What is Morpheus8? This is the laser treatment Kim Kardashian uses to get her flat stomach and we've tried it too
Kim Kardashian is the latest celebrity to back the 'painful' Morpheus8 laser treatment to achieve her enviable flat stomach. We tried it and this is what we thought.
This is not the first time that Kim Kardashian has taken to Instagram to declare her love for the Morpheus8 laser treatment. She posted about it a few years ago when she chose it as a tightening treatment on her 'mum tum' after giving birth to her first two children. However, the fact that she has posted about it again (seemingly without any commercial obligation to) means she really must be a huge fan. This time she gave us a little more insight into the treatment that she had at Dr Ashkan Ghavami's Beverley Hills clinic, calling it 'a game changer' even though 'it's painful LOL'.
And she's not the first celebrity to hail it as a wonder treatment. When tennis coach, mother of Wimbledon champ Andy Murray and former Strictly contestant Judy Murray hit the headlines with her youthful skin transformation, everyone wanted to know what the 61-year-old had done. Her lines were softened, her jawline noticeably tighter and wrinkles smoothed in a very natural-looking way. She revealed she'd had three sessions Morpheus8, and interest in the skin tightening radiofrequency microneedling treatment hit an all-time high.
Image Instagram: @dr_ judy_todd
Her doctor Judy Todd, who treated her at Glasgow's Synergy Clinic over the course of a year, shared Judy's incredible before and after images. "'I’d say [Morpheus8 has] taken at least ten years off my appearance," Judy said. "I am absolutely thrilled to bits with the result, my skin is fresher, clearer, and I feel much better about myself." Judy also had a strong prescription anti-pigmentation treatment called Obagi Nuderm, which played not a small part in her results.
Amanda Holden is also a convert to the treatment, first having Morpheus8 ahead of filming the live Britain’s Got Talent shows in November 2020 and reported on Instagram: “The results have been absolutely amazing. I’ve noticed a real plumpness to my skin and it’s much tighter. I’m more than happy to shout from the rooftops about how brilliant this new treatment is! It’s been the best hour investment for looking at least five years younger.”
What is Morpheus8?
The handheld zapper used in Morpheus8 is in fact a power couple tweakment, which brings together two of the most effective anti-ageing salon treatments: micro-needling and radiofrequency, with little downtime.
"Microneedling and radiofrequency both work to create a controlled trauma triggering the body’s healing response; collagen and elastin production, meaning you get two treatments in one; a stronger treatment (dubbed ‘microneedling on steroids’) and quicker results than having microneedling and RF individually," explains Dr Sabrina Shah-Desai, who offers it at her clinic in London.
It might sound like a Harry Potter broomstick or a character from The Matrix, but Morpheus8 'injects' radiofrequency energy into the skin via lots of tiny needles, which also act as a collagen-stimulating micro-needling treatment themselves. Both are collagen stimulating in different ways. Microneedling creates a micro-trauma in the skin stimulating the healing response while radiofrequency uses heat to shrink wrap and tighten the skin. It can be used on the face, neck and body for skin tightening and contouring. "It stimulates the production of new collagen, elastin and hyaluronic acid in the skin, resulting in firmer, smoother, more lifted and hydrated skin,” explains Dr Tatiana Lapa who offers the procedure at her London clinic, for £500 per session.
It’s one of those tweakments that sounds like it does it all. “You’ll see an improvement in contour and sometimes a slight difference in volume also, as it can have a plumping effect. Skin will be tighter, healthier and more youthful and you’ll see an improvement in texture and tighter pores too, " she says. Done on the brow bone, it's particularly effective on hooded eyes too.
The Morpheus8 has been gaining traction since it first appeared in 2019 and now has found a new niche treating 'Zoom chin' and jowls, says Dr Sabrina, the area of the face that many people have found more noticeable on video calls.
It's also particularly effective on scarring, included pitted scars, and active acne, adds Dr Tatiana.
Tummy, knees and thighs can also benefit from a Morpheus8 treatment. The machine has deeper pins that can be used for cellulite and stretch marks, adds Dr Sabrina.
What happens in a Morpheus8 treatment?
First of all, a numbing cream is applied. “After the area is numbed the tip of the handpiece is applied to the skin and using a foot pedal the needles are delivered into the skin at the programmed depth and energy,” explains Dr Sabrina. This delivers pulses of radiofrequency heat energy into the skin.
The depths of the needles is adjustable depending on the area and what it is being treated for, as Dr Sabrina explains. “For skin tightening you’d work in the dermis [deeper layer of skin], for resurfacing you’d work in the epidermis [outer layer of skin] and for contouring you’d work in the subdermal tissue [the deepest skin layer]."
There are newly released 7mm needles to work on the deepest layers, particularly great for areas such as the thighs and abdomen; for treatment with these you’d require local anaesthetic. While the full face takes around 20 minutes, the abdomen takes around 30 minutes, Dr Sabrina says. She recommends one to three treatments, but says that results are often seen even after one.
What happened when we tried Morpheus8?
Get the Gloss Editorial director, Victoria had the treatment recently with Dr David Jack in Harley street. He was the first UK practitioner to use the machine and has since performed thousands of treatments. It's his most popular machine by far.
She says: "A friend was raving about how the treatment with Dr Jack had tightened her jawline and said that even after two weeks the effect was noticeable. I was hopeful it could make a difference to my hooded eyes and tighten my cheeks, which have drooped a bit over the years making my nose-to-mouth lines more prominent. I've so far I have had the first of a course of two and can report that it was only mildly uncomfortable, especially on the brow bone, but thankfully only took 15 minutes. The longest part was the numbing cream, which takes an hour to work and which was mercifully very strong (Dr Jack imports it specially from Germany). You can see in my video, below, that my face is bright red, but this is mainly down to the numbing cream."
There’s very little downtime with Morpheus8. You may experience a little redness but this should dissipate within four to 24 hours, depending on the depth of the treatment you had.
Victoria adds: "I wouldn't plan to go out straight afterwards (red face notwithstanding) as you can't put on any skincare including SPF or for the rest of the day and only cleanse with water. The following day it's SPF only. I was left with one bruise on my browbone which lasted a week (although no one noticed) but other than that there really were no after-effects.
“Most patients experience mild discomfort but this is managed well with the anaesthetic,” adds Dr Sabrina. “Bony areas such as the forehead can be more uncomfortable, but the eye area is not as bad.”
Amanda Holden says that you'll be left with a red shiny face for a couple of days afterwards - if you've ever had salon microneedling you'll be familiar with that slightly sunburned 'tight face' feeling afterwards, but this soon dissipates.
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