We’ve talked a little bit about what you can do while you can’t get Botox during social distancing. We wanted to follow up by sharing Elizabeth’s expert, insider tips for the full range of treatments we can’t currently access. We hope these will help you out for the time being, and that you’ll be able to keep them in your back pocket in the future if you ever need to travel or spend time away from your usual medical aesthetics provider.
The Best Dupes for Botox
“Botox is a miracle,” Elizabeth told The Kit. We couldn’t agree more. The downside is, we can’t replicate a miracle, we can really only emulate it.
Elizabeth’s top recommendation: combine vitamin C, like Miracle 10’s Super C, with AHA cream or AHA gel. Once you’ve applied that, you can layer your retinol treatment on top for a supercharged effect. But don’t start with this right away if you haven’t been using these products before. You want to work your way up slowly and introduce them individually. When you’re ready to layer these products, you only want to do so once a twice a week for optimal results.
The Best Dupes for Dermal Fillers
Fillers for lips and skin have the same key ingredient: hyaluronic acid. It holds as much as 1,000 times its weight in water (😮) which is what creates its plumping, filling effect. Elizabeth explains that’s also what makes it an awesome skincare ingredient, drawing moisture and a similar plumped look to your skin. For a deluxe option, try Face Lift, which not only contains this key ingredient, but is also loaded with a proprietary peptide combination shown to stimulate skin’s production of collagen, elastin and, you got it, hyaluronic acid.
If you’re looking for less luxe night cream that still packs a hydrating punch, check out Night. It contains hyaluronic acid and helps to seal in moisture and vital skin nutrients while you sleep.
The Best Dupes for Microdermabrasion or Microneedling
Elizabeth has a warning about at-home versions of the tool, which is something you might see advertised on Instagram or elsewhere. She told The Kit: “From what we’ve seen, these tools are scratching the skin—they’re not doing those controlled pin-pricks. You might as well just scrape your skin with sandpaper as far as I’m concerned.”
These treatments are popular in the clinic because they stimulate collagen and elastin production by triggering the skin’s healing process. But you can create a similar effect with a good chemical exfoliant, like retinol, without damaging it with unnecessary and painful abrasions. If you’re not using it already, start slowly with a lower concentration at once or twice a week and work your way up to every other evening. Over time you can increase the strength of the product, but remember that it’s a marathon, not a sprint.
The Best Dupes for IPL Laser Treatments
If you like IPL treatments because you’re targeting hyperpigmentation, brown spots, acne scarring or uneven skin tone, there are two products you can use to treat the same concerns. Once again, skincare all stars vitamin C and retinol work wonders.
To prevent additional hyperpigmentation and brown spots from forming, you should also look for a sunscreen with an SPF of 30 to wear every day, even indoors and even if it’s cloudy. Wearing a hat on a sunny day will also work wonders.
The Best Dupes for Chemical Peels
Elizabeth suggests combining a chemical exfoliant with a mechanical exfoliant to get the best result. Chemical exfoliants like alpha hydroxy acids (glycolic acid, lactic acid, citric acid) disrupt the glue that holds dead skin cells together and keeps them sitting on the surface of your skin. Mechanical exfoliants like a gentle scrub help to slough off the buildup.
And if you want to follow the treatment protocol we use here, you can finish the routine with a mask loaded with vitamins. “This ritual is going to help brighten the skin, add hydration and make it look more plump,” Elizabeth told The Kit. “It’s also going to allow your skin to better receive any actives in your routine.”