Dr. Jeffrey Spiegel, M.D. FACS is a world renowned facial plastic surgeon specializing in advanced facial plastic surgery. Headquartered in Boston, Dr. Spiegel sees patients from around the world who come for the most safe, effective, and beautiful facial plastic surgery available anywhere.
Dr. Jeffry Spiegel, Chief of the Division of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Boston University Medical Center, offers a full spectrum of cosmetic and reconstructive treatments including facelift, eyelift, nose surgery, facial surgery, and more.
Dr. Spiegel is double board certified by the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery and the American Board of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery. He is the director of an academy accredited facial plastic surgery fellowship and professor at Boston University School of Medicine.
FutureDerm (FD): At what age should a woman start thinking about cosmetic procedures if her goal is to stay young-looking?
Dr. Jeffrey Spiegel (JS): It depends on a number of things. First of all, everyone from birth should be thinking about good skin care. So, wearing sunscreen whenever you’re out in the sun when you’re young and certainly as you get older every day. You ahve to wear the right kind of sunscreen — the mechanical ones, we like those better than the chemical ones. So we try to avoid any of the sunscreens that have “-nzines” or any kind of toxic chemical in it, and go for what are called mineral sunscreens, which are largely based on either titanium dioxide or zinc oxide. Those are very good for your skin and they block the sun. The right kind of moisturizers and alpha-hydroxy acids and things like that are also important to start. You know, as soon as you become old enough to start paying attention to your parents, that’s the time to do it.
FD: What are the best over-lunch cosmetic procedures?
JS: Depending on what the area of interest is. There’s a number of things. We have chemical peels that one can do over lunchtime that will brighten your skin and help build collagen. Those work very nicely. Somebody could certainly get Botox™ or fillers done without any problems, although with the exception that a filler to the lips will give you some swelling that’s probably better at the end of work than for lunch time. But anywhere else, that’s an easy thing to do. We also have a number of kind of laser treatments that can be done that will leave you just slightly red-looking in the immediate, which a little cosmetics can cover.
FD: What procedures do you recommend to young women looking to maintain a youthful appearance?
JS: It’s actually going to be fillers and the ones we said at the top. To be youthful, there’s a number of areas we look at:
- You want to have heathly skin tone, so you’re going to have skin care products are lasers that are helpful.
- You want to be wrinkle free. So, if you’re starting to see them on your forehead or around your eyes, Botox™ doesn’t just treat that, it prevents further wrinkles. It’s the kind of thing to start thinking about early. It might seem like you’re doing it too early if you’re doing Botox™ in your 20s, but it’s better to prevent those lines than get into your 30s and later and start chasing to get rid of them.
FD: What procedures do you recommend to someone who does have the fine lines and wrinkles and skin damage that they’re looking to fix?
JS: To reverse damage, we have to build back some of the collagen that’s been lost and prevent further injury. So preventing further injury: Get those sunscreens going and see your local facial plastic surgery about the right kinds of products, the right kinds of moisturizers, and the kinds of peels and things like that to get your skin better. This is the kind of time when some of the lasers can work very well. There are fractionated lasers like the Emerge laser, like the Palomar laser — this is a very good laser that puts laser energy into the skin, builds collagen, gets rid of age spots, really brightens the skin. We see people come in who are in their 30s and 40s and people think their skin looks as good as it did in high school.
FD: There are some overlooked places on the face and body that keep women looking older, even when they’re skin looks good. What are those places?
JS: There definite are. One of them, let me give you an example, is the front of your cheeks. If you can touch the bottom of your eye socket and find a flat spot on your cheek when you move forward instead of having it be nice and curved and round, that’s an area that shows age and makes you look older. Similarly, if you’re a woman, if your upper teeth aren’t showing when you open your mouth, if your lip is covering your upper teeth, that’s a sign of aging. Both of those things are signs of aging, signs of looking sort of masculine, signs of being less attractive, and they’re both very easily addressed.
FD: What would you recommend to address those issues?
JS: For the cheek issue, you can do something as easy as an over-the-counter filler. We have products like Juvéderm® and Restalyne® and Radiasse® and Scuptura® and these are in most cosmetic surgeons’ offices and these can be injected into the area to really restore youthful radiance. But you have to find someone who really knows how to do it, because it can also look kind of cheeky and unnatural. This is about looking just completely refreshed.
And then for the lip, there are ways of shortening the upper lip. There’s a very small office procedure that we’ve sort of authorized, and with just a few minutes in the office, you can leave with a very youthful and attractive and sexy mouth. You’ll have stitches that are visible for a few days, so that’s definitely not a lunchtime kind of procedure, but you’ll feel fine, and if you’re the kind of person who can work from how, you won’t miss a beat.
FD: Plastic surgery seems to have a stigma in the media. What’s your opinion on that?
JS: You know, I think people like extremes. So the media likes extremes. The media wants to find the world’s fattest man or the world’s shortest woman, the world’s biggest dog. And there are people who kind of do anything to extreme.
Everyone knows that exercise is good for you, but you can exercise to extremes and become overly large, overly muscular or overly thin and emaciated-looking if you’re a runner. People can over-do things and it’s the same with any kind of aesthetic procedure. Just like you can overdose on chocolate, you can overdo these things. So, you have to be the kind of person who finds a reputable person who’s board certified, someone who’s very good at facial plastic surgery, and make sure that the person you’re seeing is going to help guide you in what you’re doing. So, because the extremes are so tantalizing for us to look at, regardless of what it is, the extremes of plastic surgery sometimes find their way into the media.
The important thing to realize is that it’s only people who’ve had things done to extremes or poorly that you can see. There are far, far, far more people walking around who’ve had procedures done that went well, and you don’t even know anything was every done.
FD: What else would you like to tell readers?
FS: I think there are two take-home messages:
- One is don’t skimp. You need to take care of yourself to look your best. And so that means using the right products, taking advantage of technology, and seeing the right people starting early. It’s the same with anything else. You don’t want to be trying to lose 100 lbs and get back in shape, it’s better just to stay in shape. And certainly you can find someone to help you lose those 100 lbs, but you’re going to be happier if you never had to do it.
- The other thing is to take advantage of the experts around you. There are facial plastic surgeons who are well qualified in most communities, so just find someone and go in for a consultation. It’s very inexpensive, and you see your dentist twice a year, you might as well see your plastic surgeon twice a year and get a check up to look at “What can I do to make sure I keep looking my best?”