Novu Medical Aesthetic Clinic’s lunchtime carbon facial peel gets an upgrade this year, with the additions of gold dust and black ginseng to the treatment’s arsenal of key ingredients

SINGAPORE (Apr 16): Carbon laser peel treatments are fast becoming the hottest fad in Asia’s medical aesthetic industry for their short treatment durations and virtual lack of downtime. Dubbed the “China doll peel” for the porcelain doll-like finish it brings to the complexion, the photo enhancer-based laser procedure is said to be safe to be performed on most skin types and boasts a plethora of benefits such as reduced pores and oil secretion, blackhead removal, anti-ageing effects and skin rejuvenation.

Novu, a Novena Global Lifecare Group portfolio brand, released its own version of the treatment in early 2017 with its inhouse formulation. The inaugural “Glazo” paste comprises medical activated carbon and Kadaku plum, which is rich in vitamin C as well as phenolic, gallic and ellagic acids, known for their antioxidant, anti-pigmentary and anti-inflammatory properties. This year saw the launch of Novu’s “Glazo Gold” edition of the paste, featuring gold dust to restore skin elasticity, brighten complexion and reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Another novel component of the renewed formula is black ginseng, to boost collagen production and promote skin cell restoration.

After cleansing, the paste is applied as a mask and left to dry, before it is subsequently broken down into nano-granules on contact with laser pulses for absorption into the skin’s dermis. Heat from the non-ablative laser not only aides in allowing the skin to better absorb these active ingredients, but also shrinks pores to produce a more refined skin texture.

Sharp, crackling noises combined with a faint burning smell — a result of the lasers coming into contact with the carbon suspension — can be particularly intimidating for the uninitiated, such as myself. This was especially so with my sight being completely sealed off by safety goggles throughout the lasering process. While some may perceive it as an assault on one’s senses of sound and smell, the minutes-long procedure was a relatively painless one. I found the sensation to alternate between ticklish and prickly, without reaching either extreme. The experience did not even leave my face with a hint of redness after.

For sustained results, Novu recommends that one undergoes the Glazo Gold carbon laser peel over a course of eight to 12 sessions, which can be further complemented with any of the clinic’s three signature treatments to end the facial session. Even then, they should last no longer than 15 to 20 minutes in total. Opt for Novu’s Kakadu Ion Infusion to soothe skin while removing dead skin cells and impurities; the application of Kakadu Plum-infused serum to rebalance moisture levels and keep skin smooth and supple or alternate the main treatment with a P+ Phyto Laser and Radiance Light session, which targets pigmentation and inhibits the overproduction of melanin.