Trish: Welcome, everyone out there in podcast land. I’m here today, or tonight actually, with Dr Caroline Taylor-Walker, who is the doctor, GP, at Medical Skin Clinic. Dr Caroline’s got an amazing clinic there offering a whole lot of non-invasive procedures, including through from skin problem through to weight. There’s an IV bar, which is the intravenous vitamin infusions. There’s skin care.

One of the things that we’re going to talk about today is skin boosters, because I know myself that no matter what you do insofar as looking after yourself, one of the most important things is to look after your skin. I’ve believed that from the time I was a child, and I’m obsessed with my skincare so I thought everybody else would be interested in this as well. Welcome tonight, Dr Caroline. I can call you Dr Caroline, can’t I?

Dr Caroline: Yeah, definitely. It feels funny if you say Taylor-Walker, actually.

Trish: I know, me too. It feels funny to me, too, because I feel like … I know you’ve got this beautiful clinic in Torquay in Victoria, and you’re very, very busy. I know that you’re having skin boosters, so can you tell all of our listeners out there about the skin boosters? What are they and what do they do?

Dr Caroline: Yeah, sure. Skin boosters are basically a type of dermal filler. The difference being is that they’re a lot softer and a lot thinner consistency than the normal fillers. Most fillers you dissociate with actually filling defects and volume loss within the skin, and causing that kind of plumpness in structure, whereas these skin boosters actually work more on a biochemical level rather than a structural, mechanical level.

They’re a lot similar to dermal filler, but a lot thinner, and they’re injected into the skin to basically cause hydration, plumping of the skin, increased luminosity, and also to stimulate the collagen.

Trish: Okay. Basically, what it is, it’s like having fillers but very, very lightly put in under the skin.

Dr Caroline: Yeah, so you can use them in different areas of the skin. You can use them on the face or the neck or the decolletage or on the hands. Generally what we do is numb the area first with some local anaesthetic cream, and then we actually inject the whole area, so all the skin with the filler, just in a really superficial level so it’s almost like a drink for the whole skin, so the whole skin’s getting that benefit from the soft filler and the hydration.

Trish: How does that make the skin radiant? Just from the …

Dr Caroline: What we’re injecting, the filler is hyaluronic acid, which most people know now because it’s quite a … Been a buzz word for many years. It’s very, very hydrating, so each molecule of the hyaluronic acid can actually absorb up to 200 times its weight in water. The hyaluronic acid we inject absorbs lots of water and that hydrates the skin, and that hydration is what plumps the skin up and makes it look more radiant and more luminous.

Also, the hyaluronic acid, as we know, just stimulates the collagen induction so you get a smoother skin, the improvement in the fine lines and wrinkles, better hydration. It can also help with some acne scars, if you got little depressed acne scars it can help to reduce the appearance of those. Then, obviously, the stimulation of the collagen helps to prevent the ageing over a longer period of time.

Trish: Basically it’s like a … Do you put it everywhere or are there certain spots that …

Dr Caroline: Yeah, so it just depends how much people can afford, I suppose. Most things come down to money. We can inject it over the whole face. Generally the whole face, we’d recommend about two mls, but generally most people only use about one ml on the face. What we do is then we just pick those target areas, which on most people are usually round the mouth, round the eye area, maybe those accordion lines on the side of the cheeks, those areas that are starting to look a little bit drier, getting the fine lines, and just need that bit of plumpness.

Trish: Excuse me, sorry. I had a friend on the weekend who was saying she was a smoker and she’s all paranoid about the lines that are around her mouth. Would that work for something like that? Would that help?

Dr Caroline: It depends on the depth of the lines, really. Generally if people have got quite deep lines that are permanent, then we probably would recommend more of a thicker filler that would give you better results quicker, whereas these are more for an all-over general softening of the lines. It’s more for the hydration of the skin, really, so it’s probably more for maybe early prevention, early anti-aging from 20s and 30s, and then later more the collagen stimulation and hydration of the skin. If there’s more permanent lines I’d probably recommend a … For quicker results, probably recommend a thicker filler.

Trish: Basically if you wanted to … It’s not to actually fix anything specific, it’s just to hydrate the skin and make it luminous?

Dr Caroline: Yes. Yeah, yeah.

Trish: If you wanted a little bit more you could have a bit of extra, if there was little areas that you decided that you needed, great. If not, it’s a preventative, almost…

Dr Caroline: Yeah. We recommend it for all ages. There probably isn’t an age that we wouldn’t recommend it for. What we do is for the younger, say 20s to mid-30-year-olds, I recommend it more for a prevention to start stimulating the collagen without giving any volume changes or structural changes to the face, which they don’t need, and maintaining that hydration, which is probably starting to reduce due to just their normal, everyday activities and exposure to the environment and chemicals and things.

Then probably from mid-30s onwards it’s more with the normal ageing process it’s going to start to look a little bit dull and lose hydration because the sebaceous glands stop producing as much oil and the skin starts to get a bit drier and a bit crinklier. This treatment is to prevent and help treat that.

Trish: A lot of people say, “Oh no, I don’t want to put fillers in my face,” but tell us a bit about hyaluronic acid and what it actually is and why it’s okay to use and how it works, basically.

Dr Caroline: A lot of people get quite nervous about fillers, but I think it is generally a misunderstanding or them mixing it up with the old-school collagen injections or they see Google pictures of people who have simply had far too much. As we know, far too much of anything in life is bad.

Generally, hyaluronic acid is a sugar molecule that is naturally occurring within the skin, so it’s something that we have in the skin anyway and we’re just replacing that with a hyaluronic acid so the body recognises it as a normal molecule and acts as if it’s a normal part of the skin.

Generally, over time, the body dissolves, breaks down hyaluronic acid so the filler that we inject, the body sees it as normal and carries on that normal breaking down process. That’s why, over time, fillers dissolve and vanish, because the body just breaks it down as a normal process. Yeah, it doesn’t have anything bad in there. There’s no animal products or anything that the skin recognises as foreign.

Trish: Is it something that you have to do really often?

Dr Caroline: All fillers you could have done once and never, ever again. If you have it done, you don’t have to then continue the process. A lot of people worry that when they have it done once, when the filler, say, dissolves or isn’t there anymore, their face is going to end up looking worse than what it was before the filler was put in.

If anything, once the fillers dissolve, the face then starts off at a better level than it was looking before the filler was put in. Then it’s up to you again. You could decide to never have it done again, or you could decide to continue with the treatments. When you have the filler, it causes definitely an anti-aging process, so once it’s gone you’re in a better starting position than you were when you had it put in.

Each filler generally has a different kind of lifespan, and most fillers, depending on their thickness, depends on how long they last in the face with the thinner fillers lasting the least amount of time and the thicker fillers lasting the longest. Skin boosters are the thinnest ones available, so they generally don’t last as long as other ones.

With the treatments, we usually recommend at the starting point one treatment a month for three months, three consecutive months, to really hydrate the skin and boost that collagen production. Then we would recommend a treatment every six months to maintain it. Again, as I said, you could leave it and repeat it again in a year or you could never have it done again or you could do it again in three years’ time, but the recommendations would be six monthly to get the maximum benefit.

Trish: You can basically, if you want to, you can treat it as your monthly facial, because seriously, the process is not that much more anyway.

Dr Caroline: Yeah, no, that’s what I’d probably do instead of a facial. You’re probably going to get more out of it than … Obviously facials, most facials, include the ingredient hyaluronic acid. Everyday people should be using a serum with a hyaluronic acid in there. Now, how much of that is actually absorbed and used by the skin is difficult to know, whereas this we’re actually injecting it right in the layer where it can be used by the skin in a positive way.

Trish: I’ve got some … Yeah, I did have another question. Does it hurt? Because it’s all over the face so…

Dr Caroline: We numb the skin before the treatment’s done. Usually with most needles the worst part is the needle piercing the skin at the beginning. Once the needle’s within the skin it’s actually in a layer of skin that hasn’t got any nerve endings, so you can’t feel it once it’s in there. Because we numb the surface of the skin, that first initial piercing of the skin is nothing. It’s pretty comfy.

Trish: Okay, so it doesn’t sound too painful.

Dr Caroline: Yeah, no, it’s okay.

Trish: How long does the treatment take?

Dr Caroline: Normally the numbing takes about 20 minutes to do the numbing, and then the treatment’s probably another 20, 30 minutes on top of that. Most of the time we book people in for about an hour to do it, but the actual procedure itself is probably only about 20 minutes to do.

Trish: Can you see a difference straightaway, or does it take time to look good?

Dr Caroline: Yeah, it takes a little bit of time. Initially there’s a possibility of a bit of down time. Some people can get … When you leave it looks a little bit red and some tiny little pin pricks, prick marks, in some areas, but not everywhere. Sometimes you can see some little lumps of the filler, but generally after 24 hours that’s gone down. There’s a tiny risk of a bit of bruising, but the bruising’s either nothing or very minimal, so the down time’s pretty good. Most people can go to work the next day without any problems. I can’t remember what you asked me. What was the question again?

Trish: How long does it take? Does it hurt? Oh, yeah. No, the other thing I wanted to know is do you need to, as far as cover goes … Obviously, you can’t have it done at lunchtime and then go back to work, so you either get it done late in the afternoon or on your day off.

Dr Caroline: You probably could. I mean, we do it at work and then carry on and it generally looks fine. I said it can be a little bit red, but if you put a bit of makeup on you don’t really see it.

Trish: Oh, so you can just put makeup on and then go back to work, so you can do it.

Dr Caroline: Yeah. We normally recommend the mineral makeup that’s easy to put over the top, and yeah, should be fine.

Trish: If they do it at your place, you sell mineral makeup there, don’t you? You’d have some.

Dr Caroline: We don’t sell it, but we have some that we can use.

Trish: Yeah, that’s perfect. Oh, great. I reckon that’s answered my questions. I know you’ve got it on special at the moment.

Dr Caroline: Yeah.

Trish: Could you tell us what that price is?

Dr Caroline: Yeah, sure. We normally charge $300 for a ml, and we’ve currently got it for $200. Yeah, normally we do a package of three for 870, so if you wanted the package of three they would only be 600 at the moment.

Trish: Oh, perfect.

Dr Caroline: It’s worth getting it in February.

Trish: Perfect. Fantastic. Thank you so much. I’m definitely going to … I reckon I’m going to be at one of those. I’m pretty sure years ago I had my marionette lines filled, and I don’t know, because I was like … They made me just feel a bit old, so they did my … But I’ve never had it done again, and I reckon that was years ago.

Dr Caroline: Yeah, and that’s the thing with filler. Like you said earlier, do you have to continue it? You can just have things once and then leave it, but the skin boosters are quite good if you’re feeling that things don’t really need much filler at the moment but you do feel you want a bit of a boost or something, or the skin needs a bit of hydration.

Trish: Yeah, or you got a big event coming up in six months, you want to make sure you look your best. That could just be part of the protocol.

Dr Caroline: Yeah, definitely.

Trish: That sounds great. Thank you so much, Dr Caroline. That was really, really informative. For anybody who’s interested in having some … You call them boosters. Does everyone call them boosters?

Dr Caroline: Yeah, they’re known as skin boosters.

Trish: They’re known as skin boosters everywhere. You can drop us an email to info@plasticsurgeryhub or find Dr Caroline on our website. Thank you so much for taking your time away from your family to chat to us.

Dr Caroline: No, that’s great. Not a problem. It’s been fantastic.

Trish: Thanks a lot. Great. Bye.

Dr Caroline: Okay, bye bye.


If you’d like to arrange an appointment with Dr Caroline and take advantage of their special on skin boosters or to find out more about Medical Skin Clinic in Victoria phone them on (03) 5261 6171.


Trish is a plastic surgery blogger. She is passionate about wellbeing, health and beauty, and doesn't mind a little bit of 'help' from the amazing cosmetic and beauty procedures that are available today. Trish spends her days talking to women and men who are looking for suggestions and advice on procedures that are available to them. Cutting through the sales pitch and hype, a down-to-earth response on general information is what you will get.

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