YEP. That's my forehead. With my own blood on it.
You can call me Kim Kardashian, as her IG photo made this procedure viral a few years back.
And you can call this procedure a PRP or "Vampire Facial" as coined by an LA dermatologist.
Before I get into the seemingly gory (but really not so) details of my personal experience, here's some facts. PRP stands for Platelet-Rich Plasma. This therapy can be used to treat arthritis, rebuild damaged tendons or cartilage, relieve joint pain and more. It has been used to safely treat wounds, injuries and other problems for years.
How does it work? Platelets are the cells in your blood that help tissue heal and grow new cells. In PRP Therapy, they use your own platelet cells and introduce them to the areas where you need collagen growth, tissue regeneration, and more.
Why I agreed? It provides a natural way to help you achieve a youthful look in an aesthetic anti-aging treatment. PRP naturally smooths and tightens your face, softening wrinkles and turning back the years with smoother skin texture and tone.
That's the basic info we share in our brochure at the functional medicine practice I work in. I really wanted to see for myself, so I did it - TWICE! I'll give you the day by day with pics and my top tips for when you go.
WHAT TO EXPECT:
Step 1: Your aesthetician will put numbing cream on you. Make sure you are not allergic to anything in the cream. A good one will ask you beforehand.
Step 2: A trained phlebotomist will take a vile of your blood and spin it in a machine to separate out the plasma (Liquid Gold as we call it in our office) that he/she will use to spread on your face once the microneedling begins. That is when the blood comes to the surface and why it's called a vampire facial.
Step 3: The process sounds and looks intense, but did not hurt at all and I am a huge wimp. The temporary skin damage is actually beneficial in this case and the plasma helps bring collagen to the tissue so you look plumper and younger! I really saw a difference immediately.
It took about an hour for my numbing cream to fade and then I started to feel slightly sunburned. The redness and irritation started going away around dinner (my appointment was over our lunch hour) and before I went to bed I use antibacterial silver gel and an organic moisturizer. That is what I put on for the next few days until my face was peeled and healed.
1. My beautiful aesthetician Debbie showing me the vile. Face covered in numbing gel.
2. Me looking in awe (with a numb and therefore expressionless face) at the "Liquid Gold".
3. Right before we started. IV explanation below.
4. Immediately after the PRP was over. Red.
5. Sitting up after about 10 minutes of rest. Less red already.
6. Another angle. Notice neck was done as well!
7. Back at my desk about 2 hours later. Face feeling TIGHT. Where did my wrinkles go?
8. About 4 hours after procedure. Some red spots coming out, but overall redness fading.
9. At home before bedtime. Some damaged skin showing through in several spots. Tender.
10. The morning after. Less red, dry but no pain.
11. Out and about with a hat and sunnies. Peeling! Day 3 after PRP.
12. Day 4! Slight variations in some spots, but they faded completely within a week.
Do your research on the place you will be getting this done. And who will be doing it. I personally knew Debbie for over a year and trusted her fully. I asked her about 101 questions beforehand. She was patient, knowledgable and trustworthy. She also works in our office under an MD which for a procedure like this I think is very important. (If you are LOCAL, you MUST come see Deborah Carlson at Advanced Natural Medicine of Jupiter! She is the only one I would let touch my face!)
If the place has nutritional IVs available, use them! The first time I got an immune booster and it helped me heal faster than her other clients who did not get hooked up. The second time I got a glutathione which controls inflammation and acts as a master detoxifier and an antioxidant. It destroys free radicals in the body and helps to build the body’s defenses against diseases. Benefits for the skin? Refines pores, keeps that glowing hydrated look, controls acne and reduces scars, helps to slow down the effects of aging and improves the overall quality. This is thee WINNING combo!
Make sure the skin care regime that's suggested is pure and top of the line quality. I used to use any old thing, but learned why that needed to change. If you are not sure or aren't given one, check out this site for what we have at the practice: https://www.drmichellemassa.com/skinbetter-science
In conclusion, would I recommend a PRP facial? 100 percent. It's the natural alternative to things I personally am not down with (no judgement!) like botox and fillers. Not because of the reasons people want them - I get it. The chemicals just scare the bejesus out of me. If we can use our own body to help itself with aging with no harm done? I'm in.
Have some turmeric handy for recovery, ask plenty of questions before you book and keep me posted if you decide to try this unique procedure! I said "never"...but now am a full believer who will continue to partake. Hope this was helpful in finding some answers if you are searching for the truth behind a PRP!