"Cosmetic acupuncture is a great natural way for women to rejuvenate their skin. It's specifically for women who don't really want to go under the knife yet, or under the syringe for that matter," said licensed acupuncturist Kathleen S. Funk.
More and more people are taking a stab at this ancient Chinese medicine.
"Cosmetic acupuncture works by bringing more blood circulation and nutrients into spots in your face," said Funk. "When a person has wrinkles, you have two furrows that come up and so the wrinkle is right in the middle. When we insert a needle in the middle of the furrow, we're actually targeting the body to produce collagen, naturally produce collagen in that wrinkle, and the collagen will actually fill up the furrow and it smooths out the wrinkle."
Funk says one treatment costs from $150-$300, depending where you go, but she says make sure it's a licensed acupuncturist.
If you're not so sure about needles on your face, Funk explained to us how the process works.
First, she gives her clients an herbal tea that actually helps the skin, helps plump it up, and helps clear the complexion. Next, she does a full diagnosis intake to determine the right procedure. Each treatment is unique and tailored to that person's needs.
Next, she does a cleansing poultice, which is an anti-aging mask with Chinese herbs unique for the patient. This helps smooth out the skin and clear out the pores.
Then, Kathleen does body point acupuncture on the hands, legs, or belly. She moves to the face for acupuncture next. She leaves the needles in for about 20 minutes to allow the body to adjust, then removes them.
Next, Funk uses jade rollers to massage upwards from the neck to the top of the head to induce lymphatic drainage. She applies pearl powder after that. Crushed pearl is a Chinese herb that's been used since ancient times. It clears heat, regenerates the skin, and gives a natural glow. The whole process takes about 45 minutes to one hour.
Kathleen says you don't have to have wrinkles to get an acupuncture facial - the treatment can have a preventative effect as well.
So, is cosmetic acupuncture better than Botox?
"Well, I can't actually say it's better than Botox, but it has a different effect," said Funk. "With Botox, you're actually deadening the muscles. What we want to do is increase the lifting action of the muscles."
What does the treatment feel like?
"It was really relaxing," says Kim Taurins, one of Funk's clients. "It was a total body experience. The needles in the face I assume were really small because I didn't feel them going in at all. I'm really looking forward to my next session."
And the results?
"My face felt brighter and clearer. People were commenting on my skin," said Taurins.
For more from Kathleen Funk and Tre Spa Salon, visit trespasalon.com.