April Beauty Buzz

Jane Larkworthy unveils a cellulite eraser, conception tool and Botox alternative.

Photo: Robert Mitra

A new cellulite treatment works like a pain-free jackhammer.

A technology that was once used to remove kidney stones and later found to ease muscle and joint pain is now smoothing cellulite. Female athletes showed a marked improvement in the appearance of their thighs after several treatments with Acoustic Wave Therapy, a deep-tissue vibration device that works like a tiny jackhammer and targets the bunched-up fibrous walls that form cellulite. “It breaks fiber by shattering it with vibration,” says Bill J. Johnson, a doctor who uses the method at his Innovations MedSpa in Dallas. “If you have great muscle tone but you still have dimpling, you’re the ideal candidate.” Recommended treatment is twice a week for four weeks (at a cost of about $1,500), with follow-ups every six months.

Photo: Robert Mitra

Canyon Ranch in Tucson, Arizona

Canyon Ranch has been an institution for more than 25 years, but in April it’s launching its first-ever product line, called Your Transformation. The nine skincare formulas are packed with natural ingredients like goji berry and blueberry to fight free radicals; niacin and ceramides, known to repair cells; and sodium hyaluronate to plump skin. In keeping with the ranch’s 360-degree approach to wellness and beauty, plans are in the works for at-home lines targeting weight management, menopause and insomnia. At Saks Fifth Avenue.

Photo: Robert Mitra

New hope for conceiving.

For decades, the thimble-shaped cervical cap has been used for contraception. But now a new product is employing it for the opposite purpose. The Conception Kit, which contains ovulation predictor tests, semen collectors (akin to sterile, nonlatex condoms), sperm-safe lubricant and the aforementioned caps, is the first FDA-approved system designed to enhance a couple’s chance of getting pregnant naturally. Available with a doctor’s prescription through, the $299 kit allows you to transfer semen from the collector into the cap, then insert the cap so it is in direct contact with the cervix for four to six hours. According to Conception Kit developer Michael LaVean, the system can help couples overcome fertility problems like a low sperm count, poor motility and a tilted cervix.

Photo: Robert Mitra

Needle-free Botox?

A topical form of botulinum toxin is in development by a California company called Revance Therapeutics, in which Medicis Aesthetics, the company behind fillers Restylane and Perlane, is a major investor. The formula, which would be applied in doctors’ offices, contains an active toxin molecule that folds in half—making it small enough to penetrate skin—and then unfolds and exerts its effects once it hits the muscle under the dermis. Though approval of a final product is several years off, the “folding technology” may also prove useful in other areas. “It could work for the delivery of various other drugs to treat skin diseases or restore appearance,” says Medicis chairman Jonah Shacknai.

Photo: Robert Mitra

Clinique gets into the cosmetic surgery arena.

Medicis’ archrival, Botox creator Allergan, is also focusing on topical treatments. The company has joined forces with Clinique to create products specifically for skin undergoing cosmetic procedures. The yet-to-be-named line, which will be sold only in doctors’ offices, is scheduled to debut in the fall.