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Photo by: WWD/Steve Eichner

This ghoulish-sounding treatment for the signs of aging was introduced in 2009 and has since been mentioned on 200,000 Web pages. It involves injecting the patient's own pale yellow blood plasma around the eyes and mouth, borrowing a technique used to promote healing after orthopedic surgery. It's not actually a face-lift, and it's not FDA approved for use in the face. There are no independent studies proving its cosmetic benefits, though some doctors believe the growth factors in plasma can gradually stimulate collagen production. For results that will be noticed immediately, doctors often add Juvéderm, a hyaluronic acid filler, to the plasma, creating confusion about which substance is doing the plumping. Since plasma extraction can add more than $1,000 to a filler bill, many dermatologists now recommend that patients stick with a wrinkle-fighting method that's proven to work, such as a filler used on its own.

Most Overrated Cosmetic Procedures

Joan Kron, Allure magazine

New cosmetic procedures often fail to live up to their original promise. Some may even do harm. We investigate the innovations that you might want to reconsider.

It wasn't so long ago that a woman with a desire to look younger, slimmer, or simply better would huddle with her doctor in private. Now, one demonstration of a new laser on the Today show, and phones are ringing in dermatologists' and plastic surgeons' offices across the country. More and more patients are demanding the latest treatments the moment they hear about them on the news, in the salon, or over lunch with their best friend. Here's the problem with this pioneer impulse: Plastic surgery's past is crowded with operations that were rushed to the public with insufficient testing, or that proved too painful, or that simply weren't as effective as promised. Take it from us, the most dangerous word in plastic surgery may be "new." And unlike making a mistake by, say, buying a pair of jeggings that aren't entirely flattering, cosmetic procedures are often irreversible. Here, a hard look at the choices.

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