There’s no denying that technology is advancing at a rate of knots, whether it’s the technology in your desktop computer, your cellphone or even your car, it’s difficult to keep up with the advances that are put in place to make our day to day lives that little bit easier.  Whilst we’re well aware of the technology around us, it’s also in our beauty regimen, in our skincare and in our makeup.  From the advanced delivery systems in retinol products to help us slow down the ageing process, to the technology in lipsticks to make them turn from matte to glitter in an instant, our skincare regimes are informed by technology without us even realising.

But did you know, that the aesthetics market have been using technology to analyse and prescribe treatment for years now since the introduction of the first Visia facial scanning machine?  Now on to it’s seventh generation, the Visia machine uses advanced multi-spectral imaging to aid quantitative analysis and visual assessment, all packaged up in one, well, pretty simple looking piece of kit.  The idea is that it’s used to scan an aesthetic patient’s face, in the same way that a diagnostic scanner such as an x-ray or MRI would be used with a medical patient, and diagnose problem areas as well as project future skin appearance, based on the patient’s current presentation.  Clever right?

The Visia Facial scanning assessment machine ready for a patient

I was invited along to Aesthetic Beauty Centre in Newcastle for a complimentary scan.  The machine is a small desktop type set up and like the type of facial scanners you find on beauty counters such as Murad, you put your chin and forehead against set markers.  That’s where the similarity ends.  This equipment is space age, it moves around the subject capturing whichever angles or sides of the face are requested and takes into account nasolabial folds etc. when making its diagnoses.  It flashes three times, which takes around three seconds, before presenting its findings on the screen.

Now this bit, this is both super interesting and super cringe – your face is displayed as eight colour tinged images that display the eight main areas of concern as a visual, a percentage, a graph, or any other way you and your aesthetic doctor wish to view it.  So, what exactly is it scanning for?

SPOTS

Typically brown or red skin marks, distinguishable by the distinct color and contrast from the background skin tone. Spots vary in size and shape, and are normally visible to the naked eye.

WRINKLES

Furrows, folds or creases in the skin that can increase as a result of sun exposure and are associated with a decrease in skin elasticity.

TEXTURE

Raised and depressed areas that indicate variations on the skin surface affecting skin smoothness.

PORES

Circular surface openings of sweat gland ducts. Due to shadowing, enlarged pores appear darker than the surrounding skin tone and are identified by the darker colour and circular shape.

UV SPOTS

The absorption of UV light by epidermal melanin just below the skin surface results in the display and detection of UV spots that can result from sun damage.

BROWN SPOTS

Pigmentation and discolouration on and beneath the surface of the skin.

RED AREAS

Concentrated darker red areas, which may be related to a variety of conditions such as inflammation or spider veins.

PORPHYRINS

Bacterial excretions that can become lodged in pores.

Scary stuff right?  This machine can give you an instant rundown of your own personal problem areas in just three seconds and in eight pictures.  Mine showed that my skin appears slightly older than I actually am and that’s because whilst the number of deep wrinkles I have is lower than someone of my age, my pores, redness and UV spots are higher which fit perfectly with the amount of time I’ve spent in warm climates.

A screenshot of the photographs taken during a Visia Skin Assessment at Aesthetic Beauty Centre in Newcastle, showing pixie Tenenbaum's face close up

Generally speaking the Visia skin Assessment is used as a gateway to sales but at Aesthetic Beauty Centre it’s offered as a standalone service for £80.  Once you’ve had it, you can seek advice on what might be the best approach for you to take to reign in those problem areas.  The theory with Aesthetic beauty Centre is that if you’re booking the Assessment, then you’re already looking to make a change – whether that’s with skincare, a new beauty regime to adopt at home, some level of facial peel, or something more invasive such as an injectable filler or anti-wrinkle agent.

After my Visia Complexion Assessment, Dr Dutta was able to manipulate the photograph using Visia’s inbuilt technology to advance by skin forward in time to show how it could look if I were to do nothing, and to roll it back in time to show what could be achievable with a course of abrasive peels.  The whole thing had me studying the screen with interest, albeit through my fingers.

So what now, well, Visia is not just a prescriptive analysis, but it can also inform your lifestyle moving forward.  For example, considering wearing SPF, or minimising the time you spend in bright sunlight, remembering to stay hydrated and to fully remove your makeup before bed.  It’s a simple way of giving an insight into the future of your skin, and how you, the patient, can act in a preventative manner.  Interesting, scary and informative and it definitely made me really think about my skincare routine in the days following.

Pixie xo

Fancy booking one for yourself?  Call Aesthetic Beauty Centre on 0191 2739339

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