Opportunity Knocks for 2016

Posted on: January 7th, 2016 by Catherine Catto

The beauty industry has changed irrevocably over the last 5 to 10 years.

The industry is not alone in this respect. Almost every sector of society has changed and will continue to do so, at a rapid pace. This has arisen as a result of developments principally in electronics and technology. We are now able to communicate with people from all corners of the globe in real time, and with ease, from our desks and homes. Now those individuals and groups (including scientists, engineers, mathematicians, marketers, and people from all disciplines), are able to collaborate and benefit from each other’s discoveries, experiments, experiences and views. The compounded effect of this is exponential.

How has this affected the beauty industry?

The beauty industry has been affected by the technological and communication revolution in that it is now possible to perform treatments which have permanent or long term results in relation to their effects on skin tissue and cellular make up. This includes those aspects related to the visible signs of ageing. Treatments which invoke these more permanent results are now commonly termed aesthetic treatments. This sector is the fastest growing in the industry.

When aesthetic treatments were first introduced, as with most new technologies (e.g. calculators, computers, and mobile phones), early stage products were extremely expensive. Also aspects of functionality still needed to be honed and improved. These improvements occurred rapidly over the first few years of the 21st century. We are now in a position where there is an array of safe, efficacious, affordable technology. This technology is in high demand from an increasingly well informed, expanding mass of consumers.

Successful investment is all about timing. Many owners of beauty salons, spas, medical practices and nail studios  that previously were not considering offering aesthetic technology, are now doing so. They recognise that many of these treatments are becoming so mainstream, that unless they offer them, they will miss out on potential revenue. Not only that but many salons recognise that they will lose business to competitors who do offer these treatments. Increasingly, salon owners are now considering this to be the right time for investment into the aesthetic sector, for the following reasons:

  • Price of equipment has tumbled compared to the £100K systems that were being sold 10 years ago, and which were generally only purchased by medical clinicians.
  • Machines are now able to treat very safely, and the images of aesthetic treatments gone wrong using light and heat based technologies, are few and far between.
  • Non-invasive technology can now achieve really noticeable and genuine long term results.
  • Treatments are now far more comfortable than in the past, and in some cases (such as with Dual Radio Frequency) very enjoyable.
  • Machines are neater, more attractive, contain more features and can offer greater income potential than previously, thus making them even better value for money.
  • Experience of usage has increased and consequently standards, safety and results (knowledge being abundantly shared online).
  • Consumers are placing a higher value than ever on the importance of looking as young and rejuvenated as possible. This is due, amongst other things, to improvements in health and longevity of life. Also, prevailing media driven culture, has elevated the status of many, who would otherwise have remained obscure, to that of celebrities, with an emphasis on looks and image. Old is out and young is in, and with the technology to perpetuate that, it is likely to remain.
  • The market for aesthetic technology is driven by consumers who have abundant and free access to the latest developments in the industry via the internet. This will continue to be the case.
  • The industry has been de-regulated for many non-invasive aesthetic treatments, to reflect their increasing safety, and to differentiate them in this respect from more invasive and potentially damaging treatments.
  • Business revenue will decline, in many cases, if they do not invest in technologies which reflect the change in spending patterns and demands of consumers.

Which Technology?

The most popular and well know of all non-invasive aesthetic technologies is that used to achieve permanent hair reduction with light based systems. This includes Lasers, IPL (Intense Pulsed Light), and E Light systems, sometimes known as ELOS (Electro Optical Synergy) systems.

LASER (Light Amplification by the Stimulated Emission of Radiation)

Laser machines emit a single narrow concentrated beam of light which travels at a consistent speed and targets one particular wavelength. The wavelength of any particular laser is determined by the target it wishes to reach, which is dependent on the treatment being performed. So for hair removal the system will be aiming for the absorption peaks of melanin and for thread veins for the absorption peaks of haemoglobin. Because lasers emit singular wavelengths, a different laser is often required for different treatments. Lasers tend to perform best when doing one function and within certain skin types.

IPL (Intense Pulsed Light) systems

IPL systems emit multiple wavelengths of light which travel at varying speeds and can be adjusted (via filters or in some cases a different handpiece) to narrow down a band of wavelengths in the spectrum where there is a concentration of the target that they need to select to treat for particular conditions such as thread veins, pigmentation and hair removal. These properties allow for great variability and make them much more adept at providing a wider range of treatments and in adapting parameters and delivery methods, according to skin types. However, due to the higher absorption rate of the light on the surface of the skin with IPL systems (the light is more scattered than laser), this introduces a downside as far as darker skins are concerned, in that IPL systems can generally only successfully treat skin types 1 to 3 and potentially a light skin type 4. This can be overcome with the addition of Radio Frequency as described below:

Electro-Optical Technology (E Light Technology)

E Light Technology has the advantages of both Laser and IPL but can treat a wider range of skin types and conditions than each, and is also safer and more comfortable, and gets superior results to IPL. It is therefore the best of both technologies and has emerged as a result of advancements over the last ten years.

Electro Optical technology simultaneously delivers traditional IPL or the more advanced Multi Pulsed Light (MPL®) and bi-polar radio frequency.

Electro-optical technology is the safest technology of this type on the market and is therefore more suitable for darker skins, which have a higher concentration of melanin (and hence a higher propensity towards hypo-pigmentation). It also achieves better results on lighter haired individuals (in hair removal mode) as it requires less melanin absorption to produce results.

How does combined electro-optical energy work?

The technology uses MPL® (advanced IPL) light energy to target cells in the skin for treatment (such as blood vessels for the removal of thread veins, melanin for the removal of age spots or hair). However it differs from IPL only, in that it also uses radio frequency to emit heat from within. Because the radio frequency does not heat the epidermis (surface area) of the skin, but penetrates deeper down within the dermis, following the path of least resistance created by the MPL®, better treatment outcomes can be achieved using a lower energy of light emission.

Because E Light uses a lower energy of IPL or MPL® to achieve the desired results (due to the fact that the RF energy is assisting the overall treatment), there is less likelihood that the melanin which is in the skin surface will be overly heated (because IPL or MPL® energy heats down from the epidermis, whereas RF energy heats electrically from within). This makes it more suitable and safer for darker skinned individuals than traditional IPL systems alone; it also renders the possibility of removing lighter hairs greater. This is because there is less dependence on targeting the melanin in hair to destroy the hair follicle, as the radio frequency simultaneously heats the hair bulge to attack the hair on 2 fronts without raising the temperature of the epidermis. If desired, the radio frequency can be turned off, to provide a traditional IPL system, for the purpose of training. However this would rarely if ever be done in practice, as results are always safer and more superior, with the radio frequency.

Therefore, E Light technology:

  • Is the only system that can get rid of even minimally pigmented hair colours, such as dark blond and red, that other light solutions and lasers are unable to treat successfully
  • It is the only available technology allowing the treatment of darker skin tones without compromising the treatment efficacy or safety
  • The E-Light system uses light energy to heat the hair shaft, which when combined with the radio frequency energy which follows the path of the light, heats and coagulates the follicle itself, which brings better results in relation to permanent hair reduction.
  • This technology is safer, as the combination of advanced IPL (MPL®) and Radio Frequency, means that significantly less melanin dependent light energy is required then in IPL only systems, resulting in practically no side effects and in higher comfort of the patients during the treatment
  • The inclusion of Radio Frequency in the technology also provides an additional rejuvenating and tightening effect.

The SkinFirst System has all the benefits of an advanced E-light machine, and own the trademark MPL®, Not only that, but there is also the unique option to add on skin tightening and lifting, and fat shrinkage (for body contouring and cellulite). This additional technology utilises standalone bi-polar and monopolar radio frequency. This is probably the fasted growing, extremely efficacious, treatment for rejuvenation. The SkinFirst system is reputedly the most comfortable on the market, and our clients love it.

We have a training course running on Monday 1st February in Cheshire for light based treatments. This covers hair removal, thread vein, pigmentation, rosacea, acne and rejuvenation. If you purchase a system we can offer free training onsite as an alternative.

We would love to help you take your business forward, or offer you a treatment. Treatments can be administered in Cheshire, or via any of our partner salons who have purchased the equipment throughout the UK and Europe principally.

Please phone us on 01925 446688 or email contact@www.skinfirst.co.uk