Aesthetic Medicine
Aesthetic Medicine



Online searches relating to acne scarring more than doubled since start of pandemic

Tweakments, TikTok’s Glow filter and “resting stress face” are trends that have helped to drive an incredible boom in the UK aesthetics and skincare industries this year, with searches for “skincare” having soared 309% between January 2020 and July 2021.

The Beautified Britain Index: The Skin Report, released by Dr Yusra Al-Mukhtar’s Dr Yusra Clinic, analysed data from Google searches, Google trends, news stories, professional industry bodies, consumer surveys and social media trends to see how Britain is looking at beauty post-pandemic.

The research revealed that consumers are taking their skincare much more seriously, with searches for “aesthetic treatments” and “tweakments” growing by 50% from January 2020 to July 2021, and “best skin care” searches rising 89% in the same period, the report found.

Lip filler, microneedling and chemical peels were the most searched for tweakments, with searches for each increasing by 22% in this period, while searches relating to acne also increased thanks to the rise in “maskne” associated with wearing facial coverings during the pandemic. “Mask acne” searches went up by by 315%.

Interestingly, searches for “acne scarring” rose by 124%, with specific searches for “acne scars” and “how to get rid of acne scars” rising by 124% and 83% respectively.

The data also gave insight into the top 10 tweakments of 2021 so far:

1. Lip fillers (searches up by 22%)

2. Toxin (searches stayed the same)

3. Microneedling (searches up by 22%)

4. Tear trough fillers (searches up by 50%)

5. Chemical peels (searches up by 22%)

6. Dermal fillers (searches up by 22%)

7. “Baby botox” (searches up by 60%)

8. Medical-grade skincare (searches up by 336%)

9. Juvederm fillers (searches up by 60%)

10. Morpheus8 (searches up by 3782%).

Industry celebrates under–18s injectables ban

As of 1 October it became illegal for aesthetic treatment providers in England to give botulinum toxin injections and dermal fillers to under 18s purely for cosmetic reasons, as the Botulinum Toxin and Cosmetic Fillers (Children) Bill came into force. The bill prohibits procedures for under 18s in England if they are for aesthetic purposes and not approved by a doctor. The new law warns clinics and practitioners that they should verify proof of age and that consent from parents or guardians is not a defence.

In cases where a medical need is determined and approved by a doctor, these procedures must only be undertaken by registered health professionals. The Department of Health and Social Care said failure to comply with the law “could result in a criminal prosecution and an unlimited fine”.

It is estimated that around 70,000 under 18s receive botulinum toxin or cosmetic fillers each year, according to the Department for Health.

Health experts have been calling for the UK Government to ban injectables for under 18s since 2019 in light of TV programmes such as Love Island making fillers popular with teenagers. The British College of Aesthetic Medicine (BCAM) is among the aesthetics industry associations and individuals in support of the Bill.

Galderma to develop silk–based dermal fillers

Dermatology and aesthetic injectables company Galderma is to develop new biostimulating fillers based on silk technology. Galderma has entered into an agreement with medical device company Sofregen Medical which works with silk protein for tissue building and regeneration, for the codevelopment and option-to-acquire of the fillers, a new category for Galderma.

Sofregen already has a silk-based biostimulating injectable implant branded as Silk Voice, consisting of purified silk protein sponge particles mixed into cross-linked hyaluronic acid. The company describes the product’s mechanism as such: “The silk particles act as a scaffold and facilitate cellular infiltration; over time, the silk will be enzymatically degraded, replaced by newly generated tissue.

“Pre-clinical studies show that when a suspension of these particles is injected through a small gauge needle, it acts to facilitate durable cellular ingrowth and collagen production, while slowly bioresorbing over time.”

Under the agreement, the companies will each take on specified codevelopment activities related to a portfolio of novel silk-based biostimulator fillers. Galderma will have an exclusive option to acquire Sofregen’s Silk Voice as well as assets associated with its aesthetics business.

This would mean that Galderma would have all rights to the products being co-developed by the parties, as well as ownership of Sofregen’s silk technology platform in the aesthetic and dermatological field. Both companies are keen to bring the products to market as soon as possible.

Almost 50% of Europeans have suffered from a skin condition in the past year

Just under half (47.9%) of all adults in Europe have suffered a skin problem or disease in the past 12 months, according to the European Academy of Dermatology and Venerology’s (EADV) Burden of Skin Diseases in Europe report.

The study, which aimed to gain a better understanding of the prevalence of skin diseases in the general population in Europe, found in its preliminary findings that among 21,401 members of the general population, 47.9% self-reported at least one skin condition but, on average, those people affected declared a median of two skin diseases.

Projecting these figures to the total NEUKS (Norway, European Union, UK, and Switzerland) population of 408 million inhabitants aged 18 years shows that more than 195 million adults in Europe self-reported at least one skin condition.

The most common condition affecting those surveyed was a fungal skin infection, affecting almost one in 10 people (9.07%), the research found. Other conditions affecting more than one in 20 adults were atopic dermatitis (aka eczema) (5.34%), alopecia (5.22%) and acne (5.49%).

The study is the largest undertaken of its kind in Europe, with data collated from 44,689 adults aged 18 and above from 27 European countries (including the UK).

“As the leading European organisation in dermato-venereology, the EADV is taking on an important role in determining the prevalence and impact of skin disease across Europe,” said Marie-Aleth Richard, Professor at the University Hospital of La Timone, Marseille, and the EADV board member leading the survey.

“The fact that one in two people across Europe live with skin disease on a daily basis makes the skin the most affected organ in the body and as an organisation we are therefore committed to making skin disease a public health priority.”

Salicylic acid named most popular beauty ingredient of 2021

Salicylic acid is the most searched-for beauty ingredient of 2021, with 73,000 monthly searches, according to new research by cosmetics brand New Nordic.

The research assessed search volume data of 30 popular beauty ingredients from the past year to reveal the top 10 most searched for, with the exfoliating acid coming top. Salicylic acid dissolves dead skin cells, revealing a smoother and clearer complexion, as well as keeping pores clear and reducing acne, even helping to prevent future breakouts.

Hyaluronic acid came in second place with 64,000 monthly searches for the skinplumping and hydrating ingredient. It has anti-wrinkle properties, helping to reduce the appearance of wrinkles and preventing new lines from developing. Niacinamide, a form of Vitamin B3, took third place with 59,000 searches. The ingredient can help build proteins in the skin and lock in moisture to prevent environmental damage, minimising the appearance of pores, fine lines, and wrinkles, as well as redness.

Collagen placed fourth in the ranking and retinol, a derivative of vitamin A, finished the top five with 50,000 monthly searches, the report found. The rise in ingredient searches comes as consumers turn to simple products to make a big impact on their skincare routine, as minimalist skincare – aka “skinimalism”– grows in popularity.

Implantable fish–skin graft developed for soft tissue repair

Kerecis, a company that specialises in developing fish skin and fatty acid solutions in cellular therapy, tissue regeneration and protection, has created the first ever implantable medical fish-skin graft for surgery which can be used to reinforce soft tissue. The Kerecis Omega3 SurgiBind is indicated for implantation to reinforce soft tissue where weakness exists, especially for patients requiring soft tissue repair or reinforcement in plastic or reconstructive surgery.

Kerecis’s Omega3 intact fish skin, when grafted onto damaged human tissue, recruits the body’s own cells and is converted into living tissue. The company says because no disease-transfer risk exists between cold-water fish and humans, the fish skin is only gently processed, retaining its similarity to human tissue. This gentle processing preserves the skin’s original three-dimensional structure, with its inherent natural strength, complexity, and molecules maintained.

The aim of the product is to help practitioners better manage the risk of complications and improve outcomes, with the fish-skin technology providing rapid incorporation and cell ingrowth, accelerated neovascularisation and faster wound closure, which all speed up full tissue remodelling.

The company has received authorisation from the FDA to market the product in the US. Kerecis founder and chief executive Fertram Sigurjonsson said: “This new product re-enforces our entry into the surgical market and demonstrates that the benefits of our technology extend beyond treating severe wounds and preventing amputations.”


BAS to hold online workshop

The British Association of Sclerotherapists (BAS) will hold an online sclerotherapy workshop on 13 November. The workshop will be led by consultant vascular surgeon Mr Phillip Coleridge Smith, who will stream live treatment demonstrations of foam sclerotherapy and micro-sclerotherapy, and answer questions from the panel and audience. The event is open to members and non-members. For more information: events

4T Medical pushes environmentally–friendly initiatives

Medical aesthetics supplier 4T Medical has been certified as a Carbon Neutral Plus Organisation by independent body Carbon Footprint for the third year running. Through the purchase of carbon offsets, 4T Medical will offset 153 tonnes of CO2 produced by the company’s dealings. This year’s contribution will help fund the REDD project which aims to help reduce deforestation in the Amazonian Rainforest in Brazil, as well as planting trees in the UK and Kenya. 4T Medical has also put in place various initiatives such as efficiency measures, reduction of single-use plastics, carbon-neutral couriers and more.

Dr Aamer Khan publishes book

Dr Aamer Khan, clinical director at The Harley Street Skin Clinic, has published a book with publisher Routledge. Regenerative Medicine in Aesthetic Treatments: Stem Cells, Stromal Vascular Fraction, Platelet Rich Plasma, and Platelet Rich Fibrin is a 151-page book covering the use of regenerative medicine to reverse the ageing of tissues and repair scarring and documents the procedures and results for patients.

Lisa Franklin launches members–only community

Lisa Franklin, facialist and founder of the eponymous skincare brand, has launched a members-only virtual area on her website for her high-net-worth clients. The House of LF aims to become a beauty community for Lisa’s clients and brings together exclusive discounts and access across luxury beauty, fashion and wellness brands.

Dermatology market to reach £5.12bn by 2028

The global dermatology market is expected to reach a value of $7.04 billion (£5.12bn) by 2028, driven by demand for topical medications.

Research by analyst Grand View Research predicts that the market will expand at a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 6.9% between 2021 and 2028.

A rise in consumer interest in dermatological medications, such as antiinflammatory agents, anti-infective, local anaesthetics, cleansers, and emollients to treat acne is a major factor driving spend. Additionally, an increased awareness of skin diseases, demand for fast diagnosis, and a rise in cases of skin cancer and other skin problems are all driving growth, according to the report.

Clinical monitoring accounted for the largest revenue share of dermatological services in 2020, figures showed. This was due to an increase in the number of clinical trials and the need to monitor those trials efficiently.

Cosmetic doctor creates new practice-management software

Cosmetic doctor Dr Askari Townshend has designed and launched a new clinic software system, having been disappointed with other practice-management systems. Collums is a cloud-based system designed by Dr Askari and developed by the person behind supermarket Waitrose’s online shopping platform.

Having struggled to find clinic software that was designed specifically for aesthetic practitioners and was simple to use, Dr Askari said he decided to create his own system. Collums features electronic notes and consent forms, full payment integration via Square to enable card-less checkout and online booking.

Square payment integration means clinics can use a wireless card terminal to accept all cards and Apple/ Google Pay payments, removing the need for daily reconciliation. It also saves patients’ card details at the point of booking to protect against loss of payment from no-shows.

“My old software was difficult to use and complicated –I was spending too much of my time troubleshooting software problems rather than focusing on my patients and business. The only way to get the kind of software I needed was to use my experience and build it myself, said Dr Askari.

“I’ve designed Collums with a focus on simplicity – user journeys are quick and intuitive, reducing the cost and time of training and user errors. It means that practitioners can get back to doing what they do best – looking after their patients.”

The software has been developed and tested over two-and-a-half-years, with Dr Askari trialling it in his own clinic Askinology in London. Dr Nestor Demosthenous has also signed up to use Collums at Dr Nestor’s Medical Cosmetic Centre in Edinburgh.


Cutera hires two new team members

Aesthetic technology manufacturer Cutera has taken on two new members of staff as it continues its investment in the UK market. Samantha Strydom, who has 10 years’ industry experience in aesthetic lasers, has joined as practice development manager, while Mat Lane is a new territory manager. His background is in business development.

Smart Ideas in–person event back for 2021

Consulting Room’s Smart Ideas event will return on 13 November. The business event for aesthetic clinics will feature workshops on business strategy, risk management and sales and marketing.

The event will also run one-to-ones with business leaders and an exhibition with market-leading suppliers. To register:

Omniya launches online skincare store

London health and aesthetics clinic Omniya Clinic has launched an online luxury skincare store. Brands include Dr Levy Switzerland, Heliocare, iS Clinical, Obagi, Skinceuticals and ZO Skin Health. Nicola Liberos, aesthetic nurse practitioner at Omniya, added: “We’ve partnered with some of the most wellrespected brands in skincare, each of which offer products for specific rare and common skin concerns.”

Lynton arrives in New Zealand

Lynton has announced House of Camille as its exclusive distributor for New Zealand. Steven Newell, export manager for Lynton, commented, “House of Camille are a great fit as a Lynton distributor as they share similar values for clinical excellence, safety, and quality. We can’t wait to see the Lynton flag flying high in New Zealand.”

Marion Gluck Training Academy re-introduces in–person training

The Marion Gluck Training Academy has announced the return of its in-person training courses on bio-identical hormone replenishment therapy for prescribing medical practitioners. Introduction to BHRT will take place at London East Business & Technical Park-UK in Essex on November 26, while Developing Your Knowledge will take place at The Royal Society of Medicine on 21 November.

This article appears in the November/December 2021 Issue of Aesthetic Medicine

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This article appears in the November/December 2021 Issue of Aesthetic Medicine