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Cosmetic acupuncture (alternatively known as anti-aging acupuncture/ facial revitalisation acupuncture) is an ancient Chinese beauty treatment that has become popular after high profile celebrities such as Meghan Markle, Gwyneth Paltrow and Angelina Jolie have reportedly used these techniques to look good naturally.

Chinese Cosmetology (the study and application of beauty) has a long history within Chinese medicine. The Chinese believe that beauty comes from within and so a beautiful exterior depends on a balanced, healthy interior. Dr Jess completed a 2 year specialist training course in Chinese Cosmetology at Acumedic, London. In Cosmetic acupuncture (and sometimes herbs) is used to stimulate the body to make you feel more radiant naturally.

One of the many TCM theories of the various mechanisms by which acupuncture works is that with needle insertion, the body endures a micro-trauma that in turn stimulates the injury repair system within the body. It is this natural healing process that is thought to stimulate the production of collagen at the site of the needle insertion. TCM theory believes that facial acupuncture makes the skin appear more stimulated, youthful and rejuvenated. Facial acupuncture has been done as part of anti-ageing therapy for over 2000 years.

By combining her knowledge of lifestyle medicine, Chinese medicine and acupuncture treatments, Dr Jess is able to provide a unique approach towards enhancing beauty naturally. She is happy to give individual, tailored advice on diet and appropriate nutritional, herbal and skincare products to aid treatments.

What IS THE EVIDENCE?

Although Cosmetic acupuncture has been done for thousands of years, studies have only begun to assess the effects recently. We do know that acupuncture is relatively safe with a 2008 review (White et al) showing the risk of a complication to be between 1:10000 and 1:100,000 (very low). Wheras the same cannot be said for Botox and other aethetic procedures, although cosmetic acupuncture can be done alongside other treatments.

A 1996 report in the International Journal of Clinical Acupuncture reported that among 300 cases treated in China with cosmetic facial acupuncture, 90% had marked effects with one course of treatment. The effects included: improvement in skin texture and coloring, increased elasticity, reduction of wrinkles and overall rejuvenation, not merely confined to the face [1].

A small pilot study published in 2013 which examined 27 women having 5 sessions of facial acupuncture showed a significant improvement in the elasticity of the skin - they used computer tomography - a mapping of the skin to show these changes. Although small, this study showed that facial acupuncture can produce measurable changes in the skin (2). 

ACUPUNCTURE TREATMENT



What Happens During A COSMETIC Acupuncture SESSION?

Whilst lying down, up to 50 needles will be inserted into specific points on your face. The gold or seirin facial needles are so fine that they can barely be felt on insertion. After discussion over any areas you are unhappy with needles can be inserted into wrinkle lines, and areas such as bags under the eyes, sagging around the jawline, scars or thread veins on the face. Additional needles for wellbeing are done on the body during treatment. Acupuncture is relatively painless and many patients find it relaxing. 

You are then left for 20-25 minutes to relax with the needles in position and then they are removed. The needles may be manipulated during this time. Up to 10 sessions either weekly or 2 weekly may be needed to reach maximum effect. Dr Jess is an experienced traditional Chinese acupuncturist, cosmetic acupuncturist and electro-acupuncturist registered with BMAS (the British Medical Acupuncture Society).

A course of 10-15 weekly treatments should be undertaken for best results. On achieving the required results monthly or 6 weekly treatments may be recommended to maintain improvement. There is a risk of short term local bruising.

Read more articles about cosmetic acupucnture and personal experiences below:

 "How to get ageless skin WITHOUT Botox"

 "Everything you need to know about cosmetic acupuncture"

 "Road test: Is cosmetic acupuncture the new 'natural' botox?

"Would you stick 95 needles in your face to look younger?"

 

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