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Derm Devices: Taking Antiaging In Hand

By: Leslie Benson
Posted: April 2, 2008, from the April 2008 issue of GCI Magazine.

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Elaine Sauer, corporate spa director of Red Door Spa Holdings, saw the potential retail value of home-use devices. She toyed with the idea of selling clients such equipment at the Mario Tricoci Hair Salons and Day Spas she oversees, but finally, she opted against it.

“More people are managing some of their routines at home with personal equipment—from the Zeno to Wellbox—but like everything, the human hand does so much more for rejuvenation and draining stagnation from the face,” Sauer says. “I can’t imagine that facials will ever be replaced with these new avenues. The human touch is irreplaceable.”

With the medical avenue of injectables changing the face of the skin care business, estheticians like Sauer are taking notice. “Since Botox was approved for antiaging officially a few years back, I am noticing products being available via e-commerce and through various avenues today,” Sauer says. “There’s such an awareness of people wanting to remain youthful. Even people in their twenties and thirties are having Botox! We tend to think women use more products—and they do—but they want multifunctional products. Men feel the same way.”

It’s no wonder, says Fields, that hair removal and hair growth laser treatments are rising in popularity in the device category. “They can be costly,” says Field s, “but there are no sterile parts, so you can give them to others to use. Some of these devices can be used by the whole family.”

Unlike the natural and organic personal care market, over which industry professionals are debating standards of certification, not all cosmetic device manufacturers have pursued government-regulated approval or clearance. However, in the case of products considered to not pose significant risk to the general public by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), some companies believe such clearance is unnecessary.