Tuesday, 28 April 2015

What You Should Know About Plastic Surgery and Gender Transitioning

If you’ve been keeping up with celebrity news, then you’ve definitely heard about Bruce Jenner’s confirmation that he’s transitioning to life as a woman. Coming out and talking about his personal life is a huge deal, especially considering that trans issues and voices are often under-addressed in the media and public sphere. Jenner’s candidness has put the common struggles transgender people face on a daily basis in the spotlight—it also draws attention to what the process of transitioning and plastic surgery can look like for some transgender people.

The Process of Transitioning

In order to be eligible for gender reassignment surgery, a person has to first be diagnosed with Gender Identity Disorder (GID) by a mental health professional. After diagnosis, the person can begin hormone therapy. Biological females transitioning to male are given androgens. Biological males transitioning to female take estrogen, progesterone and testosterone-blocking agents. These hormones can be taken orally, by injections or through a patch.

The individual must live their life as their preferred gender for a period of time. This is called the Real-Life Experience. One of the purposes of the RLE is to confirm that the person wants to live the rest of their life as their preferred gender.

After one year of hormone therapy, Real-Life Experience and two letters of recommendation from health professionals, the individual is eligible for genital surgery. Not everyone decides to have surgery though; some people are content with the results they get from hormone therapy. For those who do want to pursue surgery, they can have procedures like liposuction, rhinoplasty or vocal cord surgery as part of their transition.

Bruce Jenner confirmed he will be transitioning to life as a woman
Source: Jezebel.com. A photograph of Bruce Jenner
During Jenner’s widely watched interview with Diane Sawyer, he said he plans to get cosmetic surgery to his face and breasts. He also said that he had been taking hormones for a year and a half. Wondering what other plastic surgery procedures transwomen can do? Below are just some of them.


Liposuction can help define areas such as the waist and abdomen. The targeted fat is removed to create a slimmer and more refined hourglass appearance. Non-surgical and surgical liposuction techniques are available.


Cosmetic concerns like bumps, bulbous tips or crooked noses can be addressed through a nose job—this procedure can enhance a person’s overall appearance and facial features. Depending on the case, certain characteristics of the nose can be changed to look more feminine by narrowing the nasal bones and nostrils.

Hair transplants

Hairlines can be moved forward or have a rounded shape through a hair transplantation. If there are areas of thin hair, a hair transplant can be performed to add more density.

Cheek implants

Females tend to have fuller cheeks than males. To achieve this look, cheek implants can be inserted. Fat grafting is another way to enhance cheeks. Fat grafting involves removing fat from an area of the body which is then transferred to the cheeks.

Lip fillers

Fuller, pouty lips are typically considered feminine and attractive. Soft tissue fillers such as Juvederm or Restylane are injected to plump up lips. Fat grafting to the lips is another method of lip enhancement.  

We’re glad to hear that Bruce says he’s never been as happy as he is now. It took a lot of courage to be open about his life, especially in front of millions of people and his family. Hopefully Bruce’s story will continue to encourage more conversation about transgender people and issues. Not everyone will support Bruce, but his honesty and voice at the very least puts these issues on the table to get people thinking. Sometimes just talking about issues is what’s needed to start change.

Friday, 24 April 2015

Get a Free Anti-Aging Package at SpaMedica

Lie down, browse your phone or tablet and lose fat off your body without surgery. Within a few visits, you'll see a noticeable difference in your figure and shape.  These packages are perfect for you if you've got some stubborn fat you can't shed no matter how hard you workout or how well you eat. Not ready or too squeamish for surgery? Then a non-surgical body contouring package is right for you.

Purchase a body contouring package and get a free anti aging package. Be slimmer and get rejuvenated skin just in time for the summer.  Offer expires May 15, 2015.

Get this SpaMedica offer now!

Below are just some of the non-surgical body contouring packages we offer:


This fat reduction treatment uses cold temperatures to kill fat cells in areas of unwanted fat. The device sucks fat into a chamber where the temperatures are then dropped below freezing. The fat cell's temperature drops to the point where the cell disables. It undergoes a permanent death cycle in response to the cold exposure. Up to 22% of the fat cells in the treated area will die. 

BodyFX and UltraShape are often combined during CoolSculpting treatments to enhance your permanent fat reduction. BodyFX is a radiofrequency energy-based treatment, while UltraShape uses focused ultrasound energy to reduce your fat for good.  

Dr. Mulholland says CoolSculpting is the least invasive treatment at SpaMedica's MedSpa. Most CoolSculpting patients see 2-3 centimetres of fat reduction after just one treatment.  


BodyFx treatments use radiofrequency energy for permanent fat reduction and cellulite improvement. The RF energy tightens the skin and high-tech voltage electrical pulses results in permanent death of unwanted fat cells. After combined treatments, patients can expect 2-6 centimetres of permanent fat reduction in the abdomen area. They can also see 3-5 centimetres of fat reduced from the inner and outer thighs.

Why you should choose SpaMedica

SpaMedica has been combating fat with non-invasive treatments for over 10 years. Dr. Mulholland and his team are the most experienced in Canada with combining technologies that gives you visible results in fat reduction and skin tightening. Unlike other centres, SpaMedica offers multiple technologies with your treatments to enhance your fat reduction and skin tightening results.

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

How to Ditch Your Eye Bags for Good

Learn what causes eye bags and what you can do to treat them.

Do you get told that you look tired more often than you like? Blame it on the lack of sleep or long work days. But even if you do get a full eight hours of sleep and you still look far from refreshed, maybe it’s because of your eye bags.

Why do some people have eye bags?

Eye bags are the puffy and sometimes dark pads underneath your eyes. While eye bags can be a temporary issue that goes away after a solid night of sleep, some people have permanent eye bags. Genetics and ageing are the main factors of this cosmetic problem.

When you age, the bone and fat of your face lose volume which all contributes to making you look older. Lower eyelid bags are actually fat and they don’t shrink or enlarge when you age. When you lose those supporting structures and tissue volume in your face, that’s when your eye bags stand out more.

Other causes of eye bags
  •      Stress
  •     Allergies 
  •     A poor diet with high sodium intake
  •     Dehydration
  •      Lack of sleep

Some creams and anti-aging serums can benefit the skin around your eyes—if you choose the right one and use it for a long period of time. The skin around the eyes is the thinnest layer on our bodies, so it’s considered a highly sensitive area that’s prone to accelerated ageing. It’s best to start your eye skincare regime early (such as in your 20s and 30s) as a preventative measure.

Don’t have enough patience to wait around to see results? Then consider soft tissue fillers or surgery such as blepharoplasty. Soft tissue fillers like Restylane add volume to facial tissue to correct wrinkles and loss of volume. Restylane plumps the area around your lower lids to banish the appearance of eye bags. This treatment takes only 15-45 minutes to complete depending on where the filler is injected and how much is required. Results can last from 6 to 9 months.

Before and after photos of a blepharoplasty patient
Source: SpaMedica. Before and after photos of a patient who had blepharoplasty to remove her eye bags.
A permanent solution to treating eye bags is blepharoplasty, also known as eyelid surgery. Your plastic surgeon makes incisions below your lash line and then removes the excess fat and skin. This technique leaves you with no visible scars. After your surgery, the sutures are removed within 4-6 days. You’ll experience some swelling but that goes down gradually and can be covered up with makeup. You can see the final results within a few weeks.

So, you’ve got surgical and non-surgical options to treat your eye bags. Getting rid of your eye bags won’t only make you look years younger, you also won’t be asked if you had any sleep the night before.

Thursday, 16 April 2015

Don't Skimp Out On Laser Hair Removal

Laser hair removal treatments can be risky if performed by inexperienced providers.

Who doesn’t love a good deal? Sales and discounts give you a rush because you feel like you’re saving money on that new shirt or phone you bought. It can sometimes feel like an impulsive reaction to buy something because it's just so cheap compared to other prices you've seen. But think twice about certain things such as unusually cheap non-surgical treatments like laser hair removal, especially at establishments without licensed medical professionals. Sometimes the results could be poor and even dangerous because of the lack of medically licensed or poorly trained staff.

What’s a medi-spa?

Medi-spas offer treatments like laser hair removal, laser tattoo removal and dermal fillers unlike a regular spa. Ideally, medical doctors, aestheticians and nurses should be a part of the staff at medi-spas. Depending on what treatment you’re having, the individual who’s treating you should be well-experienced and licensed to do so at a medi-spa.

The risk of so-called medi-spas

Tons of establishments market themselves as medi-spas with limited (or any) licensed staff on site. This sounds obvious, but the lasers used in laser hair removal treatments are incredibly hot. These powerful lasers can leave burns and scars, especially when they’re operated by inexperienced hands.

It’s sadly common for dermatologists to see patients who suffer from complications after getting laser hair removal treatments from ill-trained individuals.  The Canadian Dermatology Association surveyed doctors across the country and found that “73% of  dermatologists surveyed have treated patients for burns, scars or other wounds sustained after seeking laser treatments.”

The medical aesthetics industry is unregulated

Technically, anyone can legally operate lasers and perform laser hair removal treatments. You don’t have to be a doctor or a dermatologist. You can even buy laser equipments online on Kijiji without any training or credentials. With this loophole, it’s quite simple to make money off of oblivious patients without having real qualifications.

Another issue to consider is that a medi-spa or salon may not have enough lasers that are right for your skin type. Sometimes the laser(s) they have can’t remove all of your hair. According to this article, patients with light skin and dark hair get the most effective laser hair removal results. This Toronto Star article reports that people with dark or tanned skin are at a higher risk of side effects because of the extra pigment in their skin. If the wrong machine is used or the laser’s settings aren’t adjusted, the patient can leave with burns or discoloration.

Get laser hair removal treatments by licensed medical professionals.
Dr. Mulholland at SpaMedica performing a laser hair removal treatment. SpaMedica has multiple lasers and wavelengths.
Your best bet is to visit a centre that has multiple lasers and wavelengths that can be used throughout your treatments. This is important because while one laser can permanently remove some hair follicles, a different laser is needed to remove the rest. Multiple lasers should be used if you want the best results.

Don't be afraid to ask questions

It’s always stressed to do your research before any procedure. Laser hair removal is no exception. It might be tempting to choose an establishment with dirt cheap prices, but don’t let the cost of treatments sway you. Find out if the treatment provider is a licensed doctor, nurse or dermatologist or if there are any on-site. You really don’t want to deal with buyer’s remorse, especially when it can leave you with scars and burns.

Tuesday, 14 April 2015

What’s The Big Deal About Big Boobs?

It’s no brainer to say that we like big boobs and that goes for men, women and everyone in between. Big butts may be the trend lately, but a pair of voluptuous boobs is still unquestionably attractive in the eyes of people around the world, and more specifically in North America. Men just tend to look (or stare) at large breasts. Have you ever wondered exactly why that is though? There’s got to be some scientific reasons as to why men find big boobs so attractive, right?

The average breast size has gotten bigger over the years

Over the last 30 years, the average bra size for women grew from 34B to 34DD. The reasons? A bigger chunk of the population have larger waistlines than before—more than 60% of American women are obese or overweight now. The lingerie company who conducted this bra study also noted that women are now more aware of their bodies and are wearing bras that fit them properly.  We also can’t forget that since breast augmentation is always one of the top procedures performed year after year, that also plays a huge factor in larger breast sizes.

Big breasts indicate a woman’s health and fertility

One reason why big breasts are considered attractive is because they’re indicators of a woman’s health and fertility. This study revealed that a woman’s breast size and waist-to-hip ratio signified her ability to bear and nurture children in the eyes of men. The study’s researchers wanted to find out if women who had big breasts and a narrow waist did in fact have higher chances of reproduction—and their research and results did prove this hypothesis. 

Financial status of men indicates their preference for breast size
How financially well off a man is correlates to what breast size he likes in women.
Financial status of men indicates their preference for breast size

Alright, now we know western men are biologically inclined to be attracted to busty women. Apparently a man’s financial status reveals what breast size he prefers too. In a Psychology Today study, psychologists wanted to see if there was a link between a man’s socioeconomic status and his preference in breast size. Men of different socioeconomic backgrounds were asked to pick what breast size they thought were attractive after watching animated female figures of different breast sizes.

  •  Poorer men preferred large breasts
  • Financially well-off men preferred small breasts

Not everyone goes crazy over big breasts

Everyone prefers different traits and quirks that they find attractive. Some people are into small boobs. Some people like big, bubbly butts. All of that is perfectly fine. Even if there’s a chosen preference, most of the time men can’t help but look at a woman’s big breasts. While they’re not always staring at them, they will definitely notice. Don’t get mad at your boyfriend or husband if you happen to catch up sneaking a peak at big boobs. Now you know there are science-backed reasons as to why men can’t help but look. At least most of the times. 

Friday, 10 April 2015

Pre-Juvenation: Can You Be Too Young For Botox and Fillers?

There’s no such thing as being young forever, but at least you could look like it.

Ageing tends to make people anxious. Fears such as not looking as attractive, desirable or healthy anymore creep in. You’d think that it’s people in their 30s and beyond who make appointments for Botox and dermal fillers to treat and prevent wrinkles, but it’s not only them. People in their 20s and sometimes even younger are choosing to have non-surgical procedures to keep their youthful looks.

This trend is called pre-juvenation; this is where someone prevents the signs of ageing before it even happens. The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery reports that people between the ages of 20-29 accounted for 556,558 non-invasive procedures in 2013. Laser hair removal was the top performed procedure. After that, it’s Botox, microdermabrasion and soft tissue fillers that were the most sought out.

Developing lines and wrinkles is inevitable. But pre-juvenation is the concept of preventing these natural developments from forming in the first place. No doubt, this trend has gotten people divided. Some people think that pre-juvenation is totally fine and a good preventative measure.

For example, Dr. Kenneth Arndt published an article in JAMA Dermatology stating that it’s never too early to use Botox if a person wants to maintain a youthful appearance. Other people, surgeons included, believe pre-juvenation is unnecessary. They think young people shouldn’t be getting Botox before they even see wrinkles because it’s “overkill”.

Dr. Arndt says he doesn’t agree with treating children or teenagers, but he does say it’s reasonable to consider getting Botox treatments when people begin to feel bothered by things such as frown or forehead lines. His reasoning? “It’s easier and more effective to inhibit progression than come in 10 years later and take them away.”

Is pre-juvenation the only way to avoid wrinkles?

Make sure to wear sunscreen to avoid sun damage and wrinkle formation.

Of course, Botox and dermal fillers aren’t the only ways to maintain good, supple looking skin. How you take care of your skin and diet is important too. Wearing sunscreen (SPF 30 or higher) is always stressed to keep your skin protected from sunspots or decrease your chances of developing skin cancer. It’s not only the summertime you should be wearing sunscreen—lather it on all year. Even though the sun’s not blaring through the sky in the winter, you can still get sun damaged skin especially if you do winter sports.  

Facial animation like frowning and smiling also influences wrinkle and line formation. Constant frowning can develop glabella lines, also known as the “11’s” between your eyebrows. If your skin’s been damaged by the sun, you have a higher chance of developing lines. Since sun damage breaks down the skin’s collagen and elastin, your skin thins out, making it difficult to maintain a smooth appearance. 

If the thought of wrinkles terrify you, know that there are plenty of preventative measures you can do. Whether it’s pre-juvenation treatments or maintaining a good skincare regime, you can keep those youthful looks if you really want to.

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Hair Transplants: 4 Surprising Areas Where You Can Get Them

When you think of hair transplants, you probably imagine these procedures happening on the head. That’s not always the case. Hair transplantation can thicken the hair density of a few different areas of the face and body. This surgical technique works by transferring hair follicles from one part of the body (donor site) to an area where there’s a lack of hair (recipient site). So if hair transplants aren’t just restoring heads of thinning hair, where else can they work?


Source: Beautyhigh.com

It’s all about thick eyebrows these days. Remember during the 90s when pencil-thin brows were in? Not so much anymore. Celebrities like Cara Delevingne and Lily Collins are known for their full eyebrows and played major roles in starting the fascination with bold brows.

Some women go in for eyebrow hair transplants because they can’t grow back their hair after years of over-plucking. Others may have medical conditions that lead to thin eyebrows. For most people, though, they’re just looking to change up their eyebrows’ appearance. After all, eyebrows do make a huge difference in framing a person’s face and how old they look.


While some men prefer to have a bare and smooth chest, others are actually looking to get a fuller chest of hair. Men may not be able to grow hair in this area because of genetics or past laser hair removal treatments. Accidents and burns are also culprits that would make hair growth difficult.

So where do these hairs come from to make your chest hair fuller? They come from your scalp. Even though these hairs will be on your chest, they’ll continue to grow like regular hair. You should trim them regularly, unless you’re fine with extremely long chest hair. These hairs remain permanently on your chest after transplantation.


I’m pretty sure you’ve noticed tons of men rocking thick beards around the city. Some of them can just naturally grow thick and even facial hair but not all men are born equal—that’s why facial hair transplants are a big deal right now. This procedure can cost anywhere from $5,000 to $15,000.

It’s a steep price but that doesn’t stop men from gravitating towards it. According to this CBC article, a study conducted by the International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery shows the number of facial hair transplants increased by 9.5% globally from 2010 to 2012.

Pubic region

According to this article, hair restoration to the pubic area is a booming business in South Korea. That’s because pubic hair is considered as a sign of sexual health and fertility. While Brazilian waxes and laser hair removal for pubic hair is super common in North America, Korean women want to transplant the hair from their heads to their lady bits. 

It makes you think twice about cultural norms and expectations of what’s considered sexually attractive, doesn’t it? This 2-4 hour procedure costs a little over $2,000.

Hair really is an important feature for many of us. Some people treat their hair as a reflection of who they are or as a fashion statement. It’s also a deeply personal thing—people may have specific reasons to have or not have hair in certain areas of their bodies. Regardless, it’s fascinating to see that hair transplantation can be done in so many areas of the body today.

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Transform Your Post-Baby Body With A Mommy Makeover

Mommy Makeover Before and After Photos
Source: SpaMedica. This mommy makeover received breast augmentation and energy-assisted liposuction.
Even after having children, plenty of women are healthier than they’ve ever been. They have healthy eating habits and work out a few times a week. Just take a look at celebrities—they’re known to give birth and hop right back into their evening gowns and bikinis almost immediately.

Exercise and a good diet don’t bring back certain things though and a lot of women can attest to that. After giving birth and breastfeeding, a woman’s breasts tend lose volume and shape. Dr. Mulholland, a Toronto plastic surgeon, says breast augmentation is a very popular procedure for women. Many of his breast augmentation patients are women in their 30s who have children. Breast augmentation is the second most performed procedure after liposuction.

Amanda, a woman in her 20s, feels self-conscious of her body after giving birth to her daughter three years ago. She says she was so used to always having a fit body without ever having to workout often. After giving birth, she started feeling insecure about her body. “I didn’t feel as sexy or desirable anymore,” she says.

Amanda exercised regularly for a few years. Even though she’s in good shape, she still feels bothered by some problem areas—her abdomen and love handles. She also says her breasts have lost some volume. To address these concerns, Dr. Mulholland recommends liposuction and breast augmentation. This combination of surgeries performed at once is also known as a mommy makeover.

Mommy Makeover Before and After Photos
Source: SpaMedica. This mommy makeover received liposuction to her tummy and hips.
Dr. Mulholland performs two types of mommy makeovers; a mommy mini and mommy major. Amanda had the mommy mini, which was an operation that took an hour and 15 minutes to complete. Mommy majors are ideal for women who had or plan to have two to three kids. Usually, mommy majors include breast surgery, tummy tucks and liposuction.

Mommy makeovers without tummy tucks performed require about 1-2 weeks of recovery time. If a tummy tuck is needed, then women should expect to have 2-3 weeks of recovery.

Now that a few months have passed after her procedure, Amanda says she’s ecstatic with her appearance. She says those around her have noticed a major change in her personality and sense of humour. Though her looks changed, she says the biggest difference was in her personality and how she presented herself.