You may have recently heard about cosmetic acupuncture and are wondering, “how does cosmetic acupuncture work?” or “does acupuncture hurt?” This article will discuss what to expect during a cosmetic acupuncture treatment, how it works and results of treatment.
During a cosmetic treatment, a licensed acupuncturist places small filiform needles on the face as well as on the body. Needles on the face will target facial motor points as well as your areas of concern, such as wrinkles below the eyes, frown lines between the eyebrows or acne scars on the cheek. Needles inserted at points on the body will address any constitutional imbalance that has given rise to skin imperfections, such as a weakened digestion or excess heat in the stomach or lungs. These body points will help to promote optimal physiological functioning by balancing the organs that contribute to beautiful skin (the stomach, lungs and liver) and sedating factors that have given rise to issues manifesting on the skin (dampness, heat, stagnation, stasis).
When a needle is inserted below the surface of the skin, it induces the body’s healing response. This healing response starts with a cascade of chemical mediators (fibrin, oxygen, macrophages, growth factors, collagen) sent to repair the tissue damage. This response also increases blood flow to these areas, bringing oxygen and nutrients to the site of repair, and strengthening the structural matrix with increased collagen. Results of treatment are increased tissue density, diminished lines and wrinkles and even moisture balance of the skin. These things together help to create a beautiful, lustrous appearance.
Cosmetic acupuncture targets specific facial motor points to help balance muscle tone to even out tissue density. Sometimes, wrinkles can be caused by an overuse of facial muscles. Your cosmetic acupuncture treatment will address those areas by calming your nervous system and relaxing the muscles. Other times, sagging can be caused by underuse or lack of function in facial muscles. Acupuncture works to reset the nervous system and create balance of muscle tone and nervous system function.
Cosmetic acupuncture works at many levels: chemical, physiological, structural and energetic. Cosmetic acupuncture works on a physiological level by promoting smooth blood flow to the face and throughout the body and removing stagnations/adhesions. It also works on a chemical level by inducing collagen, elastin and fibroblast production. These increased chemicals strengthen the structure and increases the integrity of the skin. Lastly, cosmetic acupuncture works on an energetic level by addressing the emotions that may be contributing to the repeated expressions that contribute to wrinkles and fine lines- skepticism leading to horizontal lines on the forehead, anger leading to lines along the nose or sadness leading to vertical lines along the cheek. Read more about the emotions and their representation as lines on the face here.
If you are interested in cosmetic acupuncture treatment to address signs of aging or acne, please book an appointment here. If you are not sure if acupuncture is right for you, please feel free to book a free 15 minute phone consultation to get the chance to have your questions answered. You can also check out my FAQs page to see some commonly asked questions. I look forward to working with you!
Written by Stephanie Salinas, Licensed Acupuncturist