Just as our faces show signs of aging as we get older, so do our hands. With time, our hands develop sun spots, and veins and tendons become more prominent as we lose volume. Fortunately, there are some excellent treatments available for rejuvenating the hands.
One of the most effective ways to rejuvenate the hands is to remove sun spots (aka liver spots). Sun spots develop after years of sun exposure. Even low grade, periodic exposure can be enough to bring them on. The numbers of sun spots you get depends on the combination of genetics and the amount of exposure you have.
To remove sun spots, we can use bleaching creams, liquid nitrogen, chemical peels and microdermabrasion, and lasers.
Bleaching creams work by gently lifting out the excess pigment that causes the spots. They are the least invasive way to remove the spots but also take the longest to work. You simply apply a bleaching cream once or twice a day. Up to 2% hydroquinone is sold over-the-counter, but higher strengths are often needed.
Of course, it is also critical to protect your skin from further exposure, and that includes wearing sun screen daily.
Liquid nitrogen is a simple, quick treatment that can be used to remove one or more sun spots. Liquid nitrogen is an extremely cold liquid that freezes the spots, inducing them to form a scab and ultimately fall off. It usually takes 2-3 weeks for the scabs to fall off on the hands.
Chemical peels and microdermabrasion
Chemical peels and microdermabrasion work by lifting off the top layers of skin (and the discoloration along with it). The depth and amount of peeling from a chemical peel depends on the acid used. Often times, more than one peel is required for optimal results.
Laser treatment is very effective at removing sun spots. An IPL is most commonly used since it can treat an entire area easily. IPL works by zapping the skin with light which gets preferentially absorbed by sun spots. The absorption process triggers a reaction in the sun spots that ultimately causes them to fall off.
Tendons and Veins
The loss of volume in our hands with age is what makes tendons and veins appear more prominent. A variety of synthetic fillers or fat can be injected under the skin to replace that volume. One of the most commonly used dermal fillers for the hands is Radiesse.
Radiesse is a synthetic filler that can be easily injected between the tendons to fill those spaces. Small areas between the web spaces are numbed, and Radiesse is injected through these areas. Treatment takes a few minutes and results are instantaneous.
Recovery is quick. Bruising is uncommon, but there can be a slight amount of swelling for a day or two after treatment.
One final treatment for removing excess veins in the hands is sclerotherapy. When veins are prominent enough that filling the backs of the hands is not enough, sclerotherapy can remove those veins. In sclerotherapy, a solution is injected into the vein itself which irritates the vein causing it to collapse on itself and scar.