Quarterly Health and Culture Publication - DERMATOLOGY
PROF. Antonino DI PIETRO
SCIENTIFIC DIRECTOR – ISTITUTO DERMOCLINICO VITA CUTIS
ISTITUTO CLINICO SANT’AMBROGIO (MI)
Marks, wrinkles, facial skin sagging under the weight of the years that pass, or the rising work-related stress. This is why demand for beauty and “soft” dermatological treatments, that can ensure effective but natural results, are on the increase. And not only among women. Men are not immune to the search for strategies for looking good at any age. In confirmation of this, there is research and the production of information, video tutorials and useful online advice on how to have good-looking facial skin at any age, what is available on the cosmetic market, which has opened up to specific products and cosmetics dedicated to caring for men’s skin, and, naturally, dermatologists who confirm this growing trend in Italy as well. More and more mature men are looking for beauty, or as they would say, a healthy-looking appearance that can show a few years less when they are on the hunt for a new partner or a new job. We do not call it vanity, with these things being for women only… men “only” want an easy, home-based or very subtle remedy to ensure a handsome face even past their prime, nothing too invasive, drastic and obvious, something that takes off that extra five or six years. Needless to say, men and women both want the same thing: eternal youth. And who do they turn to? To a plastic surgeon? No, too difficult, expensive and risky if you don’t have the right address. To a beautician? You go there for manicures, facials and massages, but for permanent hair removal it is better to trust the experts. Men want a quick and discreet solution. For aesthetic treatments, the stronger sex chooses a dermatologist, a rational man or woman, a doctor with solid scientific grounding who know how to prevent and treat the damage that skin suffers every day: sun, wind and environmental pollution, as well as the bad habits that we inflict upon ourselves, such as smoking cigarettes, excess alcohol, sugars and fats in our diet, not enough water, and not enough exercise in the open air.
Professor Di Pietro, what do men ask when they go to a dermatologist?
“In my over thirty-year experience, men generally have a particular technique for coming to talk about what we plastic dermatologists call specifically “anti-ageing” treatments for men and women. Men initially come for a first dermatological visit, with a series requests relating to seasonal disorders or routine checks linked to health: the annual examination of moles, an annoying itch on the skin that appears after a seaside holiday ad excessive exposure to the sun’s rays, red or white patches sometimes after swimming in a pool. Common requests for someone who takes the time at home to monitor sunburn and solar erythema, mycosis on the skin or fingernails, skin irritations and so on. Then, however, at the end of the visit, we get to the point, and the man asks his dermatologist: “Doctor, could you recommend a good after-shave cream? One that leaves the skin nice after shaving, but which maybe reduces these signs that are showing... Tell me, doctor – what can be done?”. Or he says: “I have been working too hard over the last few months, and now my face seems to have aged. Is it too much coffee, would you say? Doctor, what would you advise for reducing both the coffee and the signs of time?”. And it is here that the patient arrives at his real request to the plastic dermatologist: after ten minutes of various circumlocutions, he asks for a solution to his aesthetic problem. When he asks me about a good after-shave cream, in reality the patient is looking for advice about a good anti-wrinkle cream suitable for men’s skin, at least to start with. Because he will then ask me what dermo-cosmetic discoveries and interventions are most suitable for men’s skin, and how many sessions he would need to undergo in order to take a few years off his face, without this impacting negatively on his life and habits. But he will get there in stages. He needs to melt the ice first of all, get closer to the doctor; only after this preamble will the plastic dermatologist become an ally in treatments for male beauty and vigour.”
What aesthetic dermatological treatments are most requested by men?
“Removing dark marks from the face, due to an accumulation of melanin that is typical of those of a certain age, getting rid of a double chin, smoothing out wrinkles on the forehead, removing crow’s feet from around the eyes, rejuvenating the entire face by eliminating expression lines, removing the belly and love handles, finding an effective treatment for baldness or progressive hair loss – generalised or in patches (alopecia and alopecia areata): these are the most common requests from men, younger or more mature, who turn to dermatologists. Btu there is no shortage of other, newer ones: eliminating fine lines from the tragus (ears), which age the face in men, and are a telltale sign of time passing. Some patients, aged 40 years and over, complain of a thinning of the lips: their request is to make the lips naturally more defined and firmer, but without the horrendous “rubber dinghy” effect, which is not good, even on women. The result? A kissable smile at any age.”
What type of men seek treatment from a plastic dermatologist, and what treatments are most requested?
“Requests for aesthetic treatments come from businessmen of a certain age, but also from young sports and showbiz personalities, who need to be seen with perfect skin, always toned and smooth, in order to show more self-confidence in public. As a very young person would say, skin that is “selfie-proof”. The treatments that I recommend depend greatly on the type of patient, on the skin’s tolerance of heat and cold.”
Scalpel-free treatment for having a younger face?
“From 30 to 90 years of age, the most effective “anti-ageing” dermatological treatment involves an initial session of Picotage, followed by a session of Rimage. One or two maintenance sessions may be necessary over the course of a year.”
The overall cost for rejuvenating facial skin?
“Like for a nice week’s seaside holiday in August. The action provides excellent aesthetic results: the skin immediately appears more toned, elastic and rejuvenated, without any unnatural effects. In the case of marks on the face, these are dedicated, minimally invasive treatments.”
What is Picotage?
“Much requested by men, as it is not painful and ensures a natural effect, it is a treatment that I have devised here at Vita Cutis. It is the most sensible treatment, as it is aimed at regeneration of the face. Hyaluronic acid is injected under the skin with mini-needles; however, this does not cause the facial features to swell up, as the treatments are not filling but regenerative. The effect is entirely natural, lasts three or four months, and may be repeated without any contra-indications. It takes five or six years off a tired face; for example, it eliminates crow’s feet from around the eyes in 15 minutes, providing an immediately fresher and more attractive look.”
What makes skin young?
“Hyaluronic acid, but when this is lost through natural ageing processes, it needs to be made clear that it is not possible to perform miracles. Whereas a child’s skin is full of hyaluronic acid, at 60 years of age, around 40 percent of this precious ally of skin elasticity has been lost.”
How can you have nice skin at any age?
“In addition to environmental prevention (protecting oneself from the sun is essential for maintaining youthful skin), gentle cleansing tailored to each type of skin (oily, normal, delicate or with particular problems) needs to be carried out at home. After this, dermo-cosmetics able to maintain hydration and improve the skin’s defences should be applied. The next-generation ones that I recommend are based on phosphopidine, a mix of phospholipids and glucosamine, with a UV filter: ingredients that strengthen cellular membranes and increase the quantity and quality of the hyaluronic acid naturally present in the skin. If an “anti-ageing” cream, serum or a gel are to be chosen for the skin, the latter two are preferred by men, as they are not greasy, and are rapidly absorbed.”
By: Antonella Quaranta
Translation: TDR Translation Company
Editing: Violetta Valeeva