The Art Of The NeedleWho wants to look like a pincushion? Not me, but I agreed to let certified MeiZen acupuncture practitioner Melinda Mingus, MD, give me a cosmetic acupuncture treatment in her New York City office because she spoke so knowledgeably about the effects. (Though Mingus suggests a series of ten treatments, I had time for only one.)
The sterilized, stainless steel acupuncture needles, as thin as a human hair, cause microtrauma in the skin, which increases blood flow and the production of collagen and elastin, says Mingus. She believes that the treatments can result in firmer skin, a reduction of wrinkles, and a tightening of the jowls. Her patients have reported healthy side effects, such as improved digestion, better-quality sleep, increased energy, and a sense of overall well-being. Hey, doc, sign me up! Stick a thousand needles in my face!
Well, not just my face. Mingus needled other body parts as well (my hands, legs, feet, ears, and scalp) in order to stimulate various nerves. She's an extremely skilled acupuncturist; I couldn't feel the needles going in. I lay still for about a half hour, deeply relaxed. After I had been successfully de-needled, I examined my face in a 7X magnifying mirror for holes or red dots—I couldn't find a single one. And my skin was glowing. But I'd have to take it on faith that my improved complexion had anything to do with the treatment; there's no scientific evidence that cosmetic acupuncture works.
— Beauty director Valerie Monroe
Next: Does snake venom really eliminate wrinkles?