Would You Wear a Second Skin?

It might sound a little gross, by a thin, skin-like coating just might be the best way to achieve a certain effect: tight, youthful looking skin. There's little in the way of current cosmetic procedures (short of surgery) that can actually tighten your skin. This skin coating might be a huge leap forward!

We all know about the popularity of injectables, but how would you feel about a skin coating to eliminate wrinkles? Would you consider coating your face in a thin layer of silicone in order to tighten your skin and make yourself look more youthful? Think about it like this, would you get a second skin put on to make you look younger?

Highlights of This Skin Coating

Because that’s exactly what researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have been working on. This “second skin” is actually a thin piece of a silicone-like substance, and it’s applied right to the skin. To be sure, this product is just now coming out of the testing phases, so it’s likely you haven’t heard of it yet (and won’t until more tests are performed and the product begins a big marketing push).

But there’s a lot of excitement on the horizon, because this “second skin” can address a lot of issues in a way that modern cosmetic and non surgical procedures simply can’t. And that means more options for patients (along with, potentially, some better results).

What Can This Second Skin Do?

When you want to get rid of lines or wrinkles, you might consider a procedure such as Botox or dermal filler injections. But there are limitations to those options. Botox, for example, will only eliminate a specific type of line (associated with muscle groups). And dermal filers can only fill volume. That is, they can’t actually smooth out or tighten skin, they can only present that illusion.

That’s what makes this skin coating somewhat remarkable. According to the MIT researchers who developed it, this “second skin” can actually be put on in such a way that it tightens the skin. That means if you have a certain amount of excess skin—and that’s where your lines and wrinkles are coming from—this can alleviate that.

That’s mostly remarkable because, previously, the only incredibly effective way to eliminate excess skin or to tighten skin was through surgery. Yes, laser and directed energy systems have had some effect, but it won’t be quite as potent as surgery or—perhaps—this new “second skin.”

What is this Second Skin Made Out of?

You’ve probably heard (extensively) about silicone breast implants. Well, the same material, in a way, composes this skin coating. It’s comprised of an exceptionally thin layer of silicone. The thinness here is quite important, because that’s what allows this skin coating to look quite natural—so no one knows you’re wearing it.

There are several ways that this silicone layer could be useful, both cosmetically and medically. Some of those ways include the following:

  • A new form of blepharoplasty! The researchers at MIT looked into using the skin coating as a way to address lines, wrinkles, and excess skin around the eyes. This could be an effective way to perform eyelid lift procedures in the future.
  • Eliminating Lines and Wrinkles: As mentioned above, this skin coating is an exceptional way to get rid of lines and wrinkles because it tightens the skin—and there aren’t a lot of other non surgical options for doing that.
  • Delivering medicine: You know those nicotine patches that help people quit smoking? Well, this new “second skin” could be like that, only way, way better. These coatings could help deliver a wide variety of medicines to body—for both aesthetic and medicinal purposes.
  • Protecting the skin: Finally, these skin coatings might be used to help protect the skin. There are many people who have sensitive skin or skin conditions or who are healing in some fashion, and these barriers could help protect the skin from a wide variety of conditions and concerns.

We’ll Find Out More in the Future

As with many of these cutting edge treatments, it might be awhile before we hear about these “skin coatings” (and trust me, they’ll come up with a much more marketable name) in popular culture. It might be a bit before the celebrity spokespeople.

But innovations such as this are important. They give us some insight into what’s coming down the pipeline—into what we might expect from cosmetic surgery going forward. The fact that this skin coating is a non surgical way to get tighter skin (something that, as I said, is quite difficult to achieve otherwise) further solidifies the excitement factor.

In other words, this is one procedure we’ll definitely be keeping our eye on in the future. A skin coating to eliminate wrinkles might sound too good to be true—but honestly, that’s usually how most of these procedures get their start!

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