What is the Vampire Facial
Microneedling is the insertion of very fine short needles into the skin. This causes controlled micro-injuries that stimulate the body’s natural wound healing process. The micro-injuries trigger the release of cytokines and growth factors that lead to remodeling of collagen and elastin.
PRP stands for Platelet Rich Plasma. Platelets are key factors in hard and soft tissue repair mechanisms. They provide the essential growth factors that are involved in stem cell migration, differentiation and proliferation. The stimulation of fibroblasts and endothelial cells induces new extracellular matrix deposition and neo-vascularization. Plasma is essential for cell survival as it contains nutrients, vitamins, hormones, electrolytes and proteins. Proteins are key molecules for the coagulation process and the formation of the fibrin polymer that will serve as a scaffold for cell migration, differentiation and proliferation. In short, PRP is an energy boost for our skin.
By combining microneedling and PRP into one procedure new collagen, new blood vessels, and new fatty tissue are produced trying to “repair” the skin that was never injured! This results in younger-appearing skin. The effects of the procedure improve for 2 to 3 months.
1. Growth factors are isolated from the patient’s blood. This done by drawing your blood from your arm (just like getting a blood test done). Then, using a centrifuge, the platelets are isolated from that blood creating platelet-rich plasma or PRP
2. A micro-needling device to create multiple micro-punctures –both driving the isolated growth factors into the skin & creating stimulus for tightening and rejuvenation of the collagen of the face. The growth factors stimulate skin stem celling into thinking there’s been an injury so new younger tissue is generated.
3. The growth factors are painted onto the micro-punctures so that the growth factors soak into the tissue for further stimulation of tightening and skin rejuvenation. The skin tightens, and glows with color, and scaring softens for a beautiful younger and very natural result.
You’ve probably seen the photos on Instagram: A celebrity or influencer’s face covered with a tinge of blood. No, it’s not Halloween makeup, it’s actually an effective trend in skincare, known as a “vampire facial.” Celebrities, including Kim Kardashian West and Bar Refaeli, are fans of the facial, which might look quite scary, but boasts big-time results.
So, what is it and how does it work, exactly? Don’t let the name fool you. In fact, it’s usually done in full light of day. In all seriousness, the treatment is a combination of a microdermabrasion, followed by the application of PRP (platelet-rich plasma). The PRP is derived from the serum portion of the blood, which contains platelets. The platelets contain high levels of growth factors, which, when applied to the skin, will stimulate cell turnover.
In laymen’s terms: It’s a facial that essentially uses, “your own blood to help promote the healthy activity of your skin cells,” says Joshua Zeichner, the director of cosmetic and clinical research in dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. Our blood is comprised of red blood cells and serum, which contain our white blood cells and platelets.
Platelets, Zeichner explains, are rich in growth factors, which essentially act as energy boots for our skin. This helps our skin function optimally, increasing everything from collagen to elastin, while also bringing antioxidant and hydrating properties. “Platelet-rich plasma is now commonly used topically as part of a regular facial, used along with microneedling to enhance penetration into the skin, and is even being injected into the skin in the same manner as dermal fillers,” says Zeichner.
Sound serious? The treatment begins with a blood draw to obtain the blood. But, contrary to popular belief, it’s relatively painless — aside from the first needle pinch.
Typically, the process includes the initial blood draw, then running the blood through a centrifuge to isolate the platelets. You’ll then receive microneedling just before your PRPs are applied. “It sounds gory and mysterious, but in fact, it is central to our evolving understanding of the physiology of the skin and advanced techniques with which to improve the quality of the skin,” says Ava Shamban, Beverly Hills based Dermatologist.
As for recovery, it might take a day or two of downtime before you’re ready to hit the streets. Shamban says recipients may need one or two days, depending on how aggressive the microneedling was on your skin. You’ll emerge from treatment a bit red, almost like a sunburn, which means post-procedure sunscreen is highly recommended. Applying makeup, though, is discouraged.
Are you a candidate?
Most likely, says Shamban. Those with “premature wrinkles, high levels of solar damage, or anyone who wants an even tone and fresher appearance to their skin,” is an ideal candidate for the procedure, she says. However, Zeichner warns that if you have a history of blood diseases, including clotting or bleeding disorders, you should not seek PRP treatment.
As far as risks go, there aren’t many. In fact, Shamban explained that the only risk you really run is bruising at the time of the blood draw. Aside from the discomfort of a blood draw and bruising from injection or microneedling, Zeichner says the vampire facial is “extremely safe, as it is your body’s own blood being recycled.”
How much does it cost?
The cost of the Vampire Facial is $800 or 3 for $2000.
PRP is Platelet Rich Plasma used to create a dermal filling re-volumizer from your own body, so it’s all-natural, and will never give you an unnatural looking result and is virtually rejection proof.
Some results are visible immediately, but full re-volumization takes 6-8 weeks and lasts 1-3 years.
PRP isolates and activates multipotent stem cells to regenerate tissue from the inside out.
It will also make new collagen, elastin, and create new blood flow and volume — which all improve the quality and youthful appearance of the skin.
PRP is commonly used in orthopedics and surgery to cause stem cell animation, damaged soft tissue regeneration, and to speed healing. In this instance, PRP is injected or applied to cause stem cell animation that will target cells damaged by aging, sun, and environmental factors, causing the area to be recreated from the inside out — leaving skin lifted, more taut, healthier-looking, rehydrated, and with beautifully fresh NEW collagen.
Stem Cell activation via PRP is not just problem management as with most dermal fillers and Botox — it’s actual regeneration. It’s damage-targeting, smart-release of highly concentrated growth factors for guided tissue regeneration that corrects the root cause of skin defects, not just the symptoms.
PRP can be used to treat: