Last week I was lucky enough to be offered a chance to try out a new skin treatment called ‘Jet Peel’. I thought the name sounded awfully painful, like some sort of turbo charged jet engine filled with acid. Obviously thinking that made me a tad hesitant on whether to give it a go or not. Luckily my shallowness kicked in and told me to go for it.
The Jet Peel procedure is currently run only at the Paramedical Skin Clinic at their two locations in Melbourne, so I booked a ticket and jumped on a plane. I really didn’t know what I was in for but I wasn’t too concerned as it had been described as quick and painless, just what I like.
I was told there was nothing I needed to do before hand to prep my skin so I just arrived with clean skin and no make-up just in case. My treatment was being done at the Thornbury clinic and I arrived a little early because I really had no idea where Thornbury was (always better to be early than late, I say). The clinic itself was very clean and open, it had tranquil background music playing and there was lots of holistic books and trinkets around the reception area. The staff were very friendly and didn’t seem to mind that I was borrowing their couch to sleep on for 15 minutes (sorry bout that, guess I was jet lagged from that 1hr flight down from Sydney).
When my appointment time came around the beautiful owner Illesha Haywood greeted me and took me into her office for a consultation. I couldn’t help but stare at her because she looked so youthful!
Illesha explained to me that a Jet Peel combines medical grade microdermabrasion with a super powerful jet stream. The jet stream boosts the already positive effects of microdermabrasion by getting into the pores and cleaning away dead skin cells, plus it also hydrates the skin. Before I went in to begin the treatment we had to get the hideous ‘before’ shots out of the way. I tried my best to take some photos on my camera but due to the gloomy weather and me not knowing how to use my new camera properly I lucked out. Once the close-up pics were taken, Illesha analyzed my skin and asked what skin concerns I have. For me my biggest concern is aging so anything preventative is great with me, but I also have my very noticeable dark circles under my eyes and multi-toned patchy skin. Something I didn’t mention to her (because it wasn’t what I was mainly concerned about) was that until a couple years ago I had distinguishably ‘puffy’ cheeks. My skin was plump and my cheekbones were razor sharp.
After Illesha looked at my eye area closely she asked if I had recently experienced dramatic weight loss. I was shocked. You see, 2009 was a tough year for me and it showed by me dropping almost half my body weight to weigh in at a rather slim 36kg (I am only 5″1 so I didn’t look that bad!). At that time my face definitely looked a little different but I didn’t think I had lost that much weight from my face. So how did she know? Illesha told me that the muscle that runs along the top of the cheekbone had dropped dramatically, something that you usually see in people with eating disorders and it gives them that gaunt, tired look. Having Illesha point it out really made me see exactly what it was that had changed my face so much, and even though I have put back on 20kg it doesn’t make a difference to a dropped muscle. Bugger!
Illesha advised me that regular treatments like the Jet Peel and other collagen builders will help to make that area look fuller again but it will never be what it was. Once the damage is done it can’t be fixed. I guess we should all take that as a warning if you are considering dramatic weight loss!
After all this education and chatting, Illesha had a beauty technician take me into the treatment room to begin. My face was cleansed twice and I was told we would be starting on my forehead, which has been known to cause a brain freeze. I thought to myself that sounds very strange but whatever, I am here now! When the nozzle touched my skin it felt like a rod of ice was being dragged across my forehead. At first it was cold but totally bearable. As it moved down my face certain areas, such as the under eyes, were way more sensitive and the cold sensation felt like it was freezing my eyeballs. When it came to the lower half of my face I had the weirdest sensation that caused me to feel like I was drowning from cold air. I put this down to the fact that the water coming out is so cold and being blown at such a speed that my mind was playing a trick on me and not realising the water was actually being sucked up another tube at the same speed. Ok that was confusing and yes, I am mental.
I only had my face done which doesn’t include the neck or décolletage area, so it took about 40mins. Afterwards I felt pretty cold (lasted about 10 mins) but also refreshed and far more awake then I was when I arrived. I have been a long time fan of microdermabrasion and started using it in my early teens, but at times I found it to be drying due to the crystals soaking up a bit too much oil from my skin. There was no evidence of this happening with the Jet Peel and my skin felt plump and smooth.
Illesha then took me back to her office for some ‘after’ shots and to analyze my skin again. Looking front on we both felt there was a small but noticeable improvement around the jawline and cheekbones. I was also shown the different layers of my skin using a special camera (I wish I had those photo’s!!). It showed that my skin is heavily pigmented and I have lots and lots of sun spots beneath the surface just waiting to erupt. On the plus side I had no capillaries which means I don’t have to worry about redness or those weird red lines showing up, for now. The treatment also toned down the blemishes and mozzie bites giving my skin a less ‘messy’ look.
Now, one week later, my skin is still smooth and I feel it has been more hydrated than usual. I don’t drink water (at all!) so I really notice hydration levels in my skin.
Obviously this sort of treatment works best on a course of 6 or more, even though a single treatment can show results, you want to get the most out of it and continual treatments is the best way. I am going to try and get back to Melbourne on a semi-regular basis so I can keep up these treatments because I feel it has been worth it.
AU $720 per treatment
Available at Paramedical Skin Clinic South Yarra (ph +613 9827 1255) or Thornbury (ph +613 9480 0166).
Disclaimer: This treatment was provided for consideration. All thoughts, opinions and expressions are my own and remain uninfluenced by any other party.
UPDATE – 8 JUNE 2012: If you saw this story on Channel 7’s Today Tonight, please make sure you read my updated post about how they falsified evidence.