Have you heard of a blood facial or “vampire facial?” Would you want one?
Although some might have a visceral reaction at the mention of blood, it’s really not as extreme as it sounds. The terms refer to using platelet-rich plasma, a blood product, to improve your skin. Facial injections and topical facial treatments probably aren’t new ideas to you, it’s just the mention of blood that makes it sound different. But there are some good reasons to think that platelet-rich plasma might have positive effects on the appearance of your skin. Take a look at what you need to know about this facial treatment.
Despite the moniker “vampire facial,” a vampire probably wouldn’t be interested in a platelet-rich plasma treatment at all. Vampires want other people’s blood. When you go in for platelet-rich plasma treatment, they use your own blood for your treatment. Knowing that you won’t be putting someone else’s blood on your skin or in your body should help calm any squeamishness. It’s also a lot safer – you shouldn’t have an allergic reaction or any other type of complication when it’s your own blood.
During the treatment, you’ll have blood drawn – probably not a lot, one vial should be enough. The blood will be put into a centrifuge to separate the blood and isolate the plasma. Then the plasma is either used topically or injected into the skin.
Okay, now you’re not worried about becoming a vampire or grossed out by the thought of using a random person’s blood in a beauty ritual because you know it’s your own blood. But that brings up another question – why would that work? After all, most people don’t enjoy having blood drawn – if you’re going to do it, you probably want to know that there’s a good reason.
Luckily, there is. There are many substances that can be found in your blood. Your plasma, for instance, contains proteins that promote healing and the growth of new cells. It can speed up wound healing, and it can also promote the growth of new collagen.
You may see platelet-rich plasma treatments combined with microneedling, which is the practice of using tiny needles on the skin to create tiny wounds, which causes the body to create new skin cells to heal the injury. When combined with platelet-rich plasma, the tiny wounds from microneedling heal faster and more efficiently, which can improve the overall results.
You may also see platelet-rich plasma offered as an injection. Used this way, it’s meant to get rid of wrinkles and creases, decrease scars, and plump up the skin. Sometimes, the blood in these treatments is combined with another facial filler in order to show faster results. Other providers might just administer the blood alone, in a series of injections, and warn the patient that it might take a little while to see results.
As is true for most beauty treatments, the results can vary. Some people have seen dramatic and excellent results from platelet-rich plasma treatments. Others say their results were less noticeable.
The plasma should promote new collagen growth. New, healthier collagen can tighten your skin, strengthening it and helping to fill in lines and wrinkles. What’s more, you should see hollow parts of your face plumped up and better moisture retention in the skin. The treatment promotes a stronger skin barrier, which helps to lock in moisture and prevent dry skin. You may even find that the treatment unclogs your pores and reduces their appearance. That means that not only do you look better, because of the reduced appearance of pores, your skin is also better equipped to absorb moisturizer or other helpful substances because the pores are no longer clogged with debris that block your beauty products.
One of the other benefits of using platelet-rich plasma is that it’s long-lasting. Keep in mind that the plasma promotes the growth of completely new skin cells rather than trying to make the existing ones look better. When platelet-rich plasma is used as injectable, it might take a little longer to see the result than it would with a filler, but the results will also last longer than a filler. The effects can last as long as 18 months.
It’s also worth noting that it can take fewer treatments to achieve the results you want than it would if you were going about it a different way. Microneedling, for example, may take four treatments to be effective without the addition of platelet-rich plasma, but with the plasma, you might only need two treatments to reach the same results. This makes platelet-rich plasma treatment less time-consuming as well.
You know it’s your own blood that’s going to be used in your platelet-rich plasma facial, so it’s probably safe since it came from inside you. But is the procedure as a whole safe? There’s something about getting blood drawn that feels very medical, so it makes sense to think about the possible health concerns.
For the most part, the procedure seems safe when it’s done properly. It’s not right for everyone – people who have hepatitis, HIV, AIDS, and blood cancer should avoid it. It’s also not safe for people who are taking blood thinners, and those who have skin cancer in the area that will be treated with the platelet-rich plasma should also avoid the treatment. Most other people, however, should be fine. Just make sure that you visit a reputable provider. If the blood is handled incorrectly and becomes contaminated or mixed up with another person’s blood, you could experience complications. But if your facility follows the blood-handling and safety procedures followed by transfusion centers, you will be fine.
If you’re looking for ways to improve your skin, it’s important to know who to trust and where to go for products that can really help. Check out Iconic Skin Clinic for more information.