Winter Skin Care from the Inside Out

Winter Skin Care
The holidays make crazy women out of all of us. We run around from our jobs to the mall, stay up late wrapping gifts after the kids have gone to bed, haul trees in cars not meant to hold them – and to do it, we gulp down enough caffeine to power a small city.

Put down that coffee cup.

Pick up your water bottle.

Now picture everyone at your next holiday party wondering how you could possibly look so dewy, vibrant, and refreshed. Keeping your skin looking fresh and moisturized for winter is a process that starts from the inside out. Here are some tips for how to look – and feel – beautiful this season.

1. Drink plenty of water and avoid lots of alcoholic drinks – and yes, avoid caffeine. You want your skin cells to have the fluid they need to stay plump and full, and drinking plenty of water is the best way to support your entire body.

2.  Use super foods to stop dry skin before it starts:

  • Almonds, filled with Vitamin E, act as a natural sun blockers and antioxidant.
  • Carrots clear up breakouts because of their high Vitamin A content.
  • Dark chocolate’s flavonols reduce roughness.
  • And flaxseeds and salmon, packed with Omega-3 fatty acids, help with decreasing fine lines and spots.
  • Sweet potatoes are rich in vitamin C which is essential for collagen production.

3. Choose the right moisturizer for the season: winter calls for a richer lotion than the warm humid days of summer. Applying your moisturizer while you are still damp from the shower will help to lock in moisture, and remember to pay attention to areas around your lips and eyes that are especially prone to dryness.

Are you ready to be the envy of your New Year’s Eve party?

What is Beauty? – Part 5 Your Shape

This article appeared in

Prestige Magazine (10) – December 2009

What is Beauty? – Part 5

Your Shape


Raye Toscano

In previous installments of this “What is Beauty?” series, we’ve discussed tricks and techniques to enhance your eyes and lips and draw attention away from your nose and any blemishes you may have. We’ve mentioned the importance of quality skin care products like Revaléskin and we’ve explained how the artistic use of Botox, Facial Fillers, Intense Pulsed Light, and Erbium Facial Resurfacing can accentuate your own natural beauty and make you appear more vibrant and youthful.

Today we’re going move away from the face to focus on a subject many women would like to avoid, body shape. Gwendolyn Brooks said, “Each body has its art,” yet very few women feel completely satisfied when they look in the mirror. You shouldn’t feel alone. It seems for most of us that no matter how hard we exercise or how strictly we diet, there are always a few problem areas that just won’t improve.

For some women, it’s that little roll around the waist or that pooch under the belly button. For others, the inner or outer thighs seem to attract little deposits of fat or loose skin. For others, it’s the bra line in back or the upper arms or even under the chin.

There is an answer for these problem areas and it’s easier than you think.

SmartLipo is a revolutionary way to melt away these fat deposits permanently with very little down time and minimal discomfort. I’ve had this procedure done myself and I’m enormously happy with the results. Let me explain how it works.

Using local anesthesia, our Physicians make a tiny incision no bigger than the tip of a pen. An anesthetic solution is gently infused under the skin in the fat layer. This step feels a little odd but I didn’t find it the least bit painful. One end of a tiny fiber optic thread, like a piece of thin pasta, is then inserted and the other end is attached to a laser which heats up the thread and melts the fat. Using suction, the liquid fat is removed and that pesky problem area disappears!

The best part of this procedure is that it is painless. You are totally wide awake during the entire process chatting with the Doctors, listening to music, eating crackers and sipping cappuccino while your fat melts away! There’s no general anesthesia and no IV line. Simple and easy.

AND because the laser heats up the underside of the skin, new collagen forms and produces a significant amount of skin tightening and retraction, something you won’t find at all with traditional liposuction. Melted fat, tighter skin – what could be better?

I was back at work the next day already looking thinner. Then for months afterward my body continued to absorb any leftover liquid fat and my skin continued to form new collagen. Each week, it seemed, I became tighter, firmer and thinner.

There are several different types of “Lipo” lasers on the market. It’s important to understand that it’s not the type of laser that matters. It’s the skill of the Physicians doing the procedure. At REDBAMBOO Medi•Spa, Dr. Toscano and Dr. Teleszky have been doing SmartLipo longer and more often than anyone else in Pinellas County. I am especially proud that our Physicians were named the “Best in Tampa Bay” at SmartLipo by duPont Registry. Call us at 727-726-6100 to schedule a complimentary consultation.

I know it’s tempting to overindulge with food and drink during the Holidays. Isn’t this a perfect time to plan for a shapelier “New You” for the “New Year”?

What is Beauty? – Part 4 Blemishes

This article appeared in

Prestige Magazine (09) – September 2009

What is Beauty? – Part 4



Raye Toscano

In this series of articles called “What is Beauty?” we have discussed techniques for enhancing your own natural attractiveness. Your eyes and your lips are the key areas that allow your own inner beauty to shine through. Your goal, then, is to direct the attention of others toward those magic areas and away from any distractions.

In the first article of this series, we discussed using Botox and Fillers to soften or erase lines that point toward the nose. The next month, we mentioned techniques that open and emphasize the eyes like Latisse for feathery eyelashes and a tiny pinch of Botox for an arched browlift to make you look more open and refreshed. Last month we discussed how the subtle and artistic use of Fillers in and around the lips can restore lost volume and bring back that luscious youthful look. We even mentioned how a touch of Botox in the right spots can restore that impish smile that gravity drags downward as we age.

This month, I’m going to ask you to look carefully at your face in a mirror. Instead of your eyes or your lips or even your nose, I want you to look everywhere else.

Do you have blemishes, sun damage or brown spots? Maybe you have some reddish flushing or broken capillaries. What about rough texture? Smile lines? Forehead wrinkles? Loose crepey skin under the eyes? Jowls? Hollows? As you look, try to notice anything that catches your eye and draws attention away from your more attractive features.

Now there isn’t one single fix for all of these problems. That’s why you should have a thorough consultation with an experienced aesthetic professional along with a detailed Visia skin analysis. Each person’s face and each person’s concerns are unique but I can tell you that most of those issues can be improved dramatically and usually more easily than you might think. We are fortunate to have lots of tools at our disposal and the expertise to help you choose the right ones for your face.

A key first step is to use a quality line of skin care products. RedBamboo Medi•Spa is the first aesthetic medical spa in the country to carry the amazing Revaléskin product line. These Coffeeberry extract products are loaded with antioxidants that protect the skin from damage caused by free radicals and restore moisture and youthful consistency. We also offer a full line of medical aesthetic products and services including prescription-strength chemical peels to repair sun damage and microdermabrasion to polish and smooth areas of roughness.

Our talented Physicians use a combination of various Facial Fillers and Botox to soften wrinkles, smooth jowls and restore lost volume. We even carry the exciting new filler, Hydrelle, featured recently on The Doctors. An Erbium Laser can tighten that loose skin at the jaw line and under the eyes and Intense Pulsed Light removes age spots, sun damage and flushing.

The purpose of this month’s article is to have you focus on the other areas of your face and to notice the little things that might distract someone’s gaze away from your sparkling eyes or your luscious lips. With some guidance from our professionals, you can regain that “peaches and cream” texture that your man will love to caress.

Next month – the Shape, the Silhouette.

You can read the whole series of Raye’s articles at

What is Beauty? – Part 3 Lucious Lips

This article appeared in

Prestige Magazine (08) – August 2009

What is Beauty? – Part 3

Lucious Lips


Raye Toscano

In my last two articles we covered techniques for enhancing your own natural beauty.  We mentioned some ways of reducing lines and wrinkles that point toward the nose and some advanced techniques to draw attention toward our most interesting facial assets, our eyes.  If you missed these two helpful articles, go to and click on Articles/News button and then on Raye Toscano’s Prestige Articles.  The series on “What is Beauty?” starts with Number 06.

This month, we want to focus attention on those luscious lips.  Eve Glicksman writes, “Ancient lovers believed a kiss would literally unite their souls, because the spirit was said to be carried in one’s breath.”

So how do we make our lips more noticeable, more desirable and more luscious without going too far?  The key factor, I believe, is subtlety.  Many women are reluctant to try fillers because they’ve seen friends who have been injected with so much volume that shape and detail are gone.

Here are some guidelines.  First, start with the vermillion border, that fine line that separated the lips from the skin.  A tiny bead of filler along this border erases vertical lines that cross the lips (smoker’s lines) and emphasizes a pleasant “Cupid’s Bow” outline.  Only once this outline is perfect, symmetrical and pleasing to the eye can attention be turned to lip volume.

The lower lip should appear to be between one-half and two-thirds of the total volume of the lips.  If it appears that the lower lip has lost some volume, a tiny amount of filler can be placed just inside the lip to produce the proper proportions.  Commonly, some volume may also be missing underneath the two peaks of the upper lip.  Again, this can be plumped with the tiniest bead of filler.

That’s it for the filler.  Don’t overdo it.  Unless there is a specific wrinkle or defect that needs to be corrected, trying to produce a full “Hollywood pout” will usually look fake.  If someone looks like she’s just had her lips “done”, then I think her doctors have failed.

Before we finish our discussion about luscious lips, there is one more technique that deserves to be mentioned.  As we age, the muscles that pull down the corners of our lips become over active.  This can cause even nicely shaped lips to appear to be frowning a lot of the time.  A small amount of Botox in just the right spots can turn that frown into a gentle pleasant smile.  Not all Physicians who use Botox have been trained in this advanced technique.

I am grateful that our physicians at REDBAMBOO Medi•Spa have been trained in Botox and Facial Filler techniques by one of the best in the country.  Their aesthetic artistry produces results that I believe are superior to anyone else around.  For those of you concerned about discomfort, we either mix the filler with some anesthetic or perform a dental block so that the whole experience is painless.

Next month, the fourth installment – erasing blemishes and smoothing complexion.

What is Beauty? – Part 2

This article appeared in

Prestige Magazine (07) – July 2009

What is Beauty? – Part 2

Enhance Your Eyes


Raye Toscan

A woman’s beauty comes from within.  Beauty is the gentle clarity of a intricate thought, the spiritual rush of intuition and the burning flame of passion.  When these inner complexities are expressed through the eyes and on the lips, that is what makes a woman captivatingly beautiful.

Your goal, then, when you attempt to augment your own natural beauty, is to remove distractions and focus attention on your eyes and your lips so that an observer cannot help but be motivated to explore the secrets hidden within.

Last month, we described some techniques we use at REDBAMBOO Medi•Spa to direct attention away from the nose such as erasing frown lines with Botox and softening nasolabial folds with Fillers.  This month we’ll focus on enhancing Thoreau’s “jewel of the body,” your eyes.

Your eyes should look open, clear, intelligent and inviting – even mysterious.  How do you get that look?  The most effective technique for opening up your eyes is called the liquid browlift.  This is really nothing more that a few units of Botox strategically and artistically placed to produce a gentle arch to the eyebrow that makes your eyes seem open, alert and refreshed.  This is a subtle change that you are sure to appreciate.  Usually less than $100, this treatment is amazingly affordable.

Another way to draw attention to your beautiful eyes is to enhance them with long gorgeous lashes.  Latisse, the new medication from Allergan is available only by prescription and we at REDBAMBOO were the very first ones in our area to carry it.  Ladies, believe me that it works so well that I have cut back to using it only a few times a week.  Applied at night like eyeliner, Latisse will cause your lashes to grow 100% thicker, 25% longer and 18% darker in just a few weeks.  Check for some amazing details about this miracle product.  At $120 for a two month supply, Latisse is just too good to pass up.

Some women are concerned about the “smile lines” that develop on either side of their eyes as they age.  (Please, ladies, never call them “crow’s feet”.)  These lines are usually fairly shallow and only appear when you are smiling broadly.  Luckily, they point right toward your eyes – exactly where you want the attention to be when you are happy.  If they are particularly bothersome to you, they can be softened with about 20 to 24 units of Botox.  For many women, however, these lines are not unattractive at all and add significant character and expression to their eyes.  Let us help you decide whether your own smile lines are just fine the way they are or whether they could benefit from some softening.

Next month, how to focus attention on your luscious lips.

We’ll help you focus on the techniques that will provide the most pleasing results for you.  Your eyes are your precious jewels.  They deserve a magnificent setting.

Next month we’ll explore luscious lips.

What is Beauty? Part I

This article appeared in

Prestige Magazine (06) – June 2009

What is Beauty?


Raye Toscano

This week, my husband and I watched a documentary about the efforts made in Europe during World War II to protect precious works of art.  As I watched footage of French curators carefully boxing up the Mona Lisa, I began to wonder about beauty and how we decide that someone is, indeed, beautiful.

I believe that it has much to do with the eyes and the lips.  Thoreau said “The eye is the jewel of the body,” so however we can draw attention to our eyes enhances the expression of our own inner beauty.  What woman doesn’t want a man to be captivated by her stunning eyes?  And the lips.  Percy Bysshe Shelley said, “Soul meets soul on lovers’ lips.”  A luscious set of lips invites a man to wonder and swoon for the secrets they may hide.

So, how do we draw someone’s gaze toward our eyes and our lips and away from other features that might not be so flattering?  Today, and over the next several months, I will share with you some secrets for doing just that.

For today, we will focus on directing attention away from that most prominent of facial features, the nose.  If your nose is a little large or broad or even bumpy, there are tricks we can use to divert attention away from the nose and toward our more attractive features.  Our first strategy is to erase any facial lines that point toward and draw attention to the nose.

Most of us have “frown lines” between the eyebrows, two vertical lines that point straight down.  If these lines are not too deep, 20 to 24 units of Botox will make them nearly vanish.  For very deep lines, we use Botox first to relax the muscles and then, two weeks later, add a little Facial Filler to completely flatten the wrinkles.  The result is a softer, happier look and less attention to the nose.

The lines that start at the wings of the nose, extend down to the corners of the mouth and sometimes even further down to the jaw line can sometimes be quite deep.  The shadows caused by them point like a big arrow directly toward the nose.  Botox doesn’t work well in this area so this is a job for Fillers.  At REDBAMBOO Medi•Spa, we give our patients a dental block so that filling in these lines is a painless procedure.

Our Medical Directors, Dr. Laszlo Teleszky and, my husband, Dr. Frank Toscano, have been trained by the very best and they do a marvelous job of reducing these lines and directing attention away from the nose.  Call us at 727-726-6100 for a complimentary consultation.

Next month, how to make your eyes the focus of your face.

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