NEW ORLEANS -- Some people stay away from skin treatments because they don't like needles, or don't want to look like they've had work done.
Now there's a treatment dermatologists can use that improves damaged skin with no bruising or down time.
Lisa Ludwig makes sure her fair skin is the best it can be with topical serums and creams, but so far she's drawn the line at having invasive procedures.
"I don't mind looking my age, but I like to look as good as possible," said Ludwig, 56.
But now her dermatologist, Dr. Mary Lupo, has suggested she try something recent to the market. It does not involve injections, but there are very tiny, gold needles.
"I really don't want to have any down time, and I think if it's just sort of like a facial, that sounds great to me," said Ludwig.
It's called AQUAGOLD fine touch. The doctor mixes a custom formula of products designed to go under the skin, such as hyaluronic acid, which are those natural fillers that plump up the face and wrinkles, along with a Botox-type ingredient. It's loaded into the vial, then quickly pushed into the skin through short, hollow, gold needles.
"We use the AQUAGOLD system primarily for texture and fine lines, large pores and overall, it's sort of like a mega, mega, mega, facial," said Dr. Lupo, a board certified dermatologist in New Orleans.
There is little or no down time after the procedure, maybe just a little redness, but no bruising or chance of a frozen muscle look.
Patients see an overall glow or rejuvenation for a few months.
"When you use the Botox in these smaller levels at the surface of the skin, where it's not getting anywhere near a muscle, it improves the size of the pores. It shrinks the pores, it decreases redness over time. Botulinum toxin decreases pore size over time. There's improvement with acne," Dr. Lupo said.
It can be used in older patients along with injections of fillers and Botox, or in young patients who need nothing else.
"This is great for the needle-phobic patient who only has fine lines and maybe doesn't have the time to do laser, or they want to do it in addition to a laser," said Dr. Lupo.
Lisa's cousins who live in Atlanta and Austin tried AQUAGOLD and told her she should too.
"They've said the results have been fantastic. It just gave them, reduced the fine lines," Ludwig said.
It's a procedure that can be done a few times a year to get accumulative improvement.
"I'm a believer to do less at more frequent intervals than to do a lot less frequently, because I believe when you do less at more frequent intervals, you get a more natural result. Period," said Dr. Lupo.
AQUAGOLD costs around $625 for the entire face. The only restriction after the procedure is that you can't wash your face for three to four hours.