Winterize Your Skin

Winter Skin

Winter can wreak havoc on our skin particularly as we move from the cold outdoors into our heated homes and work environments.

Wind, precipitation, and dropping temperatures can leave us with dry, flaky patches, or grey dull skin from lack of cell turnover.  Redness and rosacea can become unmanageable.

winter-landscape-2995987_1920 (1)

Our Top 10 Tips for Maintaining Your Skin

You can spend a fortune on products but good skin comes from the outside in.

  1. Wrap your scarf around your face. There’s a reason the bedu wrapped shemaghs around their faces. It was to have protection from the elements.
  2. Forgo processed foods. Nothing is worse for your skin that junk food and sugary carbs.
  3. Remember dairy is inflammatory. Many skin problems vanish when we stop consuming gluten, grains, and dairy.
  4. Good fats like avocado and olive oil contain essential fatty acids and nutrients to feed your skin, as do fatty fish.
  5. Forgo hot baths and showers. They feel so good, but they are so drying. Settle for tepid instead.
  6. Just because you don’t feel as thirsty as you do in summer, doesn’t mean you should stop drinking water. Remember hydration doesn’t just happen when you drink liquids. Fruits and vegetables are essential to keeping your tissues supple and healthy.
  7. Try rose hip oil, avocado, almond oil for after shower moisturizing. Sometimes, natural really is best and most compatible with skin.
  8. Use a mild liquid facial cleanser mixed with table sugar for an effective scrub. Or make a mask from raw honey or aloe Vera. Japanese women swear by rice water, Eastern Europeans by egg whites. Inexpensive, easy to use and naturally biocompatible.
  9. Don’t overwork your skin with elaborate skin care routines. On a daily basis, sometimes less can be more.
  10. Get a facial.


Winter Facials.

  1. Silk Peel

The perfect winter facial. DermalInfusion three- in -one advanced skin-resurfacing treatment simultaneously exfoliates, extracts, and infuses skin for a 70% increase in volume.

2. Queen Bee

Exclusive to Refine Medical Spa, the Queen Bee facial combines Silk Peel with the skin tightening effects of Venus Legacy, a cutting-edge technology that utilizes multi-polar radio frequency and pulsed magnetic fields that cause a thermal reaction in the tissue that stimulates the body’s natural healing response.

3. The PRP or Vampire Facial is done using your own drawn blood that is centrifuged to separate the platelet-rich plasma, which is then applied directly to the skin. The platelets are high in growth hormone, and the microneedling stimulates the skin to regenerate. The entire procedure stimulates cell turnover. PRP can be combined with AquaGold’s superfine micro-needles to gently deliver a custom blended serum designed specifically for your needs into your skin.


The better you care for your skin today, the less you will need to do (and spend) as you age.




The dreaded batwing. You probably saw it materialize on your body sometime in your late thirties or early forties. You might have caught sight of yourself in a reflection or on a photograph, upper arm flab waving about like a flag in the wind. Since then you’ve restricted your range of motion so much that you resemble the Queen of England.


Working Out

It may be that you used to play sports or work out in the gym, but life has interfered with your schedule. You have a demanding job, older parents, or a family to look after. Maybe you’ve been ill or injured and have had to take time off from your regime.

Fat Storage

Perhaps you always had large arms even though the rest of your body may be slim or average in size. We all hold weight differently and some people have heavy arms, just as some have heavy calves. If you are fine with it, we encourage you to celebrate your unique body. If, however, you are restricting your life or feel ashamed of your upper arms in short sleeves, sleeveless dress, or your clothes never fit correctly, this article is for you.


Coolsculpting vs Liposuction

That’s fine, you say, but I’m not subjecting myself to surgery and the pain and inconvenience afterward. Well you needn’t. The science behind Coolsculpting is called cryolipolysis and it’s about freezing fat cells, which your body processes and excretes naturally. Coolsculpting is non-invasive with no downtime, although some people may show a bit of bruising after the applicators are removed. If you are planning a beach holiday or an intimate get away, we urge you to give yourself some time to allow the bruising to clear up.

What to expect

So how does it work? The protective sleeve or gel is placed on the body prior to the applicator. The fatty flesh has been previously outlined by the doctor and the applicator now goes over it. While you read or nap, the Coolsculpting process does its work. After thirty-five minutes, the applicators are removed. Results are individual and you may need several sessions to see best results.

You will, however,  see changes in thirty to ninety days and the cells that have been eliminated will never return. You may, however need to watch your weight since there are other cells in the area which fight fill up with fat if you are consuming excessive calories or the wrong types of food for your individual needs.


Coolsculpt Cooladvantage Petite

There are several types of Coolsculpting applicators for various uses. We are thrilled to introduce Coolsculpt Cooladvantage Petite, which has been designed for arms and small areas of the body and for petite persons. It can be used on the arms, flanks, abdomen, and back (bra fat). In order to debut the device, we are offering a buy three sessions and get one free special.

Coolscultping can always be combined with Venus Legacy,which will tighten the skin after the fat has been removed for a tighter and more toned appearance. Venus Legacy accomplishes that with radio wave frequencies.

Coolsculpting has been approved by the FDA as a non-invasive way to remove fat non-surgically and the scientific evidence behind Coolsculpting has been published in over  one hundred peer reviewed abstracts and papers .


The Science behind Coolsculpting

Cryolipolysis is the non-invasive cooling of fat tissue to induce the breakdown down fat cells without damage to other tissues. It is based on the principle that fat cells are more vulnerable to energy extraction than surrounding tissues. A non-invasive applicator is attached to the targeted procedure area to extract energy from the underlying fat tissue while protecting the skin, nerves, muscles, and other tissue. The cooled fat cells undergo  cell death and are gradually eliminated, reducing the thickness of the fat layer.

During the procedure, exposure to cooling causes fat cell apoptosis, which leads to the release of cytokines and other inflammatory mediators. Inflammatory cells gradually digest the affected fat cells in the months after the procedure. Lipids from these fat cells are slowly released and transported by the lymphatic system to be processed, much like fat from food. Because the lipid clearance process is gradual, there is no harmful change in blood lipids or liver function.

Lipids in fat cells crystallize at warmer temperatures than other water-containing cells. This is how cryolipolysis targets only fat cells for destruction and spares other tissue such as skin, muscle, and nerves. The CoolSculpting system controls the rate of energy extraction or cooling during the procedure.

Call us today for a free consultation: 312.867-0600

Please click on the photos to see all our Coolsculpting pages.

Coolsculpt Cooladvantage Petite

Coolsculpt Mini




Remaining Youthful from the Inside Out

Chicago’s Refine Medical Spa’s Anti-ageing Recommendations

You’ve probably arrived at Refine Medical Spa’s website because you are looking for aesthetic procedures to refresh and improve your appearance. We’re thrilled to have you here, but today we want to talk about the ageing process and what you can do to make the second half of your life even better than the first.

Stress and Ageing


We’ve all heard that stress kills by weakening our physical systems and organs over time. The sad fact is, we have lifestyles that are deleterious to our health. Competition for status and resources play a part of our development from our earliest days and continue into school and the job market. Keeping up and maintaining our position, our possessions, our retirement funds, our children’s schools, and worrying about their place in the world takes a toll on our health. We have so much materially but we have little enjoyment in our lives. Statistically, Americans take fewer vacations and enjoy life less than their first world counterparts.

Few of us can afford to pick up and change our lifestyles, becoming a fitness expert on Bali or artisanal cheese maker in Vermont. If we choose to remain locked within the system, we will never experience significant reductions in stress. So what can we change? We can begin with our thought processes and our response to stress. How we chose to think about events has been ingrained in us from earliest childhood. But there are ways to reprogram our unconscious and our subconscious mind to respond as if we were living in the slow lane, even though we are not.



Meditation is the single most effective method of calming both mind and body and stepping out of the ego centered mind. You don’t need a fancy technique, classes, or a teacher to begin. You just need a quiet space where you won’t be interrupted for ten to twenty minutes each day. Yes, you do have time for it-just substitute it for your binge watching or social media time suck.

You can begin by sitting in a quiet space and bringing in the light –whether you want to call it God, the Universe, your higher Self, or nothing at all-through the top of your head. Then simply breathe and follow your outbreath with a mantra. Om is simple enough or God, Love, Forgive, Secure-whatever turns you on at the moment will work. Keep sitting. Your thoughts will jump all over the place but eventually they will clear, though it may take a few sessions. You will then discover a whole other world beyond your daily concerns –somewhere where your true self intersects with larger cosmic truths.



Unfortunately, the way yoga is taught in the United States is more akin to calisthenics than anything else. True yoga is a discipline, which affects your entire life and your entire system: body, mind, spirit, and soul. We’ve had a hundred years of quantum mechanics and yet the paradigm that our medical system is built on is still mechanistic. It has not yet incorporated the notion that we are pure energy, or that there could be more to a methodology of integrative medicine than incorporating a few acupuncture sessions on top of the existing system, which treats disparate symptoms with pharmaceuticals or aggressive therapies.
While there are a variety of yoga styles to choose from, they should always be practiced mindfully, and at your own speed to the best of your ability.



In the hands of a qualified practitioner, hypnosis can be used to circumvent years of talk therapy, which makes one aware of one’s issues but rarely can resolve habitual thought patterns by reprogramming the parts of the mind that we so often can’t access by conventional means.

The point is to change the way we habitually process information and react to that information.

Other Calming Therapies

Forest Bathing


Sure, the Japanese term has gained currency in recent years but regular nature walks really work to drain your organism and mind of tension. Even in cities, walking by waterfronts or through parks is adequate for decompressing. In the West, we like to think we have mastered nature but really we’re just part of the whole and we need the outdoors to restore our well being.

Earthing can be considered a subset of our time in nature. Take off your shoes, walk through the grass or sand, put your bare feet in the water, and connect to Earth’s energy field.  There have been scientific studies done on Earthing, so give it a Google and see if it doesn’t make you feel better.

Massage and Body Work


Massage feels fantastic though the effects are temporary. Body work will release habitual blocks and body armor and work through the emotions that we have not released and that are stuck in our bodies. Remember mind, body, and spirit are not separate but are an integrated whole. Working on one will affect the others.

Facial Exercises

We’ve all accepted the way to keep our bodies healthy and in shape is to give them a combination of strength and aerobic training. Facial exercises can relax habitual tension and fixed expressions and keep the underlying facial muscles from atrophying. There are a number of very good videos on Youtube you can learn from. The actor Cary Grant did them daily and swore by them.



It’s the elephant in the room but unless our diets are whole and organic, we can’t expect to be in prime shape or to look particularly youthful. There is no right diet for anyone within those parameters. Allergy testing should be part of our physicals, because we can be eating the healthiest foods on the planet but they could be causing our bodies damage. Raw, cooked, vegan, vegetarian, paleo, pescetarian or gluten, oxalate, dairy, and nightshade free-don’t follow even the best intentioned advice from so -called experts. You will have to do an elimination diet to see what works for you. However, you can begin by eating whole foods and eliminating processed foods altogether. Experiment with alcohol as well. We love it, but it does raise blood sugar and it is harmful to your liver.

Rest and Sleep

Good sleep is critically important to good health. New studies reveal what ancient systems have long known and implemented, sleeping and rising with Earth’s rhythms are healthiest. The hours between 11 pm and 2 am are most critical to regenerating the body.  Do what you need to do to be in bed with eyes shut by 10.30 pm.  There are excellent sleep enhancing videos on YouTube you can play to stop your thoughts from racing and relax the mind. Experiment and see what works best for you: music, nature sounds, or a soothing human voice.

Bioidentical Hormone Replacement Therapy and Telomeres


A telomere is a region of repetitive nucleotide sequences at each end of a chromosome, which protects the end of the chromosome from deterioration or from fusion with neighboring chromosomes.  Telomere length is considered a key marker in measuring a person’s biological age as opposed to their chronological age. Shortened telomeres have been associated with cellular aging and dysfunction.

We feature TA-65® , a patented, all natural, plant-based supplement that can help maintain or rebuild telomeres that diminish as people get older. By activating an enzyme called telomerase, the TA-65® compound can help slow down and possibly reverse age and lifestyle-related telomere shortening. Telomere length is considered a key marker in measuring a person’s biological age as opposed to their chronological age. Shortened telomeres have been associated with cellular aging and dysfunction. By activating an enzyme called telomerase, the TA-65® compound can help slow down and possibly reverse age and lifestyle-related telomere shortening.

Hormones control many bodily functions. They serve as an internal communication system between cells and coordinate growth, digestion, appetite, immune function, mood, and libido. Even mildly out of balance hormones can have a big impact on your health and well-being. Bio-identical hormones are man made hormones derived from plants that are chemically identical to those the human body produces. Estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone are among those most commonly replicated and used in treatment.

BHRT is a treatment used to augment the body’s natural hormone levels. BHRT can be used to treat men and women when their hormone levels drop or become unbalanced. Used most often to combat the symptoms of perimenopause and menopause, it can be used to improve symptoms of cancer treatment or to treat conditions such as adrenal and thyroid disorders, insulin resistance, osteoporosis, and fibrillation.

Dr. Bonnie Vulich is a doctor of osteopathic medicine, meaning she had the same training as an MD, with one exception. She examines your entire body as a whole, not just as symptoms arising from disparate and unrelated parts. As she completed a fellowship in anti-ageing medicine, she is qualified to recommend a whole body approach to healing from the inside out with the right blend of therapies, nutrition, and supplements that are unique to you and your needs, and to help you to remain youthful from the inside out.

Holiday Eating

Bad Advice from Experts and the Media About Food

brooke-lark-158019-unsplash (1)

For years, women’s magazines have been giving us ridiculous advice on how to eat over the holidays, such as: Before a party, load up on carrot sticks. When you get there, skip the appetizers, and drink white wine spritzers.

Let’s get real. Few of us overeat appetizers at holiday parties. What we do is over drink, eat carb rich, and sugar laden foods. In the meantime, there are other things going on this time of year that are contributing to our cravings.

It’s bad enough that the days are getting colder and we are spending less time outdoors, but we have the additional burden of daylight savings time, making for shorter days. I don’t know about you, but I don’t feel like eating cold crudities dipped in yogurt on days like this. Additionally how many of you come home from a long day at work and can’t wait to get into the kitchen to make a gourmet meal. Yeah, me neither.

So there remains the question of what to eat.  It’s easy in summer when you can pop something on the grill and make a salad, but that’s not going to work to satisfy your bodily requirements now. This is why so many of us gain weight during the winter months; we grab the richest ready made foods we can find, which usually consist of flour and bad fats.

For those of us who work in office environments and are who are constantly exposed to sugary treats like commercial candies, donuts, cookies and the like, something more that willpower will be required to overcome temptation.

Healthy  Fats


Your secret weapon during the cold months of the year is fat. Yes, you heard me right. For years, fat has been demonized in the press and by the medical establishment. This push has been made by lobbyists on behalf of processed food companies. Of course, those companies use bad, cheap fats to create their Frankenfoods.

The fats you should rely on are not only good for your heart, your skin, hair, and overall health, but they are deeply satisfying and will leave you sated for a very long time afterward.

So what kind of fats should you be eating? This is very individual and you will have to either experiment on yourself or get tested for food allergies and sensitivities, but generally grass fed butter, coconut oil, MCT Oil, and olive oil are your best bets. Dairy can cause inflammation, so you will have to experiment with cheeses and not overeat them. Generally speaking, you should be looking for grass fed, hormone free products. Skip milk and cream altogether. Nut butters can also be problematic due to mold overgrowth and for some people who react to histamines, avocado can be a problem as well.



What other superfoods can we rely on during the winter months? Sardines are a nutritional powerhouse-and all you have to do is open a can. Fatty fish like salmon can be made in minutes –either baked or broiled-with a bit of spice, lemon juice, and butter. Tuna takes a quick sear and a splash of soy sauce -gluten free of course. If you require meat, then the slow cooker can be your best friend.

Have you been avoiding egg yolks in the mistaken belief that they can damage your arteries? Nothing can be further from the truth. Eggs are a perfect food. Just make sure you buy organic and free range to get the most nutrients from them.

In terms of vegetables, look to dark leafy greens like kale, spinach, collard greens, Brussels sprouts, and broccoli. They take minutes to steam. Add garlic powder, sea salt and olive oil and you’re ready to go. Additionally these nutritional powerhouses have the advantage of being liver friendly. And that’s critical if you are going to be drinking.

Lose Weight by Refrigerating Carbs


The quickest way to lose weight is to get carbs out of your diet. Add sweet potatoes instead. Forget Granny’s Thanksgiving recipe, which is laden with brown sugar-sweet potatoes are already sweet enough! Baked or steamed with the addition of grass fed butter such as Kerry Gold-and you will be in heaven. Baking, refrigerating for 24 hours, and then reheating potatoes increases their resistant starch content by 280%, according to some studies. You can do the same for beans, pulses, purple potatoes, and rice. But limit your intake to once or twice a week, if you want to lose weight.

After you make dietary changes to include healthy fats and still have sweet cravings, up your red meat intake. If you still crave sweets or need to sweeten coffee and tea, consider Stevia, a South American herb, which comes in a powder form and is 200 times sweeter than sugar. It has none of the metabolic dangers associated with commercial sugar substitutes. If you must have dessert, purchase organic cocoa powder, and in your mixer combine it with avocado, vanilla, Stevia/or maple syrup, and chocolate almond milk to make a rich and satisfying chocolate mousse which is not only healthy but indistinguishable from the dairy and sugary original.

Holiday Drinking


And now we come to the one thing that can sabotage our best efforts during the holidays: alcohol. So what should we drink over the holidays? Whiskey, vodka, brandy, gin, tequila, and other pure alcohols have zero carbs. The lowest-carb wine option is a flute of champagne with 1 gram of carbs. Dry white and red wine have around 2 grams per serving. A typical beer has 13 grams.  It’s more than likely that the health benefits of alcohol, particularly wine, have been exaggerated. No alcohol is liver friendly, although fortunately, the liver is a self-regenerating organ. So to help you drink moderately, ask for a chaser. A bubbly mineral water will fill you up, provide much needed hydration, and help you to drink less.

Please click on the photo below to find out what your cravings really mean and which healthy foods you can substitute.


Gut health, Supplements and Probiotics


The Importance of Food for Maintaining Good Health

Hippocrates, the father of medicine, said, ‘Let food be they medicine and medicine be thy food.’ In modern times, we have paraphrased this aphorism as You are what you eat.


However, since the era of the Madmen in advertising, we have allowed ourselves to be fooled into thinking that prepackaged, fast, or otherwise adulterated food is actually good for us. Nothing can be further from the truth. While improvements in hygiene and waste disposal, along with powerful antibiotics, have contributed to lengthening our collective lifespans, we are entering old age more debilitated than our counterparts did in previous eras.

Partly due to our sedentary lifestyles, or indulgence in excessive sports, we are ever more reliant on technologies and surgeries to help us retain mobility. Some of us resort to hair color, plastic surgeries, or injections to look younger. We go on diets to remain slim and sexy, following every fad from low fat to low gluten.

However, we rarely think about the impact our actions have on our long-term health. True, most of the health conscious have stopped smoking, but have replaced that indulgence by guzzling supersized glasses of wine, focusing on the heart healthy benefits of Resveratrol while ignoring the effects of carbohydrates and sugars on their bodies. Additionally we indulge in so-called whole grains and healthy carbs, while wondering why our waistlines never seem to shrink.


Some people, on the other hand, believe our cave ancestors ate nothing but meat, which could not be further from the truth, and err on the other side of dietary spectrum. Others follow the Okinawa diet or the Mediterranean diet ignoring that the less stressful lifestyles and general contentment of those populations relative to our own culture might be the real clue to their good health.

Organic Food, Soil Depletion and Supplements

Now you might say, that’s not me, I eat an organic and balanced diet. The only trouble with that is that the organic label doesn’t always mean food is entirely raised or initially sourced organically. Even grass fed cows spend the last portions of their lives in feedlots, thus undoing most of the benefits beef eaters hope to derive from consuming ‘organic’ meat.

The most disturbing aspect about agriculture in the United States is that our soils have been leeched of vital nutrients and minerals and poisoned by pesticides and petrochemical fertilizers for decades. We think we are getting the fuel and vitamins we need to maintain a healthy body, but we are not.



We then resort to supplements. However, we might not realize that not all vitamin and mineral formulas are of the same quality. Those on sale at our local drugstores, or even in stores that specialize in vitamins, have been found to be full of additives, fillers and contaminants.

If you are going to supplement, it is advisable to purchase physician/pharmaceutical grade supplements available from holistic health practitioners. These supplements will be the ones most able to deliver benefits without any additional fillers or contaminants.

While we carry a wide range of supplements manufactured by Metagenics and Xymogen, Dr. Vulich recommends that almost everyone can begin to improve overall health by taking probiotics. As Hippocrates also said, Health begins in the gut.

Gut Bacteria and Well-being

What do we actually mean by the gut? The gastrointestinal system, also referred to as the gastrointestinal tract, digestive system, digestive tract, or gut, is a group of organs that includes the mouth, esophagus, stomach, pancreas, liver, gallbladder, small intestine, colon, and rectum.


What then is gut bacteria?  There are three to five hundred different kinds of bacteria within the digestive tract. Along with other tiny organisms like viruses and fungi, they make up the unique microbiota that is different in each human being. One’s microbiota is determined by the mother’s microbiota, the environment that the body is exposed to at birth, and from diet and lifestyle.

Bacteria lives in the entire body, but the bacteria in the gut may have the biggest impact on well-being. Though they line the entire digestive system, the majority live in the intestines and colon.

Chronic stress, antibiotics, poor overall health, C-section births, and environmental toxins can all deplete the beneficial flora found in the gut. Symptoms can present as heartburn, constipation, bloating and excess gas while having far-reaching and damaging consequences for overall health.

Chronic inflammation can cause the body to seek to protect itself, launching an immune response and damaging its own tissues and organs in the process.  Studies indicate that poor gut health may be responsible for depression, headaches, fatigue, fibromyalgia, autism, Parkinson’s Disease, Lupus, Rheumatoid arthritis, dermatitis, obesity and diabetes.

We also have to consider the fact that our entire system works symbiotically and that the metabolism and thyroid cannot function properly without good gut health. Some physicians suggest that those with subnormal thyroid function need to improve their gut health in order for thyroid medications to be completely utilized by the body.

Certainly, gut health can be improved by eating fermented foods, such as sauerkraut or Kimchee, consuming bone broth, oinions and garlic, while avoiding sugars and limiting gluten or processed carbohydrates. However, supplementation can help the body get a jump-start in creating good gut fauna and eliminating a host of underlying health problems.

Dr. Bonnie Vulich will be happy to discuss your symptoms and goals with you and suggest a nutritional program along with the proper supplementation to improve your overall health. Please call today 312.867-0600.

Non-Surgical Body Contouring with Fire and Ice Body Treatments

With our busy schedules, few of us can afford to devote hours to physical fitness, but even if we do, we can still have pockets of unsightly fat that are completely resistant to our efforts.

Liposuction was the old way of treating this areas, but not only is it expensive, it also carries risks such as any surgical procedure might do.

That’s where CoolSculpting comes in. CoolSculpting is a non-invasive, risk free treatment with no downtime that melts fat away naturally. Fat cells are frozen with the CoolSculpting device, painlessly, and then eliminated by the body’s natural processes.

Protective gel is placed on the area and then the device is utilized to freeze the fat cells, while the skin and muscles remain undamaged. The most amazing part of CoolSculpting is that those cells die off and leave the body permanently. Generally, when a person gains or loses weight, the fat cells either expand or contract, but they remain in the body. In other words, with CoolSculpting the fat cells that were frozen will never return.

Patients will see improvements within three weeks, though it can take up to three months to see the full results, which can be dramatic.

CoolSculpting can be used on the abdomen, flanks, inner or outer thighs, chin, and upper arms.

However, CoolSculpting cannot improve the quality of skin. When we are older, our skin doesn’t bounce back as quickly after weight loss. That’s where Venus Legacy, the fire portion of the treatment comes in. Venus Legacy is a device that delivers radio frequencies is used to heat the collagen below the skin, causing it to tighten and then regenerate. Venus is often used to treat cellulite eliminating the dimples found on the thighs and buttocks, smoothing skin and tightening sagging.

After both treatments are applied, you will experience fat reduction and the skin, where the fat loss occurred, will be firm and not saggy.

Come in for a complimentary consultation with Dr. Vulich, who will explain both procedures in depth and devise an individualized treatment protocol specifically for you, no matter where your problem areas may be occurring. Do remember that CoolSculpting and Venus Legacy aren’t a short cut to weight loss if you are obese.

To get you into shape this summer, we are now offering  20% off the total package, which combines both treatments. Call us today 312.867-0600.

Fat- reduction- plus- skin- tightening
Fat Reduction with CoolSculpting meets tightening and toning with Venus Legacy

Effective Cellulite Treatments

What is Cellulite?

Cellulite is a term for the dimpled appearance of thighs and buttocks, which will affect 80-90% of all women.

The cause of cellulite is unknown, but it is thought to result from an interaction between the connective tissue below the surface of the skin and the layer of fat that is just below it. In women, fat cells and connective tissue in this layer are arranged vertically. When fat cells protrude into the layer of skin, the appearance of cellulite is created. In men, tissues have a fish net structure, which may explain why men are less likely to have cellulite than women.

Ageing, genetics, dietary choices, an inactive lifestyle, metabolic speed, and hormones all play a part in the formation of cellulite.

What you can  do to improve the appearance of cellulite.

  • Eat a diet that is low on processed food and carbohydrates
  • Eat fresh vegetables
  • Try to avoid standing or sitting for long periods
  • Walk and take the stairs whenever you can.
  • Add squats to your exercise routine to build muscle
  • Stop smoking. Smoking disrupts blood flow and the formation of new collagen

Do creams and topical applications work?

Retinol and body creams which contain ingredients such as caffeine have been shown to improve the appearance of cellulite. Caffeine dehydrates the cells, while retinol over a period of months thickens the skin. Dieting and liposuction are completely ineffective since they do not alter the structure of connective tissue.

What can you do if those treatments fail to bring about the changes you desire?

Venus Legacy™ delivers safe and effective treatments that smooth cellulite, improve the appearance of sagging skin, and reduce fine lines and wrinkles on the face and body comfortably with no downtime. Venus Legacy™ uses heat to naturally boost collagen production and break down fat cells, which smooths cellulite, improves the look of sagging skin, and diminishes wrinkles on the face and body.

How it works

Venus Legacy™ uses Multi-Polar Radio Frequency and Pulsed Electro Magnetic Fields to produce heat under the skin’s surface. This process helps to naturally increase collagen and elastin fibers, while also shrinking the volume of fat cells. At the same time, an adjustable pulsed suction (called VariPulse™) gently works to pull the skin upward, allowing the energy to travel deeper and providing more comfortable and effective treatment. The result is a body that looks slimmer and more sculpted, skin that looks tighter, and cellulite that almost disappears.

What you should know:

  • Venus is safe for all skin tones.
  • The treatments are cumulative. After your final treatment, your results will continue to improve for up to 3-4 months. After that, your face and body continue to age, so maintenance is recommended once a month or every 3-4 months, depending on the person.
  • No downtime. The treatment area may look a little flushed and warm to the touch, but this will go away within 1-2 hours. You can return to your daily schedule immediately after your treatment.
  • Most patients receive 6-8 treatments per area. The exact number will depend on each individual person and the area being treated. Treatments are done once a week. Each session lasts 15-30 minutes, depending on the area being treated
  • Venus Legacy™ treatments are comfortable. The level of heat and suction can easily be adjusted to suit you. The applicator will slowly get warmer until your skin reaches the needed temperature and stays within that temperature range. If you do feel it is too hot, let the operator know and they can easily lower the temperature a bit. If the technician is using the VariPulse™ feature, you will also feel a gentle suction on your skin, like a very low-power vacuum, as the applicator moves around the area. This can also be lowered if needed. Afterward the area may feel warm to the touch, but other than that, you will feel perfectly normal.

Before and After

If you think you are a candidate for the Venus Legacy treatment, please call us for a complimentary consultation with Dr. Bonnie Vulich at 312.867-0600.

The Many Uses of Botox

Beyond erasing wrinkles Botox® has many medical applications from easing migraines and excessive sweating to helping control premature ejaculation and erectile dysfunction.

Cosmetic use of Botox®

You may think of Botox® as something utilized by expressionless Hollywood actresses and spoiled trophy wives to keep foreheads preternaturally smooth, and ageing at bay. It is true that many of our celebrities have suffered at the hands of overzealous doctors. But the in the right hands, that is to say a physician who has a profound sense of aesthetics and anatomy, Botox® can freshen and rejuvenate without altering one’s expression  for the worse.

What is Botox®?

Botox® is made from a purified, mostly harmless neurotoxin that causes Botulism. It was developed in the 1980s by Dr. Alan Scott, a San Francisco ophthalmologist, who was looking for a cure for crossed eyes. His incidental discovery was that it made wrinkles dissipate.

Since 2002, Botox® has been FDA-approved for all kinds of therapeutic applications, including migraines, severe sweating, muscle stiffness, and urinary incontinence.

Chronic migraines 

In 1992, Beverly Hills plastic surgeon Dr. William Binder noticed his Botox® patients reported fewer headaches. Allergan tested the drug on people suffering from chronic migraines, and Botox® was FDA approved  for the disorder in 2010.

Neck spasms/ Vaginal spasms/ Facial spasms

In 2000, Botox® was approved by the FDA in treating severe neck spasms and pain. Though not yet approved, some women use Botox® injections to treat spasmodic vaginal muscles, thus easing pain and making intercourse possible.

Botox to halt excessive perspiration

When doctors noticed that their patients being treated for facial spasms were sweating less, scientists at Allergan and outside of the company began studying whether Botox® could be a successful therapy for people with who sweated profusely. Botox® was approved for the treatment in 2004. Today,  Botox® is used to treat overly sweaty hands and feet.


In 2014, Dr Norman Rosenthal, a clinical professor of psychiatry at Georgetown University School of Medicine, and Dr. Eric Finzi, an assistant professor of psychiatry at George Washington School of Medicine, published a study showing that when people with major depression got Botox®, they reported fewer symptoms six weeks later than people who had been given placebo injections. Scientists have since determined that Botox can influence the central nervous system beyond the areas in which it is injected.

Other applications:

Botox® is being tested for its ability to halt premature ejaculation and to help with erectile dysfunction, prevent abnormal heartbeat patterns, treat excessively cold hands and scar tissue in babies with cleft palates.

Further unapproved uses of Botox® injections include:

Writer’s cramp –  Injections are also helpful for “musician’s cramp,” in which the musician’s fingers contract while playing.

Hand tremors The injections probably improve tremor severity but may also result in finger weakness.

Spasticity – Shown to be beneficial for lower-limb spasticity associated with cerebral palsy in children and for upper-limb spasticity associated with strokes in adults. The injections particuarly improve the gait of children with tightened calf muscles.

Esophageal spasms -The injections appear to reduce such symptoms as regurgitation, difficulty swallowing, and accompanying upper chest pain.

Drooling -Evidence suggests that the shots may control excess salivation in people with Parkinson’s disease and amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

Voice abnormalities– For vocal cord palsy, or spasms that produce a strained or tremulous voice.

Gummy Smile –  Injecting Botox into the upper lip weakens the retractor muscles, lowering the lip line to produce a more aesthetically balanced smile.

Jaw Softening – Botox can be used to perform jaw line softening. Injecting Botox into the masseter muscle (the primary muscle used in chewing actions) reduces its overall size; transforming an overly square and masculine appearing jawline into a more feminine oval or heart shape.

Jaw Tension, Lock Jaw, and TMJ Disorder – Experimental-stage research has shown Botox to be effective in treating a variety of jaw disorders including severe tension, TMJ Disorder, and lock jaw. When injected into the jaw Botox relaxes the facial muscles; both reducing occurrences and minimizing symptoms.

 Anal fissures -Botox® seems to have a better healing rate and side-effect profile than nitroglycerin ointment for persistent tears caused by spasms of the anal sphincter.

Botox® may yet to demonstrate other uses for medical conditions, so far it seems to be a wonder drug.

Side effects of Botox® may include:

Allergic reactions, rash, itching, headache, neck pain, muscle stiffness, shortness of breath, nausea, diarrhea, muscle weakness, cold and flu symptoms, and drowsiness.

What is CoolSculpting?

CoolSculpting vs Liposuction

Do you remember liposuction? It is a surgical procedure to remove pockets of unwanted fat. The limitations are that you must be within 30% of your ideal bodyweight, healthy, and a nonsmoker with elastic skin. More importantly, it is a surgical procedure carried out under general anesthesia that carries with it risk, such as infections and uneven fat removal. You should expect bruising, swelling, and soreness for at least a few weeks, and you will be required to wear a compression garment for one to two months after surgery to control swelling. Additionally, you will have to take antibiotics to prevent infection.

What if there were any easier and far less costly non -surgical alternative with little risk and no downtime.

Now there is with the FDA approved CoolSculpting procedure.

What is CoolSculpting?

CoolSculpting is a non -invasive procedure for eliminating pockets of fat bulges in the submental area, thigh, abdomen and flank, along with bra fat, back fat, underneath the buttocks (also known as banana roll), upper arm and chin.

How does it work?

Years ago, scientists at Harvard University observed that some children who ate popsicles got dimples in their cheeks. The scientists realized that the popsicles were freezing and eliminating small pockets of fat cells.

The idea that cold can target fat cells—without damaging the skin or surrounding tissue—was the insight behind cryolipolysis, the proven science on which the CoolSculpting procedure is based.

The treatment precisely delivers controlled cooling to targets fat cells under the skin. Over time the fat cells crystalize and gradually die off and leave the body through the body’s natural elimination processes leaving a sculpted appearance. Those cells will never return, resulting in permanent results. Untreated areas will have no change in fat cell distribution.

What does the procedure involve?

During the preparation, the clinician applies a gel pad on the body part that the procedure will be done. Then, a roll of fat is placed between two panels that cool the fat to a freezing temperature

As the cooling begins during the first few minutes, you typically feel intense cold. This soon dissipates. With some applicators, you’ll feel some pulling as suction is applied. The area generally goes numb within 5 to 10 minutes of treatment. Many people read, watch videos, work on their laptop, or nap during their CoolSculpting treatment.

What to expect after the treatment:

You may feel some tingling as the area is massaged for 2 or 3 minutes. Patients are usually able to return to normal activities following their appointment. You might feel uncomfortable as the area treated may feel a little sore and appears reddish. You may also feel some stiffness, but this is normal and will last for less than 15 minutes after the procedure. However, you may resume your normal activities.

What results can you expect?

Frozen, dead fat cells are excreted out of the body within several weeks of treatment. You may start to see changes as quickly as three weeks after your treatment, and will experience the most dramatic results after 2 months. Your body will continue to flush out fat cells for up to 4 to 6 months after treatment.

Are you a candidate for CoolSculpting?

CoolSculpting is not for everyone. It is not a treatment for obesity. Instead, the technique is appropriate for helping to remove small amounts of extra fat resistant to other weight-loss attempts such as diet and exercise

CoolSculpting is a safe and effective treatment for reducing body fat in many people. There are some people who should not try CoolSculpting. People who have the following conditions should not do this treatment because of the risk of dangerous complications. These conditions include:

  • cryoglobulinemia
  • cold agglutinin disease
  • paroxysmal cold hemoglobuinuria (PCH)

What Happens if You Gain Weight After CoolSculpting?

The treated fat cells are destroyed and flushed out of your system for good, but weight gain is still a possibility.

The process of gaining or losing weight is different from the process of destroying fat. When you lose weight, your fat cells shrink, making you thinner. When you add more pounds, the cells you do have become larger so you become larger.

If you end up gaining weight after CoolSculpting, the fat that remained in the treated area can increase in size. The same is true of the fat in other areas of the body. Since you have less fat in the treated areas, you might notice that you gain more weight or fat in other areas of the body instead.

Are there side effects?

Following the procedure, typical side effects include temporary redness, swelling, blanching, bruising, firmness, tingling, stinging, tenderness, cramping, aching, itching, or skin sensitivity These effects are temporary and generally resolve within days or weeks. Though rare, some additional side effects may occur. As with any medical procedure, ask your physician if the CoolSculpting procedure is right for you.

Before and after patient results:





How to improve your chances of finding a job when you are over 50.

Congratulations, you’ve made it past H.R. to the first round of interviews. Your resume is impressive; you’ve upgraded your skills and added new ones consistently, and you’re no slouch when it comes to mastering computer technology.

You know there are two or three other candidates for the position, yet you still feel that you have a great chance-after all you are at the top of your game –you’ve mastered your ego, and you don’t get fazed by office politics or engage in petty personal vendettas. You’ve got your powerful body language, your firm handshake, and your eye contact down pat. You ask the right questions, and your answers are fluid and intelligent.

You wait for that call- and then, nothing. What gives?

Here’s the real truth. People make up their minds about you within seconds. They base their opinion on your body language and facial characteristics. Traits like likeability, trustworthiness, and competence are determined solely by a fleeting impression. Sadly, that impression, according to several psychological studies, and not your skills, is the deciding factor to whether or not you will be hired.

Sadly, our society discriminates heavily against older women. For some reason, we are seen as less attractive and less desirable than younger women or men our age, despite the fact that we are at our best, our wisest, and our most competent.

So what can we do to sell ourselves? We’ve all seen the blissed out whippet slender grey haired yogini in fabulous over fifty advertising. I can guarantee that those women have husbands who manage hedge funds-thus their level of contentment. Forget the grey hair, you’ve got to color it and get a chic youthful cut. The second thing you must do is to remain in shape. Nothing says mumsy or post-menopause more than a few extra pounds. How are you going to do this-especially when you are stressed and don’t have perfect control over your adrenals and thyroid gland? To keep from packing on the pounds, you are going to have to take some serious steps. First, stop drinking coffee or caffeinated beverages. Nothing will over stimulate your already taxed adrenal glands more. Secondly, cut out booze. Ouch, I know it hurts! We love our glass –ok, goblet, of wine in the evenings.  However, it’s too sugary and it inhibits the fat burning process. Three, cut down on carbs. Let’s face it, you’re not a triathlete, and your body can’t burn those useless calories anymore. Get rid of grains, and especially gluten. Yeah, it’s too trendy for words-but so what? Sugar too, no more of those comforting sweet treats. Cut down on nuts ( four are healthy,  forty are overkill)  and eliminate dairy. So what are you left with? Primarily vegetables, fish, and grass fed meats. Boring, it’s true, but you will look and feel better. Knock those pounds off, and later you can reintroduce an occasional treat. Learn about vitamins and supplements and purchase only quality brands that will support your body.

For now, forget the gym and get out and walk in nature, the park, or by the lake. Nature is the greatest de-stressor available. Later you can add weights for shape and other sports for fun.

Lastly, you have to learn to control your negative thoughts. Whether or not you believe in new thought-i.e: that thoughts shape our reality-you can certainly raise your happiness vibe by focusing on the positive things in your life and doing what makes you happy. There is nothing worse for your health and outlook and the energy you are giving out than to be stuck in fear and despair.

There are tons of free guided mediation videos, along with tapping, and talks on new thought on YouTube to help you learn those skills.

Now that you have your body and mind on track, we turn to your face. I can anticipate your thoughts already-you’re a feminist and you have utter contempt for the desperate wives of Beverly Hills. You’d never get a facelift, or two, like Jane Fonda, Diane Sawyer or Barbara Walters, and you’d never be caught dead with those giant duck lips, either. Well, you don’t have to. A skilled doctor can restore lost volume to your face with injectable fillers. Shot into your cheekbones, your sagging face is lifted in a matter of minutes-no more jowls!  Deposited into your marionette lines-ten years are instantaneously reversed. The sockets under your eyes that have gotten hollower with age are another great place where dermal fillers prove their efficaciousness.

Botox lifts your forehead and eliminates the lines on it, softens your crow’s feet and is the most marvelous antidote to the formation of migraines.

CoolSculpt Mini melts away double chins, creating a more youthful and chiseled appearance, while facials and cutting edge peels restore a smooth, plumped appearance to skin and eliminate dark spots, acne, and rosacea.

It would be lovely if we loved in a world that was fair and equitable, but we don’t, unfortunately. You can give yourself an edge over the competition by looking more youthful and beautiful. That, in itself, works wonders for your confidence levels-and that always attracts people and, consequently opportunities, to you.


In the following weeks, we will examine different therapies for the body and face and the benefits of each. Join us!