about the benefits of threads. “There are different types of threads, and they have different constitutions and designs, depending on what you want to achieve. There are smooth (mono) threads for improving skin texture, or threads with barbs, cogs, anchors, cones or screws to reposition the tissue. Regardless, they all stimulate collagen production, which means that the results from these treatments last much longer than previous generations.”
Whilst explaining some of the more technical aspects of how different treatments are administered (we will have to write a whole different piece on that), she also suggests that if you are considering a clinical, collagen inducing treatment, you should also consider preparing and following up with an at-home treatment regime. “I always encourage my patients to use a microneedling device at home, between the procedures I perform on them.” She goes on to say “Imagine that the treatment I am providing is the equivalent of building a house. If I build a great looking house on a wobbly foundation, cracks will start to show after a while.”
Another aspect that she is keen to explain is that “Different types of collagen stimulation work together to create an overall effect; like a dermal filler and at-home microneedling; the filler is used to replace lost volume and the continuous microneedling will maintain and stimulate the skin and boost the effect of the filler.”
Dr Barragan’s top tips for successfully choosing an anti-ageing treatment
We asked if there was anything in particular to consider when contemplating a clinical anti-ageing procedure. “In your first consultation with your doctor, describe as honestly as possible what you are trying to achieve. This is often a better approach than saying ‘I want threads, or fillers’, because this allows the doctor to recommend the best way for you to achieve your desired results.” She then adds “My personal approach to all non-surgical treatments is to go slow. Start with less, and if necessary, add more – this is much easier than reversing a treatment”.
Dr Ana Barragan is an accomplished Non-Surgical Senior Aesthetic Doctor providing specialist treatments in clinics in and around London. She also trains other doctors. Treatments/conditions she specialises in include: cheek and lip enhancement, chin augmentation, neck lift, eyebrow lift, skin mesotherapy, clinical microneedling, nasolabial fold, tear trough, hyperhidrosis, and marionette lines.
She is also a fully qualified dentist, specialised in implants.
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