The New Skin Treatment Everyone’s Talking About
The New Skin Treatment Everyone’s Talking About

The New Skin Treatment Everyone’s Talking About

You might have heard of Polynucleotides – the new, injectable treatment that regenerates your skin by improving the tissues on a cellular level. It works like Profhilo, offering both long and short-term improvements in collagen production and therefore, smoother, firmer skin over time. Here, aesthetic experts Dr Karen Doherty and Dr David Jack explain why it’s causing so much buzz, the results you can expect and why it could be worth the investment.
By Rebecca Hull

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What It Is

“Polynucleotides are chains of ‘nucleotides’ or ‘nucleic acids’, which are the molecular building blocks of DNA and RNA. These compounds are now being used in aesthetic medicine because they are believed to stimulate skin rejuvenation by promoting cell growth, collagen production and by repairing aged tissue. Polynucleotides used for cosmetic purposes are often harvested from fish sources – that includes salmon sperm. The benefits of these injectable treatments include improved skin hydration, elasticity and smoother texture. They are particularly useful around the eye are to reduce the appearance of crepey skin or dark circles.” Dr David Jack

“The benefits are extensive and transformative. Polynucleotides are proven to significantly boost skin’s hydration levels and also its ability to retain moisture. Additionally, they can repair damaged skin and promote new tissue growth, which can help to mitigate some of the damage caused by UV rays and sun damage. I often describe them as an all-rounder for those wanting to optimise and maintain their overall skin health.” Dr Karen Doherty

Why It’s Different

“I’m often asked how Polynucleotides differ to Profhilo. The former work by stimulating your cells and in turn, skin healing, as well as improving collagen production. They also help to reduce inflammation in your skin’s tissues, so it can be a useful treatment for those with rosacea and other inflammatory conditions. In contrast, Profhilo is a hyaluronic acid-based product which hydrates skin and stimulates both collagen and elastin production through its unique formulation. This works to give skin a chemical reaction, just like a response to injury. The key difference between these types of treatments lies in the intended outcomes – cellular repair versus hydration and toning.” – Dr David

Where It Works Best

“Polynucleotides work in all the areas of the skin that many skin boosters, like Profhilo, can’t – think eyes, lips and forehead. The main site that people opt for is the eye area as it’s the first place you see signs of ageing and skin laxity. It’s a fantastic alternative to tear-trough filler which simply adds volume. Polynucleotides can improve the thickness and health of the skin, reducing the appearance of under eye hollows and dark circles over time. You can also have the treatment done on your décolletage, stomach, backs of the arms and also around the knees – essentially, anywhere you want to tighten and firm skin.” – Dr Karen

Who It’s For

“The best candidates are those who want to improve skin’s texture, hydration and elasticity without any invasive surgery. It’s ideal for those experiencing the early signs of ageing or those who wish to proactively manage their skin quality. Those who suffer with sun-damage and skin dehydration will see impactful results too, as will those with very sensitive skin. It’s great for those who can’t undergo more aggressive treatments like deep chemical peels or laser therapy as it’s less abrasive.” – Dr David

What To Expect

“Following a consultation with your chosen practitioner – where you’ll discuss skin health goals and what you want from the treatment – a numbing cream will be applied to the areas which will be injected. The numbing cream will stay on for around 30 minutes so you’re comfortable throughout. The most you will feel is a very light pressure from the needles going into your skin. The numbing cream is then removed, and the treatment begins. When I do this procedure, I mark on the face where I will inject so we can move through quickly. It takes around 20-35 minutes maximum, depending on how many injection sites there are. After that, you’re good to go – there is no downtime aside from some light redness and potential bumps that are normally small and last only two to four days.” – Dr Karen

The Aftercare

“I recommend having two sessions spaced two to four weeks apart. This will help optimise the process around your skin’s regeneration and allow it sufficient time to respond to injections. Skin cells need time to undergo turnover and regeneration. Polynucleotides can help to stimulate this process, but it won’t happen overnight. Spacing the treatments allows the skin cells to react to the treatment, start the healing and regeneration processes, and prepare for another stimulation. Some patients may opt for a course of three sessions depending on their skin laxity and overall skin health, but this is something that we would determine during a consultation. In terms of results, you’ll see an initial improvement soon after your first treatment. The most significant changes will become visible after four weeks. This is because your skin will have had time to regenerate with collagen and elastin kicking in. Expect firmer tone, better texture and improved hydration and glow.” – Dr Karen

“You can combine Polynucleotides with other aesthetic treatments – but this should be done strategically and always with advice from your practitioner. Treatments that work well in combination include dermal fillers and fractional treatments such as Morpheus8 to further tone and refine your skin. Depending on your needs however, you may find Polynucleotides is enough on its own.” – Dr David

The Risks & Side Effects

“As with any cosmetic procedure, Polynucleotides come with potential risks and side effects, the most common being bruising, redness, swelling or pain at the injection site – these reactions are temporary but can be uncomfortable, so it’s worth preparing for this. Overall, however, the treatment is deemed safe and compatible for most. In rare cases, there is a risk of allergic reactions which is due to the biochemistry of the product being derived from salmon DNA, so always check with the person carrying out your procedure first that you’re fully eligible.” – Dr Karen

The Key Takeaways:

“Always ensure you see a reputable practitioner before undergoing a treatment like this. The General Medical Council Register is an excellent starting point. It lists certified medical professionals that you can trust for safe procedures. Other bodies such as the British College of Aesthetic Medicine is great too – it also lists members who are all medically qualified for treatments like this..” – Dr David

“It’s worth noting costs ahead of your treatment – one full treatment at my practice is £800. Two sessions are needed to see the full benefit, with each one spaced two to four weeks apart. For most, this is all you need for lasting results. My final takeaway point is to remember that results don’t happen overnight. It takes time and if you’re looking to see a difference ahead of an event or special occasion, it’s worth allocating some time so that results can be seen in time.” – Dr Karen

For more information from both experts, visit

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