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Dr. Wu

If you guys follow along on Snap you know I’m am OBSESSED with RealSelf Contributor Dr. Douglas Wu. I mean he gives me the oppportunity to try laser and exposed the good, the bad, & the ugly of plastic surgery…filler…and BOTOX!

Since I’ve talked about Botox in the past, it was fun to go straight to the source.

I feel like 2016 has been heavy with the plastic surgery/filler/Botox. So instead of going against it- I wanted to know more. As always, everyone is different- do what works for you!

Ok on thay note, here’s Mr. amazing Doctor Wu:

Let’s talk lips. They’re all the rage. Tell us about lip fillers.

The lips are one of the most important parts of our face in terms of our perception of beauty, youth, and attraction.

Full, symmetric lips that are proportionate to the rest of the face convey a very powerful positive impression. That’s why this area is one of my favorites to work on. Due to age and genetics, we all start to lose volume in our lips. Thinning lips tend to give us a sad, displeased, or severe expression even though we may feel none of those things. Restoring that lost volume can be achieved with fillers.

There are a variety of products that can be used including Juvederm, Volbella, Belotero, and Restylane Silk. Although they are all hyaluronic acid-based fillers, each of these products have slight different properties and can be used to achieve different effects.

The selection of the correct product for the correct patient while using the right injection technique is the key to success!

I like Botox between my eyes. Thoughts? I think it’s preventative.

Neuromodulators such as Botox, Dysport, and Xeomin are some of our most tried and true anti-aging tools. The region between the eyes is sometimes referred to as the “glabella”, the “frown lines”, or the “elevens” due to the characteristic appearance of wrinkles in that area.

Other areas that are commonly treated with Botox include the wrinkles around the eyes ( sometimes called “crow’s feet” ) and the horizontal forehead wrinkles.  In the hands of more experienced injectors, Botox can even correct or improve many different areas of the face and neck.

There are two main benefits of using Botox.  First, we get that immediate beautiful relaxed appearance that conveys a happy, energetic outlook.

Second, with repeated treatments at regular intervals, Botox has an incredible anti-aging maintenance and preventative effect.  It can actually reverse frown lines and wrinkles and make them go away!

We’ve done many studies on this phenomenon, & it’s really one of the safest, most effective, and most pleasing treatments we have today.

Tell us about IPL— lasers seem like the perfect way to get rid of skin damage.

IPL ( or “intense pulsed light” ) is a really cool treatment that can dramatically improve sun damaged skin and can also help to maintain beautiful skin through the years.

It has a special place in our hearts because our own Medical Director Dr. Mitchel Goldman was one of the very first dermatologists to develop this technology over 20 years ago and we’ve continued to be at the forefront of its usage ever since. Nowadays, IPL is used all over the world and is one of the most popular laser treatments for sun damaged skin.

One of the great things about IPL is that it requires very minimal to no downtime. However, with so many IPL devices currently on the market, and so many different laser settings, it’s really important to find an expert provider to ensure optimal results.

What’s a popular plastic surgery trend that is kind of…odd?

My answer to this one would be the so-called “Brazillian Butt Lift” or fat transfer for buttock augmentation.

It’s a fad now, but once it falls out of favor it will be a tricky problem to correct.

Treatments you recommend that are non-invasive?

Non-invasive treatment options are a specialty of mine and we’ve really come a long way in terms of the things that we can achieve using these techniques.

There are so many different options these days, but the important thing to remember is that each treatment should be tailored appropriately so that it is specific for the individual getting treated.

We each have unique characteristics about our skin and this should always be taken into account when planning treatments.

Generally speaking, different age categories benefit from different levels of treatment.  For example, individuals in the 20-40 category may benefit from a simple maintenance regimen of Botox and IPLs in order to prevent wrinkle formation and reduce sun damage.  Into the 30-50 category, volume loss and skin laxity may become more prominent and so fillers and skin tightening procedures may be indicated.

Patients in their 40’s, 50’s or above may require more aggressive treatments such as laser resurfacing or more significant volume restoration. As you can see, treatment recommendations are fluid and must be specific for each individual. The important thing is to always have both short and long-term goals in mind.

That way, we can all age gracefully over time and be the best version of ourselves.

When should you start? Should everyone start? Opinions here?

When to start is a very individual question that takes into account our own preferences, our natural physical attributes, and our goals and visions for our future. Identifying WHEN to start is not as important as deciding HOW to start.

Most of us by the time we hit our late 20’s or early 30’s could certainly consider ways to prevent excessive damage from accumulating in our skin.

This could include anything from making a conscious decision to lead a healthier, more active lifestyle, to paying more attention to sun protection and skin care, to targeting specific features like wrinkles and volume loss with treatments.

The dosage and degree of treatment should always be customized to be appropriate for each individual.  That being said, starting relatively early and keeping up with maintenance will always pay huge dividends down the road and over the years.

plastic surgery | by the skinny confidential

Biggest misconception about what you do?

I think the biggest misconception about what we do is that we are focused on creating a single vision of beauty and that only certain types of people desire or could benefit from our services.

The truth is our primary goal is to maximize the health and beauty of each individual patient and that means combining their desires and aspirations with our own professional knowledge to create customized treatment regimens. No two patients are the same, and what works for one may not work or even be desirable for another.

Everyone can benefit from improvements in their skin but the path to achieve those improvements is highly individualized. As the largest organ in our body, it’s very worthwhile to invest in its health & maintenance.

Any tips for avoiding wrinkles, sun damage, aging, etc.?

There are three steps for keeping our skin perfectly healthy.

The first is sun protection, sun protection, sun protection! This means using good sunscreens, reapplying them every couple hours when out in the sun, avoiding or minimizing direct sunlight exposure, and trying to wear protective clothing. Sunscreen science has come a long way over the past few years and more advanced products now offer better protection ( NOT BEING ANNOYING BUT I PREACH THIS BIG TIME GUYS !!! ).

Secondly, a good skin care regimen is of paramount importance.  There are three ingredients in skin care products that have been proven to be very good for our skin: a growth factor, a retinol, & an antioxidant.  Building a skin care regimen around these three basic products is the best way to optimize the maintenance of our skin on a daily basis.

Finally, undergoing skin treatments at the appropriate time, in the appropriate way, and at the appropriate intervals can not only prevent further damage from accumulating, but actually reverse the signs of aging.  We live in a very exciting time where our knowledge of skin science has now reached a point where we really can stop or slow time, and use proven methods to improve our skin in safe & effective ways.

+ Find Dr. Wu at Cosmetic Laser Dermatology in SD. 

{ lip painting via Shanna Lisa }

  1. I LOVED this post. As a 31 year old contemplating botox and doing my own research this definitely helped my decision. Thank you thank you, Wish I lived closer to this doctor.

  2. Hii Lauryn!!!
    Loved this post 🙂 I am 21 years old and not quite thinking of any botox yet but the lip filler craze is tempting of course so I really enjoyed this read…

    However, my question for you is about SUN EXPOSURE…
    You rave about how awful it is and cover every inch of your body as much as you can to avoid any damage to your skin, but we need sunlight for Vitamin D levels! Vitamin D is so important and achieved best from the UV outside!! How do you keep this balance?

    the sun bunny.

    1. Thanks Amanda! I try to limit my sun exposure to around 30 minutes a day. That way I get the sun I need but save my skin from its ugly side effects! xx

  3. Do you use a growth factor, a retinol, & an antioxidant in your skincare regime personally? Can you pls tell us more about those ingredients and diff options for each?

  4. Hi Lauryn! Very informative post. I am obsessed with your blog!! Do you know what products would offer a growth factor?

  5. I love that you go to experts for these questions! Love this information. Did he give you any recommendations for types of sunscreens (really for face) to use?

    1. Hey Hannah I found the image on google & linked to it. BUT I just found her site & fixed it. Is this correct now? xx

  6. This post was super helpful because I’m turning 30 next year. Thanks for all the great info.

  7. Cosmetic surgery is too often glorified by celebrities in Hollywood who are frequently chastised by the media and society for having breast implants, face lifts, and liposuction, done all in the name of vanity. Although this is the most commonly portrayed face of cosmetic surgery, there are several health benefits of cosmetic surgery which can be gained through these procedures which are not as well publicized.

  8. Botox in glabella is an amazing solution. I work on a computer and my forehead was wrinkled all the time. I suppose almost every woman after 30 is like me. I had an immediate result. Literally just stand up from the chair in my surgeon`s office, looked myself in the mirror – LALA BYE wrinkles. When I got home my husband told me that I looked like I didn`t work this day. He was right I wasn`t working but this was not the reason of my improved appearance. However, if you reading comments just to find some personal opinions, not surgeon`s then my advice is do it. You will thank me later.

  9. I was more than happy to uncover this great site. I need to to thank you for your time due to this fantastic read!! I definitely enjoyed every bit of it and I have you bookmarked to see new information on your blog. I am also specialist and always seeking for new information from internet although its too late for me to comment as i recently start to explore and i really loved it so if you have some time please stop by and check ALCS

  10. Thanks for this awesome, well-spoken, and detailed post! You know what, you’ve done a great job in clearing alot of misconceptions about botox and plastic surgery. It is true that there are alot of horror stories out there and that many celebrities might have had too much work done, but all that can be avoided especially when you arm yourself with knowledge, like the one your blog post provides!

    I can tell that you’ve done alot of research and maybe even shared some of your own personal learnings and experiences in the matter, which I appreciate very much. Not only do personal experience and learnings help people relate more and absorb the information easier, but it also has a sense of honesty, and that is what makes it great.
    A large part of my research, now that I’m considering a more ballsy procedure is looking at every before and after rhinoplasty galleries out there. I think its important that you find cases similar to yours and gather as much of photos of the possible outcome from these galleries.

    Even so, a huge chunk of the success and satisfaction with the procedure relies on the surgeon you choose. I checked out DR. Wu and he seems very good at the craft!

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