Skin rejuvenation using radiofrequency energy.
The Infini is the brand name of a machine that produces radiofrequency energy and can deliver that energy through a unique microneedle system into the deeper layers of the skin. This rejuvenates the skin, corrects scarring and tightens and lifts sagging skin.
In choosing the Infini to offer as a treatment option at our clinic we thoroughly researched the best device in the microneedling radiofrequency space. We only invest in scientifically proven and tried treatment methods and avoid gimmicks and devices that patients request purely because they are trending on social media.
Radiofrequency energy is a type of electric energy that consists of a very high-frequency current in the millions of cycles per second called MegaHertz (MHz). Living tissue such as the skin offers resistance to the passage of electric currents, and when an electric current such as Radiofrequency energy meets resistance, heat is generated. It has been shown that heating up the deeper layers of the skin to a high enough temperature will create collagen contraction and a wound healing response which results in old and lax collagen and elastin fibres being replaced by new collagen and elastin.
The significant advancement in using Radiofrequency for wrinkle reduction and skin tightening came when it was combined with skin needling. By inserting fine needles into the skin, and then sending the radiofrequency energy down the needle, it enables the energy to be accurately delivered to the desired depth and spares the surface of the skin from damage. The Infini uses a series of insulated microneedles (0.2mm) to deliver radiofrequency energy up to 3.6mm below the skin’s surface.
Typically in an Infini treatment, about 30% of skin in an area is treated with each therapy, which is why 2-3 treatments can be needed for the best result. If too much skin is treated in a single session, the downtime and risk of reaction significantly increase.
A wide variety of conditions can be treated on both the face and body but in particular:
The micro needling technology of the Infini enables the needle to be inserted at variable depths, and hence the energy can be delivered at different levels. This is important to individualise treatment as some areas of the skin are different in thickness than other areas, and also some skin conditions require deeper treatment levels than others.
The Infini can treat at a much deeper skin level than Lasers. By using microneedles, the Infini can reach up to 3.5 mm below the surface of the skin, which is why it can reach the deep dermis layer of the skin and result in collagen production and skin tightening. Lasers used in cosmetic medicine target structures in the epidermis and upper dermis of the skin and do not have much effect below about 1.5mm depth. This means lasers are best for treating the surface of the skin and are the treatment of choice for such things as removing unwanted pigment, blood vessels, hair, and tattoo ink.
The other significant advantage of radiofrequency energy is that it is ‘colour blind’ which means it doesn’t matter how dark the skin is or even if the surface is tanned at the time of treatment. In contrast, Laser energy is very colour dependent, and great care needs to be exercised when using lasers to treat darker skin types and tanned skin, because of the risk of unwanted side effects such as increased pigmentation.
The Infini uses microneedle technology primarily because by delivering Radiofrequency energy through a needle, the heating can be accurately and safely directed and localised into the dermis of the skin.
Various devices in the past have tried to apply radiofrequency energy onto the surface of the skin to heat below the surface, but results were disappointing. This is because to heat the deeper dermis to a high enough temperature to stimulate collagen is difficult without damaging the surface of the skin. Differences in skin thickness, hydration, collagen, and fat make the depth of heating unpredictable. If tissue heating doesn’t occur at the right level at the right temperature, then minimal collagen stimulation occurs, and poor results are achieved.
Trauma from the needles penetrating the skin also causes mechanical stimulation to fibroblast cells in the skin to also help in producing collagen.
The needles used with the Infini are gold plated to minimise any chance of allergy. The needles are very fine, only 200 microns (0.2mm) thick. The Infini uses a tip that has 49 tiny needles (also called pins), and they deliver the energy in what is called a fractional mode. The needles are insulated, which means that the energy is directed through the tip of the needle, and heating can be accurately targeted and controlled.
The Infini is a fractional radiofrequency machine. The idea of fractionating energy was first used in the Fraxel laser in 2005 and essentially what it means is multiple discrete points of skin are treated surrounded by unaffected skin. Fractionated treatment assists wound repair and result in faster skin healing, less discomfort, and greater safety for the patient.
No, everyone cannot have Infini, but in practice, very few patients need to be excluded. Patients with cardiac pacemakers or implanted defibrillators should not have any electric type treatments, including Infini. Patients with cochlear implants should also avoid radiofrequency treatments because of potential damage to the implant.
If there is a metal implant in the area being treated, the skin overlying the metal implant should not be treated. If someone has a known allergy to metals then caution needs to be exercised as the Infini uses metal pins; however, the needles used in the Infini are gold tipped to reduce the chance of any metal sensitivity.
Patients with acute skin disease should not have any cosmetic treatments, including Infini.
Patients who are pregnant or breastfeeding are as a general rule advised against all elective procedures, including the Infini. While there is no evidence, it is not safe, there is also no evidence to prove it is entirely safe. Also, it does involve the use of quite strong topical anaesthetics, and we recommend deferring Infini treatments until after breastfeeding.
Patients with severe medical conditions such as uncontrolled diabetes, autoimmune diseases, or cancer can have Infini but will not get as good a result because of impaired skin healing. Similarly, patients who are unwell or are smokers will not tend to respond as well to Infini compared to healthy patients.
Patients on certain medications need to be more cautious before having Infini treatments such as patients on blood thinners who might bruise more easily and drugs that cause photosensitivity that might have a more severe reaction after treatment.
The Infini needles are virtually painless as they are inserted into the skin because they are so fine and are inserted very fast. Also, the 49 microneedles in the tip of the Infini handpiece do not all punch into the skin at the same time but are inserted serially in rows. However, when the radiofrequency energy is delivered through the needles, it can be felt and cause discomfort from the heating below the surface of the skin. Hence for an Infini treatment, a topical anaesthetic is applied before treatment. When the topical anaesthetic is used, most people rate the procedure as only 4 out of 10 in terms of pain.
If someone has metal pins, implants, or artificial joints in other parts of their body, they can experience a tingling sensation in those areas during an Infini treatment. This is caused by the electric current used in Radiofrequency energy but is not painful.
Topical anaesthetic cream is applied 60 minutes before treatment. During treatment, a cooling machine (such as a Zimmer cooler) can be used but is not essential as the insulated needles used with the INFINI avoid heat damage to the surface of the skin. Treatment of a full face takes about 45 minutes and face and neck about 60 minutes.
Each area is typically treated at different depths with 2 passes for each depth. There can be some pinpoint bleeding when the microneedles penetrate the skin and occasional bruising. After treatment, a cold pack is used, and then a soothing cream applied. Recovery time can be reduced by the use of a special LED light straight after treatment.
The general expectation is to have some downtime for about 48 hours after an Infini treatment. There is some initial redness and swelling after the procedure, this reduces quite quickly in the first few hours then some residual redness typically lasts for about 2 days. There is sunburn-like sensation after treatment due to the heating beneath the skin, and this also gradually dissipates over the first 48 hours.
Typically some early improvement is seen due to collagen contraction and tissue swelling then further gradual improvement continues to occur over the next few months. Full results take 4-6 months, as this is how long it takes collagen remodelling to be completed.
Most patients see improvement with only one treatment, but optimal results in facial rejuvenation, skin tightening, and Hyperhidrosis typically takes 3 treatments. It is important to remember that the Infini is fractional technology, with areas of healthy skin left surrounding the areas being treated to minimise downtime and side effects and allow for rapid healing. These areas of untreated skin are targeted in subsequent treatments. The best results with acne scarring can take 5-6 treatments.
The usual interval between INFINI treatments is 3-4 weeks, but they can be spaced further apart if necessary, and this will not adversely affect the final results. In facial rejuvenation and skin tightening, it is usually recommended to have a follow-up treatment every 12-18 months to maintain results.
It depends on the area being treated, but as a guide, a face treatment is usually $770. If both the face and neck are treated, the cost is $990. Packages of 3 treatments can be purchased at a discounted rate.
The Infini is an ideal treatment to combine with lasers because it is so targeted without damaging the surface of the skin. One example is in the rejuvenation of sun-damaged skin, we can treat with the Infini to improve the elasticity and wrinkles followed with the 1927 Fraxel Laser to treat surface pigmentation.
Topical treatments can also be combined with the Infini. The micro needling creates an opening in the skin for topical products to penetrate and be more effective compared to when they are just applied to healthy skin. Products that have been used successfully include Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Hyaluronic Acid, Growth factors, and Hydroquinone.
Treatments such as anti-wrinkle injections are best not performed on the same day as Infini if they are in the same area. The heat from the radiofrequency can reduce the effectiveness of the anti-wrinkle injections and also tissue swelling after Infini treatment can potentially result in the migration of the anti-wrinkle product and unwanted side effects. Dermal fillers based on Hyaluronic Acid can also potentially be broken down more quickly if the Infini is used in the same area.
Proper medical assessment, including current medical conditions, medications, and allergies is essential before Infini to provide realistic expectations.
Patients do not report pain after the Infini procedure. There are no restrictions on activity after Infini, but while sun exposure can occur immediately after treatment, it is generally advised to minimise sun exposure while the skin is red and feeling warm.
Some skin reactions can persist for several days longer after treatment in certain circumstances such as very sensitive skin types, when on certain medications, impaired immunity or if smokers. The use of phototherapy immediately after treatment with LED light, has been reported to reduce recovery time by as much as half and is recommended if increased skin reaction is more likely, or if downtime needs to be kept to a minimum.
After treatment, the skin can be cleaned with cool water, and a soothing cream may be recommended. LYCOGEL, which is a breathable make-up, can be applied immediately after treatment, but we advise avoiding using make-up for 48 hours.
In the first 2 days, it is also recommended that care should be used when touching the skin with dirty hands or towels. A gentle moisturiser can be used frequently, but alcohol-based products should be avoided for at least 1 week. Shaving and showering can be recommenced the day after treatment.
Before and after images are presented purely as a reference point of the results that can be achieved. Everyone is unique and outcomes will vary and realistic expectations need to be discussed on a case by case basis.
Got questions? Or ready to book in? Contact our experienced and friendly team to start your journey to healthy skin with us.