I Tried Four Anti Aging Treatments And Here’s What I Found Out

1 / 5

The Non-Surgical Facelift

Let’s start with the down and dirty. The name of this treatment alone got me excited, and ladies, I kid you not, it worked wonders. I am (ahem) in the over 35 crowd, and because I spent my 20s frolicking around Southeast Asia without sunscreen (I know), my skin needed some serious TLC. This treatment really helped. Using ultrasound, it heats the subsurface of the skin and the tissue beneath it to 65-70°C, encouraging the body to send new cells to the affected area.

That’s the good news. The not-so good news – which only applies to women who have had fillings in their teeth (me) – is that sometimes, the procedure can get a bit uncomfortable. I felt a strong sensation in my teeth when the ultrasound was near my cheeks. The technician was aware of this and gave me cotton pads to put between my cheeks and lips beforehand, but I needed more than what she gave me. When I doubled up, it felt much better.

According to the paperwork, the Non-Surgical Facelift will fix slack necks, undefined jawlines, double chins, drooping eyes and more, and need only be topped up every six to 18 months. The bonus? It works slowly, so you don’t see the full results for three months. I absolutely noticed a difference around my eyes and my smile lines around my mouth, and I will definitely be going back for more.

Where: The Skin Gym, The Centrium, 21/F, Room 6, 60 Wyndham Street, Hong Kong,
How much: $8,880 for a full facial treatment, with the option of also treating the neck for an additional $1,800.

2 / 5

Skin Lift Near Infrared (NIR)

Let me start with the good news: when you leave after this treatment, you see an immediate difference. You can choose to have your inner thighs, arms (you know, the jiggly part that you need to do 400 daily push-ups to get rid of?), or your tummy. I had my inner thighs done and the technician told me to go home and put on my skinny jeans so I could see how fab I looked. The weather was 35 degrees at the time, so I didn’t follow her advice (as if!), but I will say, I noticed that my thighs felt tighter and looked better overall.

Now for the bad news: remember when I said, “no pain, no gain?” Um, yeah. This is not for wimps. “Trust us, you won’t get burned,” the tech told me before she began, which really isn’t a sentence that puts you at ease.

Okay, I thought. At first, it’s not that bad. I kept thinking, “Wow, women who complain about this must be such babies.” But then she kept going. And going. And going. Each side takes 30 minutes to complete, and I am not joking when I say it felt like a hot coal had come in contact with my skin sometimes. Which is why I didn’t continue and have my arms done. This time. But I may just have to go back because seeing immediate results – that are said to last a year or so – is something this girl will suffer for.

Where: Strip Ministry of Waxing, 8 Lyndhurst Terrace, 9/F, Central, Hong Kong,
How much: $1,200 for arms, $1,500 for stomach, $1,800 for inner thigh

3 / 5

The OxyGeneo Facial

If you think “facial,” do you think about lying back, relaxing and having someone beautify the heck out of your face? Well, then this is the facial for you! This treatment simultaneously exfoliates the outer layer of the skin, infuses it with nutrients and stimulates oxygenation. Apparently, the facial process produces minute carbon dioxide bubbles, driving the skin to oxygenate from within. The technician used a machine to help the process, which was so relaxing I dozed off for a few minutes (naptime, anyone?). The process is such: an application is done to exfoliate the skin, then the machine (called a Capsugen) is used to clean the skin, and more products are put on for rejuvenation and anti-aging. Finally, the Capsugen is used to oxygenate the skin, creating blood flow and oxygenation.

The result? My skin looked much brighter and definitely felt smoother than when I walked in.

Where: The Skin Gym, The Centrium, 21/F, Room 6, 60 Wyndham Street, Hong Kong,
How much: $980

4 / 5

3-D Facial

High above chaos in Causeway Bay is a little slice of quiet paradise called Elevatione Beauty Galleria. This super deluxe treatment uses diamond dust and 24-karat gold in its products, which could explain the $9,800 price tag for the three-piece combo set if you want to buy some to use at home (because who doesn’t want that kind of luxury all the time?). First they applied the diamond dust capsule, to detox, clean and close my pores (of which I have many). Next, they put on a golden leave-on mask, which is used as an anti-oxidant and to hydrate my skin. Third, they used a rose stem cell hydro night gel, which was to protect and firm my skin. In between it all, they used what I would call a face vacuum to clean my pores (she happily showed me the disgusting grit that came out of my face afterward, and I’ll admit it was oddly satisfying to know it had been cleaned so well). The facial is $1,480, and afterward, you’re treated to a lovely pot of tea and biscuits and asked to relax in the comfortable waiting room.

Where: Elevatione Beauty Galleria, Tower 1, Unit 1702, Times Square, Causeway Bay, Hong Kong,
How much: $1,480

5 / 5

Optimal Skin Facial

Okay, full disclosure: one of the Sassy Girls, Surmayee, had this one done instead of me (trust me, I was jealous). Which is why I said I only tried four. But in keeping with the theme, she, too, said you needed to get used to the sensation. “It doesn’t hurt, it’s just uncomfortable,” Surmayee said. Here’s how it works: with the help of a DF II Machine, which uses sound waves to help the serums penetrate, the therapist then used a technique called “iontophoresis,” which introduces ionic compounds into the skin by applying a local electric current. She explained what Surmayee would feel ahead of time, so Surmayee said she knew what to expect.

“It was really relaxing, and the products felt lux,” said Surmayee. “The mask that was also nice and soothing.”

No joke, girls, her skin looked better and fresh – and I can honestly say she was glowing when she came out of it.

Where: The Mandarin Spa, 5 Connaught Road, Central, Hong Kong,
How much: $2,200 for the 90-minute facial from Monday to Thursday/ $2,500 from Friday to Sunday and public holidays

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