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The Instant FaceLift: Fight Aging With a Hot-Needle Wand


I’ve had my face slathered in bird droppings and my skin peeled off and sanded, all in an effort to achieve clear, flawless skin—in fact, there’s nothing I won’t try in order to attain a spotlight-worthy complexion or an instant facelift for that matter. Most recently, I subjected myself to getting punctured in the face hundreds of times with a hot needle-studded wand. Called the ScarLet RF treatment, it involves a doctor’s manipulation of a smoothing-and-tightening gadget, and it is one the hottest treatments in the dermatologist’s office. The ScarLet RF relies on radio frequency energy (intense heat) delivered by dozens of small needles to warm tissues deep in the dermis, which stimulates wound healing and in turn spurs collagen production in the skin. The goal of the ScarLet RF treatment is to tighten the skin, improve the appearance of wrinkles and lines, as well as diminish acne scars and large pores.

On my ongoing quest for clear, flawless skin, I paid a bold visit to the Obagi Medi Spa in Dubai to undergo the painstaking treatment. I was greeted by a receptionist named Joyce, who, to my relief, began the treatment by applying a topical anesthetic all over my skin so that I wouldn’t be susceptible to any pain. The anesthetic was left on my face for about 25 minutes, until it was completely numb and I was ready to take on dozens of tiny needles.

The actual treatment was performed by Dr. Shadan Naji, an MD dermatologist with over ten years of experience in the aesthetic field. Dr. Naji took the needle-studded wand and began driving tiny holes into my forehead. “Does it hurt?” she asked. It didn’t; in fact, I didn’t even know the treatment had started. But I definitely spoke too soon, because seconds after, I felt a sharp (although brief) pain that I would liken to getting stung by a bee. The doctor then proceeded to shoot deeper needles into my fleshy cheeks, and moved her way down to my jawline, and finally concluded by needling my nose.

The overall process (minus waiting for the anesthetic to kick in) took less than 20 minutes, and though there were brief moments where I felt shooting pain, it was not as uncomfortable as I had anticipated. My blotchy face was then slathered with a cooling mask to relieve the redness and inflammation. Dr. Naji wrote a prescription for a healing cream, advised me to use it three times a day for three days, and I was on my way. I was assured that there was no downtime, that I was to avoid using makeup and any skincare products for at least 24 hours, and to apply sunscreen religiously over the next few days.

Though a month’s time is required before any obvious results show on the skin, I was left with the feeling that I had just had an instant face-lift. My skin was noticeably smoother, tighter, and radiant without any swelling or bruising. This treatment is ideal for those who want to fight aging, as the results are noticeable. If done regularly (my dermatologist recommends 3 sessions a year), the ScarLet RF treatment will indeed turn back the clock on your skin, and make it thicker, more radiant, and noticeably tighter.

The ScarLet RF treatment is available at Obagi Medi Spa’s newly launched location in Jumeirah. Prices range from AED/SAR 2000 to 4000.

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