Better than Botox? Natural alternatives promise big results
CTV British Columbia
Published Friday, September 27, 2013 3:59PM PDT
Last Updated Friday, September 27, 2013 7:37PM PDT
A growing number of Vancouverites are shunning invasive cosmetic surgery procedures in favour of natural treatments that claim to produce similar results.
Botox and cosmetic fillers promise to turn back the hands of time, but many women see the treatments as too harsh, with results that drastically change their appearance – in a bad way.
“With all the celebrities doing it you can see drastic changes in the face and they've lost their natural look,” said Kim Payne, a client at Vital Clinic.
Wanting to slow the aging process but not go to extremes, Payne underwent cosmetic acupuncture, what’s billed as “the natural alternative” to Botox.
Registered Acupuncturist Nicole Longstaff said the treatment increases collagen and elastin production, filling in fine lines near the mouth and eyes.
About 85 needles are inserted in the face and Longstaff swears results after 10 to 12 sessions.
“You can’t tell [the clients] have had something done. They just look younger and fresher. And that’s the look that people really want,” she said.
There are several new natural procedures like this that claim to get results, but just because they’re not using harsh chemicals doesn’t mean they’re inexpensive.
Cosmetic acupuncture runs for $125 per session, meaning over 10 visits you’re spending $1,250.
For $185, women are trying out the brand-new Qi magnetic beauty facial, which involves putting 1,000 gold-plated magnets on the face.
The treatment is supposed to combat “low skin Qi,” resulting from stress, illness, smoking, sun damage, poor diet and environmental toxins. Practitioners say the “Qi deficiencies” cause dull skin, loss of volume and elasticity in the skin, heavy jowls and facial sag.
In theory the magnets are supposed to stimulate nutrients deep within the skin, bringing them to the surface.
Payne says she noticed results after the unusual treatment.
“My scar’s gone down quite a bit. It used to be a little bigger so that's nice,” she said.
If you don’t like the idea of visiting a clinic for treatment, the at-home bee venom facial is being marketed -- and hailed as -- “Nature’s Botox.”
Nutrition House sells the B.C.-made jars of ‘Queen of the Hive’ face anti-wrinkle contour mask with manuka honey and bee venom for $69.99. The ethical mask – no bees are harmed in the process – is also available at other health food stores.
“It gets results,” said Meg McQueen of Nutrition House.
It also has celebrity followers. Dutchess Kate Middleton created a buzz for reportedly using a similar venom before her wedding.
Between Botox and natural treatments the anti-aging industry is bringing in billions of dollars each year. But the one thing that experts agree on is the best thing you can do for your body is eat well, limit your sun and make sure to get lots of sleep.
And those are all treatments that won’t cost you a dime.
With a report from CTV British Columbia’s Norma Reid