Skin booster injections. What are they? In English, there doesn’t seem to be one catch-all term for all-over skin injectable treatments. You may have heard of them by the nebulous term “skin booster injections,” by other terms like “AquaGold,” “Baby-Botox facials,” “hydro lift,” “meso–injection,” or “micro–injection” or even by their brand names, e.g. Rejuran Healer, Volite, or Filorga. Because there isn’t a standard name for this type of treatment like there is in Chinese, “水光針,” it can often be quite confusing to even understand what these treatments entail.
What is it?
In short, skin booster injections are micro-injections of solution cocktail all over the skin. The goal is to hydrate the skin, improve fine lines/texture, shrink pores, and improve the appearance of skin. Infusing various rejuvenating components into the skin improves the skin overall, hence the term “skin booster.” What is injected and how its injected is how skin booster injections differ from each other. The treatment name is broad because it encompasses a wide range of inclusion possibilities.
In general, the solution base is dilute hyaluronic acid (HA). Yes, the same base ingredient as dermal fillers! HA is a sugar molecule that binds to water. It is found naturally in the skin and used in many topical skincare products to hydrate the skin. Dermal fillers and skin booster injections use different types of hyaluronic acid. Skin booster injections generally utilize non-crosslinked HA, while dermal fillers generally use crosslinked HA (although this does not hold true for every type of filler or skin booster).
Crosslinking refers to the hydrogen bonds between HA molecules; the more there are, the more the HA molecules hold their shape and structure. Crosslinking also allows HA to resist degradation/breakdown over time. This is what causes HA dermal fillers to be a thick, gel-like consistency. The more crosslinking, the thicker. This is a great property for dermal fillers, where you want injections of HA to maintain their integrity and stay in place to volumize or change the contours of the face. Skin booster solutions tend to use non-crosslinked, more dilute HA, which allows for delivery all over the skin. No crosslinking allows for better spread of the HA throughout the skin. In comparison to dermal fillers, skin booster injections tend to be a watery or syrupy consistency.
Related: What is Filler?
What else besides hyaluronic acid can be included?
Besides HA, many inclusions are possible, making skin booster injections highly customizable. Peptides, vitamins, amino acids, growth factors, and PDRN can be added to the solution cocktail. Different brands of ready made solution cocktails are on the market, such as Rejuran Healer or Filorga. Each brand will feature its own selling point, such as PDRN, amino acids, or special combination of vitamins. Personally customized cocktails are also possible, depending on skin concern.
It is also possible to have solutions that contain no HA at all. Depending on the desired results, different combinations can be custom created. For example, “Baby–Botox” facials or “micro–Botox” is a possibility. “Baby–Botox” or “micro–Botox” refers to hyperdilute Botox that is injected very superficially into the skin in order to temporarily shrink pores and give the skin a beautiful, shiny, & smooth appearance. In comparison to traditional Botox injections, many less units are needed. However, many more injection points are required if the goal is to shrink pores; hence its qualification as a form of “skin boosting injection.” “Baby-Botox” refers to the small amounts of Botox needed per injection area.
While normally Botox is injected deeper to target the larger muscles of the face that contract and cause wrinkles, Baby-Botox targets the more superficial and tiny muscles of the pores of the face. While it is true that pores do not “open” or “close,” they do have tiny muscles called arrector pili. Pores are openings in the skin for hair follicles and sebaceous secretions. Arrector pili muscles are responsible for the hairs (whether the hair is visible or not) in each pore standing up when you are cold, which is also known as goosebumps. Injecting Botox to target these muscles relaxes these muscles and temporarily reduces oil secretion from the pore, making pores appear tighter and smaller. This method of injecting Botox also can smooth fine lines over the entire treatment area.
A Baby-Botox facial is different from traditional Botox injections; they do not each have the same effect. The first targets more superficial muscles and has benefits for the appearance of the superficial skin, while the latter targets deeper, larger facial muscles responsible for the areas that form wrinkles.
Related: What is Botox?
PRP can also be considered a type of skin booster injection. PRP stands for platelet-rich plasma, which is derived from your own blood. In order to obtain PRP, blood is drawn and centrifuged in order to separate out platelet-rich plasma. Plasma is the liquid component of blood and is rich in platelets and growth factors. These components stimulate body regeneration and wound healing. Injecting PRP back into the skin can boost skin texture, clarity, and appearance by plumping and regenerating skin. PRP can also help improve hair health.
How are they administered?
HOW skin booster injections are delivered are also where treatments can differ. Skin booster injections can be administered with a standard syringe and needle all over the skin. This takes much more time, but is fantastic for area-specific treatments and navigating some of the trickier contours of the face.
Secondly, a micro-injection gun with several needles can be used, which allows for even depth penetration and regimented delivery amount per “shot.” Much like microneedling, a disposable needle grid tip is used to penetrate the skin in a stamping motion. The microneedling-like tip provides the added benefit of collagen neogenesis due to the act of stamping the needles into the skin. This kickstarts skin regeneration. Unlike microneedling, the needles are hollow, which allows the solution to pass through the needles. The needle tip is attached to a syringe and the gun uses negative pressure to deliver solution cocktail into the skin.
Another delivery method is something like AquaGold, which is a brand of micro-injection device that has a liquid reservoir attached to a needle delivery system. Stamping the needles on the skin allows the solution in the liquid reservoir to pass into the skin.
What are the benefits of skin booster injections? What do different add-ons do?
The benefit is in the name! Skin booster injections help to enhance and improve skin overall. Injection all over the skin has a benefit of skin rejuvenation through the incitement of collagen growth due to the wound healing process. This is the principle behind microneedling skin treatments. Using needle delivery of skin-benefiting components allows bypassing of the skin barrier and targeted delivery of these compounds. Depending on molecule size, some elements cannot topically pass through skin by themselves. Systemic delivery (such as by mouth or by IV) may not bring rejuvenation to desired areas of improvement. Infusing skin with beneficial additives, such as antioxidants, HA, or skin-regenerating compounds helps to improve skin appearance, tone, texture, elasticity, bounce, and clarity.
Hyaluronic Acid: Hydrates and plumps skin. Helps diminish fine lines due to dehydration.
Glutathione: Skin antioxidant, brightening and helps with skin radiance.
Vitamin C: antioxidant, skin brightening, helps fade post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation.
Polydeoxyribonucleotide or PDRN: PDRN is DNA fragments, usually derived from salmon sperm cells. PDRN has anti-inflammatory, anti-melanogenetic, bone regenerative, tissue damage preventive, anti-ulcerative, wound healing, and scar preventive effects.
PRP: helps to regenerate and revitalize skin, can help improve hair health and density.
Baby-Botox facial, Skin Botox, Micro-Botox, Meso-Botox: Shrinks pores, reduces oil production, and smooths tiny fine lines.
How does a treatment go?
At DSC, we first determine what goals you have for treatment in order to determine the best cocktail for your skin. Topical numbing cream will be applied to the skin. After enough time has elapsed, the numbing cream is removed and treatment will begin. Solution will be injected into the skin, whether it be with a needle, injection gun, or micro-injection device. Once all solution has been delivered, a cooling mask and/or ice packs will be applied to the face to calm and soothe skin.
Is there any downtime?
Because these treatments involve microneedling-style stamping or hand injection all over the face, there may be a few days of pinprick scabbing, bruising, or tenderness.
Is there any aftercare?
It is best to avoid heavy exercise, steam rooms/saunas for a few days after treatment. Skip use of active topicals like AHAs or retinoids a few days before and after treatment. Avoid hot water, alcohol, and makeup for about 24 hours post-treatment. Let skin heal naturally, do not pick, scratch or otherwise disturb skin in treatment area. Wait a minimum of two weeks before and after treatment for facials, massage, waxing, or other treatments in the same area.
How often do you need treatment?
This is highly variable and depends on the type of skin booster you pick. Botox and other brands of toxins are limited to once every 3-4 months. For other combos, it is truly up to your personal preference. While there may be a few days of minor downtime post-treatment, there is no upper limit to skin infusion of vitamins, HA, PDRN, or other add-ons. You can choose to treat once a month, once a quarter, or before special occasions.
To learn more or book your appointment, book a free consultation with DSC! We have many years of experience with skin booster injections and are happy to recommend custom blends to suit your skin.
DSC Laser & Skin Care Center
889 S. San Gabriel Blvd. San Gabriel, CA 91776