Editor’s note: This story appears in the winter issue of Aspire magazine.
Visiting with the team at Defy Nature is like swapping beauty tips with a group of good friends. Except in this case, your friends are all certified skin specialists who know exactly how to turn the tide on the effects of sun, stress, aging and acne.
The New London medical spa has built a reputation for both excellence and expertise by offering gentle, targeted anti-aging treatments.
The results speak for themselves. The spa boasts a diverse clientele, from 20 to 70-somethings; men as well as women.
Professional skin care treatment is about enhancing your appearance, not radically altering it, explains Defy Nature co-owner and founder Erin Azia, a skin specialist and certified laser technician. Defy Nature is a nonsurgical aesthetics center whose services include skin rejuvenation; wrinkle fillers and injectables; anti-aging; laser hair removal; chemical peels; and home skin care maintenance.
“We’re very conservative here,” she says. “Our clients appreciate our approach, which is that we want you to look like a better, well-rested version of yourself.”
Erin and her husband, Gregory Azia, MD, opened Defy Nature seven years ago. Dr. Gregory Azia is in solo practice in New London, where he specializes in general, laparoscopic, vascular, and breast surgery. He serves as the Medical Director for Defy Nature.
Erin and her staff stay on the leading edge of product research and professional development, and always test the products themselves, to validate their effectiveness.
One service, called e-Matrix, uses radio frequency to heat cells below the surface and stimulates cell renewal and collagen; this is good for minimizing the appearance of acne scarring and fine lines and wrinkles, in particular. Another procedure, called Gentle Max Laser, stimulates collagen underneath the skin in a non-invasive skin tightening treatment.
The fillers include hyaluronic acid, a naturally occurring substance that works with your body to help add lost volume back into your skin. And the company also carries a line of of medical-grade skin care products their clients can use at home.
“The skin care lines we endorse protect your investment in yourself,” Erin explains. “Over-the-counter products have to be marketed to all skin types and ages, which makes them far less effective, and also ignores the truth that every person is different.” She and her staff take pride in helping people get the best, longest lasting outcome based on their individual concerns, she says.
BY THE NUMBERS
Another Defy Nature advantage is that treatments are accessible across a variety of price points and budgets.
Potential clients receive a personalized, thorough and complimentary consultation with Kristin Kenny, a registered nurse who holds multiple certifications in dermal fillers and aesthetics. Clients are asked to share their concerns in order of importance. Kristin then designs a strategy to improve appearance overall.
“There is no pressure here,” she stresses, “and a lot of people don’t know that we do work within your budget. We’re different in that we don’t use a flat rate, we don’t charge an injector fee, things like that. Most of the people who come in for a consult are happy and surprised to discover that they have many options within reach.”
Medical Front Desk Manager Terrie Grabowski nods. “We just want people to come in and be educated. What we really want is for people to leave feeling good and feeling confident about their choices.”
And, like Erin, Kristin emphasizes that Defy Nature’s therapeutic approach is effective, but realistic-looking. There are no duck lips in sight.
“A lot of men and women express the fear that people will ‘know they had work done,’” Kristin says. “But the results are very natural. My goal is to just to make you look a lot more refreshed, less tired-looking, and the best you can be.”
Those of us in our 30s and 40s notice the decrease in collagen production as we age, with the appearance of lines around the lips or between the eyebrows; thinner, less defined lips; and an overall sagginess around the neck and cheekbones. That’s the time to act, explains Erin.
“The advantage to starting treatment young is that you can catch these areas as they start to decline,” she says. “The better condition your skin is in, the better it will respond.”
Most treatments take between half an hour and an hour to administer and last from 10 to 18 months, though Defy Nature also offers a very popular treatment called Bellafill, which is a 5-year filler.
Those coming in for Restylane every 12-18 months, for example, might welcome the break from periodic injections to opt for a longer-lasting effect. The secret to Bellafill’s longevity is that it works with your body. As the filler metabolizes, it stimulates the production of collagen, harnessing your body’s natural resources and prompting the natural cycle of collagen repair that slows as we age.
“I had a high school reunion coming up and wanted to turn back the hands of time. Bellafill filled in those lines and signs of aging without changing my look,” says Deb, a client. “It was me, but better.”
Client Dianne echoes that feeling, saying that she was pleased with the treatment and “would not hesitate to do this again.” Another Bellafill fan, Taylor, reports dramatic results in a longtime problem area. “I always hated the deep folds around my mouth. Bellafill filled them in and just having that done has erased many years off my face…”
Regardless of the motivation to seek treatment, the team focuses on making each process a pleasant one.
“We want everyone to feel comfortable here,” Terrie says. “We welcome anyone who wants to check us out and see what we have to offer and take advantage of that complimentary consultation.”
Many walk out relieved.
Erin says the most common feedback she receives is: “I look like myself, just better.”
Defy Nature is located at 399 Ocean Ave., New London, CT, 06320. The new year is an ideal time to rejuvenate your look; follow the spa on Facebook to keep up with the latest promotions and specials, including a December special on Bellafill. For more information call 860-442-5347 (L-E-G-S) or visit defynaturellc.com