Cosmetic Acupuncture – facelift without a surgeon’s knife


Whilst most people wouldn’t mind looking a few years younger, the notion of allowing a surgeon to take a knife to your face is more than a little off-putting. As a non-surgical alternative, cosmetic acupuncture can deliver a fresh faced radiance whilst diminishing the signature signs of aging. More importantly the treatment addresses the underlying causes of ageing, which can be preferable to masking the symptoms with invasive procedures.

Cosmetic Acupuncture has recently attracted much media attention. The Irish Times recently acclaimed this treatment as “a viable alternative to cosmetic surgery and the effects can run much deeper than simply improving appearances”. This remarkable treatment may erase as many as 5 to 15 years from the face.

Improving physical appearance with the help of cosmetic acupuncture has a history, which dates back over 800 years to the Sun dynasty, when the empress and the emperor’s concubines used it to maintain their youthful allure.

So why is this ancient technique now becoming so popular? One of the world’s leading acupuncturists, Virginia Doran, has been instrumental in introducing the treatment to modern western culture. Her treatment protocol has featured on the US’s major television news networks, even appearing on Sex and the City! Not surprisingly, New York and LA waiting lists for cosmetic acupuncture are often over a year long and populated by the rich and famous (reportedly Madonna, Gwyneth Paltrow and Cher – Telegraph 13/8/2004).

So how does the Acupuncture facelift work? A number of hair-thin needles are skilfully inserted into specific acupuncture points and manipulated to encourage blood and energy flow. This energy, or “life force”, is said to regulate the body’s innate healing processes and invigorate the facial area. Proponents of cosmetic acupuncture say it can offer measurable results after only a few sessions, eliminating fine lines and reducing deeper wrinkles. Bags under the eyes are reduced, droopy eyelids are lifted, sagging and puffiness are smoothed away. Other long term benefits can include increased moisture and elasticity in the skin, the activation of collagen production, better muscle tone and jaw-line definition, tightening of the pores and improved hormonal balance.

A complete treatment program involves a series of 12 sessions. Following the initial course of treatment, intermittent maintenance sessions can prolong the results for several years. Also included in the series is a tailored prescription of herbal supplements and treatments, both of which are facets of Traditional Chinese Medicine.

But is it painful? Well, less painful than you might think. A thorough eyebrow plucking from a trained beauty therapist can cause more eye-watering pain than 10 acupuncture needles combined. The treatment is also much easier than going the surgeon’s knife, with full anaesthetic and waking up with a faceful of bandages and bruises. Unlike the injection of potentially harmful chemicals into your skin, cosmetic acupuncture’s only side effect is an improved sense of health and well-being!

But what is the scientific support for Facial Rejuvenation Acupuncture? A recent research study, found that out of 300 test subjects, over 90% showed significant improvements after one series of treatments.

The weakness of most conventional cosmetic therapies is that they do little or nothing to enhance the client’s underlying health condition. It’s primarily because cosmetic acupuncture fully embraces the principle of ‘inner health/outer beauty’ that it works so well – and that results last longer. I liken cosmetic acupuncture treatment to a gardener tending the soil of a plant to produce a healthy flower, rather than superficially trying to polish a petal.

While the initial desire to look younger may be a simple case of vanity, the effects can prove far more profound than merely improving one’s appearance. As a practitioner of Oriental medicine, our aim is to help people to profoundly improve their lives. Many people come looking for cosmetic acupuncture, but return for the health benefits.

Dermot has now introduced Virginia Doran’s Cosmetic Acupuncture treatment protocol at his clinic in Dublin

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