Spots. Wrinkles. Dry skin. Thin skin. Even if we manage to keep our faces free of laugh lines and crow's feet, our hands often spill the tea on how old we really are.
The culprits are many, says Steven Davis, chief surgeon at Davis Cosmetic Plastic Surgery in Cherry Hill. As we age, we lose fat in our hands and we lose bone mass. Our skin also naturally thins, and all of this living is compounded by exposure to the sun's ultraviolet light. Because who really remembers to put sunscreen on their hands?
"We were so focused on taking care of other parts of our body that we forgot that our hands can give away our age, as well," said Davis, who added that he's noticed a considerable uptick in patients asking for advice on how to keep their hands looking young.
In other words, we want our hands to look good in selfies, too.
So if you've tried all the exfoliating masks on the market, were loyal to cocoa butter, and your hands still don't appear as cherubic as they once did, here are two doctor's office options that will give them a more youthful look. But be prepared to pay up.
One of the ways Davis helps patients is by beaming an intense pulsed broadband light called the Lumecca Laser on age spots and discolorations. The light, he says, is attracted to the pigment, and after a few zaps — and a few days — the discoloration dries up and flakes off like a scab.
Depending on how deep the pigment goes, patients may need more than one treatment, but one usually does the trick, Davis says.
Sessions range from $150 to $350.
There was a time not long ago, Davis said, when one of the few ways to restore youthful vitality to the hands was to inject fat retrieved from lipsocution into them. Still in use, this method can be invasive.
In May, the Federal Drug Administration gave Restylane — the company behind the hyaluronic acid injectable that plumps up both cheeks and booties — approval for a filler that will add volume to the sunken spaces between our fingers.
"In our bodies, we create hyaluronic acid and as we get older, it starts to get less and less," Davis said. "This is a synthetic version of that."
One syringe is about $650, so a treatment can run $500 to $1,000. But the plumping effect lasts up to a year, Davis says.